PTSD - Calling the bluffs

I read a very interesting study once which concluded that para or commando trained personnel were much less likely to develop any kind of mental health issue, particularly ptsd, as a result of combat. On my phone and away from home for a while so can't link.
Any ideas why that might be?
That report, as I recall, said that although they were less likely to suffer with mental health issues, when they did, it was more severe.
 
That report, as I recall, said that although they were less likely to suffer with mental health issues, when they did, it was more severe.

That's interesting and reminds me a bit of the cognitive reserve hypothesis in dementia. The more educated someone is, the later they get diagnosed with dementia, but symptoms are more severe when diagnosed. Ideal being they have greater cognitive reserve to deal with gradual loss of faculties.

I wonder if the mental resilience required to pass certain courses means you can also deal more with inner turmoil. Up until a point.
 
Last edited:
it makes me think about how witnesses see the same incident but have completely different accounts of that same incident (an RMP demo using two blokes on a simulator has always stayed with me). if the human brain can process information in such different ways in different individuals it doesnt entirely surprise me that people can react differently to traumatic situations. this then helps make sense of why there seems to be no rhyme nor reason to who is affected.
Hypothesis time, We have learned from our past, I believe that people from a good family up bringing, who perhaps had some good lessons in life , where it comes to coping, and not hiding emotions would probably cope better to varying degrees of trauma, Those of us who have had tough childhoods, maybe lacking in emotional needs, may suffer more, ....just a bit of swag
 
Anybody can end up with PTSD, regardless of experience or brains or toughness etc.
Easy to think otherwise but it's not the case.

Funding for ex forces is an issue. Charities with names like Combat Stress give the impression they deal with combat stress, and that's what many donors probably think when they stick their hand in their pocket.

I think such charities should have separate funding for combat veterans, PTSD as a result of service other than active service, then for ex services whose problems are not service related. At least then there would be no ambiguity.

Rolling them all in together makes the numbers look good, which is good for funding, but it skews statistics, can mislead donors, and less money for the 'combat veterans'. Housing is the same.

Something else I think is important; Forces focussed intervention like Combat stress isn't for everyone. Some people won't be able to only talk to other veterans, especially in a group. Many might say civvies don't understand but there's others who don't want to be around the 'squaddie culture' if that makes sense.

I worked with rape victims for a bit years ago and had to really fight my corner as many ie most women working in the field felt female rape victims should have a female practitioner. Some women were agreeable to the idea though and felt it was an opportunity to regain trust in a man through the professional relationship.

Horses for courses and there's no one size fits all solution. Sadly though because it all comes down to funding, all to often there's only one or two sizes available.
 
Hypothesis time, We have learned from our past, I believe that people from a good family up bringing, who perhaps had some good lessons in life , where it comes to coping, and not hiding emotions would probably cope better to varying degrees of trauma, Those of us who have had tough childhoods, maybe lacking in emotional needs, may suffer more, ....just a bit of swag
I think you can be statistically more likely to have one issue or another because of a particular type of past history but given the figures involved both outcomes are pretty unlikely.

I think when it comes to MH there are so many variables involved (background, emotional intelligence, personality type, peer support etc) it’s difficult to pick out one thing.

Which is my the crime scene witnesses example comes to mind.
 
I found this quite interesting......

The lawman added: “The provision for servicemen who suffer some mental health difficulties as a result of their service is not adequate.”

Says who?
Pretty much everyone and you can widen that out to all of society
 
I read an article in our local weekly paper about a woman who was asked to leave a local Asda on her mobility scooter. The accomanying photo showed her to be an obese lard arse. Anyway the reason she was asked to leave that she had a small dog that she needed for support as she had PTSD. She had been a nurse in the TA but had never served outside the country. She complained that the dog was needed and was wearing a special special "support dog" coat that she had bought on ebay from the USA!
She should move to France, small dogs carried in supermarkets are not a problem.
Plus Britain would have one less lard arrse.
 
Ok fine.

So whats to say that people who work in the emergency services won't suffer just as much, if not worse, from the incidents they may have to attend?
What’s your point? It’s not a competition, nor is this thread about anything but service personnel.
 

Nemesis44UK

LE
Book Reviewer
Civvy pseud here. Feel free to skip.

PTSD exists on a spectrum. From 'extremely annoying' to 'I have made the decision to end it all'. If it's not 'extremely annoying' and doesn't affect your life in any great way, then you probably shouldn't be diagnosed with it.

Talking of diagnosis. People are trying to get C-PTSD included in the DSM for a distinct diagnosis compared to PTSD. C-PTSD is Complex PTSD. Many people think the distinction is vague and that it doesn't warrant a separate category. Sufferers of C-PTSD tend to be more prisoners of war, concentration camp survivors and childhood abuse 'victims'.

I've been studying PTSD for some years and C-PTSD for a while as well now. I've been diagnosed with PTSD, but I actually have C-PTSD. I don't make a big thing of it. I never bring it up in conversation. There is no help for it on the NHS and I've had to go 'private' to get to grips with things.

It's life changing and it's not going away. It's something you have to just try to deal with best you can. I don't compare my 'PTSD' with what a combat veteran would have. Then again, I don't compare it with the 'PTSD' a gang-rape survivor who has been in a horrific car crash, who just got mugged and had bones broken and a knife held to their throat, who then lost all their surviving family in a car crash, has.

I don't think anyone should compare their diagnosis with anyone else. Does it stop you functioning and unable to live life? Does it put you in a place where you have lost all hope and are making plans for the final exit? Join the club. You may have bigger problems than PTSD.

