My practice is dedicated to providing therapy, support and advocacy for military service members and Veterans and their families. I have tremendous respect for the sacrifices you have made in service to our Country and I believe that you are deserving of the best quality care and support when you need it.
Post Traumatic Stress (PTS)
If you have served and are experiencing symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress (PTS), you are not alone. Up to 20% of Veterans of the post 9/11 conflicts have been diagnosed with PTS. If you are of this 20%, take comfort in knowing that your symptoms are normal and a natural response to trauma; there is nothing wrong with you. PTS is unique in comparison to other mental health diagnoses, as the symptoms are caused by exposure to traumatic events. Therefore, the resulting trauma response should be viewed as an injury rather than a disorder or illness.
When you suffer a physical injury, the body naturally heals itself and a similar healing process occurs when a trauma injury occurs. The symptoms of PTS are normal and expected immediately following a traumatic experience; as healing occurs. Typically, PTS symptoms resolve within a few weeks to a month, as the traumatic events are processed. If you are continuing to experience symptoms months and years after the trauma, something is getting in the way of the natural healing process. In therapy, when you are ready, we will look at what is getting in the way of your natural healing and help you to integrate the trauma in a realistic, healthy way so that you can move past the trauma and live a more fulfilling life.
The definition of moral injury is "The damage done to one's conscience or moral compass when one perpetrates, witnesses or fails to prevent acts that transgress their own moral and ethical values or codes of conduct." Moral injury has emerged as one of the most prevalent invisible injuries to military service members of the post 9/11 conflicts. The symptoms are similar to those of PTS and treatment methods used to treat PTS have also been shown to be effective in treating moral injury. If you believe that the symptoms you are experiencing could be due to a moral injury, I can help. I have training and experience in evidence based treatment modalities including EMDR and Adaptive Disclosure, which could be effective in alleviating your symptoms.
The Long Road Home
Returning home after deployment can be a difficult transition for you as well as your loved ones. You may feel isolated, like even your closest family and friends can't relate. You may feel as if you have changed and no one understands you now. You may feel like your loved ones just want you to be "back to normal." The transition from war zone to home front would ideally take place slowly and with a great deal of understanding and support. However, this is not always possible when balancing your needs with the needs of your loved ones as well as tending to your responsibilities while readjusting to "life as usual." If you are suffering from symptoms of PTS, this process is undoubtedly much more complicated. How do you find the time and space to heal from the trauma you have experienced so that you can tend to your relationships and responsibilities? Therapy, of course.
Seeking support for yourself or your loved one is a sign of strength. I understand that when you are accustomed to solving problems on your own, reaching out for help can be difficult. However, I encourage you to contact me even if you are unsure, as making that first contact is often the hardest part. We can discuss your needs and treatment options and you can choose how/if you would like to move forward. As a private therapist, I have the opportunity to do this work because I want to, not because I have to. I will treat you as an individual rather than a case and will focus on your individual needs so that you can be the best warrior, person, partner, and/or parent you can be.
Give An Hour Provider
I am a proud Give An Hour provider, meaning I provide no cost ongoing therapy services to military service members, veterans and their families. If you have questions regarding whether you qualify for free services through the Give An Hour program, please contact me and we can discuss your unique situation. You can also obtain more information by visiting giveanhour.org.
Due to the dangerous nature of your job, I understand that the risk of injury is high. If you are injured, disabled or have other circumstances that make it difficult to travel for an in-office appointment, I can come to you. I offer in-home therapeutic services, under certain circumstances. If you have questions about in-home services or any of the services I provide, please contact me and we can discuss your needs and how I can help.
"Courage is mastery of fear, not absence of fear." - Mark Twain