Showing posts with label recovery. Show all posts
Showing posts with label recovery. Show all posts

Monday, June 27, 2022

PTSD - Causes, Symptoms, Treatment featuring Kathie Costos.

UPDATE THIS VIDEO IS NO LONGER UP. THEY TOOK DOWN ALL OF THEM. 


Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
June 27, 2022

Thank you to Anxiety Commander and crew for all you do! It was a pleasure doing this video with you!

Today, our Special Guest is Kathy Costos. She is a YouTuber, the author of multiple books, the founder of an amazing organization PTSD Patrol and much more. In this video, we are going to discuss what actually PTSD is along with different dimensions of Generalized Anxiety Disorders.

In 1982, Kathis Costos survived many life-threatening events. She heard the term Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) back then but she didn’t have computers or cell phones to research and find out more. The only way she could learn about this was at the local library. The only books she found were clinical ones that she couldn’t understand. She had to use a dictionary to understand what she was reading in those clinical books. What dedication!

The research was all centered on war veterans. The more she learned, the more she understood that veterans and family members needed to be made aware of what the experts had found.

In 1999 She wrote her first book, For The Love Of Jack and it was published in 2002. It helped a lot of people and helped therapists gain more understanding of what PTSD does to families as well as veterans.

In 2006 She started doing videos on PTSD and started Wounded Times soon afterward because reports on PTSD were all over the country but still, there was no one source putting them all together.

She started PTSD Patrol in 2017 to change the conversation from doom and gloom to hope of healing. She believes that therapy works!

And to all the readers of Wonded Times
Remember, it's your life! Get in and drive it!
#BreakTheSilence and #TakeBackYourLife from #PTSD

Thursday, June 16, 2022

all the power to change your tomorrow is in your control

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
June 16, 2022

You may have heard humans only use 10% of their brains. Easy to accept that idea, considering how we are aware of so many remarkable people able to do things we cannot.  We all believe in rumors and when we hear something we know we heard before, we don't question it. It allows us to assume they have unique minds, far beyond what is "normal" to the rest of us. It is the same thing with #PTSD. If we see someone who seems to be fine after surviving what caused PTSD in us, we think they have stronger minds than we do. 

The thing is, it isn't true. Appearing to be "normal" after surviving, escaping unchanged, unharmed, and unaffected, may not be something you can see with your own eyes, but you can with technology.



According to a survey from 2013, around 65 percent of Americans believe that we only use 10 percent of our brain.

But this is just a myth, according to an interview with neurologist Barry Gordon in Scientific American. He explained that the majority of the brain is almost always active.

The 10 percent myth was also debunked in a study published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.

One common brain imaging technique, called functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), can measure activity in the brain while a person is performing different tasks.

Using this and similar methods, researchers show that most of our brain is in use most of the time, even when a person is performing a very simple action.

A lot of the brain is even active when a person is resting or sleeping.

You may be wondering, what does this have to do with #PTSD? A lot! If you believe only a tiny percentage of your brain works, you settle for what you think you can't do. You don't look for new possibilities or new things to learn. With PTSD, if you believe you have no power to do anything about it, you don't.

Think about everything that goes on in your brain. Now think of all the treatments out there that your brain needs to heal, just as much as parts of your body need to heal from wounds you can see. Just because you cannot see the wound of PTSD with just your eyes, you can see what it does to you. It may not make sense until you can see it with your own eyes. Well, actually, you can.


Scientific America
MRI studies conducted over the past two decades have found that PTSD patients with dissociative amnesia exhibit reduced activity in the amygdala—a brain region that controls the processing of emotion—and increased activity in the prefrontal cortex, which controls planning, focus, and other executive functioning skills. In contrast, PTSD patients who report no lapse in their memories of trauma exhibit increased activity in the amygdala and reduced activity in the prefrontal cortex.

“The reason for these differences in neuronal circuitry is that PTSD patients with dissociative symptoms such as amnesia and depersonalization—a group comprising somewhere between 15 and 30 percent of all PTSD patients—shut down emotionally in response to trauma,” says Ruth Lanius, a professor of psychiatry and director of the PTSD research unit at the University of Western Ontario, who has conducted several of these MRI studies. Children may try to detach from abuse to avoid intolerable emotional pain, which can result in forgetting an experience for many years, she maintains. “Dissociation involves a psychological escape when a physical escape is not possible,” Lanius adds.
The article, "Forgotten Memories of Traumatic Events Get Some Backing from Brain-Imaging Studies," is about how child abuse survivors have memories trapped, resurfacing as recovered memories. There were a lot of controversies about this because some therapists were introducing memories. This caused a great deal of research into proving how recovered memories could actually be real. In other words, like hunting for monsters under your bed when you were a child, you're hunting for the ones that hitched a ride in your brain but hide themselves in the darkness of your mind.

We all know that the only way to get rid of monsters is to confront them and stop being afraid of them. Don't fear a monstrous memory because you can defeat this one too! Now that you know the power of your brain, all the power to change your tomorrow is in your control even though you had no control over what happened to you.

Thursday, April 21, 2022

Common knowledge eradicates PTSD Stigma

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
April 21, 2022

If the stigma of #PTSD is ever going to be eradicated in the minds of survivors, it requires common knowledge. The simple fact that PTSD strikes out against survivors of many different events is the first step toward doing just that. Here is a small list to think about first.

Australian Doctor
Dr Nick Coatsworth has revealed before he started his role as Deputy Chief Medical Officer during the coronavirus pandemic he suffered from debilitating post traumatic stress disorder which left him feeling like he was having a heart attack. The Today medical expert shared his story with Karl Stefanovic, saying the symptoms left him housebound and unable to do his job.

Canada Military Members (University Manitoba)
Measuring the mental health of military members
A new series of studies looking into the mental health of Canadian Armed Forces members aims to better understand the connections between mental health and military service.

The studies follow up with data collected by Statistics Canada in collaboration with the Department of National Defence in 2002 and compare it with more recent data from 2018. In 2002 participants were asked to fill out a survey on mental health. In 2018 researchers contacted 2,941 of the original 5,155 participants and asked them to fill out the survey again. The survey aims to show clinicians and stakeholders how mental health changes after 16 years of service in the military.

“We figured it was important to follow up with some of these people and see how their mental health changed over their service. This is an important gap in the literature right now,” says Dr. Shay-Lee Bolton, assistant professor of psychiatry, Max Rady College of Medicine, Rady Faculty of Health Sciences. “Seeing people at one-time point and then comparing with another to see what is changed and the same hasn’t been done before.”

