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    Final project Final project Document Transcript

    • Multigenre Research Paper:PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=PTSD&view=detail&id=8D2C8976AAD73405EEF5BB74161966601947B579&first=0&FORM=IDFRIR&adlt=strict Brittany Manous Honors 10th World Literature and Composition Ms. Lester and Ms. Hamilton 4 May 2012
    • Dear Reader, My project is about PTSD and the effect it has on our soldiers and veterans. When myresearch for this project began, I did not have a clear understanding of the illness. I personallyknow soldiers and veterans who suffer from PTSD and studying this illness gave me muchinsight as to why they act the way they do in certain situations. In the beginning, I knew thatPTSD was a serious illness but I had no idea how many forms and symptoms there are in ourmilitary. Ms. Hamilton and Ms. Lester as well as my fellow classmates gave amazing sources ofinformation. I personally got much of my insight from an interview I had with a family friendwho served in the Vietnam War. Gale Opposing Viewpoints and Gale Virtual Reference Librarywere the two sources I relied on most. The most helpful sources came from Gale OpposingViewpoints because it let me look at both sides of the argument of PTSD and if it is beingignored. Maketheconnection.net helped me by listening to interviews and first hand experiencesand although I did not quote or use the interviews in my project, I learned how soldiers andveterans handle emotions and it gave me inspiration for deeper researching of the illness. There are a few highlights of what I have learned. For instance, I learned that the suiciderate and substance abuse rate is skyrocketing. Our government is completely ignoring the factthat our soldiers are suffering daily. The men and women who serve in our military are cryingout for help and the military personnel medicate them heavily then send them right back into thebattlefield. I do not understand how or why a person could simply ignore a cry for help. I amglad to have found many organizations who offer help to mentally injured veterans and soldiers
    • and I hope to one day be a part of the United States citizens who are trying to make a differencein their lives. I believe the study of this topic is important and everyone should make this illness morecommonly known. The truth about PTSD needs to be brought to the attention of the public due tothe fact that you could be around a soldier or veteran everyday who may suffer internally fromwar and you would never know because all soldiers are taught to keep emotions bottled up. Ipersonally would like to see more done for prevention of PTSD and reintegration for when oursoldiers arrive home. PTSD affects not only soldiers but also their families and I would not knowwhat to do if I had to suffer through that alone. PTSD is becoming more and more prominent andwe can all take a part in volunteering to help them and their families through times of crisis.Sincerely,Brittany Manous
    • Table of ContentsCover Page…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………1Dear Reader Letter………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………....2-3Table of Contents………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………4Research Paper…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….………5-12PTSD Recipe……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..13Faux Texts………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….…….14Found Poem…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………....15Skit…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..16Free Verse Poem……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..17Collage………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..……18List of PTSD Terms……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………19
    • Brittany ManousLester and Hamilton10th Honors World Literature/Composition4 May 2012 PTSD Research Paper “The question is not whether PTSD is real and serious. Its a devastating mental illness.The question is how many veterans have PTSD, and clearly our goal should be to try to addressthe veterans needs and help them deal with their problems and move on in life.” (Edwards)PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) is an illness that 1 in 7 soldiers suffer from on a dailybasis (Boone 18-22). PTSD is an extremely serious issue and needs to be addressed at once. PTSD is becoming more and more prominent and according to statistics, the suicide ratein the past year has risen 11% in soldiers who have been turned away by the VA ("CombatsInner Cost"). This is extremely unacceptable and should not be ignored. These men and womensuffer everyday from issues that our government turns a blind eye to. “Seemingly my senses andbody would hijack my mind and I could only be a witness looking out as I reflexively reacted toapparent hostility.” ("Brothers - PTSD: The Film") This quote was featured in a film aboutsoldiers who came to suffer from PTSD and this quote is important due to the fact that it showsexactly how a person can be affected and how they cannot control what goes on internally. It has been said, “A small combat squad that has experienced several fire fights developsa sense of oneness with each other; they have become one organism through the forging processof fight or flight.” ("A Decade of War Leaves a Generation to Heal") Brotherhood plays hugely
