Showing posts with label after trauma. Show all posts
Showing posts with label after trauma. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Miracles come without warning too!

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
September 12, 2023 

We woke up on September 12th with a reminder that normal no longer existed. That's the way all survivors of traumatic events wake up to what becomes a different normal to us.


It wasn't just the people running out of the buildings. It wasn't just the police officers and firefighters running into them. It wasn't just the people in the area, or across from it in New Jersey. People all over the world watched what happened in real-time.

Then searchers operated on pure adrenaline being fed by the hope they would find their friends alive. With each day, it was all being slowly drained away. They didn't see what all of that was doing to them. With each passing year, they didn't know that day would become a continuous danger to them.



U.S. Marines pray over a fallen comrade after he died from wounds suffered in fighting in Fallujah, Iraq, April 8, 2004. AP Photo/Murad Sezer, File
20 years post-invasion, many Iraq veterans haven’t found peace on the Harvard Gazette is a reminder that those we sent into combat in Afghanistan and Iraq didn't see it coming either. None of them saw #PTSD coming until it had already dug into them.

Miracles came to survivors on 9-11. Firefighters and survivors on Stairwell B and more stories came out. They happened but we didn't know about them until afterward. Miracles happened in Afghanistan and Iraq too. Can they happen to us too?

And now for the good news. None of us saw the people coming to help us, but they came. We don't see healing coming until it arrives proving hope still lives. Not just in us but in those taking the time to help us. Had they not had hope they could help, they wouldn't bother. Honestly, it can be damn draining to work with people after trauma but they do it and most of the time, it is because either someone helped them at some people in their own lives or they knew someone.

We don't see the day coming when we can actually feel the smile come over our faces. We don't see it coming when we suddenly pick up the guitar and play it again, or let our fingers caress the keys of a piano. We don't see it coming when we pick up the paintbrush, molding clay, or any of the other tools we use to create something out of love. We don't see it coming when we sit and write our thoughts, and visions, or attempt to allow inspiration to flow through us. That all can happen after hope returns to us and we don't see it until it arrives. Miracles come without warning too!

Sunday, September 10, 2023

#PTSD is the invader you don't see coming

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
September 10, 2023

After surviving the traumatic event, you may have felt lucky to remain alive. Figuring you are safe, you try to get on with your life, going back to whatever that life was like before it happened to you. The thing is, that event opened the door to the invader. It is a war you didn't start. #PTSD is the invader you don't see coming.

If you are prepared for this enemy, you start to fight it right away. You know you have 30 days to conquer it and begin to heal the wound it caused. Should you not be prepared, your choice is to surrender to it or fight with everything you've got. Unarmed, you don't have much to fight with.

Waiting to just get over it, pretending nothing has changed in you, allows it to feed off everything you are and suck out the life you once lived. Family and friends tell you that you're not acting the same way you did before. They try to get you to cheer up. When that doesn't work, frustration takes over and they tell you to just get over it. They have no clue this isn't a wound that time will heal. This is a wound that spreads like an infection. While everyone else is miserable, including you, PTSD is all too happy to claim more of you.

That's what the Ministers Of The Mystery Series is all about. The first book, The Scribe Of Salem, is about a war reporter. Chris Papadopoulos was nearly killed by a bomb blast in Afghanistan. His friends serving in the Army saw it happen. That event wouldn't leave them alone.

When he returned home to a hostile wife, he had to fight to heal his physical wounds. He didn't know his soul was wounded too. He had too many other things to fight, including his wife. The wounds to his body eventually healed but the other wound grew stronger until he lost everything he had, including his faith in God.

Returning to Salem as a failure, he relied on drinks being poured by his favorite bartender and only friend, Ed. On the 7th anniversary of the bomb blast, he didn't want to spend one more day suffering without any hope of anything getting better. God agreed.

If you want to see how this demon can be defeated by a broken man, you'll have to read The Scribe Of Salem. If you're guessing it has something to do with witches, you're right but the witch in this one is one. You may have never heard of witches like her but chances are, ones like her are waiting for you to turn to them too.

Sunday, August 27, 2023

Learn surviving the unexpected before you need to know what PTSD is

Residents Trained During First Wave of Pandemic Experienced Less PTSD

Apple Valley News
Lori Solomon
Aug 25, 2023
FRIDAY, Aug. 25, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- First-year residents training during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic were significantly less likely to screen positive for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) versus residents training before the pandemic, according to a study published online Aug. 22 in JAMA Network Open.

Michelle K. Ptak, from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues examined changes in PTSD symptoms among first-year residents training before and during the first pandemic wave (March to June 2020). The analysis included participants in the Intern Health Study (2018 to 2019 [prepandemic; 1,137 participants] and 2019 to 2020 [during the pandemic; 820 participants]).
read more here

Now that you've read that, understand that #PTSD can be prevented with knowledge before it happens, while trauma cannot be prevented, no matter how hard you try. After traumatic events, we understand what it is like to have our "normal" reality shattered. We enter into a new reality of life as a survivor of it. We have 30 days to fight the symptoms and begin the healing process. As soon as that happens the less residual changes we have to live with. After 30 days, if the symptoms are not gone or at least weaker, we may need professional help. The only way to know that is to find a mental health professional to evaluate us. (Good luck on that one when they are hard to find now.) The thing is, you do need to see one as soon as possible. It is what you do between now and when you can that can make all the difference in the world. You can begin to heal by learning what it is as soon as you figure out you've changed. Learn from others who have begun their journey into life as a survivor. The thing is, as soon as you realize you are not alone and there are many more out there just like you, it can prevent a lot of the bad stuff that can come if you know nothing about it.

One of the biggest things is anger. Considering how many thoughts crash into each other, the longer we face people judging us almost as much as we judge ourselves, anger feeds off anger. We think about the fact it happened to us and then we think about everyone we know judging us because they have no clue about what we don't even understand. How can we explain it or expect them to understand if we don't? Anger is fed when we get frustrated because waiting to get over it doesn't work, but in fact, lets it get worse claiming more and more of the person we used to be. It gets very uncomfortable having a stranger living in our heads when our bodies look the same. That's the stranger they don't understand. They get angry too because they want us to just get over it and go back to the way we were before. We want them to understand us, and at the same time, we know we'd probably react the same way they are. 

Is anger a real thing that is different from normal anger? Yep!

Anger, The Forgotten Emotion Unveiled: How Trauma Influences Problem Anger

Neuroscience News
August 26, 2023

While we know a lot about sadness and fear, anger still has an uncomfortable place in society. Most of us don’t know what anger is for, or the difference between healthy and problem anger. Summary: Anger remains a misunderstood emotion, often stigmatized and mishandled in society.
Researchers revealed a significant link between problem anger and trauma experiences, with anger serving as a common, yet overlooked symptom of PTSD. The study also highlights disparities in how men and women experience and express problem anger, particularly after trauma.