In every category including anxiety, depression and PTSD, there is an increase in the number of people who have been diagnosed with a disorder. Bolton isn’t yet sure yet why there has been an increase in diagnoses but recognizes that it’s something to keep an eye on.

“I think it shows a vulnerability that’s there. We don’t know that it’s due to their military experience, but it shows that there is a vulnerable population there,” says Bolton.

Ohio First Responders (ABC 5 News)
ELYRIA, Ohio — Once considered a silent crisis, there continues to be a growing dialogue and conversation centered around first responders and the impact and prevalence of post-traumatic stress among the ranks. In addition to continued efforts on the state level, a national organization is in Lorain County this week to provide first responders with mental health training that will help them identify operational stress and trauma in themselves and their colleagues.

The workshops being offered to first responders include small group discussions that encourage participants to examine and acknowledge the impact that stress and trauma have on their day-to-day lives. The scenario-based training teaches first responders how to initiate potentially difficult conversations with their colleagues.

Wellington Police Chief Tim Barfield said the training is especially critical for law enforcement officers. Recent studies have found an estimated 1 in 3 law enforcement officers suffers from PTSD. Removing the stigma associated with that is an important step, he said.

“There is a stigma among first responders that if we're bothered by something, we’re weak,” Barfield said.

“We need to break that stigma," he said. "We need to understand that the things we see every day doesn’t make us weak, but we do need to learn how to deal with it.”


Oklahoma City Bombing (KOCO News)
Oklahomans and neighbors cope with a dark day in the state’s history.

April 19 is a tough day in Oklahoma City with so many coping with their feelings about what happened 27 years ago.

Mental health professionals said it’s important to make sure that coping is done in a healthy way. The Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse reminds Oklahomans if they are experiencing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, they are not alone.

“It’s a collective trauma that we revisit every year together,” said Lauren Garder, senior manager of Zero Suicide and Trauma Care with the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse.
“You can have PTSD from repeated exposure to traumatic details of somebody else's life and those effects that is PTSD all the same,” Garder said.

You just read a small list of different people with PTSD. PTSD does not choose anything other than the fact a human has survived something horrible. It does not know nationality. It does not know profession. It does not know if you are male or female. The shock hits all survivors and no one is left unchanged by it. The level of the change is determined by the strength of their emotional core. This is why when spiritual help is added to what mental health professionals do, there is greater healing.

How strong is your emotional core? Think about how simple things are deeply felt by you. If you look at a colorful sunrise or stunning sunset, and it takes your breath away, you have a strong emotional core. If your heart beats a little faster when you hear the sound of the voice of someone you love, or feels as if it is breaking when they are hurting, you have a strong emotional core. The more you feel good things, the more you feel bad things as well. Sorry but, it a human tradeoff.

There are many times in our lives that we will feel something, but no one else can understand the strength of our emotional connection to it. This is why if you take a lot of people, exposed to the same event, not all of them will develop PTSD. This is also why some of the survivors who were not drastically changed may judge those who were as being "weak" but it also has a lot to do with the stigma attached to what they already think about those who have it.

All too often when you use the term PTSD, people immediately think it only happens to veterans because that is all they hear on the news, online and on social media. While the causes are different, the fact is, while we are all survivors and human, we are all different. Different life experiences combined with the event itself are part of the way we go from "victim" to "survivor" of what happened to us.

My survival story began at the age of five, so what came afterwards with the other events, is not the same as others who survived the same types of events but not all of them in their lifespan. With each event, after the initial shock, and dealing with it along with the emotions that followed, I viewed myself as a survivor. That went a long way toward faster and stronger recovery. 

Not feeling as if I needed to hide what it did as something to feel ashamed of, also helped. It freed me to speak about what I was dealing with. Back then, peer support did not exist as it does now. Peer support back then was when people cared enough to just listen while survivors could make sense out of what happened in a safe place where we were not being judged. Now there are groups.

In groups, people understand that all the others are there for support and those who have begun to heal, offer support as much as they receive it. It is empowering to give support after you have received it for yourself.

The main thing healing people understand is that it is not a contest. No one compares themselves against others who may seem to be grieving less or more than the do. Everyone is different but the thing is, everyone there shares the common bond of surviving! Now, maybe you know it too!

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

In The Arms of Stranger Angels


Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
April 13, 2022

(About the book Stranger Angels)

Chris survived domestic violence. He had a wonderful childhood but it was what his wife did to him that nearly destroyed him. He was wounded while reporting on the war in Afghanistan. When he returned home, she hated the fact he was home, instead of trying to help him heal. She tried to kill him. Having failed at that, she stalked him.

Mandy, the woman who began to heal Chris, survived child abuse and an abusive husband. He tried to kill her but failed. 

Alex and Mary, brother and sister, survived child abuse.

All of them, along with many others in Stranger Angels, not only survived child abuse, they healed. The healing did not stop with them. They passed on hope to all others that they could not just live a happier life but could become part of a miracle for others to hope for.

All of them had PTSD because of what other people who were supposed to love them did to them. All of them were healing. Some healed completely. Others, like Chris were still healing their wounds.

They knew what it was like to feel hopeless. They knew what it was like to feel as if God allowed it all to happen and to lose faith in His love. They also knew what it was like to have their faith restored and have their broken hearts mended. They were no longer God's lost children searching for hope. 

It is because of this, that Chris set out to write his third book to offer hope to survivors of domestic violence. He traveled to talk to his friends to gain a better understanding of what it was like for children when their own parents inflicted the most damage to them. All of them were examples of what is possible for others to have in their futures and be empowered to dream of the day when they would also become healed.

I know what it is like too. My Dad was a violent alcoholic until I was 13. He recovered with help of people from AA. He ended up helping others. My ex-husband tried to kill me and then stalked me. So, yes, I know what it is like. I survived many other things, but it was the damage he did to me that did not go away until I found out he died. Even with the suffering I went through, I managed to get married again, had a daughter and lived a pretty good life. I had help along the way. The thing that helped heal me more was my faith in God and helping others find what I found. That no matter how lonely, hopeless or lost we feel, He sends someone into our life to let us know He hears our prayers and feels our tears. Helping others was healing for me too!

Some think these books are sad but that is only part of their stories. There is great sadness and struggles. Just like there is great sadness and struggles for anyone trying to heal after surviving any of the causes of PTSD. Just like others, there is also hope when people understand what PTSD is, what caused it and what you can do to #takebackyourlife from #PTSD. Having someone who knows what your life is like helps you #breakthesilence and break the power PTSD has had over your life.

I hope you find comfort and a better understanding of what it is like to be in the arms of Stranger Angels.