    • into how a soldier copes in wartime. Many soldiers say that they become closer to a brother orsister of war than they do a lover or family member. When a fellow soldier is murdered, it ismore traumatic and detrimental to the internal health of the soldier who may have eitherwitnessed or caused the death. The soldier may never live this down and may constantly sufferdue to the death. A man once quoted, “We send our soldiers to war for our freedom and then lock them upwhen they are broken and of no use anymore.” (Adams) Once a soldier is diagnosed or showssigns of developing PTSD, our government thinks that it is best to medicate them heavily orignore the fact that they are suffering altogether. Soldiers are sent into multiple tours of duty aslong as they are physically well enough to fight. If a soldier suffers from PTSD, they arementally broken. Once a man or women is mentally broken due to war, the government looksdown at them and considers them as „expendable.‟ Soldiers then become veterans as they aresent home to be reintegrated with family and daily life that they had left behind. A soldier once reflected during an interview, “We can be true to our morals, or, we canfix the problem. We cannot do both." ("Afghan Shooting Sparks Mental Health Concerns for USSoldiers") This applies to all situations soldiers are placed into. In foreign countries, men andwomen are introduced into a new culture with many new values and respects they may notunderstand. Men, in Afghanistan for example, have the power to control the women and childrento do whatever they need. Many terrorist groups have used the sympathy of our soldiers to theiradvantage for years. Our soldiers have to make life or death decisions every single day they gointo war. There are accounts of women strapping bombs to their children to injure the soldiersand there are also accounts of children taking their own lives in order to attack a soldier.
    • In All Quiet on the Western Front, “No soldier outlives a thousand chances. But everysoldier believes in Chance and trusts his luck.” (Remarque) Death after death, hour after hour,shot by shot, soldiers are always fearful for their lives. Seeing the deaths of their brothers andsisters, a soldier can never get rid of the images. No amount of medication can erase thesememories; only dull the pain of another day. The sights, the smells, even the taste of the air hasbeen reported as reoccurring flashbacks of PTSD. The media and our government keep so much of the war censored from the public eyeand that is one reason PTSD needs to be brought to attention. “That is what death is like. Itdoesnt matter what uniforms the soldiers are wearing. It doesnt matter how good the weaponsare. I thought if everyone could see what I saw, we would never have war anymore.” The deathof babies, young children, and women are always most destructive to a soldiers‟ mental health.Almost every soldier in America is raised with some form of the belief „thou shall not kill.‟ For aman or woman to take the life of an innocent to protect a brother or sister is one of the mostdifficult choices any soldier will ever have to make. Each soldier is a son, daughter, and mother;father, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, or cousin. A soldier belongs to someone somewhere and nomatter what, that soldier has feelings and emotions that are constantly pushed behind them inorder to keep our freedom restored. A very powerful quote, “America without her Soldiers would be like God without Hisangels.” (Burling) Our soldiers are our protectors, our saviors, and how do we treat the mentallyill in the eyes of our government? We treat them as they do not exist and like they are not worthyof the government‟s spending. Government spending, according to CNN, is being cut moredramatically short with each passing year. Soldiers‟ health is not our main priority and that isheartbreaking. These men and women face danger every morning while we sleep, during the day
    • while we work, and at night just so that United States civilians can live a peaceful and dangerfree life. The consistency of our men and women of service who suffer from marital issuescontinue to rise as well. “You cant patch a wounded soul with a Band-Aid.” (Carey) A soldier orveteran needs love, support, and sometimes just a hand to hold. Soldiers are sent on multipletours of duty for even up to 24 months at a time with few breaks to return home. This puts astrain on a marriage, a relationship, or a family just like it is expected to do. Soldiers have theworry of cheating spouses, never seeing the birth of their children, never getting to be around fortheir children, and as simple as it may sound, one female solder cried over not getting to help herson with his homework. The rising stress levels add to the wartime stress a soldier may be facingand there is only a certain limit to which a person can be pushed before something is bound tohappen. As a soldier returns home and has nobody who can understand, there is a form of therapythat is proving to become more and more helpful. “So many of our veterans are coming back andthey have a lot of trauma issues to work through ... Lucy has the skill of being a comfort dog.”(Caprioli) Dog therapy is extremely popular with amputees who may have lost limbs in war dueto bombs, destructive shots, or mistakes made in battle. Soldiers may not be able to mentallycope with the fact that they have lost a part of them in the war and that is a part they will neveragain. Dog is „man‟s best friend‟ and this statement is put to the test as the army now works withorganizations to train dogs to cater to the needs of our veterans who have visible war wounds aswell as the psychological damage that goes along with it.