Years ago there were reports of men coming back from WW1 with 'shell shock'. We draw a parallel with that and PTSD today. But is it really the same thing? Is there an overlap? What else could 'shell shock' have been other than Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Stress? That's putting it mildly isn't it when you witnessed half a dozen of your mates around you (probably signed up from the same village and played together as kids) getting sliced in half, quarters, smithereens.

Nobody should have to witness that, but many did and survived. Some just became withdrawn, some turned to drink, some even carried on with their lives, but none talked about it. Some went quietly mad. Some just went mad.

Is it fair to compare the horrors they saw with the horrors soldiers have seen today? I'm not going to attempt to answer that question.

Some people get PTSD after seeing relatively trivial things, but it's not trivial to the person at hand. Others witness the stuff of nightmares and shrug it off. I would think that if a couple of muckers saw some stuff, and one of them got PTSD but the other one didn't, then the one that pulled through would not think his other mucker weak, or lacking in any way.

Which brings us on to the bluffers. For sure they exist. I bet they even exist among those that have served. Again, I'm not going to stick my neck out here and say any more. But there's probably one or two. Maybe they suddenly find they have it when they've got in to trouble and are looking for a way out. The way that hackers miraculously get Aspergers when caught hacking in to the White House.

But I would imagine those numbers are very small. You 'lot' seem to have some strong bonds and judgment systems in place, so for the most part, when someone who has served says they have PTSD, I would believe them.

Unlike the shower of shit that is the civvy world. They don't only make a mockery of those who have served, they make a mockery of those with genuine PTSD outside of that realm as well. It's extremely insulting to everyone, most of all themselves really, but some people have no shame. It dilutes the whole diagnosis and makes it seem as if it is akin to 'feeling a bit down'. You know what I'm talking about.

I've gone quite deep with this stuff. One of the ways of my self-healing is to try to help others with the condition, both PTSD and C-PTSD. I've occasionally come across a couple of vets here and there on my travels. British, American, Australian even. They were pretty far gone by the time they decided to talk to me.

As you well know, no vet really wants to talk to a civvy. I get that. I respect it. It's ok. But now and again, the odd one slips so far through the net that they will talk to anybody, after alienating everyone around them, usually because of alcohol/drug addiction and even violence. I don't know if I did any good. Does anyone really know if they did any good? We like to think so.

I may criticise the professionals in the field (the ones I know anyway), and I may criticise the system, but I always defer to 'them' and 'it'. It's more of a support structure that I'm involved with. And I always let everyone know I'm just a 'pseud'.

It seems to me that people coming out of the military (or still in the military) seem to have a better support structure in place. I don't know. But it seems to me as well that people who have PTSD from military experience, seem to have it at the much more sharper end of the spectrum, that is to say: much worse.

I have no idea of the culture or the stigma involved in military circles with regard to PTSD, so I suppose now would be a good time to shut my big pseud mouth and put a sock in it.

I've offered my 'services' here before, and that offer still stands. I doubt anyone would want to get in touch with a dumb civvy like me, but the offer is still there. If nothing else I can point you to resources and other possible avenues of attack, if you feel as if you have hit a brick wall, and just maybe just want to try 'one more thing' before you make that fateful last decision. The last decision you will ever make.

Some of you have been very good to me on this website. So if I can pay back even a tiny amount somehow, it would be my privilege.

There are lots of resources out there, but often times it comes down to the human touch and the striking up of rapport. Sometimes you need someone that has 'been there man', and others, you just need a bit of distance and perspective.

Big hugs and sunny smiles to you all anyway.
For some reason, I quite like your rambling posts. They’re oddly charming.
 

Joshua Slocum

LE
Book Reviewer
What’s your point? It’s not a competition, nor is this thread about anything but service personnel.
Would it improve matters if they changed the name or definition of PTSD so that one covered military service, and another covered the wider spectrum found in civilian life ?
something very clear and unambiguous ?
 
I’ve seen both with PTSD, and SF, it’s not complete protection.
I'm sure that I read a newspaper article a while back claiming that SF seems to attract bods a little bit further along psychopathy spectrum.

Thus, would folk with a less emotional outlook would find traumatic events less disturbing?

Pure cod psychology on my part of course
 
Would it improve matters if they changed the name or definition of PTSD so that one covered military service, and another covered the wider spectrum found in civilian life ?
something very clear and unambiguous ?
No. An injury is an injury, howsoever it is caused.

The big problem is lazy diagnosis. If it fits into the PTSD bag, it gets shoved in there, whether it's PTSD or a similar condition, which might not respond to treatment in the same way.
 
Would it improve matters if they changed the name or definition of PTSD so that one covered military service, and another covered the wider spectrum found in civilian life ?
something very clear and unambiguous ?
No, it’s the same condition however it’s caused and the treatments for it are exactly the same, currently CBT/EMDR are the only ones recommended tho there’s research into others ongoing.

A broken leg is still a broken leg whether you got it falling off your bike or caused by an RTA, for example. There’d be no benefit to anyone in defining PTSD by service or not, especially as military service PTSD is for the most part (generalisation alert!) caused by one or two traumatic incidents as opposed to that caused by sexual abuse, which can be hundreds/thousands of incidents over 10yrs or more. There isn’t a ‘special’ PTSD, but if you’re looking at more serious and intractable/ difficult to work cases it wouldn’t be military caused trauma (for the most part) it would be the abuse caused trauma. I’ve now run two decent sized independent hospitals for women that dealt solely with that, as an example, they were both full with a waiting list. There isn’t to be a market/need for remotely like the same number of male facilities either within the NHS or privately.

That said the condition affects individuals differently and it isn’t just about levels of exposure.
 
Last edited:

Similar threads

Latest Threads

Top