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

When Hope Returns, Rejoice!


Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
April 12, 2022

When you are going through a rough time, things seem pretty hopeless and you are struggling, it is good time to remember all the other times you got through when you thought there was no hope for anything to get better.

I'm going through a really rough time now. I wrote three new books but I have no one to help me get people to discover them. They were written to offer hope of healing #PTSD. Not just from surviving war, but from surviving all other causes. You'd think that with PTSD in veterans becoming a billion dollar industry, especially when folks are raising huge sums of money to "raise awareness" they are killing themselves, it would be something worth talking about. The thing is, there really isn't much healing awareness going on for them. For the rest of us, there is little hope being offered.

So how is it that this billion dollar industry is something no one wants to talk about? It seems even fewer want to read about it. Is it because they are afraid it will depress them? Given the fact that most still cling onto the stigma of PTSD, that makes sense. After all, viewing yourself as a "victim" or thinking that you are weak, or whatever negative thought you have after surviving, no one wants to be reminded of any of it.

The problem is, you do not discover empowerment either. I know I become inspired when I read about someone in the writer's community talking about struggling and then finding success. I feel even more hopeful when they turn around and pass on what they learned so that others struggling will be able to find more readers too. After all, other authors know what it is like.

It is the same thing with PTSD. It is a story all of us know all too well. But we don't get "well" or live happier lives, until hope returns. 

Right now, I'm am remembering all the other times things seemed hopeless but suddenly, God turned it all around and it all worked out. What is hopeless for me to do, it is possible for Him to do. Some days I wake up and for no apparent reason, I am smiling and happier. Nothing really happened other than I know God heard my prayers and is doing what He can to help me.

That is what The Lost Son Series is all about. The main character has PTSD from domestic violence. Veterans are in the books and they have PTSD but are healing, and passing on, not just hope, but a way to get there. There are others in all three books doing the same and offering inspiring stories to give hope to anyone else, just like them.

Hope returned and they rejoiced. They passed it on and others rejoiced too! Isn't that what we should be all be raising awareness of to actually make a difference in someone else's life?

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Stranger Angels Healing Scars of Abuse

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
March 28, 2022

Stranger Angels part three of The Lost Son is about domestic abuse survivors going on to lead awesome lives because someone came along to help them heal.

Chris thought about how he didn't spend enough time writing about healing from what happened to many people in his life. He had a good childhood and great parents. Too many of his friends were raised by horrible parents and his ex-wife was the target of bullies in grade school.

He decided to write another book telling their stories to offer hope to others, including survivors of domestic violence committed by a spouse. After all, he was one of them. It is hard enough for female to break away from an abusive spouse/partner. It was almost impossible for him to ask for help when his wife was the abuser. He had PTSD from that plus the bomb blast that almost killed him.

Mandy, the woman who taught him about how God still works miracles, was also an abused by her mother and then her husband. She went on to help people heal from trauma for 40 years. 

Alex and Mary, the agents for his publisher, were abused by a horrible mother.

While helping people who lived in a shelter, Chris encountered two sisters who were abused by their mother's boyfriend. She disappeared and they wanted help to find their Godmother so they wouldn't end up in foster care.

One of the woman from the shelter said that Chris was a stranger angel because of Hebrews 13:2 

"Be not forgetful to entertain strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares."

He had been taking supplies to the shelter every week but no one knew who he was. They all called him the stranger angel.

Chris was also the target of a fraudulent preacher who had many secrets of his own.

The thing that Chris kept proving over and over again is that there were more good people in the world than there are evil ones. Most of the ones doing the most good, knew what it was like to have evil done to them and they did all they could to help others just like them.

I know, because I was the child of a violent alcoholic. While physically, he never hurt me, my older brother was his target. My Dad stopped drinking when I was 13 and changed his life for the sake of his family. Later in adulthood, my abuser was my husband. At first it was verbal abuse, but that didn't hurt me at all. After everything I had already survived, his words did no damage to me. One night he came home from work and it became physical abuse to the point where he tried to kill me. He stalked me for a long time after that.

I know what it is like to feel helpless, as well as not feeling worthy of receiving help but that is never the end of our story. Someone comes along to help us heal. We learn to trust again and I hope when you read this book, you learn to believe in miracles again too. After all, they happen all the time when God sends stranger angels to deliver the answer to our prayers.





Monday, February 28, 2022

Young Ukrainians Share Struggles Amid War

Don’t Keep Quiet: Young Ukrainians Share Struggles Amid War

WebMD
By Kelly Wairimu Davis, MS
Feb. 25, 2021
“Be on the phone, FaceTiming, talking, writing,” Botwin says.

“I think it’s so important right now to be reaching out and talking to people, especially the younger folks over there [in Ukraine] being able to use things like social media,” she says.
Hypervigilance, sadness, rage, anger.

Many young Ukrainians have taken to Instagram to express their emotions as Russian forces continue their push deeper into the country.

Political unrest between Ukraine and Russia has a long history, but this is the first major conflict in the region since 2014.

Recalling childhood stories from past crises with Russia, one common sentiment among millennials and Gen-Z Ukrainians on social media is, “I’ve always been afraid of war,” as well as, “How could this happen in the 21st century?”

Expressing these thoughts and feelings online is a great way for young people to help manage fear, anxiety, and other troubling emotions they may be having, says Shari Botwin, a licensed clinical social worker and author of Thriving After Trauma: Stories of Living and Healing.

Focusing on creating physical and emotional safety is also critical.

“Be on the phone, FaceTiming, talking, writing,” Botwin says.

“I think it’s so important right now to be reaching out and talking to people, especially the younger folks over there [in Ukraine] being able to use things like social media,” she says.

“This is one of those situations where we don’t have control over what’s happening, but I think being able to speak and say and connect with other people on these feelings can actually make the situation a bit more manageable.” read more here

This is a really important time for people to become aware of the simple fact, they need to use the power they do have to begin healing now, especially if you are young.

When I survived the worst events in my life, I was just 22. For 40 years, I've been working on PTSD and have heard all kinds of advice over the years. The best advice was to open up and talk about what is going on with you. Share your fears. Cry. Scream. Do what you need to and honor the feelings you have so you can get rid of them and begin to heal. If you hold them in, they are like an infection to your soul. PTSD starts to take over.

The other thing to remember is, you have no idea how many other people you know going through the same thing, but are afraid to speak out. If you have PTSD, YOU ARE A SURVIVOR and there is nothing to be ashamed of as a survivor. It means you were not defeated so don't give up!

#BreakTheSilence and #TakeBackYourLife from #PTSD

Friday, February 25, 2022

Can you become part of a miracle?

