Still at War
You are happy when they come home, and you see them and hold them again. You think that they are safe because they are back home with you where you believe nothing can hurt them. This is an illusion.
In reality, too many are still at war. Too often, they won’t tell you about the war, or how hurt inside they are, from the things that they can’t reconcile in their own minds; the things that they did, and the things that they experienced. The things that keep coming back to haunt them, whether it be in dreams or in flashbacks. Things that drain one’s self esteem, stimulate one’s depression, repress one’s motivation, and ultimately; destroys one’s relationships. It has been thus since just after “The Greatest Generation” won their war. As a society, we just didn’t ever want to admit it.
The good news is, that it can be dealt with. However, the Veterans cannot do it alone. They need hands-on peer guidance, brought about thru a support network coalition of peers, programs, and non-political institutions and infrastructure (re Orange County Veterans Advisory Council Needs Assessment Survey, Orange County, Ca., 1974). However, just as importantly; they need comfort and validation while moving through the labyrinth of a society torn apart over the very war which stole their youth and their innocence (Still at War, Calif/Nev VVAW, 1976).