A Female Veteran and PTSD
Here is an article about a female veteran and PTSD. The veteran, who will be on tonight’s PTSDchat Radio broadcast. Karolyn Smith is a veteran of the war in Iraq where she manned a machine gun on a Military Police gun truck. Coming back from that war she struggled with PTSD and TBI as well as physical injuries from an IED.
Karolyn found a new purpose with the help of a kitten who had part of a back leg amputated.
Karolyn’s story is very important because, with policy changes in the US Department of Defense, women are now allowed in combat roles. Traditionally those roles are considered “front line” combat jobs. With the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, there are no front lines, this meant that women in jobs like military police, military intelligence, and logistics were facing combat just as much as the men in the Infantry or Armor. Female soldiers have entered the ranks of the Rangers and will soon be attending Special Forces training and SEAL training.
As more women enter the ranks of the combat jobs, the flow of female veterans returning from combat with PTSD and TBI will also increase. We need to be talking about it now because the military’s one-size-fits-all approach to PTSD that is currently being used won’t work. Psychologically women are different from men, so PTSD screening needs to be different for men and women.
The VA in the US is improving women’s health care but it has a long way to go. This is true for both behavioral health and physical health. We need to be advocating for our female veterans at all levels, especially with the VA and the US Congress. This discussion is so important because we will not leave our female veteran’s behind!
So tune in tonight to find out about a female veteran and PTSD!