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
February 25, 2022
Have you ever wanted to help someone but didn't think you could? If you're thinking that you are only one person and there isn't much you can do, think about it. A lot of people felt the same way, until they remembered how one person, just like them, helped them. Lives are being changed because people are using the power they do have to deliver miracles.

The Lost Son series are fictional, but there are survivors doing whatever they can to give hope to others that they can heal too. There are actual people all over the country doing the same thing because someone helped them along the way.

Read this from Alive Again and see if you can see yourself in any of this.

Greer from Alive Again, The Lost Son Part Two
“Good morning. We’re all here because we know miracles still happen. We know that because of Chris’s books, they were happening all around us, all along, but the world is a less lonely place now that we know they are. I’m sure you’ve heard on the news, even up to yesterday, that they also come when we least expect them, and least expect we’re going to need another one. Miracles happened to all the people behind me, and they happened to me too. The people behind me helped Chris heal in just thirteen days. That’s all it took for him going from wanting to end his life, to beginning to write about the miracles, and how all of us could become ingredients of miracles.” She looked at the crowd and the cameras.

“Many of you are doing video testimonies with the people from Netflix, so others will hear your stories and find hope. Our hope is you receive the same reward all of us did. Since the books came out, we discovered how much of an impact they had on people. They said it was priceless learning that what they did spread out to many others. They spread it even further, changing the world one person at a time, or in Chris’s case, millions.” She started to walk around.

“This is the reason we are asking you to open your hearts and wallets to donate to wherever your soul is leading you to. If you are touched by the homeless, find a shelter to donate to. If you are touched by hunger, donate to a food bank. If it is for animals, donate to a rescue shelter for them. Whatever it is, give what you can because you can. If you cannot donate money, but have some time, donate your time. If you don’t have money or time, then donate prayers because all of us know how prayers are still heard and are still answered. If you have a neighbor in need, help. If you are in a store and a clerk is having a rough day, smile or joke with them so you change their day. If you see someone acting out of anger, pray for courage to correct them.” She stood near Chris.

“Because of what happened yesterday, we understand that this event is being covered by reporters from across the country and internationally by the BBC. We are asking all of you to remember, ‘For God so love the world, He gave his only begotten Son’ and remember those in other parts of His world and care for all His children, no matter where they live.”

She smiled, “When you are feeling this world is too dark, remember that there are still more people walking in the light and join them. Realize the power you have to make a difference in this world and become a part of a miracle others are praying for. Thank you all for being a part of ours.” Greer turned around and David hugged her.

That is how you become part of a miracle. Doing what you can for the sake of others because you know how it feels to have little or nothing. If you know what it felt like to have someone help you heal PTSD, pass it on. Even if you only help one person, that help does not end with them. Whoever helped you, was helped by someone else, and they were helped before that. That miracle of hope spread person to person and lives were changed.

Over the last 40 years, I helped people because God guided me to search for answers and I was helped to find experts willing to teach me, even though I am no one special. I had no money, no connections to powerful people, but what I had was a strong desire to help anyone I could. Each and everyone of the people I helped, passed it on, for no other reason than they wanted to help someone else find their way out of the darkness of PTSD they had been living with. That's how miracles happen.


Chris with his therapist in Stranger Angels, The Lost Son Part Three
Chris looked down at the floor. “I don’t know how to say it. I’ve never told another person. I didn't even tell Mandy.”

Dariana leaned forward in her chair. “Whatever it is, it may be what is missing in your healing. Just close your eyes and tell me.”

Chris leaned back, closed his eyes and the memory came to life. “When I was young I wanted to become a Priest. That part I was able to talk about. It was a reoccurring dream that I never talked about before. I was in the sanctuary wearing vestments and carrying an empty challis, walking down the aisle, like the Holy procession but there was no one else inside. All the pews were empty. Instead of going up another aisle, I carried the challis out the front door. When I got outside, I was wearing a flannel shirt, T-shirt, jeans and sneakers, like I wore to school. I stood on the top step, looked down at the challis and it was full. I looked up and saw hundreds of people there. I gave Communion to all of them, and then preached on the the Parable of the Good Samaritan.”
Luke 10:30-37
In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’"

“Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”

The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”

Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”
You don't have to be Christian to do likewise. You don't have to believe in God or Jesus to do likewise. All you need to do is care about others and be willing to do what you can for the sake of others.

Like with all other books out there, these books are intended for a specific audience. Most people who do not go to church are not intended to get your body into one. They are not anti-church but are anti-hypocritical. The goal of these books is to empower survivors living with PTSD and fill them with the same things that filled me, nourished me and gave me peace with the past so that events no longer controlled me and people who hurt me, no longer had power over my life.

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Are You A Stranger Angel?

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
February 19, 2022

Part three of The Lost Son, Stranger Angels
2022 began with a new mission for Chris and his friends. In the process of writing a new book, Chris wanted to address the traumas that happened when some of his friends were young to give hope to others living with abusive parents and bullies. He also had to find closure for the abuse he survived in LA.

Dreams were haunting him and grew stronger. He kept his promise to go into therapy for PTSD and finally had to admit the thing he had been hiding all along.

From Stranger Angels

“Remember, we didn’t want to talk about anything outside the house. Anyway, once they got her into bed, we were sitting in the kitchen and they were talking about how they rationalized it by things that happened to them. How they just forced themselves to get over.” Bill saw the shocked look on the others. “Don’t look at me like that. All of you did the same thing. You thought just like I did, that you’d just get over it and you waited.”

Chris said, “I know I did and it just got worse. I have to tell you that if I knew how many others had PTSD just from living, and not just from combat, I would have gone into therapy a long time ago. I had no way to know it was too often part of surviving. I’m just wondering why your Dad didn’t connect what happened to Brenda to what happened in Vietnam?”

“Don’t get me wrong but, the only way I can explain it is, since he understood so little about it, it was almost like a contest in his mind. He got over it the first time, the second time and the third time. He couldn’t just get over it the fourth time. It was too much. God must have agreed because after he got wounded, the docs discharged him and sent him home. The thing is, he said his wounds weren’t bad enough to be discharged. He just knew somehow, they knew he needed to get out.” 
“So he thought Brenda should get over it too?”