Understanding the nuances between healthy and problem anger could pave the way for better mental health interventions and societal attitudes toward this complex emotion.

Key Facts:
Problem anger is a common but poorly understood symptom following trauma, affecting up to 31% of trauma-impacted populations like veterans and first responders.
Healthy anger motivates action and should not be equated with aggression or violence, which are choices rather than emotional reflexes.
Social gender norms result in differing expressions of problem anger in men and women, making it more difficult for women to openly express their anger.
read more here

So, the message here is simple. Get help to prevent more from happening to you. Even better is to learn all you can about surviving the unexpected before you need to know. 

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Horror Films as a Reimagined Space for Healing, and books too

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
August 17, 2023



I was searching for a way to prove a point to someone about my Ministers Of The Mystery series when I found this article. Horror Films as a Reimagined Space for Healing on Neuroscience News. It supports my view that #PTSD is a lot like a horror movie. We don't choose to buy a ticket to view it because it is just too damn expensive. Paying a price for surviving until we begin to heal can cost us everything we have. The thing I tried to show in the books is that we don't have to pay the fee for life.

From the day we survive we can begin to heal but we waste a lot of time waiting to "get over it" and then searching for the wrong ways to cope with the changes in us that we don't understand. I swear they should give every trauma survivor a class on healing so that we don't needlessly struggle.

Most of us don't even know the basics but don't feel bad about that since I knew more than most as a researcher without being able to acknowledge as a survivor of multiple events, I was also a member of this club no one wants to belong to. When I finally reached out to a couple of psychologists I know about what was going on, they said it sounded like I had a rare form of it. Now that made a lot of sense to me because I never could understand how I could understand others with PTSD so easily. We were all fighting the demons.

That's why I wrote the books. The article summarized the books perfectly and was written before I wrote them. I had no idea I was on the right track. Head smack moment for me because in an effort to prove a point to someone else, I proved a point to myself. 
But her story doesn’t stop there – in some ways, a whole new life, overshadowed by trauma, has only just begun, Ohio State University graduate student Morgan Podraza posits in an article published in the journal Horror Studies.

This was addressing the movie Halloween but it could have been about one of the main characters in the series. Grace Falls was fighting PTSD in The Scribe Of Salem but while some will just assume she had it from being an Orlando FL motorcycle police officer, it is not until the third book, 13th Minister Of Salem, does the reader discover it began many years before she comes back into Chris's life. 

“The way this film specifically deals with cycles of trauma and their connection to the experiences of survivors was really important to me because I think it is indicative of how we talk about trauma and survivors of trauma even today, and ways that people are spoken about negatively – their trauma is not acknowledged or they’re not given an opportunity for healing,” Podraza said.

Cycles of trauma are exactly what they go through, all the characters. They were all judged by others that did not understand and then helped by those who did.

Podraza cites scholarship in her article noting that survival of trauma itself is a crisis, that moving forward with life after a traumatizing event is also traumatic. The Laurie Strode character shows how this might look: Her obsession with protecting herself and others is tethered to her survival, and her outlook on life – a life saved by her own hand – remains grim because she’s convinced she is subject to a continuing threat.

And that last part was the point I was trying to prove.  The horror movie is not one we can walk away from as if it never happened. The thing is, our lives do not have to be one horror movie after another. We get to see love stories, victories, and yes, even comedies. As we heal leaving the horror movie no longer leaves us checking the back seat of our car to make sure the threat didn't follow us out. Yes, I did that after I saw the first Nightmare On Elm Street.

Authors struggle to weave their stories into something that will cause readers to enjoy or learn from them. The following just made me cry because this review is beyond what I hoped for. (Linkedin
Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Penned by Kathie Costos, 13th Minister Of Salem is a work in the supernatural horror, suspense, and gothic drama subgenres, forming the third installment in the Ministers Of The Mystery series. It is best suited to mature adult readers owing to its dark content and adult situations. In this profoundly intriguing continuation of the series, we find ourselves back with Chris as word of his achievements and talents has spread, but this only leads to more trouble for our hero. Trying to get married would be hard enough without the constant death threats from the cult of the now-defeated Haman Cain, let alone the Master’s warning that his end-time is drawing near.

Kathie Costos brings us back into the world of gothic suspense, deep drama, and a chilling thriller with a bang in this third installment in the series. I found myself deeply involved in Chris’s psychological storyline. We see the painfully realistic damage that his adventures, battles, and triumphs have left him with over the events of the first two novels. I felt his pain, isolation, and pressure deep in my soul; such is the efficacy of Costos’s intimate narrative, thought, and speech portrayal. The darkest elements of the work are also well-handled to avoid being gratuitous but remain chilling to the core. I recommend 13th Minister Of Salem to fans of the existing series as another accomplished paranormal chiller to devour.

You can find the books wherever you love to buy them from in eBook or paperback 

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

"O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things?"

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
May 9, 2023


Let it be this if you take nothing else away from this post, remember this. James 2:14-17
14 What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?

15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food,

16 And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit?

17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.

How often have you heard people offering "thoughts and prayers" when others are hurting? More people dying and being wounded, along with being tariffed because someone decided they wanted to kill as many strangers as possible, as fast as possible? 

I'm sure you're tired of hearing it as much as you are repulsed by the fact their thoughts do not prove they are thinking about solutions. It proves their prayers are not really for the lives but more so for what they want to protect. Guns and the expanded ability of anyone to get them, load them, and aim them at everyone in their path, matter more than people just trying to live their lives.

How often have you heard people claiming that the problem is mental illness and not guns used to kill others? For whatever reason, they turn around and, not only protect the guns but unconscionably expand the ability for more people to obtain them.

These same people refuse to fund mental health agencies to care for those with that illness. The result is, more people facing mental health challenges they would not have had had it not been for the mass murderers given the ability to traumatize them. We have an ever-increasing population of people with #PTSD and will keep claiming more lives because hope has been taken from them due to the lack of deeds.

All too often, these same people turn around and claim to be Christian leaders, yet show nothing Christlike in their deeds. Most people see them for what they truly are. They are usurpers of faith and what they view as power over the people they are supposed to be serving.

Some people will assume they are to be believed because they show up at church, or, just say the words they believe. Never once allowing the simple truth that people can claim to be/believe anything they want to say, and yet, scriptures point out that is not what we should pay attention to.

"34 O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.

35 A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things."
 
Matthew 12:34-35

If they were speaking the truth, they would prove it in what they do. It is up to you to prove what it is you value more with your own deeds. Contact them since you pay for their offices, phone lines, computers, and staff to respond to you. If they do not change their ways, change their jobs by voting them out of office. Stop supporting those that use your true faith as a weapon of power for themselves.

