No warrior comes back unchanged – no warrior should have to deal with this alone…EFT PTSD

We have heard a lot about soldiers returning from deployment with PTSD, TBI or depression.

At the same time, studies show that many Veterans prefer not to use the VA to deal with their trauma, feel that their spouses, buddies or spiritual counseling can help them better than mental health treatment, and many prefer not to consider themselves as traumatized at all.

But the truth is, that deployment to a war zone changes people. This is not a sign of weakness, but a normal consequence of having been exposed to war.

Not all changes are bad: many soldiers report great satisfaction that they were finally able to use what they have trained for for so long, and they are proud of their mission and their service.

But this is only a part of the picture. I think we have to get over the assumption that “inner toughness” prevents traumatization, and honestly recognize that being able to deal with trauma does not mean that it doesn’t exist in some form.

How could finishing business at home, preparing a will “just in case”, attending predeployment events that explain to the family how the death of their loved one will be communicated, not be traumatic?

How could leaving wife and children behind, not knowing if he or she will ever see them again and what that will be like, not break a soldier’s heart, even though he or she is prepared and ready to deploy?

How could seeing buddies suffer from injuries and different kinds of trauma not hit even the toughest person hard?

The majority of troops report having seen dead bodies during deployment. The constant threat, the mindset of war, the fear and exposure of attacks and combat are traumatic. Toughness helps through this, but there is an end to how much someone can heal alone. And why should they have to?

They are trained to “suck it up” and “toughen it out” to the point that, as some of my Vietnam Veterans told me, they stepped over dead bodies saying “there ain’t nothing to it”. But where does this trauma go?

How could separation and tough and difficult circumstances not wear somebody down? Should Veterans really have to wait until PTSD, depression or TBI is diagnosed, in order to get help? Why is it so hard to admit that most troops can’t just “return back to normal” and deserve respectful support to deal with this?

I believe that we need to change the way we think about war exposure, and acknowledge that nobody comes back unchanged.

If EFT was routinely offered to all troops after a mission, simply as a destressing tool, could it be that the long term effects of war exposure lessen, especially if it was accepted and offered by loved ones, buddies and spiritual coaches?

I feel that everybody deserves to get some EFT coaching after returning from deployment.

Nobody comes back unchanged, nobody should have to deal with this alone.”


  1. Natalie Hill on June 25, 2010 at 10:32 am

    Ingrid, I have so much appreciation and respect for you and your work with Vets. You are wise, sensitive, skilled and knowledgeable about the risks and results of military trauma.

    It’s difficult to live with the way we send good people to defend our country without offering effective healing services when they return.

    You are making a difference where it is so needed.

    Thank you,

    Natalie Hill

    • admin on July 1, 2010 at 9:26 pm

      Thanks Natalie, I appreciate your kindness!

  2. Pamela Murl on June 20, 2010 at 8:13 pm

    I read your post on the EFT4Vets and I feel it was very well-written and most DEFINITELY from your heart.

    I truly believe what you are saying when you discuss EFT after a mission. Perhaps if the men & women in the military had this tool to work with or had someone to facilitate them after coming in from theatre or war action, it could possibly make all the difference in how they handle things when they come back to “regular” home life after all the intensity of war. NOTHING is ever regular about life again for them when they return. I believe my son, Matt’s, return proved to me that there was nothing like business as usual when he returned. Life was not the same as it was before he first went to war. He did for many years drink constantly and many times very heavily to mask the feelings inside or to feel the numb if even for a short while.

    I do believe as I said that your post was truly from your heart and I see nothing that could be construed as being “politically incorrect”. I feel in reading your post that you used great sensitivity to relay your message to those who read it, Ingrid.

    Many thanks to you for all the work you have done to help our military understand that there is help out there…EFT.

    • admin on June 21, 2010 at 12:57 am

      Thank you Pamela, I appreciate you very much.
      Thank you for your sacrifice. I know that families are going through so much when a loved one deploys, and their suffering is usually silent. Yes, I have this dream that EFT tapping will be a standard procedure and protocol, pre- and postdeployment, as well as in theater. I know that quite a few troops are currently tapping at the front lines, sometimes with, sometimes under cover, and there seems to be a significant difference in how they respond to the trauma exposure and reintegration.

      When we release the belief that soldiers should be “tough enough” to deal with war trauma, and replace it with the understanding that in depth emotional debrief should be a normal and standard procedure, I believe that we will be able to release the stigma easier.

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