PTSD

We have all heard of trendsetters. We probably all have followed trends — perhaps as simple as clothing and hairstyles. A social phenomenon we use to fit in and gain a sense of belonging and participation. After all, we are social animals.

There is a trend today, and I have no data to prove how common it is, but it really makes me angry. It is about PTSD. A trend seems to have started where people are claiming that they are suffering from PTSD. Bologna! Men and women in the Theaters of Operation who have seen their brothers and sisters in arms blown up or have been blown up themselves… Now, they have a legitimate claim of suffering from PTSD.

Psychologists seem to have a name for every state of mind (I know, because I researched the American Psychiatric Association website for this little ditty.) Why? My cynicism says, “So they can drum up more business for themselves and their associates in BigPharma.” However, that is my cynical side. People trying to help people as best they know how is more likely. I studied to be a better Labor Rep and others studied to be better Health Care Workers. Same difference.

There seems to be a name for every malady, real or imagined. (That is what probably gives pause to the powers that be regarding the inclusion of mental illness in Health Care packages — both governmental and private sector. But that is for a different discussion.)

Getting back to my point, a “for example” — My studies taught the dangers of social drinking leading to personal alcoholism. Did I ever keep that in mind? Nope… had to end up in a debacle. My cheese slid off my cracker… I lost both my job and my Union career, and if that wasn’t enough, it took several weeks of counseling before I could admit that I was a “binge alcoholic.”

Nevertheless, a second part to my online research was specifically on PTSD. Most of the symptoms listed there I do have. However, I do NOT suffer from PTSD. I made bad choices and therefore have had to live with the consequences — those nagging remembrances. Yet, I have bad memories from Elementary School up to and including last week. They pop up now and then, too. This does not mean that I have PTSD or any other mental illness. It only means I have some bad memories. To conclude, I’ll end up where I always try to end up. The Bible:

“I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don’t get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward — to Jesus. I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back.” (Philippians 3:12–14, MSG Paraphrase Bible)

I have found the most workable answer to life’s difficulties: Call on Jesus. “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear…” (Psalm 46:1–2a, NIV Bible)