Yesterday an ex-colleague from my RAF days posted on Facebook a post about PTSD asking everybody to copy and paste it. The post was basically designed to raise awareness of the issue. Nothing wrong with that you may think. He has however received, in the comments for this post, complaints. One complaining that they don’t have time for all “copy and paste stuff created by people who just want to clog up and slow down the internet” and another from another former colleague who is a sufferer, which I feel was more relevant. I don’t feel they are more relevant because he is a sufferer but because copy and pasting into Facebook isn’t going to slow down the internet and he does make good points. So what were the relevant comments?
First of all, these posts are started by people not suffering from PTSD and those who suffer from PTSD don’t want to be reminded of it. They would prefer to talk of happier things. The first one is probably true and second and third, I have no doubt are true, but why do people start these posts anyway? Maybe they see it as a way to show support but it really doesn’t achieve anything other than raise awareness and to be honest the PTSD issue is probably well known in the UK. So how can you really help? You could join one of the charities, even if only as a fund raiser. You could donate. Both these actions would help pay for treatment and or support for sufferers. Remember those with PTSD are normal PTSD is a normal reaction to an abnormal event. It can affect anyone, emergency service, armed forces or civilian. If you know someone with PTSD talk to them normally. If they want to talk about it, let them, but don’t force the issue.
As an ex-military Trauma Risk Management practitioner, now working as a hypnotherapist I would like to volunteer to work with a PTSD charity, giving my time and skills for free. The problem is this may require me taking a specialist PTSD hypnotherapy course. These are few and far between. Finding one I’m available for and booking on it before it’s full has so far eluded me but hopefully July is the month.