From Frugivore – In growing numbers, African American women are entering the armed forces, and putting their lives on the line, both literally and figuratively to serve the United States. As many know, countless members of the armed forces have died serving their country. But few people recognize that soldiers also sacrifice their mental health through their service as well. Out of the 150,000 women who have been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan since 2002, 23% of them are African-American. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a severe anxiety disorder that can develop after an individual is experiences any event that results in psychological trauma. Many soldiers, particularly African American women, are experiencing PTSD at alarming rates, and worse, this country is ill-equipped to properly assist them in their struggle, at least at the present moment.

African American women in combat zones continue to experience higher rates of PTSD due to assaults that are never reported. To make matters worse, only 15 Veteran Affairs centers in the United States provide residential mental-health treatment specifically for women with PTSD. Thus, it’s truly become a struggle for African American women to reintegrate themselves back into their civilian lives and begin the process to heal from PTSD.

Dr. John D. Moore, a professor of Health Sciences at the American Public University System, shares, “I have worked with some African American women who have returned from different overseas operations and have reported they were reluctant to seek out treatment for PTSD or other mental health issues because they feared they would be looked at as ‘weak’ by others.”

African American women have become infamous for always wearing the “strong woman complex,” which has hurt them particularly in the realm of mental health and sexual trauma. But in the military, strength is certainly something that’s cultivated and encouraged to be exemplified. Women, in particular, constantly feel the pressure to measure up to their male counterparts, especially in combat zones, and African American women in the military experience another layer of pressure, as many are breadwinners for their families back home.

(Continue Reading @ Frugivore…)

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  • Socially Maladjusted

    Hmm!

    No takers on this one?

    I guess it’s hard to be concerned about the suffering of weak people who allow themselves to be used to kill defenceless people.

    side note: (there’s a difference – weak people are easily mislead – defenceless people are just people who don’t have the means to defend themselves.)

    I understand that many blacks are merely economic conscripts who feel that the military is the only way they can improve their situation. but it’s difficult to support or have any sympathy for the suffering of people whose choices mean death for others.

    When you fight white men’s wars you only end up killing people just like YOU –

    poor, marginalized and non-white.

    Don’t join white people’s military – don’t get PTSD.

    simple

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    • La, California Dreaming (Ocean Blue)

      “I guess it’s hard to be concerned about the suffering of weak people who allow themselves to be used to kill defenceless people.” – OR MAYBE PEOPLE DIDN’T WANT TO COMMENT ON SOMETHING THEY HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE OR EXPERIENCE WITH.

      *Don’t bother typing one of your rants.

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    • Socially Maladjusted

      “OR MAYBE PEOPLE DIDN’T WANT TO COMMENT ON SOMETHING THEY HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE OR EXPERIENCE WITH.”

      Since when did lack of knowledge or experience stop anyone from commenting on a topic? Never stopped you.

      Please

      LOL!

      and what’s with the shouty caps – is you mad about something?

      pfft!

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  • Yeahright2011

    I had a cousin was deployed for the first strike. She came back so different and wouldn’t talk about what she saw or felt over there. Talking to other people with the same experience helps more than talking to a civilian. Lots of women veterans and returnees in the Legion here and you can see how they relate better to the people who have been there than somebody with race and sex in common. That all goes away in that moment and its like their old friends.

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  • Keisha Trice

    Let’s not forget those who suffer from PTSD in the Military due to sexual assault…I know it’s another topic for discussion…but there are thousands of us who are suffering from this illness because the military fail to recognize it as far back as the 90’s. I am still fighting for them to stop masking the rapes and backlash women has suffered just for reporting them. and yes…I am a black women..I served 8 years in the Army …This is a great topic and story and hopefully more will come forward with there experiences and maybe one day something will change…This has not only affected my work life but it’s a real hindrance on my personal life. The best place that I ever received any type of treatment and assistance and understanding was through the Nashville Women’s VA Center….Unfortunately, I reside in Arizona now…and they have no help and they clearly do not understand the struggles…everything is about prescribing medication…but how will that ever help me deal with everyday situations and the struggles I continue to face…Fighting since 2003….

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