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PTSD

Discussion in 'WWII General' started by Krystal80, Mar 23, 2011.

  1. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Patron  

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    Roger, I'm glad you revived this thread. I personally never experienced any one with PTSD, but I know it's real. Thanks for the update.
     
  2. Krystal80

    Krystal80 Member

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    My grandma says when her and my grandpa were first married, 4yrs after WWII, he was still having trouble sleeping through the night every night. He would have terrible nightmares and wake up with a start. I don't think she ever questioned him about them. Years later he still doesn't want to talk about any details. He will tell me some things that are fairly random, about how long the trip took over (Philippines), how he pealed 1000's of spuds to avoid the sick men in the sleeping quarters and on the deck, the tiny native people and the weather. No details about the fighting etc though. I wonder if he had had the therapy they have now, if it would have helped him.

    I asked my grandma if my questions bothered him and she said he had mentioned he had spent 65 years trying to forget...so I quit asking him. I just appreciate what he sacrificed and enjoy him every minute I can.
     
  3. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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    USMC, I think the posers is a red herring...Not insulting you, I know they exist, but it is easy for the state yours and mine to weed out who served and who didn't and apply the necessary help required.

    A documentary last night on our BBC4, reiterated to me just how hard it is still over here for those obviously suffereing some form of mental battle damage to access any help whatsover even though we over here are constantly informed the help exists. It is there, just hard for family and friends to get it thru our NHS as an urgency when needed as shown it the documentary.

    My own view, is it exists always has...I also accept that the ww2 soldier tended to get on with things...but that was wrong. Many were left to get on with their suffering...in silence...Again I put this down to the 2 major wars of 20th Century being an all or nothing war...especially in UK where all were or seemed to be involved. So you get shared experiences...next door did the same and and those across the road, and him and her around the corner...They seemed to be surrounded by like minded knowing folk who had also experienced similar things....Today the lad or lass comes home and no one seems to understand, there are no shared experiences...down the pub, shopping, the world carries on while the lad or lass says whats the matter with you lot, don't you know there is a war on folk are getting killed. There is no shared common grief, or even real knowledge, these FEW folk who have served today are simply dissapearing back into society and a society that just seems to get on with their lives regardless...Shopping, football, holidays...And the few who have seen and served are left isolated or so they think.
     
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  4. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    About the (possibly) higher incidence today. From what I've been reading concussions especially from explosives seem to correlate pretty strongly with at least some forms of PTSD. Due to advances in battlefield medicine and body armor people are surving events that they simply wouldn't have in previous conflicts. A severe concusion as well as the possible loss of function of one or more limbs and blunt trauma would seem like a pretty effective receipe for PTSD. They are also getting to the point where some forms can be diagnosed with physical tests and these are showing up cases where the individuals often haven't complained of PTSD but the other symptoms are there to one extent or another.
     
  5. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    I think the correlation is the violence of the incident and it's affect on the senses. When your brain "reboots" there can be several moments of: "What the heck just happened, am I alive, am I dead, how jacked up am I?" There is no command prompt ctrl+f2 to restart in safe mode, so there is a lot of sensory inventory including guilt and self doubt; especially if others have taken significant damage. Not to mention momentary loss of actual brain function or traumatic brain injury that would affect production and distribution of endorphines and dopamine (the goo that helps us cope).

    Going back a bit to the other thread. In the Pacific theatre most troops were delivered by nice safe ships and transports from rear areas wich were sometimes hundreds if not thousands of miles away, all that travel took time. The reality of the situation didn't necessarily sink in until the day before or the morning of the landing; so there was little time to mentally prepare. Once the battle was over, and the island was secured, leaving the island for a rear area was just as quick: they got on a boat and were once again out of harms way.

    In Europe, on the other hand, there was a much slower movement to contact wich allowed for a more gradual preparation. The evacuation phase was also just as gradual.

    It was explained to me that traumatic events are like scuba diving: A fast ascent will cause more problems than a slow and steady return to the surface. With that analogy you could consider the European theatre to be akin to a saturation dive where the diver stays at depth for days or weeks and the Pacific more like a sport diver who spends thirty to forty minutes on the bottom often not needing decompression.

    It's easier to diagnose, and accept, a person who has an outwardly visible sign of trauma and be able to attribute that to being in a traumatic event i.e. "Yeah he's an *ss hole because a grenade blew up in his face and he lost an eye". On the other hand PTSD manifestation is often " He's just an *ss hole" with no visible indications of why. The other thing to consider is that the "being an *ss hole" is also a coping mechanism, the same as drinking or drug use.

    In my case I was an *sshole because it made people not engage with me and it was also prone to creating conflict (fighting). I love the adrenaline.
     
  6. Big_Al

    Big_Al Member

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    I have opened the thread at WW2talk (where I am a member as well) but since it is now up to 47 pages, I will read it tonight.
    To anyone who thinks PTSD is not real, or is a sign of weakness, feel free to walk a mile in my shoes.
    PTSD has been around probably since the beginning of organized warfare. There is mention of it as "soldiers heart" and "nostalgia" affecting soldiers of the US Civil War.
    Psychiatric casualties existed in WWII, as in every war.
    I myself was diagnosed in 1986 as a result of my service in Vietnam. It was explained to me that the "Traumatic Stress" part of PTSD changes the chemistry of the brain, affecting the way the brain operates. And it's a permanent change, you do not get better, you just learn to live with it. It is a normal reaction to abnormal circumstances.
    I recieved individual counseling and group therapy at the VA, but I refused their offer of drugs. I also did not, and will not, apply for disability. I do not consider myself disabled. What happened to me happens, to some degree, to everyone who participates in combat. Some more, some less. And I am humbled to be in their company.
    Thanks for letting me vent.
     
