Many people think PTSD is the root of all mental health problems among veterans. This oversimplification is often reinforced by behaviors considered abnormal. One veteran I spoke with claimed to have stopped a dangerous driver, thrown him out of the car, and “gave him a life lesson.” Most people would accuse the veteran of needing anger management classes or therapy to control his PTSD, but if you’re a veteran, you might be able to empathize with his reaction.
Many veterans experience anger, cynicism, or a heightened concern for justice during or after their service. These are not necessarily reactions to trauma or the result of PTSD, rather, they are the result of characteristics instilled in the military, but are no-longer adaptive in a civilian context.
A fellow Canadian colleague, Dr. John Whelan, has recently explored this particular issue in his book, Ghost in the Ranks: Forgotten Voices & Military Mental Health.
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