PTSD CBS Radio news (blog)

by ebentley on October 14, 2016 - 10:31pm

PTSD is mental disorder which many Americans may never come in contact with. For someone in the military though, it’s very possible that if they go into war they may come out with PTSD. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder wasn’t put into the APA until 1980, so what would happen to a military veteran before 1980 who would be experiencing PTSD? Well they would be sent home to cope with their disorder alone. Do I think this was a good idea? Of course not, because often times the veteran would end up taking his own life due to the mental disorder.

Working on a project I came across an article done by CBS News. Correspondent Steve Kroft, who most would recognize from the TV program “60 Minutes”, Steve sat down with military veterans for a CBS Radio News report. Steve would title his sit down talk with these veterans as “Combat Stress: Finding the Way Home,” This special hour long talk would be held during Memorial weekend, to promote the large impact that post-traumatic stress disorder has on our veterans. CBS News would then title the article “Post-traumatic stress disorders effect on U.S. veterans explored on CBS Radio News.”

The article starts with horrifying statistics of “Every day, some 22 American heroes take their own lives because of the stresses they experienced on the battlefield.” Reading just the first sentence of this article should shock anyone who is reading the article, knowing that our American heroes are taking their lives is not ok. Steve Kroft was a combat correspondent and photographer for Pacific Stars and Stripes in the Vietnam War. His hope with discussing PTSD and explain how devastating it is to the public, is to show that those affected by it can learn to cope with PTSD. The broadcast also looked into the Vietnam Veterans of America website, and its views and past history of PTSD. The first thing discussed was that PTSD isn’t just in military veterans, it also can be found with car accident victims, and Holocaust survivors.  Continuing the broadcast asks the question of “So how did the government react to all of this?” A California senator by the name of Alan Cranston created a bill that would allow veterans to get help with their disorder in the 1970’s. The disappointed of this was the bill wasn’t passed until 1979. It wouldn’t be until ten years later that congress would develop the National Center for PTSD, this center would be part of the Department for Veterans Affairs.

My personal opinion of this broadcast, and the article created from it was “why haven’t people reached out sooner to help veterans?” If people have known about this issue why hasn’t there been a bigger push for help with the disorder of PTSD? Today’s society is so concerned about the little issues in life, that we push aside big issues, which lead to people taking their own lives.  If the California senator created the pill for helping veterans with PTSD, why did it take nine or so years to have it past? Honestly I think that the statistical death rates at the time for PTSD wasn’t broad casted enough, so people’s concerns weren’t as high.

All in all, this broadcast opens up the unknown world of PTSD and the realization that we as Americans should step up with finding ways to support veterans who are trying to cope with PTSD. I think there should be more sit downs like “60 Minutes” that discusses, the troubles veterans deal with, from coming home after war. If we can help these veterans then we could potentially save so many lives of veterans dealing with PTSD. 

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/post-traumatic-stress-disorders-effect-on-us...

Comments

This was a very passionate post, I really liked how you used facts to highlight the severity of the issue. PTSD is like any metal illness there is a stigma around talking about it, so it is important to continue the discussion and bring to light how common it really is. It is especially important so that there is continued support for research into the treatment of PTSD. Overall, great post!

I really liked the use of rhetorical questions in this post, particularly the question of “why haven’t people reached out sooner to help veterans?”. A CNN article entitled "By the numbers: Women in the U.S. military", gives an ample list of statistics demonstrating how women are present in much fewer numbers than men in the military, in fact, women are actually banned from taking part in combat units until 2013. This means that men must be experiencing more post-combat PTSD, as there are simply more men being subject to life in the military. The problem is that with the modern day constraints of masculinity, men are supposed to be stoic and shouldn’t be expressing their feelings, as it is seen as feminine or weak. This means that men are less likely to openly discuss feelings that may result in self-harm as they were never taught to express their thoughts and feelings. This may be why people haven’t reached out sooner to help our veterans as they were simply unaware of the issue as men aren’t likely to open up about it. Repressing emotion is definitely not healthy and can in itself result in psychological issues, including homicidal or suicidal violence. Men with post-combat PTSD internalizing their feelings instead of expressing them safely is, in my opinion, the root cause of this issue and the reason there is a lack of initiative towards helping these veterans.