“Pretty much.” Bill took a swig of beer. “See the thing is, no one they knew talked about any of this either. When we went to Afghanistan and Iraq, that was all anyone was talking about back home, but we didn’t talk to each other about it. I didn’t talk to David and he sure as hell wasn’t gonna tell me since he was the strongest and bravest of all of us.” He looked at David and he was nodding his head agreeing. “Folks back home pretended that PTSD and suicides only happened to our generation and only because of war. Everyone else was being ignored, like veterans like my Dad. Even he didn’t connect Vietnam to PTSD until I was diagnosed and I was explaining it to him.” 
“I know I tried to pass it off too. Like I’d just get over it. I saw what you and David went through and that you guys had it a lot worse than I did. Now I get it. I turned it into a contest too.”

David agreed, “It’s easy to do. I did it too but it was a contest I didn’t want to win. Maybe that’s why I was fighting a losing battle until I met Mandy. I don’t know but I do know, she didn’t just save my life, she gave me a reason to live.”

Greer nodded her head, “So did I. I was a tough Black MP. Admitting I needed help was the last thing I was ready to do. The stupid thing was, I had no problem asking for backup when I needed it doing my job. I had no problem trusting the other MPs with watching my back but I had a huge problem trusting them with what was going on with me. The crazy thing was, until a few months ago when we got all that publicity, I had no idea how many others I served with were going through the same thing and thinking the same way I did. Like, we could trust them with our lives but couldn’t bring ourselves to trust them with our thoughts and struggles.”
The purpose of this series is to let you know you are not stuck suffering with PTSD and give you a way to fuller, happier life.

Studies show that suicide risk is higher in persons with PTSD. Some studies link suicide risk in those with PTSD to distressing trauma memories, anger, and poor control of impulses. Further, suicide risk is higher for those with PTSD who have certain styles of coping with stress, such as not expressing feelings. (PTSD VA)

The other thing I hope you take away from these books is the fact that you are human and while it may seem as if no one will understand what you're going through, ask the other 15 million people in the country joining the PTSD club every year that no one wants to be a member of. They may not understand what combat did to you, but they sure as hell understand what living and surviving did to them.

If you don't try to fight PTSD alone, then you learn how vital it is to have help to heal. You also find the need to help others heal too and you become a Stranger Angel!

Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.
Hebrews 13:2

Saturday, December 4, 2021

Post-trauma days of living different lives as survivors,

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
December 4, 2021




If you listen to any news program, the chances are, you have no idea what is going on when it comes to PTSD. Until we do, finally, understand that while the causes of PTSD are different, what comes after in the Post-trauma days of living different lives as survivors, will remain the silent suffering of millions around the world.

Survivors had been suffering in silence long before I came along into this life. The issue that grieves me most of all, is the simple fact that none of it had to happen.

None of it will change until we actually manage to change the conversation we're having, and what we settle for the press continuing to ignore.

I read, what are considered to be, strange things all the time. It makes sense to me because as a survivor, I am strange to others, and I'm OK with that. What give me more comfort is the fact that when I read strange things, I find how much we as humans surviving life, are all linked together.

Reading "Front-line healthcare workers at risk of suffering from PTSD", on The Morning Star covered what is happening with healthcare workers facing the continued battle against the pandemic. They are expecting over 200,000 new cases of survivors dealing with PTSD. It shows what most experts know.
Professor Neil Greenberg, a PTSD specialist at the college, said: “It’s a common misunderstanding that only people in the armed forces can develop PTSD — anyone exposed to a traumatic event is at risk.
“However, clearly there are jobs, including working in many healthcare settings, where experiencing traumatic events is more common so the risk of developing PTSD is unfortunately much higher.”
“Early and effective support can reduce the likelihood of PTSD and those affected should be able to access evidence-based treatment in a timely manner,” Prof Greenberg added.
Yes, you read that right. It isn't just about people in the military. PTSD strikes survivors, no matter what they survived. The problem with the article is that it also strikes people going about their daily lives when something happened to them without warning, leaving them to wonder if it was such a good thing they survived it or not.

PTSD from occupations also hit all over the world. Keep in mind that these people are still facing life as the rest of us, and then their jobs are piled onto their shoulders taking care of the rest of us, and all too often, each other as well.

Here in the US, our healtcare providers are dealing with the same linked traumas. For providers with PTSD, the trauma of COVID-19 isn’t over by the Association of American Medical Colleges
Even before the pandemic, 16% of emergency physicians self-reported symptoms of PTSD. Recent data, including an unpublished survey conducted in the fall of 2020 and presented at the American Psychiatric Association’s annual meeting in May, suggest that as many as 36% of front-line physicians suffer from the condition. And that statistic omits those who don’t meet strict diagnostic criteria but have still experienced powerful psychological effects. “Health care workers had to worry about not having enough beds, not having enough ventilators. They had to move into fields they didn’t know,” says Jessica Gold, MD, a psychiatrist at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis who treats physicians. “They saw their colleagues die or had to intubate their co-workers, and they had to worry about ending up that way themselves. Those are huge traumas.”
The article points out many differnt, important points, however, this one applies to everyone suffering as survivors of the causes of our traumas.
For providers suffering from PTSD and the hospitals that rely on them, what lies ahead is unclear. Once a person develops PTSD, it can last for years. More than a decade after the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks, 27% of police responders were still suffering symptoms, for example. But certain treatments, including anti-anxiety medication and cognitive behavioral therapy, have been shown to help. Bankhead-Kendall certainly finds her therapy useful. For one, she’s learned to cry more. “My counselor told me I needed to not keep things bottled up, and to grieve, so when I’m feeling really sad, I find an appropriate place and I cry,” she says. “It seems really simple, kind of silly, but it helps.”
It doesn't seem silly to me, or any of the other people out there getting the right kind of information about healing. We have to let out the pain before we can heal hope.

If you have PTSD, get  help to heal and then pass it on. If you read something in your favorite news source and they get something wrong, let them know what the truth is. If they get it right, praise them so they continue to be beneficial to other survivors.

Reach out to anyone, no matter what caused their PTSD and understand it is not a contest between who is suffering more, but is a quest to help them gain strength from your experiences. Be the miracle for others the way you had someone start yours!

#BreakTheSilence and #TakeBackYourLife from #PTSD.

Monday, November 29, 2021

I MARRIED THE WAR

My mother married the Korean War. My mother-in-law married WWII. I married the Vietnam War. They fought the battles in combat, but we fought the battles they brought back with them. Chances are, if your reading this site, you did too. Maybe the one coming home was your wife, son, daughter or friend. You know what it's like when things are going fine, as much as you know what things are like when they are not so great.

When I got into all of this, no one was talking about what it was like. My parents kept it all a secret and so did my husband's parents. It was almost as if they felt they should be ashamed of something. I had to learn what it was all by myself and eventually, wrote For The Love Of Jack, His War/My Battle.