Sunday, April 30, 2023

We need a survivor event where veterans can meet survivors of all other events

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
April 30, 2023

Email alerts on #PTSD fill up a good chunk of my day. Most of the time, I'll read the articles and get depressed. Not for the reason you may think. It isn't because there are so many, but more because there are far too many proving we have not come far enough on the healing side.

These are just a few of the headlines that came in this morning.
Art for Healing” Exhibition on display through May to benefit PTSD Foundation of America
It is not for everyone with PTSD. It is for veterans and families. Nothing wrong with that since we all know they not only need help, they earned whatever this country can do for them. As a reminder, that would include my husband, and me as his spouse. It would not include me as a survivor in my own life.
Omaha gym hosting yoga classes to ease PTSD for veterans, first responders
Also not for everyone with PTSD. Just veterans and first responders, and yet again, they not only need help, they earned it. The thing is, as the number of civilians joining the club no one wants to belong to grows every year, no one notices that while we paid the price of joining too, we are not welcomed in on any of these efforts.

The rest of them were along the same lines. The rest of us were not included and that was what depressed me most of all while reading about Senior Chief Petty Officer Mike Day. He was a hero, for sure. This is what Ken McDonald wrote about him.

Day spent the next six months recovering at Walter Reed, and when we all returned to the Naval Amphibious Base, in Little Creek, Va. in the fall, he received the Silver Star for “conspicuous gallantry in combat” at an award ceremony attended by just about every one of his Naval Special Warfare brothers and sisters in-port at the time. The ceremony was surreal. Many teammates were killed in action on that deployment and the memories were horribly fresh. But standing in front of them was a guy who had no business coming home. A walking miracle. A hero amongst heroes; reminding them that they survived.

He didn't stop trying to make a difference in this world.
He went on to retire from the Navy in 2008 and was unsurprisingly diagnosed with PTSD and Traumatic Brain Injury. He wrote a book about the experience; Perfectly Wounded: A Memoir About What Happens After a Miracle and worked as an advocate for wounded service members and those suffering with PTSD. Mike Day hanged himself on March 27.
At the end of the article, he wrote this.
I don’t know what needs to be done to make real change, but I’m going to do whatever I can to help. You should, too. Start by doing a buddy check. Make sure they’re okay. Be intrusive. Be a haunt. Be the non-judgmental support network they need. We’ll figure out the rest along the way. The most important and difficult part of recovery is getting on the path. Get them on it. I’ll see you there.
The answer to what needs to be done is not what you expect. The answer is in what unites all survivors. Why? You may be thinking they deserve special treatment. I totally agree with you. You may think they deserved whatever we can do. I agree with that too. What I don't agree with is not telling the people facing multiple traumatic events as part of the jobs they are willing to do, there are millions of us with PTSD after just one event. This is from The National Center For PTSD
Here are the best estimates for how common PTSD is in the U.S. adult population:
Most people who go through a traumatic event will not develop PTSD.
About 6 out of every 100 people (or 6% of the U.S. population) will have PTSD at some point in their lives. Many people who have PTSD will recover and no longer meet diagnostic criteria for PTSD after treatment. So, this number counts people who have PTSD at any point in their life, even if their symptoms go away.
About 5 out of every 100 adults (or 5%) in the U.S. has PTSD in any given year. In 2020, about 13 million Americans had PTSD.
Women are more likely to develop PTSD than men. About 8 of every 100 women (or 8%) and 4 of every 100 men (or 4%) will have PTSD at some point in their life. This is in part due to the types of traumatic events that women are more likely to experience—such as sexual assault—compared to men.
Veterans are more likely to have PTSD than civilians. Veterans who deployed to a war zone are also more likely to have PTSD than those who did not deploy.

When we leave that information out of the conversation, the result is a deadly one. Leaving us out of the conversation, and efforts leave us feeling as if we don't deserve help to heal. Even if we did, finding it is difficult. There are not enough mental health professionals as it is. Charities that could help won't because they have no idea we're out here or how many of us there are. The ones established to take care of veterans and first responders don't have room for us. 

While all this has been bad for us when the veterans and first responders have no clue we exist, they are robbed of the best form of healing they could ever have. These men and women were willing to die for the sake of others. They'd be willing to help us more than they are willing to help themselves. In the process, it would give them a better understanding as to why they suffer from multiple traumas when we are changed by all too often, just one of them.

Right now, they still don't think they deserve help. They still think they should be stronger and see it as a weakness. No matter how many suicide awareness events happen around the country, the event that needs to happen is a survivor event where veterans can meet survivors of all other events. Let them hear our stories of the trauma and what worked to help us heal. If we share the journey from victim to survivor with them, they will see themselves through different eyes!

Kathie Costos Author of Ministers Of The Mystery Series

Wednesday, April 12, 2023

10 years after Boston Marathon bombing " knowing we all made it through such darkness"

Readers share their memories of the Boston Marathon bombing 10 years later

The Boston Globe
By Jenna Reyes Globe Staff
Updated April 11, 2023

"I cry as I write this because I cry whenever I think about this bombing. Tears of sadness for what happened but also tears of joy knowing we all made it through such darkness and we are all stronger because of it.”-Anonymous, Cambridge

Three women with somber looks on their faces embrace. ( Michael Malyszko)
It’s been nearly 10 years since the domestic terrorist attack that took place at the 2013 Boston Marathon. Three people were killed and hundreds of others were injured when two homemade pressure cooker bombs were detonated near the finish line of the race. Following the attack, two suspects were identified and a manhunt ensued.

For those with a connection to Boston at the time, the week of the 2013 Boston Marathon is one they will never forget.

One decade later, we asked our readers to tell us what memories have stuck with them from the bombing and the days that followed.
No matter how at peace I feel, no matter how much I think I’ve forgiven myself. However much I heal, it’s not enough. It’s hard. It’s not always hard because of the guilt, either. Just all the pain you experience when you live through something like that -- you can’t forget it. So every time there’s a mass shooting, a bombing, news coverage of war, you feel the pain again, because you can feel it when you see it happen to other people. You know what it’s like to feel that terror, live through each moment in that chaos, and make decisions that you have to live with forever.”-Avery S., Arlington
All of us eventually made it home safely that afternoon. Still, I couldn’t shake the feelings of confusion, unease, and sadness. This attack hit too close to home—a place where I felt safe—and it left me more unsettled than I wanted to admit. But the tragedy did bring me closer to my family, friends, and city.”-Ryan T., Cambridge
Read more of these powerful stories here

Monday, January 2, 2023

If you are contemplating a field in mental health, God bless you


The clock is ticking at worldometers! 8 billion people as of January 2, 2023, at 8:15 on the east coast of the United States. As for the US, "DEC. 29, 2022 — As the nation prepares to ring in the new year, the U.S. Census Bureau today projected the U.S. population will be 334,233,854 on Jan. 1, 2023."