"By the Numbers: Women in the U.S. Military." CNN. Cable News Network, 24 Jan. 2013. Web. 16 Oct. 2016. .

First I just want to say thanks for your contribution. I think you hit the nail on the head, although awareness around mental illness has become much more prevalent, and we have seen policy responding in light of this is it is still heavily stigmatized. Too many professionals, like one that interact with the military ignore the realness of its existence.

I think when we especially speak to PSTD that is experienced by military personnel that we can escape a conversation about toxic masculinities and expectations of what a "rational" and "well adjusted" individual "should" just be able to deal with. I strongly agree with you, the statistics around veterans taking their lives, or veterans having to deal with this mental illness alone is horrifying, and something needs to be done. A large shift in in the culture of the military needs to take place.

I think that it is also important to note that PTSD is much more common then we think. PTSD is most often experienced by survivors of violence, physical and sexual. With 1 in 5 (this number is likely too low due to the fact that many individuals do not report assaults experienced) women likely having experienced a sexual assault or rape in their lifetime, the symptoms of PTSD are extremely prevalent. I think that these two situations are undoubtedly connected. The way in which we view masculinities and femininities, as well as the way that we often blame the victims of assault instead of perpetrators of violence, speaks to institutional systems of oppression, and the stigmatization of mental illness. This is of course an inadequate oversimplification of the complexities of gender, sexual violence, the military and other systems that intersect to create peoples lived experiences but I think it would be an interesting avenue for you to explore as you delve into this research.

I strongly agree with you, this broadcast is important, anything that can work towards changing discourses around mental illness to bring help to those who need it most is a crucial first step.

These are interesting websites to visit
http://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/PTSD-overview/women/women-trauma-and-ptsd.asp
http://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/PTSD-overview/women/sexual-assault-females...

First I just want to say thanks for your contribution. I think you hit the nail on the head, although awareness around mental illness has become much more prevalent, and we have seen policy responding in light of this is it is still heavily stigmatized. Too many professionals, like one that interact with the military ignore the realness of its existence.

I think when we especially speak to PSTD that is experienced by military personnel that we can escape a conversation about toxic masculinities and expectations of what a "rational" and "well adjusted" individual "should" just be able to deal with. I strongly agree with you, the statistics around veterans taking their lives, or veterans having to deal with this mental illness alone is horrifying, and something needs to be done. A large shift in in the culture of the military needs to take place.

I think that it is also important to note that PTSD is much more common then we think. PTSD is most often experienced by survivors of violence, physical and sexual. With 1 in 5 (this number is likely too low due to the fact that many individuals do not report assaults experienced) women likely having experienced a sexual assault or rape in their lifetime, the symptoms of PTSD are extremely prevalent. I think that these two situations are undoubtedly connected. The way in which we view masculinities and femininities, as well as the way that we often blame the victims of assault instead of perpetrators of violence, speaks to institutional systems of oppression, and the stigmatization of mental illness. This is of course an inadequate oversimplification of the complexities of gender, sexual violence, the military and other systems that intersect to create peoples lived experiences but I think it would be an interesting avenue for you to explore as you delve into this research.

I strongly agree with you, this broadcast is important, anything that can work towards changing discourses around mental illness to bring help to those who need it most is a crucial first step.

These are interesting websites to visit
http://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/PTSD-overview/women/women-trauma-and-ptsd.asp
http://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/PTSD-overview/women/sexual-assault-females...

Its refreshing to see a post talking about PTSD and mental illness, in today's society it seems that mental illness always takes a back burner to other more "pressing issues". While there are certainly such issues its sad to see that something as serious as this is practically pushed under the rug. As an army reservist myself I have worked with people who have seen conflict and heard first hand that hell that goes with, and while there are support systems in play to help those who suffer many never use it.

I hope going into the future more people see and learn about PTSD and its affects, and hopefully one day we can make sure that everyone who is affected gets help.

