Friday, July 8, 2016

How to Treat PTSD

Being Together

The Wall Street Journal published an article today about the lack of follow through of the VA to use service dogs as a therapeutic treatment for vets with PTSD. For over 40 years research has shown that there are many, many ways to assist people that suffer from severe shocks, trauma and abuse that are widely ignored by Clinical Professionals. The Medical Model insists that each and every distressed person is "Mentally Ill" and thereby must be treated by a licensed, wholly funded professional. 

But outcomes indicate that peer support, animal support, prayer, friendships, exercise, worship, and other "free" services are often therapeutic. However, they may receive little press because it is free and threatening to the people in power.

Gary Sweeten has written articles and books on the positive impact of training Peer to help distressed friends and family members. When we interviewed the parents of kids with a special need we discovered that few had ever received a friendly visit from a church member! 

What is the block to friendships? Perhaps it is fear that we would not know "what to say". That is what I often hear from people I ask to befriend families in distress. Do not say anything about the illness or disability. Talk about the Reds or the weather. Just listen. Being together is therapeutic. Be there and smile.

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