We know that PTSD does not just happen to veterans in the US. We know that it strikes human survivors. And now we know that most of the causes are because of what other humans do. The top five causes are all about other people doing something to cause the trauma.




(Check the link and see where the information came from.)
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Statistics: 2022 Update
CFHA
Report Highlights
6% or 3 in every 50 American adults will have gone through PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder at some point in their lives [9].
The leading cause of PTSD is sexual violence at 33%, with 94% of rape victims developing symptoms of PTSD during the first two weeks after their traumatic experience [23] [28].
PTSD is most prevalent among American adults between the ages of 45 and 49 years old at 9.2% [12].
Women have a lifetime PTSD prevalence rate of 9.7%, compared to 3.6% in men [17].
Civilian women have a lifetime prevalence rate of 8%, compared to 13.4% among military women [24].
11% to 23% of veterans have experienced PTSD within a given year [2].
About 17.2 veterans die by suicide each day, with veterans being 1.5 times more likely to die by suicide than civilians [2].
3 in 10 or 30% of the first responders have PTSD [6].
6 weeks of cognitive behavioral therapy can help ease symptom severity by about 50% in 21% to 46% of patients with PTSD [7].
People with PTSD who use cannabis for their symptoms are 2.57 times more likely to recover from this condition [3].
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as an intense, uncontrollable emotional and physical reaction to a reminder of a traumatic event or distressing memories [4]. This abnormal response to triggers can last for days and even years after the harrowing incident or traumatic event.

Think about what that all means to people in the US, as well as around the world. For all we know about PTSD and the results of the causes, we will never know how many people have PTSD.  There are far too many that will not be diagnosed and never enough people to be able to diagnose and treat the survivors. As long as we keep doing a lousy job of letting people know what PTSD is, why they have it, and give them hope, as well as a way to heal, we will keep seeing the suffering that does not have to happen.

Take the information you just learned and try an experiment on your own. Ask a friend or family member what they know about PTSD. If the response you get is the same one I've gotten for the last 40 years, they will say it is something veterans get. While we know that is not true, we know that they are the only group reporters want to cover. Even fewer reporters want to cover those serving today as if that makes sense to them. Why bother to report on when the events take place?

The clock is ticking around the world on the population of the planet but it is also ticking on the time lost when people survive what others do to them, but they don't have someone doing something for them.

If you are contemplating a field in mental health, God bless you because the world needs more people like you!


Kathie Costos author of Ministers Of The Mystery series

Thursday, September 15, 2022

Can you hug yourself?

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
September 15, 2022

I am still on healing hiatus and going through therapy to work through the grief of losing one of my best friends. It's hard. What I'm learning is that while I have great compassion for others, I don't seem to have it for myself,

This became clear on my way home from one of the appointments. I am a hugger by nature. While thinking about what the therapist said, I realized I am unable to hug myself.


This site started to help veterans and families heal from trauma and expanded to include everyone else, like me, heal as survivors of trauma. It is, as it was, a way of changing the conversation of PTSD from "victim" to "survivor" with the power to determine the rest of your life on your terms and not what others do or how they treat you.

The first way to hug me is to use my compassion for others to express what I see in this country with our rights being taken away by the same people screaming about their rights and what they believe should have the power to remove them from them all others.

I think a great deal about how this all is like the Salem Witchcraft Trails. Too many do not know that because zealots decided what they believed was worthy of killing those who were different. What happened in Salem was the basis for the Bill Of Rights, insuring that what people believed was equally protected in the 1st Amendment.

Legal Legacy of the Salem Witch Trials
From the History Channel
On October 29, 1692, Phips dissolved the Court of Oyer and Terminer, a decision that marked the beginning of the end for the Salem witch trials. By May 1693, Phips had pardoned and released all those remaining in prison on witchcraft charges.

In the years to come, judges and juries (and even one of the main accusers) apologized for their roles in the trials. Then in 1711 Massachusetts passed legislation exonerating those executed as witches and paying restitution to their families.

Nearly a century after the crisis in Salem, during debate over ratification of the Constitution, anti-Federalist delegates (successfully) argued that the document needed a "Bill of Rights" to guard against the violation of individual citizens’ fundamental freedoms by the federal government.

Such arguments may have implicitly drawn strength from the negative example of the Salem witch trials, when accused witches were deprived of even the most basic rights they should have been granted under English common law.

I am a Chaplain and Christian, however, I no longer attend services. I listen to people on TV talking about what they believe as if any of it should be considered as speaking for all Christians. We are not all the same and do not believe the same, which is why there are so many different Christian denominations. We are all free to choose to belong to whatever group we want or not attend at all. Considering less than half of Americans attend any type of religious service at all, it is deplorable that Christian Nationalists want to rule over all.

These zealots attack people making personal medical decisions about their own bodies and removing their right to believe what they want. Some believe that human life begins at birth when God breathes life into the body and they become a living soul. Some believe that while the zealots claim to be pro-life, they prove they are simply pro-birth instead. They claim to be in membership of followers of Jesus, yet fail to do what He preached for the sake of the living.

What gives them the right to decide what other people have to believe? What gives them the right to think they are entitled to stand in judgment of anyone needing to make one of the most traumatic decisions about what is happening in their own bodies?

Do they have a right to believe what they want? In this country, absolutely. So does everyone else. Do they have a right to interpret the Bible in any way they want? Sure. So does everyone else. They fail to see that.

Do they have the right to say what they want? No doubt about it, but again, so does everyone else. Too many politicians claim that they are being silenced and their supporters feel the same way, however, they fail to see that everyone else has the right to disagree with them while they enjoy the right to say what they want and then complain about being silenced in the next sentence they utter.

I am appalled listening to some of the zealots and with some others, they make me laugh by how much they get totally wrong, but they have the right to be as uninformed as everyone else. Their supporters have the right to believe them or not. That's a wonderful thing because no matter if we like what they say or not, we all have the choice to listen to them, or not.

Going back to the need to hug yourself, while other people get things wrong, or think unlike you, that doesn't mean you need to stop liking yourself. It doesn't mean you have to stop speaking your mind just because some people won't hear you. If other people won't try to comfort you, you can comfort yourself. If you have no one to talk to that will understand what you need to say, then find a therapist or group. When you get to a time in your life when you realize you can't hug yourself, that's time for you to take a look at all you have to give others and begin to give it to yourself!



Saturday, July 23, 2022

If you have PTSD, Annie Kuster along with others, are on your side

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
July 23, 2022

When you have PTSD and discover others have it too, while you may be sorry they are a member of this club because of the price they paid to join it, it is helpful to know they understand you. The causes may be different but what it does strikes about a third of survivors. This is why peer support matters. That is what members of the House and Senate discovered after the Capitol was attacked on January 6, 2021.

