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Monday, March 25, 2013

Veterans coping with PTSD: an ongoing struggle for couples

Veterans coping with PTSD: an ongoing struggle for couples (with videos)
Cleveland Plain Dealer
By Brian Albrecht
March 25, 2013

At first, Travis Edwards thought he just had a drinking problem. And the drinking problem took care of his sleeping problem.

He later discovered that both were symptoms of the post-traumatic stress disorder that has plagued him since returning from Army peace-keeping duties in Bosnia in 1996.

"I'd have nightmares of stuff that I'd seen or stuff that had happened, and the only way I could go to sleep was to drink myself to sleep," the 38-year-old Cleveland veteran said.

His problems have affected his wife, Sharon, who has struggled to understand his moods and outbursts of anger through their 10 years of marriage.

It's a struggle familiar to other families coping with the ripple effects of a veteran's PTSD. These effects can include nightmares, emotional detachment, isolation and mood swings that experts say can be mitigated through therapy, but never entirely go away.

Sharon said it's "like living with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. You could be with this person who was real nice and sweet one minute, then the next minute they're upset and you don't know where it came from. It could be a word, or something, and he would just change."
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Don't forget you can also read FOR THE LOVE OF JACK, HIS WAR/MY BATTLE

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