Hello! I really enjoyed reading this post! I think it is pretty crazy that post traumatic stress disorder was only recognized as a disorder around 30 years ago and is only getting larger media attention within around the last 15 to 20 years. This post stuck out to me because my dad worked at Veterans Affairs Canada until only a few years ago when he retired. I never really put much thought into the importance of his work until now. PTSD can have vast impacts on an individual and as you said, many veterans have commited suicide as a result. I think another factor that this post did not really touch on is the impact that individuals with PTSD can have on others. There have been many instances where an individual's PTSD causes harm to another individual. A blog written by Gabrielle Giroday discusses a man who was put on trial for first degree murder- having killed another man when in a PTSD episode (2016). Instances like these are especially problematic in court cases- is the individual guilty? or was the murder a direct result of their PTSD? I am very happy that today there is more awareness of mental illnesses like PTSD and that those affect by the illness can reach out to places like veteran affairs and seek help for their symptoms.

Check out the article I referred to! http://www.lawtimesnews.com/201610175702/commentary/ptsd-mainstreams

Your post immediately stood out to me because I have always been interested in the conversation surrounding PTSD and why it is rarely diagnosed and/or looked at in detail. Although awareness of PTSD, especially in veterans is increasing there is still a lot more progress that could be made to help those affected. You made a really good point near the end of blog about how many people get more concerned with the little problems in life and overlook bigger, more concerning issues. I think this is very insightful and explains why a lot of mental health issues are overlooked because people just think it's because of life stresses, being overworked or being constantly tired etc. With PTSD, people just assume that symptoms stem from having to readjust back to normal life and that once their normal routine resumes their symptoms will go away. In reality, their symptoms are out of their control and it's more often than not something that they can't overcome on their own, which is why so many cases sadly result in suicide. I encourage you to continue to speak out about the problems surrounding PTSD because your passion for the topic comes across in your writing and will inspire others to learn more themselves and pass information onto others!

I was drawn to your post because of the title mentioning PTSD. I have just done a research paper on sexual trauma in the military and its relation to PTSD. So, since I was just researching about PTSD, I was interested to know what you had to say about it. Your opening paragraph was interesting to me, I did not know that PTSD wasn't included in the APA until 1980. I believe that PTSD is an issue that all people need to be educated on. It is a real issue, a life threatening one. It is essential that PTSD & counseling gets more attention with veterans. I know from my own research about military sexual trauma, that a lot of veterans avoid counseling or talking about their negative experiences in/from war because it makes them feel embarrassed and/or shame. Sometimes, they feel like they should be strong enough to hold it all together. I personally know of a veteran, who is a family friend, who was experiencing PTSD after he served. He refused to go to counseling because he swore that it would "go away" and "he didn't need it". So, he turned to alcohol as way to self medicate. He then, ended up homeless for a period of time. I know counseling is not always the answer and not always going to solve problems, but it is a good start. PTSD needs to be talked about because it has great affect on the men and women who fight for our freedom. It needs to be talked about because it is killing veterans. I think it would be beneficial to educate those in the military (about the possibility of PTSD, counseling, ways to get help, etc.), their families and the general public, so we can do our best as a country to help them.

I really enjoyed how emotional and heartfelt your words are in this post. I think you hit on some really good points and I liked how you put in some rhetorical questions, which helps the reader really think about what you are stating. I very much agree with how it is a terrible idea to just send someone because of their mental disorder and essentially have them cope with it alone. Such a wonderful post!

I think that PTSD is a major issue that some people take lightly. I also think Mental heath is also looked at as a not a "Real" issue. I have personal experiences with patients i take care of everyday. I see that the rate of people getting help is slim to none in many different areas. Some people are denial and are afraid to get help, for they have a fear of the unknown. I also see that some try to get help but, find there isnt many places to get it. Psychologist and Psychiatrist have wait list that go out at least a year and unless you have excellent insurance they wont take you. It's heartbreaking to see this happen to many people and people who protect our country. I think there needs to be more awareness and more places to get help.

I think that PTSD is a major issue that some people take lightly. I also think Mental heath is also looked at as a not a "Real" issue. I have personal experiences with patients i take care of everyday. I see that the rate of people getting help is slim to none in many different areas. Some people are denial and are afraid to get help, for they have a fear of the unknown. I also see that some try to get help but, find there isnt many places to get it. Psychologist and Psychiatrist have wait list that go out at least a year and unless you have excellent insurance they wont take you. It's heartbreaking to see this happen to many people and people who protect our country. I think there needs to be more awareness and more places to get help.