There are many wonderful books available to help our returning combat vets. Here’s another of my reviews on an outstanding resource:
This review is from: After the War Zone: A Practical Guide for Returning Troops and Their Families (Paperback) by Laurie B. Slone, Ph.D and Matthew J. Friedman, MD, Ph.D.
This important work provides a broad array of information that will help returning soldiers, their loved ones, friends, and community to understand the challenges of reintegration to civilian life.
It provides education and advice for neighbors, coworkers, employers, and service providers who assist returning vets and their families.
Actually, the book is for anyone who wonders what to expect when a service member returns home from a war zone. It shows all of us how to help when the going gets tough (and it will).
For those like me, who were personally affected by the Vietnam War and its aftermath, we know how vital understanding and support is for our latest generation of combat vets and their families.
You’ll find eye-opening facts on p.25, about Operation Enduring Freeedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The authors point out that unlike the Vietnam War, when the draft meant that most Americans were directly affected by the conflict, the modern “all volunteer” military has left participating families feeling a sense of isolation from the rest of society.
Another fact: The top two reasons returning troops seek care at VA Medical Centers are pain from musculoskeletal problems and mental health problems.
This book addresses every aspect of reintegration one can imagine, such as:
- anticipation of return
- the post-deployment stage (honeymoon period)
- special issues for reservists and women soldiers
- reactions of children
- problems with PTSD
- communication problems
- what it’s like to be a loved one left at home
- issues for the extended family, the need for social support
- separating myth from reality, finances, relationships, and much more.
The Resource Section alone is worth the price of the book, plus there is an excellent index. Kudos to authors Laurie B. Slone, Ph.D. the Associate Director for Research and Education of the VA National Center for PTSD,and to Matthew J. Friedman, MD, PhD, the Executive Director of the VA National Center for PTSD and a Professor of Psychiatry and Pharmocology at Dartmouth Medical School.
This book is broad in scope, and will change lives for the better. Very highly recommended!