Today I received an email about a fabulous documentary, I Married The War, and happy to share this. The thing is, their service is a part of them. Combat is a part of them. When we marry them, that is included in the deal. When I watched some of the videos, I thought, wow, this is for the rest of us who fight their battles back home.

Official Trailer for I Married the War

We are thrilled to release our new Official Trailer for I Married the War. Created by our stellar Director of Photography, Bill Krumm, it offers an introduction to all eleven women, and clear insight into what the film is all about.

We couldn’t be more grateful to these women for their honest and candid interviews about their experience as wives of combat veterans. Even though less than 1% of our country’s population currently serves in the Armed Forces, we still have 5.5 million military caregivers living with veterans from WWII, the Korean War. the Vietnam War, Desert Storm, and OEF/OIF (the Middle East Wars).

It is our goal that I MARRIED THE WAR will help foster the national dialogue about supporting our veterans when they return home forever changed, and their families who are not prepared for that change when the war comes home with their loved ones.

Saturday, November 27, 2021

PTSD Overgrown Harvest

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
November 27, 2021


When will people ever learn? When will the truth become unhidden? Until that day comes, millions around the country will continue to suffer in silence.

When people hear PTSD, they assume it is related to military service. After all, that is all they hear about.
The number of Veterans with PTSD varies by service era
Operations Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Enduring Freedom (OEF): About 11-20 out of every 100 Veterans (or between 11-20%) who served in OIF or OEF have PTSD in a given year.
Gulf War (Desert Storm): About 12 out of every 100 Gulf War Veterans (or 12%) have PTSD in a given year.
Vietnam War: About 15 out of every 100 Vietnam Veterans (or 15%) were currently diagnosed with PTSD at the time of the most recent study in the late 1980s, the National Vietnam Veterans Readjustment Study (NVVRS). It is estimated that about 30 out of every 100 (or 30%) of Vietnam Veterans have had PTSD in their lifetime.
When they hear about female veterans, they assume it has to be related to sexual trauma. After all, that is all they hear about.
Among Veterans who use VA health care, about:
23 out of 100 women (or 23%) reported sexual assault when in the military.
55 out of 100 women (or 55%) and 38 out of 100 men (or 38%) have experienced sexual harassment when in the military.
Facts about How Common PTSD Is
The following statistics are based on the U.S. population:
About 6 out of every 100 people (or 6% of the population) will have PTSD at some point in their lives.
About 15 million adults have PTSD during a given year. This is only a small portion of those who have gone through a trauma.
About 8 of every 100 women (or 8%) develop PTSD sometime in their lives compared with about 4 of every 100 men (or 4%).

Firefighters end up with PTSD too, but too few hear about them.

As the Florian's Knights full patch motorcycle club, the freedom felt on two wheels inspires North American firefighters to speak truth against the stigma of first responder mental health and outlaw biker culture.

Police officers, emergency responders, and every other human surviving the thing that caused PTSD, pay a price, but too few even know what we're dealing with. PTSD is not limited by age, or occupation. It only knows something terrible happened to survivors of whatever caused it to enter their lives.

The truth is, most groups are only helping veterans with PTSD. Some are doing a great job for the right reasons and have a team in place to take care of the needs of the veterans seeking them out. They are not the ones getting the most attention. The ones with the money to bankroll advertising get the attention. The good groups do the best they can with what support they receive.

When so many are suffering with PTSD, instead of healing as survivors of the cause of it, this harvest field is overgrown because there are not enough workers to tend to all of them.

The Workers Are Few
35 Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. 36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. 38 Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” Matthew 9:35-37

And the field keeps growing far beyond what our eyes can see.
The front lines of mental health start in a person’s mind and body. Depending on the day, external stressors, resources or medication, that landscape gets smoother or rockier to navigate.

But it doesn’t end there.

The front lines shift and intersect in many environments: It can be a classroom or office, a hospital or church, a jail or shelter. Ultimately what begins as a personal experience ripples through a whole community, affecting not just the person experiencing mental health issues but their families, friends and neighbors.


And while we all have mental health (just like we have physical health), some live with mental illness, a wide range of conditions spanning mood disorders, addiction, PTSD and more. (The Seattle Times)
They can't keep up withthe need it Colorado.
DENVER (KDVR) — Mental health providers are noticing an increase in demand for services, far beyond what they experienced at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A recent survey from the National Council for Mental Wellbeing found 78% of behavioral health organizations reported seeing an increase in demand over the past three months. A majority said their waitlists are growing and nearly all respondents said they’re having trouble recruiting employees.

“We’re trying to see as many people as we can, but I don’t see it slowing down,” said Dr. Liz Chamberlain, a licensed psychologist at the CU Anschutz Health and Wellness Center.

Look up what is happening in your own state and see how overloaded the mental health system is in your own location.

Nothing will change until we change the conversation to include all humans trying to heal as survivors. We need to change the conversation we have with them, as much as we need to change the conversation we have with the lawmakers and reporters, or nothing will change. 

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Thankful God Had Plan B

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
November 25, 2021
When I was five years old, I had a fractured skull, concussion and head trauma. Aside from everything else, it caused a speech problem. Kids being kids, I was made fun of and limited what I said out loud. When I got older, it was easier to write instead of speak. My pen was my voice.

In my senior year of high school, my English teacher said I was a natural born writer. I wrote a speech for a national competition and it won first place. The thing was, I had to have one of my classmates read it because when I got nervous, words didn't come out right. My typewriter was my voice.

In 1982 I was introduced to the term Post Traumatic Stress Disorder when I fell in love with a Vietnam veteran. I had no way of knowing it at the time, but I had it too. My ex-husband tried to kill me and then stalked me for years. It helped me to understand what war did to my veteran. The more I learned, the more convinced I was that people needed to know about this. Writing was still my voice and I wrote to local newspapers.

In 1993, I got online and started to write about it on as many places as I could. My computer was my voice.

When I got older, a friend told me I missed my calling and should have become a preacher. The problem with that was, as a Greek Orthodox woman, that wasn't possible. I did not want to renounce my faith to join another church where my preaching would be welcomed. My computer was still my voice.

In 2002, I finished writing my first book on PTSD. For The Love Of Jack told our story and I wrote about the importance of our souls aiding in healing, I had to republish it in 2012.




My computer is still the voice I use most of all, but in today's world, it also because my way of speaking through videos.














One of the first videos I did was back in 2006. Coming Out Of The Dark. My video camera was my voice.
Why be afraid if you're not alone? Life is never easy, the rest is unknown. The song is by Gloria Estefan and the first time I heard it, all I could think about were the Vietnam veterans I spent so much time with including my husband. You are not alone fighting to heal PTSD just as you were not alone during combat.