Annie Kuster, along with other members, has been trying to do something about making life better for those with PTSD. She understands it and has not been ashamed to talk about what she survived. She has also been very vocal about how important getting help and support is.

She has been speaking out on PTSD for a long time.
U.S. Rep. Annie Kuster kept silent about the sexual assaults she had endured as a young woman for nearly 40 years. Concord Monitor On Tuesday night, the 59-year-old congresswoman from Hopkinton broke her silence to her husband, family and the world. Her hands clasped on the lectern on the House floor, Kuster launched into a speech detailing one of her most painful memories.

Kuster, along with other members of Congress, are talking about their struggles as well.
ABC 9 News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Long after most other lawmakers had been rushed to safety, they were on the hard marble floor, ducking for cover.

Trapped in the gallery of the House, occupying balcony seats off-limits to the public because of COVID-19, roughly three dozen House Democrats were the last ones to leave the chamber on Jan. 6, bearing witness as the certification of a presidential election gave way to a violent insurrection.

As danger neared, and as the rioters were trying to break down the doors, they called their families. They scrambled for makeshift weapons and mentally prepared themselves to fight. Many thought they might die.
“When I looked up, I had this realization that we were trapped,” said Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colo., a former Army Ranger who served three tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. “They had evacuated the House floor first. And they forgot about us.”
Bound together by circumstance, sharing a trauma uniquely their own, the lawmakers were both the witnesses and the victims of an unprecedented assault on American democracy. Along with a small number of staffers and members of the media, they remained in the chamber as Capitol Police strained to hold back the surging, shouting mob of supporters of then-President Donald Trump.
Kuster, D-N.H., was one of the first to be let out of the gallery on Jan. 6, escaping through the doors along with three other members just before the remaining lawmakers were locked inside. When Kuster’s group reached the hallway, a group of rioters was rushing toward them.

“We ducked into the elevator,” Kuster said. “And I said to this incredible policeman — I said, oh, my God, what if the elevator doors open, and they kill us? And I will never forget this moment ... he said, ‘Ma’am, I am here to protect you.’ And he was there to protect our democracy.”
NH Congresswoman reacts to January 6 primetime hearing
Jul 22, 2022
Rep. Annie Kuster says she believes the select committee hearings are changing the minds of many Americans

While some people may think this is not a big deal, the truth is, it is a huge one. So many lawmakers have been dealing with PTSD in their own lives and they understand all of us now. Maybe, just maybe, they'll push legislation through to address the help all of us need to heal. I know from where I sit, that it is hopeful to know, that people with the power to make our lives better know exactly what we're going through and what got them through their own battles.

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

PTSD needs crisis intervention now

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
June 29, 2022

Some people think that crisis intervention is some kind of new thing. Then again, some people don't think it is worth the time or effort either. Aside from having been certified in it by the International Fellowship of Chaplains, I am also a survivor of it many times.



First here is a brief history of it. The word crisis comes from the Greek word, Krisis from Vocabulary.com
A crisis is a difficult or dangerous time in which a solution is needed — and quickly. For example, the crisis caused by a natural disaster might inspire you and your friends to make a donation.

The noun crisis comes from the Latinized form of the Greek word krisis, meaning "turning point in a disease." At such a moment, the person with the disease could get better or worse: it's a critical moment. Think of a celebrity whose recent antics generate headlines like "Rock Star in Crisis" — that person needs help that may or may not be sought. At the moment of crisis, things are unstable and maybe even dangerous.

Trauma is also a Greek word that means wound. When we're discussing PTSD it literally means after trauma. Connect that to the word crisis meaning turning point and you have, not only the definition of it, you have the solution.

Crisis Intervention goes back to the 1940s and '50s.




INTRODUCTION TO THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF CRISIS INTERVENTION


Definition of Crisis
The origins of crisis theory are usually attributed to Lindemann's classic study of grief reactions. LINDEMANN(1944) established the basic framework for defining the symptomatology of a crisis. He reported on the evaluation and treatment of 101 persons who had experienced a recent death of a close relative, a number of whom were connected to the victims of the Boston's Coconut Grove Club fire. He observed that acute grief was a normal reaction to a distressing situation and noted that such reaction presented some characteristic features that appeared to form a distinct syndrome.

According to Lindemann, persons experiencing acute grief display one or more of the following symptoms:
1. somatic distress;
2. preoccupation with the image of the deceased;
3. guilt,
4. hostile reactions, and
5. loss of patterns of conduct.
Sometimes the person experiencing crisis of bereavement may have distorted or delayed grief reactions. Lindemann also stated that the grief work inclu- des achieving emancipation from the deceased, readjustment to the environment in which the deceased is missing and formation of new relationships. His contribution has been considered the starting point for the development of crisis theory.

While the origins of crisis theory are attributed to Lindemann, the work of Gerald Caplan and his colleagues at Harvard University provided the foundations for the development of crisis intervention theory and practice. Caplan's interest in crises resulted from his work with families immigrating to Israel following World War 11. Caplan has pro-vided various definitions of crisis (1964, 1974): he considers that a crisis is provoked when a person faces a problem for which he appears not to have an immediate solution and that is for a time insurmountable through the utilization of usual methods of problem-solving. A period of upset and tension follows during which the person makes many attempts at the solution of the problem.

 (Please read the whole article.)

So why isn't it being done? Why is so much time wasted belittling survivors instead of helping them get the help they need? Because if the answer isn't easy, no one wants to do the work.

That was obvious when all the groups popped up all over the country, speaking out to the rest of the world devoting time, energy, and funding to raising awareness that veterans were committing suicide, instead of including the millions of others doing the same. They reduced this heartbreaking outcome for many survivors that survived the event that caused PTSD, but could not survive surviving itself.

With PTSD Awareness Month coming to an end, you'd think that this would have been a topic worth covering. So why wasn't it? Not enough people know about it. It is one of the biggest reasons why I made most of the characters in The Lost Son Alive Again series Chaplains!

Surviving trauma is a turning point into crisis. It is at that time you want someone there to help you make the right turn toward healing ASAP!

If you are a police officer, you may have heard something ridiculous like, "you let your job get to you" as if you are supposed to not let what you see bother you at all. It all bothered you enough in the first place that you decided to take the job to prevent as much as you could knowing you'd be exposed to all of the dangers that came with the job. You'd think your superiors would be more understanding of that fact since that was probably the same reason they became officers too.

If you are a veteran or currently in the military, you may have heard, "you didn't train right" because they were told residency training would help you toughen your brain. They say things like that because they are not capable of admitting the training they touted as so successful did not work! If it did when they started it, suicide would have gone down, and not increased.

If you have PTSD from any other cause, you may have head people tell you, "get over it" or "let it go" as if you are choosing to let it hang onto you.

What if right, after you survived, someone came over to you, and was there to show you the way to begin to heal as a survivor instead of making you feel as if what it is doing to you is your fault?

