survivor guilt

SVI Blog: The Meaning of Decorations

When the veteran speaks of decorations, many feelings may surface. And when, on Memorial Day or Veterans Day, we see veterans don their uniforms for parades, the glittering, attractive face of the decoration is seen but the obverse lies dark against the veteran’s chest. The metaphorical meanings of that darkness may reach far deeper.

The First Step: Get Them to Talk

I have worked with combat veterans for a while, mostly Marines and Navy Corpsmen with PTSD and related issues, and it occurs to me that there are two kinds of “messed up” they come home with. The first is PTSD (and, by the way, I don't believe there are PTSD experts: we're all still students of it) but the second kind comes from the ever-changing rules of engagement which have become progressively more complex as objectives became more political than military