The Story of Trauma and PTSD among Canada's Veterans by John J. Whelan
Many Canadians are vaguely aware of the military's steady involvement in overseas operations over the past 20 years. For many soldiers, however, memories of these places torment them daily. They are haunted; they are changed from who they were as proud men and women. How do we support these soldiers to find their way back home? The story of Master Corporal Billy Reardon is an intimate portrayal of his journey from young man to mentally wounded military veteran. We see the world through his eyes as the toll of his deployments mount and as he struggles within the mental health system. We also see him find recovery and reconnection to the military brotherhood along with other veterans. Billy's story raises questions about the roles of front-line leadership and challenges health providers to develop an intimate understanding of military culture as a prerequisite to assisting traumatized veterans and their families.
ohn J. Whelan Author
John Whelan, PhD, is a clinical psychologist who has spent a 20-year career working with serving and retired members of the Canadian Armed Forces. He served in the RCN for nearly nine years during the Cold War years before leaving to attend university. Dr. Whelan completed his dissertation on treatment outcomes for military members with substance abuse and mental health issues and he went on to serve as clinical director for the CAF addiction treatment programs. In 2004, he established a private clinic for the treatment of complex military PTSD and developed a group therapy program for veterans to help foster peer support networks. He continues to conduct outcome-focussed clinical research, advocacy and outreach work, and he is active in several veterans organizations.
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The Canadian Veterans Advocacy Team.