All these later, almost forty of them, healing PTSD has used everything God planned for me as well as the pain others caused me.

This past summer, I was at a crossroad and not in a good way. After all these years, I had nothing new to say. I did the writing, research, created over 700 videos and had three books. I was depressed reading reports on PTSD and constantly seeing failure after failure, topped off with reporters never telling the whole story of the lives of survivors.

My faith in God was stronger than ever, but my faith in myself was at the lowest point in my life. I did what I usually do. I turned to God and prayed for a way to express what He taught me all these years. I wanted to give knowledge as much as I wanted to give hope.

God answered that prayer with The Lost Son.

Before I was done with this one, God delivered a second one to begin. Alive Again

Both book are like the Parable of The Lost Son because the main character was supposed to be a priest, but became a reporter. He walked away from God because he believed God walked away from him first. As with the lost son in the Bible, he went back to his Father and God rejoiced. He used Chris's talents and all the gifts he had to deliver messaged to the world that God still hears prayers and answers them through other people.

The stories involve veterans dealing with PTSD, but also everyone else trying to come to terms with being a survivor. I hope you find understanding and, above all else, hope that your life story is one that you determine and define. We are limited in what we can do but there are no limits on what God can do for us, and through us!

On this Thanksgiving Day, I am grateful for God's plan B for me! God gave me back my voice.

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Perpetuating the stigma of PTSD on veterans, is insulting

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
November 23, 2021

How can anyone learn something from an article that omits the most glaring fact of all? Considering that millions of people in the US are hit by PTSD every year as civilians, then add in those who end up with it from their jobs, these are the facts.
Facts about How Common PTSD Is from the National Center For PTSD
The following statistics are based on the U.S. population:
About 6 out of every 100 people (or 6% of the population) will have PTSD at some point in their lives.
About 15 million adults have PTSD during a given year. This is only a small portion of those who have gone through a trauma.
About 8 of every 100 women (or 8%) develop PTSD sometime in their lives compared with about 4 of every 100 men (or 4%).
Learn more about women, trauma and PTSD.

There is a nice way of putting this, but frankly, this article does not deserve it!

OK, employers have no idea how many of their own employees they have with PTSD and I doubt that fact bothers any of them considering they have probably been doing great jobs and made friends. Considering how many American have it every year, that is inescapable. 

The next thing that stands out about this article is the "expert" never mentions that police officers and firefighters also get PTSD from their jobs and that includes folks who did not serve in the military. Head smack moments of the day continue on this one. The worst thing of all is this if on Employee Benefit News but apparently, they prefer to perpetuate the stigma of PTSD on veterans, while leaving the rest of the population out of it. 

As it is, I'm tired of some people thinking that we have anything to be ashamed of by the labels they want us to live with. We're survivors and that is the only label we should ever allow on our shoulders. The only thing that limits us is people getting in the way of our healing...like the following article!

This is how employers can help support their veteran population suffering from PTSD

Employee Benefit News
By Paola Peralta
November 22, 2021

Veterans in the workplace are suffering — and employers may have the tools to help, if they know what to look for.

Of the 11-20% of veterans who have been diagnosed with PTSD, only 9% of veterans surveyed by digital therapeutic service Freespira say they have fully recovered from PTSD and no longer have symptoms. But it’s not from a lack of trying: veterans listed transportation challenges and finding nearby providers with PTSD experience as the main barriers to accessing healthcare services.

And with veterans making up 7% of the American workforce, their mental health — and the overwhelming burden of it — could be a problem many employers must learn to solve, says Dr. Robert Cuyler, a licensed chief clinical officer at Freespira.

“There are a lot of veterans who are now in one way or another in first responder roles,” Dr. Cuyler says. “So if you look at police departments, fire departments and EMTs, they have an awful lot of people who have military backgrounds who may have full-fledged PTSD or subclinical PTSD from being exposed to recurrent trauma.”
read more here

Monday, November 15, 2021

God still answers prayers, and people deliver His miracles!

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
November 15, 2021

Two new books are up on Amazon! As hard as it was to write two at the same time, it is a lot harder for far too many people with #PTSD.  We all see to focus on just veterans when that is the subject, but that is only because reporters never focus on the survivors of the events they cover. I thought it was time for someone to tell the stories of the rest of us. I also thought it was time to let people know that they can put their darkest days behind them and start walking in the light of God's love. After all, He didn't send harm our way, people did. Other people do what He asks them to do and they come to help us heal.

Think about whatever caused your PTSD and then think about the people who came to help you survive it. That is how it works when you are trying to survive surviving itself. There are people out there who will help you heal and live a happier life. Most of the time, they only thing they want back from you, is for you to pass it on to someone else in need.

I hope with these two books, you'll see that God still answers prayers, and people deliver His miracles!

 THE LOST SON
The scars on his body were reminders of what he survived but the scars in his soul were reminders of why he didn’t want to anymore. The condo in LA with his office covered with awards, was no longer his and he was living in a studio apartment back in Salem Massachusetts. His marriage ended when his ex-wife tried to kill him and then stalked him. All his friends were out of his life except his favorite bartender at a local bar.
Chris thought everyone he knew burned down the bridges between them and him. He couldn’t see he was the one with all the matches and his friends were trying to find the firehose. He was right about one thing. Seven years was too long for him to be suffering instead of healing, but God had other plans for him. That night, Chris was sent on a mission to save himself and millions of others when he discovered a secretive society changing the world one soul at a time.
ALIVE AGAIN
Chris spent the last two years walking in the light and did not want to go back into the darkness he had been in for seven years. He learned to secret to healing PTSD was to see beyond the pain others caused, and finally see what miracles bring to survivors. God agreed Chris should stop suffering and start to change the world. As a reporter covering the worst that people do, he used his skills and experience to report on what people do after reporters move onto the next story. As a best selling author, he proved people want God to get as much attention as Satan does.

Monday, November 1, 2021

Looking for advice on PTSD book


I haven't been on my sites for a while because I am finishing up two books on PTSD. The Lost Son is done. The second one, Alive Again is almost done. If you think about the prodigal son, then you'll understand the premise.

Luke 15:31-32
“‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”
About six months ago, I was praying to be able to write a book that could help people see God through different eyes and know that miracles do still happen, when people listen. God answered and the Lost Son was done faster than anything I had ever written before. The second one started while I was waiting for it to be edited, and I didn't even pray for this one. I had no plans to write a sequel, but it came out better than the first one,

One of my goals was to cover the causes of PTSD in everyone, not being talked about because everyone only seems interested in veterans. I wanted to include them because I've been working on PTSD since 1982 because of them. I also wanted to include people like me. I survived over ten events but I never see stories like mine in the news.

