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War Theater Military Veterans', and civilians in all walks of life who understand they too suffer deeply and often silently from the extreme trauma's in their life, use many forms of therapy to soften, cope with or rid the nightmares of that suffering, experiences that are the total opposite of how they were brought up and taught to expect life would be when not a fantasy world of a movie or game played. Finding that violent ways and tools of, legal and illegal drugs right to alcohol, staying silent, to cope, don't work, they feed further the suffering. Especially when the rest of the societies ignored the existence of or sought to suppress by denying it existed, no more as it's finally being paid attention to but still with wide confusion caused by not listening for years to those seeking to be heard. They do so in writings, in poetry, in art of all forms. They've found some of the best was in talking and listening with those who've lived through the similar experiences and trauma's, for they better understand then those who've never experienced what's hard to explain and picture living through. That continues and one great area of therapy can be music especially when well done and of their generations styles.


Soldier Hard's hip-hop lyrics reveal PTSD's rough edges

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9 February 2013 - Sleep-starved from a repeating nightmare and weary from wondering when all that therapy would reignite his fading hope, former Army tank gunner Jeff Barillaro took aim at his stubborn target with an attack as brilliant as it was simple.

He decided to break up with PTSD.

And he would do it in his increasingly famous style — studio-recorded hip-hop, under his stage name, Soldier Hard.

“Did you listen good when I said, Leave me be? PTSD, get the hell away from me. Cuz you held me down, didn’t even let me sleep, didn’t even let me breathe, didn’t let me live in peace.”"

“I thought: If I could write a letter to PTSD, what would I say to PTSD? Then I thought: Oh, wow, this is going to be powerful,” said Barillaro, an Iraq War veteran, out of the service since 2010, who has steadily gained fame among active-duty troops, young veterans and their families for his bare, often-bleak music about the daily demons of living with severe Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. read more>>>

Redcon-1 Music Group
Soldier Hard
Soldier Hard "Stolen Valor", Poser's
How does a Country HONOR It's Fallen, by Their Own 'Sacrifice' in Taking Care of the Brothers and Sisters They Served With!!
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Comment Preferences

  •  Paul Bremer Gets Shoed, and Laughs (29+ / 0-)

    Speakin of Military Troops, Afghanistan and Iraq long occupations, Abandoning the Main Missions, and promises to the Afghan people, in Afghanistan of why the country sent them into that region with the drum beats pointed at Iraq, those involved and their supporters continue actions!

    Disgusting little arrogant Neo-Con fool he is, as well as many in the audience, adding to the extremely long list of hatreds created by him and those he was associated with, In Our Names!!

    Protester hurls shoes at Paul Bremer, former US envoy to Iraq
    10 February 2013 - Former U.S. diplomat Paul Bremer had shoes thrown at him during a meeting held Wednesday in the British Parliament in an attack reminiscent of the 2008 shoe hurling directed at President George W. Bush.

    The incident occurred as Bremer, a former U.S. envoy to Iraq, was giving a speech at a meeting organized by the Henry Jackson Society, a British-based think tank named for the late U.S. senator from Washington state. Bush, who appointed Bremer to his post in Iraq was the target of a similar attack when he visited Baghdad in 2008. Shoe hurling is a traditional Arab gesture of disrespect. read more>>>

    Why isn't he and the rest serving time! This country doesn't do 'accountability', we just ask 'why do they hate us so?'! As we quickly move on to blame those and their actions that were left to clean up the extremely failed policies, while those that were a part of or fully supported ignore or totally blank it all from their histories memories!!

    Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

    by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 05:19:15 AM PST

    •  I would have preferred they throw an anvil at him (12+ / 0-)

      instead of shoes.  A guy can have a fantasy can't he?

      The self-therapy technique of actually talking to the trauma as if it were a person is one of the reasons Gestalt Therapy is so powerful for treating trauma.  Dr. Fritz Perls, the psychiatrist who created Gestalt Therapy, pioneered the use of talking to the "empty chair."

      I wrote a chapter for a textbook on the use of this technique with trauma patients.  The book received excellent reviews and was picked up and republished by two different professional book clubs.

