(Washington, D.C., Monday, November 6, 2017) - Experiencing psychological stress as part of military life can be common and when faced alone, these thoughts can sometimes lead to thoughts of suicide and depression. This Veterans Day, and throughout Warrior Care Month in November, the Real Warriors Campaign, is asking Americans to honor the sacrifices of Americaâ€™s Warriors and military families by encouraging all service members, veterans and military families to seek care for psychological health concerns.
Studies show that service members and veterans may be hesitant to reach out for support for invisible wounds. As we recognize Veterans Day, itâ€™s important to let warriors know that reaching out for help is a sign of strength.
U.S. Army Maj. Jeremy Haynes understands firsthand the importance of reaching out. After being shot four times in Afghanistan, he was told he would never be able to walk again or have feeling below his waist, if he even survived. Maj. Haynes faced depression and thoughts of suicide on his path to physical recovery. However, after reaching out for support from his wife and health care providers, Maj. Haynes began to heal his visible and invisible wounds of war. Today, more than two years later, Maj. Haynes continues on his road to recovery and shares his story.
AFTER BEING SHOT IN AFGHANISTAN, I STRUGGLED WITH MY PHYSICAL RECOVERY AND FELT PARALYZED BOTH PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY. DEPRESSION AND THOUGHTS OF SUICIDE THREATENED TO KEEP ME AT THE BOTTOM FOREVER. THROUGH THE SUPPORT FROM MY WIFE AND HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS, I REALIZED THE IMPORTANCE OF REACHING OUT. WE CAN REBUILD AND REPAIR OUR BODIES OVER TIME, BUT BEING MENTALLY FIT TAKES SUPPORT FROM OTHERS TOO. IF YOU OR A LOVED ONE IS DEALING WITH AN INVISIBLE WOUND, I ENCOURAGE YOU TO USE THE TOOLS AND RESOURCES AVAILABLE WITH THE REAL WARRIORS CAMPAIGN. REACHING OUT IS A SIGN OF STRENGTH.
If you or a loved one is coping with an invisible wound, resources are available, and treatment works. Visit realwarriors.net or confidentially call 866-966-1020.