by Leigh A. Hoffman
Editor’s Note: Leigh wrote this very passionate article after she read the following news story.
I had to pause for a moment and speak out about the events taking place in our military. It hurts me to my soul that our heroes are coming home and suffering in silence. It hurts me that there are people who will tell a soldier that it is a sign of weakness to seek help. It hurts me that there are families being torn apart and destroyed by the effects of multiple deployments and improper screening. I also think that I, as a military spouse, should not have to suffer through the heartache and heartbreak of sending her husband to war and then having to worry about what he is going to be like when he gets home and whether or not it would be “acceptable” for him to seek help. I think it is like the thought we have when we say our goodbyes when they deploy, like it ma
The recent events in our area, I believe, make a very strong case for the fact that our men and women are not getting the care they deserve. I am not saying that this is the case with every soldier, but it seems to keep occurring more and more often. The help is there, but there seems to be a stigma attached to seeking help. There are so many soldiers turning to drug and alcohol dependence and needless violence stemming from PTSD. I have seen it with my own eyes.
People in Washington and around our country like to wear their yellow ribbons and say how much they love my husband and other soldiers. It is time to make good on that statement and take care of them. Quit sending our military members, who are already having problems, on multiple deployments. Quit making them jump through hoops to get help. Please don’t stand in Washington and keep painting such a pretty face on such an ugly, horrible, reality. Come here, where we have families being torn apart, and people are killing themselves and their loved ones because they feel they have no other option. Maybe then there would be more of a sense of urgency to change a few things.
I am not writing this out of hate for my country or my government. I love my country and those who defend it, past and present. I think that there is no bigger honor than to be able to hold the hand of a man who has for many years given up so much for his country. I strongly feel that we need to take care of those who take care of us. They deserve it, and so do all of those who are at home waiting for them to return to us.
About the Author: Leigh Ann Hoffman is an Army wife and mother of three. She has been stationed many different places and has found a passion for helping other Army spouses and their families.