      The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

      by Otteray Scribe on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 05:41:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Many so called Therapys (7+ / 0-)

        Using Drugs , Silence, Violence, Using Weapons as {as a certain sniper, in his marketing himself, did for his own and thought he could extend to treat others}, and others more often then not make matters worse!

        Just ask us older veterans, some about their own lives, most others knowing what the brothers and sisters were going through or at least understood why they were going through.

        Children are brought up, and even in the religions taught, though in modern times same religious ideologies have thrown out not to hate and be tolerant of others, with one view of life and living then many are, at some point thrown into the complete opposite of, there minds having extreme issues in justifying after!

        Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

        by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:39:49 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You are right about making matters worse. (7+ / 0-)

          The psychiatrist I mentioned, Dr. Fritz Perls, once told me, "If the holes in your head match the holes in the patient's head, nothing can happen."  He also put that in some of his writings.  

          Perls was right.  It is why a person suffering from PTSD has no business trying to do amateur therapy.

          The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

          by Otteray Scribe on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:50:16 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  With the 'sniper', (6+ / 0-)

            Who by the way is no different then pilots dropping bombs or now those that control armed drones, taking up guns, especially today's widely popular semi-auto's and with extended clips, as self therapy are the many mental triggers that might release but thinking they can be used for others as their therapy leaves one wide open for those triggers to be pushed in them and directed right back on the one who joined, like a merc does, his nightmares as theray!!

            And yesterday the family of the friend killed with tried defending what they were doing with the one that ended their lives!

            Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

            by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 07:04:47 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  On the bremmer and his 'all about saddam' laugh (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Back then Saddam was more then just a friend and allie of the U.S. and our CIA, and the chemical weapons he had, well where does one think they came from!

      The Halabja Project: Uncovering the Truth 25 Years Later
      12 January 2013 - In March 1988, Saddam Hussein unleashed the worst ever chemical weapons attack perpetrated on civilians. It took place in Halabja, a Kurdish town on the Iraq-Iran boarder, under the command of Ali Hussein Majid, also known as "Chemical Ali". It is estimated that 5,000 men, women and children died in the immediate aftermath of the attack, but this remains an estimate as many of them were buried in mass graves that remain contaminated by mustard gas.

      Twenty-five years later, the Kurdish Regional Government in Iraq (KRG) have now launched the Halabja Project to finally uncover the truth behind the horrific chemical attacks.


      In this article, Hana Salama of the Every Casualty programme looks at the ongoing effort to reveal what has happened and to identify the victims of the attacks and bury them with dignity.  read more>>>

      As this well produced video, needing not dig up the history with unless wanted to, was posted after Saddam, our once very good friend, was captured in the most recent shock and awe at the Iraqi people that turned into a long deadly and destructive occupation of, now officially finally over, diversion and abandonment, with cheers from most in the U.S., of the main missions of why we sent our military into that region after 9/11!

      They accomplished far more then Saddam ever would as to the Iraqi people, friendly to him and especially not!!

      Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

      by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 01:38:44 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for pointing me in the direction of this! (14+ / 0-)

    What a great tool to help deal with PTSD - I am sure the process of writing and performing that song was helpful. I've always believed that art can help us process traumatic experiences.

    •  I Had Heard, (11+ / 0-)

      And think I posted about sometime last year about this 'Hip Hop' artist at my site, before the 'Dear PTSD'. Caught the report about at the NBC site this morning, then visited his site, as well as the record label one, and caught the 'Stolen Valor' song his recent in August of last year, Powerful. Ya might want to visit his site, this kids good and looks like he's surrounding himself with good artists as well.

      Then I caught the asshole bremer Shoeing and his blowing it off by telling the thrower he needs to work on his aim after laughing about it.

      It all fit together!!!!!!!!

      Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

      by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:10:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Here's one he did for all you (8+ / 0-)

      Military wives

      Video was made by a military wife

      Help me to be the best Wavy Gravy I can muster

      by BOHICA on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:31:35 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  They both look so young. (7+ / 0-)

        War hurts the youngest among us and then they are left with so many years of dealing with the pain. We really need to rethink war in this nation. But I know you already know that Bohica.

        •  The absolute truth we must always have (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          in mind when thinking about using out military. About how much money we put into our military instead of so many other ways it could be better spent.