    • “The doctors with their swabs and theories didn´t understand.” ("Disorder DiseaseCounseling Should Continue for Veterans") A veteran or soldier will always feel like there isnobody that can understand what they have seen and what they have suffered through in war.War is unexplainable because everyone has their own take, their own outlook, on the topic.Soldiers who have first-hand experiences are going to say that war is not what you say it is, thatit is not what Hollywood portrays it to be. A veteran is going to say that war now is not the sameas war used to be. A civilian is going to regurgitate whatever facts about the war they knowthrough the news channels. In defense of the soldiers, nobody but the military has a clearunderstanding of the morale loss, the mental anguish, and the internal pain it takes to make itthrough just one more day. Veterans have said in the past that once you get into war, it is nolonger about your family or your brothers; you fight for your own life, for one more day ofliving. PTSD is not what the movies make it out to be. This illness has more symptoms and moreside effects than mostly any mental suffering that has been diagnosed. “Have you been told bysomeone to stop living in the past? As if it‟s your fault? It‟s important to remember that we don‟tlive in the past. The past lives inside of us. It has a life all on its own. If you have PTSD, youknow all about how the past works already.” (Ford, Meagher, and Huber) We expect veterans oractive duty soldiers to just forget what happened and to move on with their lives. It is just notthat easy and we should never tell anyone to stop living in the past. Sometimes, that is whatkeeps soldiers and veterans sane because they cannot handle their own reality. “Outside, the sun shines. Inside, there‟s only darkness. The blackness is hard to describe,as it‟s more than symptoms. It‟s a nothing that becomes everything there is. And what one sees isonly a fraction of the trauma inflicted.” (Goode) A soldier is trained to hide her feelings and
    • never let emotions show. Our military will keep a soldier in active duty just to keep the numbersup on the opposing enemy. My question is, how can our numbers be more important than thehealth of an American soldier? There is honestly no answer because the government and militaryonly continue to promise that “they are doing more and more to help.” If that was true however,the rate of suicide, substance abuse, spousal abuse, and even murder with soldiers who havePTSD would not continue to increase. It is hard to see, “There is disconnection between everything human and what has to bedone in combat. Imagine being in an unimaginable situation and having to do the unthinkable.”(Jacobson) The murders, the innocent casualties, children screaming and crying, womenscreaming and crying for their children, the bombs, the blood, the dust, the mud, the tears; noneof this will ever go away. There is no possible way to imagine how a self-respecting person canhandle all of this without some sort of traumatic stress. Soldiers deserve the utmost respectbecause wartime decisions have to be made and if it involves killing a child that favors that ofyour own son or daughter, it must be done. What society considers “morally correct”, a soldiersees as “what must be done, must be done.” “His best friend and worst enemy is alcohol, and life is just one empty day after another.”("Local Soldiers Life, Struggles Remembered") No soldier should have to resort to losingthemselves to alcoholism and substance abuse due to the fact that the VA should not be turningaway our soldiers in the first place. Veterans hate to be called heroes because many of them havecommitted unthinkable acts of duty and feel that they are nothing but stone cold murderers. Thepublic does not help the pathway to their thinking as we now make movies, TV shows, books,and even music which portray murder and death to be a joke. When turned away from the VA,