While First Responders help you survive the event itself, Chaplains help you begin to take the next turn toward healing instead of suffering.

If you haven't heard about Chaplains before don't feel bad. I sent the first editions of The Lost Son and Alive Again to a psychologist I know to review them. He really liked the story and said it flowed but he didn't know Chaplains were actually out there in the real world doing the work we did.

This is from Advent Health
What Does a Chaplain Do?
A chaplain is a certified clergy member who provides spiritual care for individuals in a non-religious organization, rather than a church congregation. Chaplains can work in government roles and serve members of the military in different locations. They can serve patients in healthcare or hospice facilities. Working in police departments, fire departments, and prisons is also common for chaplains.

Since chaplains are ordained ministers, they can officiate ceremonies such as weddings and funerals. They can lead baptism services and provide final rites for patients who are passing away. Chaplains can also take on the role of a spiritual leader for individuals who do not belong to a specific religious community."" Rather than preaching messages directed toward one religious group, chaplains lead non-denominational religious services that can benefit individuals from a variety of religious or spiritual backgrounds. Chaplains who hold positions at different institutions can also minister to staff members. For example, chaplains at hospitals can provide spiritual care to nurses, doctors, and administrators, as well as to patients and their families.
This is from Franciscan Friars
Chaplains minister to people in illness and death, counseling those who are having their worst days, many with loneliness and depression. Their work encompasses being compassionate to people of all faiths, in various stages of spiritual development, and even to those who have turned their backs on God or blame him for their illness.

Often, they minister not just to patients, but to entire families. And because patients are discharged so quickly from hospitals today, chaplains are always ministering to a new set of people. They must work quickly, always on their feet, as they walk the hospital halls seeing new patients.

Yet this is how the IFOC explains Chaplains

What does being a Chaplain mean?
Minister in areas of critical incident stress, grief and loss, trauma, and stress management
Provide counsel, education, advocacy, life-improvement skills, and recovery training
Build a bridge between the secular and spiritual environments of community life"
Bring life-changing service to every sector of community life, such as health and welfare, education, transitional living, emergency service, and governmental support.

As you can see, even with different groups, the common theme is that Chaplains are in the community, where the greatest need is.

Now, some people fear the Chaplain showing up will judge them or try to convert them. Using myself as an example, I drink, smoke, and swear, so I am far from perfect. If you read this site, you know how I feel about a lot of the nonsense going on over people that forget their right to believe what they choose, does not remove the rights of others to do the same. Sadly, you may run into some more interested in doing what they want, instead of doing what you need based on where you are spiritually and emotionally.;

Lumping all Chaplains in the same pile is like piling up all Christians with the fraction self-proclaiming the moral high ground of "pro-life" when in fact what they do with the living proves they are only pro-birth.

There is a long list of Christians that believe all of us are given free will by God and it is up to us to choose what is right for us. No one has the right to use their free will to remove it from others. Most of us know that we are not there to convert anyone. We are only there to help those in need of what they are in need of and most of the time, they need someone to listen to them.


From The Lost Son Alive Again
Mandy's notes
Chris was sorting out more of Mandy’s notes when he came across her notes about him.
Chris Papadopoulos: multiple traumas, war, abuse, domestic violence, a survivor of attempted murder, betrayal, but above all, lost his sense of purpose doing the only job he believed he was born to do as a reporter and attempted suicide.
Chris just left and I am praying for him. It is almost as if those last 7 years were punishment for him. The night of the 7th anniversary of the bomb blast he survived, he struggled between regretting he survived and being grateful for being saved. Regret was winning.
He held a gun in his hands as the two opposing sides were arguing within him. He survived the bomb but saw it as the beginning of his punishment. All that came afterward, in his mind, was all his fault. The more he blamed himself, the more he destroyed himself. His wife abusing him was his fault. Losing his job was his fault. Having to go back to Salem, broke and feeling like a failure was his fault. He couldn’t see that while he did make choices in his life, some were forced on him. If his wife loved him and supported him, he may have gotten help. If his boss valued him and had compassion, he may have supported Chris and got him into counseling.
There is so much he does not understand about forgiveness and how God forgives him because he cannot forgive himself. I pray he can do that soon and realize while he forgives others, he must forgive himself as well. He cannot change anything that has already happened. All he can do is learn from it and use the power he does have over defining the rest of his life.
Chris was supposed to become a priest but now he can become a minister to millions who feel as if there is no place for them in churches. His gifts are writing and a curious mind. He has compassion and understanding of what this spiritual pain feels like. Now he knows what healing feels like and can give hope to others that they can heal as well. They will know God hears their cries, forgives them when they blame Him for their suffering, and holds His arms out to them. He waits to welcome His lost children back to their Father’s home and see that they were never really alone.
In a way, one more indication that God sets our purpose inside of our souls, and sometimes, He has to come up with plan B to get us there. The key is always if we choose to follow where He leads or not. People that listen, find inner peace no matter what they face. Those who do not, are in turmoil. I can’t stop thinking about Jesus and how the story of one life never ended. What He left us still spreads across the world. I have a feeling that the story of Chris’s life will never really end. We are all never-ending stories of the life we lived.

Friday, June 17, 2022

Peeving and perplexing problems to ponder on PTSD

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
June 17, 2022


Peeving because the following story has been repeated over decades of promises from the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs to do better addressing PTSD. A claim we've been hearing for decades. Not a typo because they started working on PTSD in the 80's.

Perplexing because I lost count of how many times this was reported on from different alerts. Not one of the reports had solutions and didn't seem to ask many questions. 

Like for starters, why is this such a huge story when there are so many other people, in the millions with #PTSD but reporters don't seem to report on any of us? How on earth will veterans finally understand that when humans survive trauma, that is the only way PTSD happens, if reporters don't report on the rest of us? Wouldn't that go a long way toward getting rid of the stigma for all of us?

Ponder this one.

KABC STUDIO CITY, LOS ANGELES reported a veteran refused to get help for PTSD until recently, but couldn't get an appointment. He shot a police officer.
"He kept saying 'I'm dead, I'm dead, I'm dead.' He kept saying that, but I'm sure he probably is experiencing some kind of PTSD," said Lewis. "He said he was in one of the bloodiest battles in Afghanistan, but he also said he had two platoon members this week to commit suicide."

Khosroabadi's family said they've been trying to get him help for years but he refused. He sought help from the VA recently but couldn't get an appointment until January.

"It hurt us a lot to see that because we do have family in law enforcement, so if we ever got that call, we would be really sad as well and we're so sorry," Shayesteh said.