  7. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    It's a pretty good read and it gets pretty passionate at times. It's best to refrain from comment until you reach the end; just as a way to avoid treading well worn ground. It's actually a great thread with a ton of resources in it. There was another thread that was spawned from there wich called into question the ability of today's troops v. those that fought in WW2.
     
  8. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Since it is now being studied as a ailment and more research being done in it it has also been recognized in other high stress jobs. Policemen, firemen, and rescue workers in particular. There was an article on in on NPR a few months back that mentioned it was a serious problem among high altitude rescue workers. That they knew many of the victims was apparently a factor.
     
  9. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large Patron  

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    No sir, I don't believe it is a red-herring. I've run into too many of them. I am not insinuating that they are a large portion of those diagnosed, but the percentage would surprise you. The government can not always weed out who was exposed to combat, and who wasn't because in many cases the unit was, but due to the individuals job they were not. Then you have the factor that in asymetrical warfare many personnel not normally exposed to combat are attacked. Then you have the factor that the military knows they have a problem and are throwing resources at it, no questions asked. So if private Schmuckatelly goes to see the psychatrist with stories they've fabricated or stolen from other fellow troops, and they sound plausible, so in order not to deny help to someone that legitimately needs it, they let posers fall slip through the cracks. What's really sad is that there are many that really need the help, and they have made great strides in trying to get them to seek the help, but they don't and it usually ends badly. Lost jobs, broken marriages, suicide. Last year was a particularly bad year in the older son's battalion, four suicides. One by an individual that seemed to be coping extremely well. They're giving classes to train NCO's to better pick up early signs in the junior enlisted members and are urging them to seek help. There is a huge problem, I'd rather some that don't have PTSD game the system than even one that is legitimately suffering go untreated.

    Brad wrote:
    That is a very common problem. In 2008, I think it was, the Marine Corps had more Marines killed in motorcycle accidents than in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. When they studied the issue they determined that most often it was young service members, freshly returned from the combat zone, buying high performance crotch rockets and trying to get their adreneline rush to make up for no longer getting the pump in the combat zone.
     
  10. 36thID

    36thID Member

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  11. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    With the fear of sounding like as broken record or collegue...i would highly reccomend LtCol Dave Grossman's studies, which he has published as books. All the triggers/reasons for PTSD are discussed. All questions here are answered. His book "On Killing" (he has others) is read right through the services and most US police forces these days...its a MUST if you're interestedin the subject.
     
  12. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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    I'd rather some that don't have PTSD game the system than even one that is legitimately suffering go untreated.

    Good line USMC. My red herring still stands as a personal opinion...The media may see things that are not there, but most ptsd sufferers over here are not volunteering themselves for treatments..that may be the difference in the pond between us.. Most go untreated until they do something to bring the authorities or family, or friends into the equation. Those that are missed usually die on a park bench with a bottle of something in their hands, not all some. Most here do not hand themselves over for any treatement and that is the rub. The few who do here can be weeded, we have smaller numbers. More suicides than war fatalities from Falklands is bearing this out over here.
     
  13. Big_Al

    Big_Al Member

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    Well, just finished reading it all. There are a few "egos" there.:eek:
    Is that you on that thread with the 1st Marine Division shoulder patch as an avatar?
    You did quite well keeping as calm as you did.:D
    I got the same response that a couple of those guys gave when I tried to join VFW upon returning from Vietnam. I wasn't a real soldier, I had not been in a real war.
     
  14. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Patron  

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    I also read the thread at WW2Talk. I agree that there are more than a few egos involved. I'm with urqh; I'd rather see some posers if it means those real cases receive treatment. Brad, I'm sorry for what you went through, but I'm also glad you stuck to your guns. I believe that some don't exhibit outward signs of PTSD, but I think they are there, nonetheless. I guess we'll never convince the true believers, but I think PTSD is real and a problem. I also feel that today's soldiers are every bit the equal of those who fought in WW2. They may be different in many ways, but are better prepared for what they face. They are also every bit as brave. I know I wouldn't want to be in their shoes.
     
  15. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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    I cant claim that quote Lou it belongs to USMC Pricey bless im...Although its a sentiment I agree with.
     
  16. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    I simply don't see how anyone who is familiar with the current work on it could believe otherwise. Not only is it relatively predictable but they have identified and implemented procedures that make it less likely. True as far as the individual goes it's not predicable but the group rates are. Furthermore they can detect changes in brain activity of at least some of those suffering from it.
     
  17. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    That is

    Ahh..... there is a bunch of the thread that has been redacted.
     
  18. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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    And dissapeared...I can't for the life of me find the one where me and Jugs threatened to take the talk site outside and beat the hell out of em...Least I think thats what we did.
     
  19. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    That's how I remember it
     
  20. lwd

    lwd Ace

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