    • all some soldiers have are the comforts of drugs or alcohol to relieve the pain and to relieve thefeeling of wanting self-destruction. "I believe that Veteran Families are our unsung heroes.” (Weiss) The families of ourveterans and soldiers are also victims of PTSD. Children have to witness their parents fighting,abuse on themselves, and even witness their parents physically abusing one another. Wives haveto suffer the most as they deal with keeping a hold on their husband and keeping the familytogether and looking typical in the view of the public. Soldiers are not the only ones who have tolearn to hide emotion and feelings. The families of veterans and soldiers must learn what isappropriate to do or say, how to learn to handle certain situations, and definitely how to holdback the tears or anger of PTSD taking place. A story was posted and a quote from it was, “His wife and children, after months ofdealing with his outbursts and uncontrollable behavior, left him out of fear for their own safety.”("Troops with PTSD Straining Resources") Imagining this scenario is almost impossible. Howcan one just up and leave the one they have grown to love? How do you tell a child that theycannot stay with their father because he might hurt them during the night? There is no definiteanswer because every case of PTSD undiagnosed or not, is completely different. The forms ofPTSD are like fingerprints, everyone has a different one because each person has dealt withdifferent traumatic situations. The same goes for the families of PTSD victims because they eachhave their own ways of coping with the side effects of the illness their loved one is sufferingfrom. A veteran on his PTSD suffering said, “So why would I have to keep that a secret?Because I do not want to burden my family and loved ones with the thoughts of knowing that I
    • am still suffering from the war.” ("Tragedy Shows Extreme Result of Postwar Stress") here aremany soldiers and veterans who may suffer from PTSD but have not went to become diagnoseddue to the fact that they do not want anybody to worry about them, especially family members orfriends. PTSD is not something to be ignored because it is only going to worsen with time.Veterans do not like to be told orders or sit with their backs to the public at anytime. (LonerInterview) PTSD is a mental health condition thats triggered by a terrifying event. Not too manypeople know of the extent that PTSD can go to and how detrimental it is to a person‟s health.This illness is sometimes looked down upon and that is a terrible shame. Soldiers and veteransput their lives on the line everyday and we need to thank them for everything they do. PTSDaffects not only the soldiers but everyone around her. There are now programs for volunteers toinvest their time into helping veterans and families of veterans or active duty soldiers and withthis; there is hope of bringing this rising issue into the spotlight and finding more solutions for itsoutcomes.
    • Learning Artifact 1 ~PTSD Recipe~2 Tsp. Activating Events3 Tsp. PainA pinch of Confusion1 cup of Guilt1 cup of Shame1 dash of Self- worth Dissipating1 Tbsp. Fear1 cup of Anger¼ cup of Resentment½ cup of Depression½ cup of Acute Anxiety Directions:1. Place the soldier in an unsafe environment away from all family and friends.2. Take away any daily life routines the soldier may have become familiar with back home.3. Teach the soldier to have no fear, no remorse, and teach him to NEVER cry in war.4. Send the soldier into battle with little to no understanding of death.5. Then, let him watch as his brothers and sisters fall around him, leaving him to hear the screams and cries for help.6. Make him decide to either shoot an innocent, a woman or young child, in order to save a fellow soldier.7. When he shows remorse or grieves, tell him to “Suck it up. This happens.”8. Give him a short 30-day leave with no help for reintegration.9. Send him home to his family, a place where nobody can understand what he has been through and give him time toponder on his actions alone.10. Then, take him away from his family and send him on multiple tours for extended periods of time.11. Once the soldier is showing signs of PTSD symptoms send him home on temporary medical leave and wish him the bestof luck.12. As the VA’s office turns him away, make sure he is physically still healthy enough for war and send him back into thedestruction.*You should now be on the right path to setting up your soldier for the perfect life-long internal war.*
    • Learning Artifact 2 Terry! ~Faux Texts~ th Hey! What’s up? Happy 4 of July!! It’s just been one of those days. Can’t wait for tonight… wrong? Aww :/ what’s wrong? s Well, I went back to the VA and I got turned down again! IDK if I can handle all the noise, explosions, and crowds of people tonight. I’m probably just being stupid… No you aren’t! I understand! No you can’t understand…I have nobody that does…Even the government can’t… Are you still on your meds ? Yes but it just dulls the pain. Never the memories. I can’t even sleep anymore… How are the kids with it? They can’t understand. They just think I’m going crazy.I’m sure they don’t  Have youmade another appt. with theVA center? Yeah but I’m not getting my hopes up. I’m going to pick up my kids now. Ly. TTYL.Ly! Call if you need me. Thanks!