You can find more information here from The National Center for PTSD. 6% of the population of adult Americans with PTSD. That means the vast majority of members of the PTSD club have PTSD while veterans, a minority in the country, have PTSD, but are the bulk of the news reports on PTSD. Doesn't make sense as it is but what is worse, is the fact

Did you know about this?
Child protection services in the U.S. get around three million reports each year. This involves 5.5 million children. Of the reported cases, there is proof of abuse in about 30%. From these cases, we have an idea how often different types of abuse occur:
65% neglect

18% physical abuse

10% sexual abuse

7% psychological (mental) abuse
Why didn't he call the VA Crisis Line? On their site, there is this,


If he couldn't get an appointment but knew he needed help, why did he still have a gun instead of making sure he couldn't use it? Why didn't he call the crisis line and get the help he was looking for?

His family says they tried to get him to go for help for years, but he wouldn't go. This is a common problem. Ask the family of any Vietnam Veteran and they'll tell you horror stories about trying to get their veteran to go for help. (Including me) The question use, why didn't he want to? It isn't like it was back in the 80's or 90's. Reporters have been covering veterans with PTSD for over 20 years because of Afghanistan and Iraq veterans using social media to share with others. Why aren't they sharing solutions as much as they share scams and stupid ideas like "raising awareness" veterans are committing suicide, when they already know that?

Top that off with the news report had the "22 a day" number which was debunked ten years ago. Do they mention how many Americans commit suicide every year is over 46,000 according to the CDC?


For Heaven's Sake! This is PTSD Awareness month but first we need to make reporters aware of what they are supposed to be reporting on or nothing will ever change for any of us!

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Gun maker used child and Bible to sell guns!

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
June 7, 2022

I don't have time to read much that does not involve #PTSD but considering all these mass murders are creating more survivors with PTSD, I've been reading these reports more lately.

I was sent a link to a Tweet about a gunmaker using a child and a Bible passage to sell guns. I totally lost my mind!


Gun-Maker Posted Chilling Ad Of Child Cradling Firearm Before Uvalde Tragedy

Huffington Post
Mary Papenfuss
May 27, 2022

Daniel Defense posted a Twitter ad with a young boy cradling a gun like the one used in the mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
The Georgia gun company that manufactures the AR-15-style semi-automatic rifle used in the horrific attack at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, posted a disturbing Twitter ad featuring a young boy holding a similar type of weapon.

The ad by the Daniel Defense gun company, one of the largest private gun-makers in America, featured a child holding a huge scoped firearm in his lap with an ammunition clip in front of him. An adult’s hand with a finger pointing at the boy appeared in the foreground.
read more here

Evidently, it was not well received considering he blocked people from seeing it after 19 children and 2 teachers were slaughtered.

Daniel Defense quickly blocked the public from its Twitter account after the mass shooting on Tuesday, and the ad was reportedly pulled. It can still be seen on screenshots and archives captured by The Wayback Machine.

I have a Bible passage too! How about Matthew 7:15-20 for starters?

You Will Know Them by Their Fruits
15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.

The fruits of these people are rotted to their core! Here is the rest of the passage so you can see what they decided to leave out in order to support their wickedness.

The Value of a Good Name
A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches,
Loving favor rather than silver and gold.
2 The rich and the poor have this in common,
The Lord is the maker of them all.
3 A prudent man foresees evil and hides himself,
But the simple pass on and are punished.
4 By humility and the fear of the Lord
Are riches and honor and life.
5 Thorns and snares are in the way of the perverse;
He who guards his soul will be far from them.
6 Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.
7 The rich rules over the poor,
And the borrower is servant to the lender.
8 He who sows iniquity will reap sorrow,
And the rod of his anger will fail.
9 He who has a generous eye will be blessed,
For he gives of his bread to the poor.
10 Cast out the scoffer, and contention will leave;
Yes, strife and reproach will cease.
11 He who loves purity of heart
And has grace on his lips,
The king will be his friend.
12 The eyes of the Lord preserve knowledge," But He overthrows the words of the faithless.
13 The lazy man says, “There is a lion outside!
I shall be slain in the streets!”
14 The mouth of an immoral woman is a deep pit;
He who is abhorred by the Lord will fall there.
15 Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child;
The rod of correction will drive it far from him.
16 He who oppresses the poor to increase his riches,
And he who gives to the rich, will surely come to poverty.

Saturday, June 4, 2022

PTSD Awareness Month, history repeated

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
June 4, 2022

This is the 4th day of PTSD Awareness Month. I think it should be changed from awareness to beware-ness because of the way some reporters cover stories on PTSD.

This is good reporting on PTSD among members of law enforcement.
Public safety officer deaths by suicide, PTSD could soon be considered line-of-duty injuries
Post-Gazette Washington Bureau
ASHLEY MURRAY
May 31, 2022
Law enforcement officers are 54% more likely to die by suicide compared to the general population, according to a 2021 study published by the journal Policing. Authors cite available data from 2017 to 2019 that shows deaths among law enforcement officers were more likely to be from suicide than from accidents or felonious acts.
WASHINGTON — Just over two weeks ago, Pittsburgh police responded when a 6-year-old accidentally shot himself in the head in the city’s Hazelwood neighborhood. Officers arrived at the home on Johnson Avenue and rendered aid, giving the small child CPR until he could be taken to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh in critical condition.

The next morning, a member of the police department’s peer support team reached out to the officers, and the team’s founder and lead, Sgt. Carla Kearns, got in touch with the company behind a smartphone app that local first responders can use as a mental health resource. They quickly added a module on dealing with the crisis of child injury and death, Sgt. Kearns said, and the team reported an uptick in app usage.

The repeated exposure public safety officers face when responding to any number of situations -— opioid overdoses, fatal traffic accidents, mass shootings, and psychiatric distress and domestic violence calls — or other job duties, for example serving warrants to potentially dangerous or armed suspects, contributes to elevated rates of occupational mental health issues.

This includes what psychologists are defining as a “crisis” level of suicides in the profession.
read more here

The problem with this is, that too many still have to deal with terrible treatment from their superiors, and sue.
Former LMPD detective suing police department for wrongful termination WAVE By Dustin Vogt Published: Jun. 2, 2022
LMPD notified WAVE News that all of former officer Christopher Palombi's cases had been transferred to different investigators following his firing.(WAVE)
Burbrink told Palombi in a text message exchange he could seek inpatient treatment and would be moved to temporary duty to another LMPD unit following treatment completion. Palombi flew to California and enrolled in a 30-day treatment program, which the department paid a portion of the treatment cost.

According to the document, Burbrink was not truthful in his statements to Palombi via text, and once Palombi returned, he was served pre-termination paperwork.

Palombi was terminated on March 2.
And then there is this bad reporting, from Metro News, Crash-Suicide victim suffered from PTSD
“For an unknown reason he wrecked, upon further investigation it was determined he had shot himself while driving down the road,” the sheriff explained.

