Saturday June 27 is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Awareness Day.
PTSD Awareness Day also comes on the end of June, which is PTSD Awareness Month. PTSD is a disorder that can affect many people who have experienced traumatic incidents, often including military service members and veterans.
The U.S. Army Reserve YouTube account shared a video earlier in June, sharing Brig. Gen, Ernset Litynski’s story of being diagnosed with and battling PTSD.
Litynski described losing friends in Afghanistan and his desire to push passed the ensuing grief he experienced as a result, not realizing the effect PTSD had in his life. Litynski said he thought he was doing well in his professional life until one day he thought he was having a heart attack. After a full battery of tests he eventually learned he was actually suffering some of the symtpoms of PTSD.
Sgt. Scott Morrison shared his own struggle with PTSD in a video with the Wounded Warrior Project. Morrison similarly described feeling comfortable in his personal life, but realizing he was also struggling with realizing he was also living with PTSD.
“I knew that I needed help and I needed some sort of support,” Morrison said. “. . . .I reached out to wounded warrior project.”
“I want to tell veterans who are sitting and dealing with what I dealt with, ‘don’t wait, don’t give up,'” Morrison said. “There’s hope. There is light at the end of the tunnel. You’ve got to work for it. It’s not going to be given to you. It’s not going to be easy. You’re going to have to work for it, but don’t give up.”
Another video, posted on Saturday by the group Stop Soldier Suicide provided a breakdown of some of the statistics surrounding the issue of PTSD in America. The group noted that depending on the branch, up to 31 percent of service members had developed PTSD after returning from combat and more than 8 million Americans over the age of 18 are dealing with PTSD. A 2018 report by the Department of Veterans Affairs indicated the number of serving in the war in Iraq or Afghanistan ranged from 11 to 20 percent in a given year.
“No one should battle this alone,” the Stop Soldier Suicides video states. “Our heroes shouldn’t battle this alone. We’re here for the fight.”