MEDICATION!!!! It is the number one thing each Army “doctor” loves to hand out. “Oh you’re suffering from PTSD? Well let me cure all of your woes with some Xanax.”. “Oh you are suffering from insomnia? Here’s some Ambien, but be careful, it can make you hallucinate!”. In my previous article “GOT PTSD?” I talked about taking a stand and getting help, medication is not the best or only way though. Now I may be a little biased because I hate taking medication, but I have gone through the steps of trying these medications and more in order to help myself. Medication can help, but it is not the answer. Good counselors to help guide you and give you a safe place to talk should be the focal point. The military should have the best PTSD specialists the world can offer, key word: should. However, any time I’ve had to deal with these “specialists” it was completely useless.
One lady was formerly a child psychiatrist who apparently hadn’t figured out yet that she was talking to adults. Talk to an enraged infantryman going through a rough time like he’s a child. It doesn’t take a genius to see whats going to happen next- I think explosion is the appropriate word. Next I had an unmotivated chaplain tell me to get a stress ball to squeeze and to punch my pillow….really? A couple of years and another deployment go by and the next specialist I see tells me he can’t help me because all he does is prescribe medication (I told him I didn’t want any medication). I’m then passed off to someone else and told to get counseling off post. Now anyone in the military that has had to go through the military to get off-post anything knows what a pain in the fourth point of contact this is with all the recommendations and approvals from Mr. blahblahblah and Mrs. Grumpy fat lady. After all the hoops I jump through, the off-post counselors gaff me off and don’t ever respond to my phone calls. One can only ask for help so many times before one tells them all to shove it where the sun don’t shine. I didn’t get any real help until I got out of the Army.
The point of my previous paragraph is to give you a glimpse into the military world. I am not the only person this happens to. The Army should have better ways to help its soldiers, and it is a crying shame soldiers have to go through so much and bear through everyone’s eyes of judgment just to try to talk about the things that bother them. It is such a struggle that most would rather not even go through all the nonsense, and that is the real crime here- soldiers won’t get help because the Army makes it too difficult.