Our brave military personal serving overseas in Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) have received overwhelming support from citizens throughout the country. While the outpouring of support has been inspiring, we must remember that some of the toughest battles facing military personal and their families take place here on the home front.
Nationally, 20% of veterans of OEF and OIF meet the criteria for depression or PTSD, yet only half of them have received mental health care. Co-occurring disorders has also become a major problem as many veterans who are too proud to seek treatment eventually self-medicate via drugs and alcohol.
Military families face unique challenges and stresses both while their loved ones are deployed and after they return home suffering the physical and psychological effects of war. This is especially difficult for children of military personal. Families of military service members also do not have adequate community support; 94% of military families feel that the non-military communities do not understand or appreciate the sacrifices they make.
Supporting those who have served our country and their families must always be a top priority. NAMI-NYS believes this and is proud to offer, as part of Mental Health Awareness Month, these resources for military personal and their families, as well as information for those who want to learn more about how to support our military families.
Talk, Listen, Connect - Produced NYS OMH and Sesame Workshop (the nonprofit organization behind Sesame Street) to address the vast and growing population of military service members with young children who face the unique challenges that military life entails; the frequent moves, the loss of a parent through deployment or multiple deployments, the stress of homecoming, and the challenges of when a parent comes home with a combat related injury.
National Institute of Mental Health PTSD - page including links to research being done for veterans and military families.
NAMI National’s Online Forums for Veterans and Families to discuss mental illness/military issues
Homeless Veterans: Stand Down - 60 Minutes story on the work of clinical psychologist and veteran, Jon Nachison to aid homeless veterans, many with co-occurring disorders.
NAMI’s Katina Gay interviews Maj. Gen. David N. Blackledge, Commanding General, U.S. Army Civil Affairs & Psychological Operations Command (Airborn), about his own experience with Post Traumatic Stress and the military's current efforts to address mental health issues.
As part of the Coming Home Project, Robyn Walser, of the National Center for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, addresses the issue of self-medication and substance abuse in returning veterans, many of whom suffer from PTSD. This program presents an overview of the problem and introduces some of the effective treatments.
90 year old World War II veteran Jack Vier tells his story to high school students in Rye NY - He shares stories about the battlefield horrors that still fuel his post-traumatic stress disorder.
Veterans, Like Active Duty Troops, Are Hesitant to Seek Mental Health Care - New York Times Article.
T2 Virtual PTSD Experience - Washington Post Story about Pentagon designed program to help veterans with PTSD