There's a lot we don't read in the news, so the main character is a reporter who didn't need to know what came after the headlines were written. He became a headline story but what came afterwards was not publicly known, until he told his own story.

The goal is to put both books out as paperback, Kindle and audio. I've been searching online for ways to do all three, but there are so many options, it is hard to decide what to do with these. I've been praying on it but, since I get confused and mess up, like with my first three books, I don't want to mess up on God this time since, He wrote most of these. If you don't know me, then you need to understand that I do have an ego, so for me to admit there is no way I could have come up with this on my own, it's really hard for me to admit that.

So, since most of you have been reading this site for years, what should I do with them? 

Should I find an agent? If so, then which one?
There are way too many online. It is fiction, spiritual, but written for people who do not go to church. In other words, with they way most of us talk. Its about suffering and miracles but is also a mystery/suspense.

Should I use a small publisher who is taking submission without agents? If so, which one?

Should I self publish on Amazon again?

Should I raise funds on Kickstarter, print and distribute them myself?

Any ideas are a blessing. Please give me some advice in the comment section and end this confusion for me!




Saturday, September 25, 2021

PTSD Ball Of Confusion

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
September 25, 2021

When you trust someone and discover they lied to you, it sucks! If they lied that time, you wonder how many other times did they lie to you. Then you wonder about everyone else you believed. While it is hard to get away from them and never have anything to do with them again, it is not impossible.

What if you lied to yourself? You tell yourself things all the time that are not true but you convince yourself otherwise. What do you do when you discover you should not have trusted you? You wonder what else you lied to yourself about. It isn't as if you can cut yourself out of your life. What do you do?

You forgive yourself by figuring out why you believed the lie in the first place. Most of us don't make things up in our own heads. We hear lies from someone else, who, very well may have been, told it and believed it as easily as you believed them.

Then you figure out if you only believed it because you wanted to. If it supports what you already thought, then it was something you wanted to hear.

We see that all the time when the topic is PTSD. When you hear someone has PTSD, maybe you think they are weak, and then believe the lie supporting that thought. What does that lie do to you when you survive something and discover you have PTSD?

The people who berate survivors the most are usually in denial about their own suffering. The truth is, someone told them that lie in the first place, and they wanted to believe it.

This is from The Department of Veterans Affairs
The number of Veterans with PTSD varies by service era:
Operations Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Enduring Freedom (OEF): About 11-20 out of every 100 Veterans (or between 11-20%) who served in OIF or OEF have PTSD in a given year.
Gulf War (Desert Storm): About 12 out of every 100 Gulf War Veterans (or 12%) have PTSD in a given year.
Vietnam War: About 15 out of every 100 Vietnam Veterans (or 15%) were currently diagnosed with PTSD at the time of the most recent study in the late 1980s, the National Vietnam Veterans Readjustment Study (NVVRS).
It is estimated that about 30 out of every 100 (or 30%) of Vietnam Veterans have had PTSD in their lifetime.
Other factors in a combat situation can add more stress to an already stressful situation. This may contribute to PTSD and other mental health problems. These factors include what you do in the war, the politics around the war, where the war is fought, and the type of enemy you face.
Another cause of PTSD in the military can be military sexual trauma (MST). This is any sexual harassment or sexual assault that occurs while you are in the military. MST can happen to both men and women and can occur during peacetime, training, or war.
Among Veterans who use VA health care, about:
23 out of 100 women (or 23%) reported sexual assault when in the military.
55 out of 100 women (or 55%) and 38 out of 100 men (or 38%) have experienced sexual harassment when in the military.
There are many more male Veterans than there are female Veterans. So, even though military sexual trauma is more common in women Veterans, over half of all Veterans with military sexual trauma are men.

Now think about all the people in the US with PTSD

  • About 15 million adults have PTSD during a given year. This is only a small portion of those who have gone through a trauma.

Stop lying to yourself and start forgiving yourself for the lies you believed about yourself! People lied to you but it is not too late to tell yourself the simple truth. There is nothing weak about being a survivor. There is nothing holding you back from healing other than what you allow to hold power over you.

No one will understand what surviving did to you unless they survived something that could have killed them. Look at the people around you and then understand it is not easy for them to understand you, even though they love you and care about you. They don't understand what caused changes in you anymore than they can understand that you need help to heal. This is why support groups work! You get the support and information you need to heal and then have the confidence to explain it to people in your life.

The only way to get there from where you're at is, tell yourself the truth about what it is and then tell yourself the truth that you are not stuck suffering. The road to healing is waiting for you and has been cleared by all the others who decided to end the ball of confusion. #BreakTheSilence and #TakeBackYourLife from #PTSD

The Temptations Ball Of Confusion

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

you served for a reason

What Does God Look Like?
PTSD Patrol
By Kathie Costos
September 1, 2021

Today on ptsdpatrol.com I wrote something I would like you to read if you are struggling with the way the war in Afghanistan ended.

Set aside the politics and decisions leaders made. The facts will all come out but you are not responsible for what they decided to do. You are only responsible for what you decided to do, and that was risk your life for the sake of those you served with, for our country, and to help a many Afghan people as possible. The rest is, as they say, "above your pay grade."

I know what it is like to struggle with not being able to save all the ones you wanted to. No, I didn't serve but for almost 4 decades I struggled with not being able to save all veterans that my heart was ripped out and I had to walk away for a while. Then I was reminded that God, with all His power, and Jesus, could not save everyone. The thing is, They did not give up on those they could save. 

Please read the following and then go to the link for the rest so that you will see that you served for a reason.


What color is God? What color eyes does God have? What color is God’s hair? What size is God? When you think about the image of God, what does God look like to you?
God has plans for all of us. Some of us do not follow where our soul leads us and they remain unhappy. Others, always seem to know exactly what they are supposed to do with their lives and they are happy. Right now I am thinking about all those who served in Afghanistan for almost 20 years. They are struggling with the outcome and wondering what all their sacrifice was for if the country returned to Taliban control, just as it was 20 years ago.

The thing is, it is not the same as it was because military men and women gave them a chance to change. Some rejected it. Others had longed for it and did everything they could to make the lives of others better. Afghanistan will never be what it was because of what all of you did for their sake.

Each one of you, risked your life for those you served with and volunteered to join the military knowing all the hardships you’d have to endure along with all the risks to your life. That desire came from your soul and God equipped your soul to be able to do it, as well as putting into place all you need to heal from all of it.
read more here