PTSD Conference At USC- Part 2

January 19, 2013

I attended the “Military Operational Medicine Research Program” conference at USC last Thursday with a guest speaker of Colonel Carl Castro.  Col. Castro is the Director of the program based in Bethesda Maryland at Fort Dietrich.

As I said in my previous blog this program was very informative but much too short.  Another segment had to do with PTSD Suicide” which I also have dealt with before, at this site.  Col. Castro didn’t talk very much about statistics of suicide but he did say that lots of money and attention were being paid on the research into PTSD suicide prevention. He asked the audience how many PTSD suicide prevention experts did we think were in the Country? The guesses ranged from hundreds to thousands. The answer he said was “25” Also he said if we wanted to have an impact on PTSD this would be an excellent place to start, not because of the money being invested in this research but because there was so little competition.

It was close to the end of the program that this subject was addressed and someone in the group asked, “Could you break PTSD suicide down to it’s lowest denominator?” He said that he would try. “What are the 3 main positive emotions that each of us have?”  he asked.  “Love…Faith…and Hope” was his response.  “Someone contemplating suicide” he continued, “Probably has decided that he has no one to love, and like many who come back from a War, probably has started to question if not completely lost his Faith. But when he/she has no Hope then this is a major, major problem.”

Lots of times, according to my wife who is a psychologist, people who are contemplating suicide feel that there is nothing left for them,  there is no Hope.  We all need to be alert to this issue with loved ones or friends or associates since we may be someone’s last hope.  There are suicide hot lines established with people that are trained to help someone come back from the brink but everyone needs to try and remember that it is some ray of hope that the person thinking of taking this step is clinging to and we may be able to influence that decision in some way, if we are willing to try.

I want this blog to perhaps be that ray of hope.  That someone with PTSD who needs to talk to someone at some dark moment, will have that someone here.  This site is always open for business.  As a matter of fact, in California, it is now 2:00 AM and I had this thought running around in my head all night as I tossed and turned in bed. I wanted to write it down.  Anyone suffering from PTSD is welcome here and you can say whatever you wish.  What you may need to get off your chest.  This is still a free site. Someone may need exactly what it is that you are offering in your post.  Something important to you, might just be important to them, as well.  We are all connected and whether we want to believe it or not we can all make a difference.