    • Learning Artifact 3 ~Found Poem~ Internal War Never Leaves Collectively by Andrew Wright, David Kerpash, Chris WoolnoughNo wounds upon my body, no scars that you can find.Just hurt from wars fought long ago, implanted in my mind.I have lived in this prison I built for most of my life.And I have blocked out all reason, all guilt and all strife.Day after day bullets whizzed by.We all feared that we might die.For many months we fought and fought.We always did exactly what we were taught.Now as I sit here too cloudy to think,My mind and body, they no longer link.My life I see before me, like old movies that aren’t real.But that’s what I see and that’s what I feel.No outward signs of injury, no telltale signs of pain,Only flashbacks and the nightmares, time and time again.May God have mercy, may He not be cruel.May He understand the prayer of this young fool.Inside of me, I hear the screams of distressLet me out of this prison, please just let me rest.
    • Learning Artifact 4 ~Skit~~SRGT: Alright men! Today we are doing a clean sweep of one of the most dangerous areas which isnotorious for hidden snipers and bombs.~Men: Sir, yes sir!~SRGT: If anything goes down, you handle that problem by any means necessary!~Soldier: Sir, what about civilians, women, and children, sir?~SRGT: Any. Means. Necessary! You are a soldier, are you not? This is your life on the line! Do I makemyself clear men?~Men: Sir, yes sir!~SRGT: Get your head in the game! We fight not only for our brothers and sisters but for ourselves! Notears, no remorse! Get in there and do what we’ve trained you to do! Men…Head out!~Men: Sir, yes sir!~The men run off and head into the dangerous area as the sound of gunfire begins.~
    • Learning Artifact 5 ~Free Verse Poem~Sunny days sometimes hurt the mostRainy days are not nearly as sadThey aren’t here with me to laugh, to playIf only I would’ve went ahead that dayIf only I would’ve stopped that bulletIf only I had the courage to stay and not runWhy not me instead of them?What about their families?Ive killed them all because I was just too tired to careToo scared to screamToo numb for reality to matter anymoreMy condition is invisible to the public.But I hurt just the same as everyone elseI was trained toughBuilt to kill or be killedHow to move on?How to let it all go?Why not me instead of them?Why not me instead of them?
    • Learning Artifact 6 ~PTSD Collage~PTSD
    • List of PTSD TermsAlcohol abuse: Use of alcoholic beverages to excess, either on individual occasions("binge drinking") or as a regular practice.Antidepressant: Anything, and especially a drug, used to prevent or treat depression.Anxiety: A feeling of apprehension and fear characterized by physical symptoms such aspalpitations, sweating, and feelings of stress.Behavior therapy: A treatment program that involves substituting desirable behaviorresponses for undesirable ones.Cognitive: Pertaining to cognition, the process of knowing and, more precisely, theprocess of being aware, knowing, thinking, learning and judging.Depression: An illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts that affects the way aperson eats and sleeps, the way one feels about oneself, and the way one thinks aboutthings.Dissociation: In psychology and psychiatry, a perceived detachment of the mind fromthe emotional state or even from the body. Dissociation is characterized by a sense ofthe world as a dreamlike or unreal place and may be accompanied by poor memory ofthe specific events, which in severe form is known as dissociative amnesia.Physiologic: Something that is normal, neither due to anything pathologic nor significantin terms of causing illness.Post-traumatic stress: An anxiety disorder that develops in some individuals who havehad major traumatic experiences. The person is typically numb at first but later hassymptoms including depression, excessive irritability, guilt (for having survived whileothers died), recurrent nightmares, flashbacks to the traumatic scene, and overreactionsto sudden noises.Psychodynamic therapy: A type of psychotherapy that draws on psychoanalytic theoryto help people understand the roots of emotional distress, often by exploringunconscious motives, needs, and defenses.Shell shock: The World War I name for what is known today as post-traumatic stress,this is a psychological disorder that develops in some individuals who have had majortraumatic experiences (and, for example, have been in a serious accident or through awar).Trigger: Something that either sets off a disease in people who are geneticallypredisposed to developing the disease, or that causes a certain symptom to occur in aperson who has a disease.