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Old 2012-11-16, 19:22   Link #1
Ruby Princess
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World War II veterans and PTSD

Do you think their PTSD is milder now than in the 1940s right after the war ended?
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Old 2012-11-16, 19:28   Link #2
kyp275
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Each war carries with it its own versions of hell and demons for those who fought in it, it's not really something you can put on a table and compare.
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Old 2012-11-16, 19:30   Link #3
Ruby Princess
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I wasn't asking to compare wars, silly. I was asking if they've recovered emotionally at all these past 70 years.
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Old 2012-11-16, 19:34   Link #4
kyp275
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruby Princess View Post
I wasn't asking to compare wars, silly. I was asking if they've recovered emotionally at all these past 70 years.
Those that have passed away, yes.

It's not something you recover from, you can only learn to live with it.
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Old 2012-11-16, 19:44   Link #5
Jinto
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You might have asked the wrong audience here. Most of us cannot even comprehend what it means to live through such times. I suppose most here are hardly able to give you a qualified answer on your question.
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Old 2012-11-16, 20:34   Link #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruby Princess View Post
I wasn't asking to compare wars, silly. I was asking if they've recovered emotionally at all these past 70 years.
Yes, and No.... War is like a permanent tattoo imprinted in their hearts and minds...
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Old 2012-11-16, 23:28   Link #7
AnimeFan188
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"Earlier patterns of combat were different. For example, during World War II, the
bulk of the Allied troops in Europe went in after June 6, 1944. The fighting in
Europe ended eleven months later. In the Pacific, the fighting tended to be
episodic. A few months of combat, followed by many months of preparing for the
next island invasion or battle. In Vietnam, not a lot of people went back for
multiple tours, and those who did spend a year with a combat unit, spent less
time in combat than they would in Iraq. Even during Vietnam, it was noted that
many of those who were in combat for 200 or more days, did get a little punchy.

In Iraq and Afghanistan, army combat troops often get 200 days of combat in one
12 month tour, which is more than their grandfathers got during all of World War
II.
And some troops are returning for a third tour in Iraq. The army has found
ways to avoid the onset of PTSD (better accommodations, email contact with
home, prompt treatment for PTSD), but many troops are headed for uncharted
territory, and an unprecedented amount of time in combat. Thus the research,
and new programs to spot PTSD as early as possible."

See:

http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htatrit/20091230.aspx

The bolded part of the quote above is why PTSD is worse for this war than it was
for wars in the past.
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Old 2012-11-17, 11:21   Link #8
Cosmic Eagle
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I somehow don't think those numbers applied to the Eastern Front where the bulk of combat occured
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Old 2012-11-17, 17:44   Link #9
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Originally Posted by Cosmic Eagle View Post
I somehow don't think those numbers applied to the Eastern Front where the bulk of combat occured
U.S. forces weren't involved on the eastern front. Did the Soviets even keep statistics
for that sort of thing?
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Old 2012-11-17, 19:43   Link #10
Cosmic Eagle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnimeFan188 View Post
U.S. forces weren't involved on the eastern front. Did the Soviets even keep statistics
for that sort of thing?
No idea but if you are looking at PTSD cases as a whole in WWII then you shouldn't neglect it's main theatre no? I'm quite certain that German records for their own side should exist....Although it's likely people stopped recording in those kinds of conditions
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Old 2012-11-17, 20:43   Link #11
Dr. Casey
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My dad fought in the single bloodiest area of Vietnam; there's no such thing as an outright cure for PTSD, but it's not impossible for symptoms to lessen and become more manageable over time. My sister described my dad as being 'a walking mass of anger and sadness' during the 1980s (My mom said that one time during the late '80s, almost 20 years after he left the battlefield, a particularly horrible memory from Vietnam hit him with so much force that he sunk to his knees crying), and whenever I was a kid during the '90s I could still sense a great darkness inside him and understood on some level that he was different from almost every other person I'd ever known or encountered; but now, most people who met him for the first time would never sense the palpable darkness and sorrow than I did as a child, would probably just think him a normal guy that lived a perfectly ordinary, happy life. His hypervigilance is also much milder than it was once upon a time. My mom said that whenever she first met my dad, for the first several years they knew each other he'd search the perimeter outside their home every night to make sure there were no enemy soldiers around, and always slept downstairs next to the front door because sleeping upstairs in their room made him feel vulnerable.

Daddy says he still thinks about the war every day, and I'm sure he would be better off had he never fought in the war (Just last year he broke down and started crying into a washcloth when talking about a friend of his who died in early 1969, and my dad almost never cries), but I wouldn't say that all World War II veterans are every bit as damaged as they were in the 1940s, no.
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Old 2012-11-17, 22:28   Link #12
Jinto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Casey View Post
...
Daddy says he still thinks about the war every day, and I'm sure he would be better off had he never fought in the war (Just last year he broke down and started crying into a washcloth when talking about a friend of his who died in early 1969, and my dad almost never cries), but I wouldn't say that all World War II veterans are every bit as damaged as they were in the 1940s, no.
I suppose, when you are in theater its like a shock condition, the brain works differently. I assume the time for reflection afterwards is what unleashes PTSD. As you said, the brain won't forget what happened, but it might be able to come to terms with what happened (the memories) over time. This should have a relieving effect... but the emotional stress that is created in the process, certainly makes people feel miserable (depression).
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