The deputy pulled over the man for speeding and noticed drug paraphernalia in the car. He asked a woman in the car, who was the man’s fiancĂ©, to step out. She did, but the driver fled.


“This individual was a previously discharged Marine. Later on we discerned he suffered from PTSD and had some psychological issues and it got the best of him there for no apparent reason,” said Eggleton.

Click the link for more, but I think you spotted the same thing I did. No one gets PTSD for "no apparent reason!"

Some reporters are trying and their timing is terrific. Because of the slaughter of little kids in Texas, they have covered what the families are going through and a lot of reporters are telling the stories of what the kids are going through. The problem is, they did that before with all the other mass murders.

If you're wondering what life will be like for the survivors of the recent mass murderers attacking all over the country, especially in schools, here is a story that sums up what happened to one of them from what he survived five years ago.

Central Texas mother pleads for help as young Sutherland Springs shooting victim continues battle nearly five years later

SAN SABA, Texas (KWTX) - Nearly five years after the Sutherland Springs shooting claimed the lives of 26 people and injured 20 others, a mother in San Saba says her son’s journey to recovery from being severely wounded is far from over.

Ryland Ward was shot once in the shoulder, twice in the stomach, and twice in the leg on November 5, 2017 inside the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs.

“As he’s getting older, the more he is realizing what actually took place that day and the extent of it,” Chancie Mcmahan, Ryland’s mom, said.

Ryland is now 10 years old and he has been in and out of hospitals undergoing 30 surgeries. It’s been a fight to recover both physically and mentally.


“His PTSD is really starting to kick in gear,” Mcmahan said. “I have him in counseling and he sees a psychologist. I’m taking all the necessary steps to make sure that he is mentally OK, but he struggles.”

It’s not just a challenge for Ryland, it’s putting strain on his mother.
read more here
As a reminder, this is what happened.

Air Force ordered to pay $230 million to Sutherland Springs shooting survivors and families of slain victims

Texas Tribune The U.S. Air Force was ordered to pay more than $230 million to survivors and families of those killed in the 2017 mass shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, a federal judge ruled Monday evening.

Judge Xavier Rodriguez had previously found that the military branch was mostly at fault for the mass shooting because it did not report the gunman’s previous assault conviction to the FBI, which could have prevented him from purchasing the semiautomatic rifle he used to kill 26 people.

In the deadliest mass shooting in Texas history, Devin Patrick Kelley fired more than 450 rounds at attendees during the church’s Nov. 5, 2017, Sunday service, injuring 22 and killing 26. He died later that day from a self-inflicted gunshot wound after two men chased him with firearms of their own as he fled the scene.

The thing reporters are missing is, that they need to stop reporting on veterans as if they are the only survivors with PTSD. They need to stop reporting on members of law enforcement as if they are the only ones. Until they decide that they need to remind everyone that survivors of traumatic events have PTSD too, and need help to heal, the toughest among us won't even try to get help. The other factor is, that their bosses will still treat them like crap because they don't understand what they should about what happens to the survivors of the things their responders respond to! 

Friday, June 3, 2022

Time for the majority to use their power

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos 
June 3, 2022

The majority of Americans own guns. The majority of Americans are also supporting gun law restrictions. So why are the members of the GOP in the Senate and House against them?



The answer comes from FORBES.

The poll found a combined 59% think it’s important for elected leaders to “pass stricter gun control laws,” including 83% of Democrats, 52% of Independents, and 37% of Republicans.

Just 37% of Republicans? Seriously? I know a lot of them and they are great people, love their families and friends, and would not want to see any harm come to them, especially from a bullet. They are responsible gun owners. Well, there was one time when we were in a truck following our husbands on a ride from Florida to Washington DC for a Memorial ride. We stopped for lunch with the guys and had a great time. We drove for about twenty minutes when one of the women realized she left her purse behind. We were in the passing lane, so we missed the next exit, had to drive more miles, and turned around while she tried to calm down. She ran in and thanked God a waitress found it instead of an unethical person, or, God forbid, a child got their hands on it. (I don't own a gun for a simple reason. I'm a klutz. Ask anyone I know and they'll agree that is the last thing that should ever be in my hands.)

The other thing is, most of the people I know are Republicans and I never once worried about being around them with their guns. They must be in the 37% of the Republicans thinking there should be stricter gun laws. I can't imagine any of them being in favor of anyone getting their hands on an AR15, or any other weapon, considering all of them obey the law and treat their weapons with respect.

So when do the majority of people in this country actually act like they are? When do we use the power of our numbers instead of just shutting up, living our own lives, worrying about our own problems, and shaking our heads because we don't think there is a damn thing we can do about any of this?

The minority has more power because they scream about what they want and demand it. The minority of people acting up always get the attention of the media, including social media because the majority think there is nothing they can do, so we allow them to do and get whatever they want.

I was talking to a woman yesterday and she said it seems like everything is just too much. She ran down the list of everything that is wrong. I told her I felt the same way, but take comfort when I see enormous groups of people joining together to fight for what is right and let their voices be heard. I take comfort when I hear politicians and members of the press showing the emotional turmoil they are in when they talk about the children massacred in Robb Middle School in Uvalde, Texas. 

That is another problem for the members of the GOP in Congress because they keep saying the way to address it is by arming more teachers and putting armed guards into schools. After all, as they say, "The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." The truth, however, is not a movie. There were plenty of armed "good guys" outside of Robb but nothing while the murderer was murdering more kids.

Let this headline sink in for a second from People.

Police Knew Texas Shooter Was in Room with Kids, Undermining Claim They Thought He Was Barricaded: Witnesses

Read the rest of this and then try to figure out how you can use your own voice to stop all this. If you read Wounded Times because of #PTSD, then know this, when we do nothing, we increase membership into this club no one wants to join.
There are about 393 million privately owned firearms in the US, according to an estimate by the Switzerland-based Small Arms Survey -- or in other words, 120 guns for every 100 Americans. That's the highest rate of any country in the world, and more than double the rate of the next country on the list.


A number of polls and surveys conducted in recent years share some insights on gun ownership in the United States.

What studies reveal about gun ownership in the US

CNN
By Harmeet Kaur
June 2, 2022

(CNN)As the nation continues to endure devastating mass shootings and increasing homicide rates, guns remain a fixture of American culture.

Many Americans consider the right to bear arms sacred, seeing guns as key to their identities and individual freedoms. Some keep guns for protection, hunting or sport, while others see guns and the lax regulations around them as a threat to life and safety. Recurring tragedies involving guns contribute to a climate of fear in which those positions become more entrenched.

Understanding gun ownership in the US can help inform debates about firearm laws (or lack thereof). Obtaining a precise picture, however, is challenging because no definitive database of gun sales exists. What we have to rely on then are polls and survey data from think tanks and academic researchers, which vary somewhat in their estimates. Still, there are some broad trends that stand out.
read more here