          We really need to rethink war in this nation.
          Although we are always rethinking war, Rumsfeld being the biggest loser on that; using military intervention as anything but the last resort is still considered UnAmerican by practically all GOP and even some Dems in DC.

          Hurting the young, leaving them with so much pain, disfigurement, disability for the rest of their lives, was my recurring experience with the VN vets of my generation, as well as others. Thanks to Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Cheney and W, Iraq casualties exceeded Nam massively and preventably. The Al Qa'qaa high explosives controversy, is covered quite well in that Wiki article.

          There were no less than 3 US military units there during the initial attack, none were given orders to secure it with troops. I did not replay the videotape made by a KSTP-TV St. Paul, Minnesota crew embedded with the 101st Airborne Division troops on April 18, 2003, in which IIRC their CO on site had contacted CentCom regarding what to do about the unguarded site and were told they could not spare any troops to be left - 9 days after Hussein's fall.

          I didn't find the initial reports I read in 2004 when the information came out, that the IAEA had warned Rumsfeld and Bush before the invasion, and again when it started, that site especially among all the weapons caches they had secured and monitored during their investigation had to be given high priority to be secured by US troops. The failure to do that probably contributed a very significant percent of the casualties and deaths of both US troops and Iraqi civilians. (Having ignored our own national security for months on Bin Laden's threats, the IAEA was easily not worthy of any credence.)

          We have recently learned that Johnson and Dirksen did not reveal to the American voters in '68 that Nixon had privately negotiated with the VC, stopping the agreement LBJ was closing on until after the election, by promising them a better deal. Their concern that the voters could not handle that ugly truth resulted in 6.5 more years before the war was ended - 9 months after Nixon left office in disgrace.

          Civilian control of the military cannot happen if the voters are not kept informed of the truth. Declarations and conduction of war are done in our names, with our tax dollars. Withholding or distorting any knowledge that would easily change that support should be a high crime, no statue of limitations.

          Now we are conducting military strikes with drones. No declaration of war in the traditional sense. Our commitment to habeus corpus, of restricted search and seizure, trial by jury before a judge, and the basic rule of law, were breached without our knowledge or consent.

          Those of us who have done enough rethinking of war have been fighting this one with information, statistics, convictions, no weapons or violence. We need to stop the wars on terrorism, drugs and gangs. So we can seriously apply our research, technology, money and effort in time to significantly halt climate change. We are well aware that an enemy is essential to the PTB in order to convince voters to approve their agendas. Climate change and the catastrophes it will bring needs to become our new, true enemy.

          "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

          by Ginny in CO on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 05:49:46 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Found this poet several years ago (12+ / 0-)

    So I was a coffin

    Poem - "So I Was a Coffin" by Gerardo "Tony" Mena
    Music composed by Gerardo "Tony" Mena
    All pictures supplied by members of 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion or their family members.
    Thanks to everyone that contributed.
    This poem won the "2010 War Poetry" contest and was first published by here:
    War child

    A multi-media project featuring poems from my manuscript "So I Was a Flag". We may leave the war, but the war never leaves us.

    All music composed and recorded by Gerardo Mena
    All footage recorded by Gerardo Mena
    All poems written by Gerardo Mena

    His Youtube channel

    Help me to be the best Wavy Gravy I can muster

    by BOHICA on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:05:17 AM PST

    •  Our Brothers, Especially, (9+ / 0-)

      But then others who if doing were doing so in obscurity, like the mis-diagnosed and silently suffering in the civilian populations, from our previous wars, of Vietnam had been doing so for years, as you know. As the country ignored and a few made pretty damn good livings off saying it didn't exist, nobody wants to pay for the results of and this past decade plus not even the wars they were sent into.

      These wars of choice and the results of can't be ignored anymore, no matter how some try hard to do as they are in even mentioning after those that beat the drums left with their war booty, but nobody still wants to pay, except the always few who understand and form organizations that some end up filling big needs and are successful but have to fight for contributions to continue!!

      Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

      by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:19:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  powerful diary, hints and directions, thanks /nt (6+ / 0-)
  •  Speakin of Missions and Promises Abandoned (6+ / 0-)

    And those still being sent trying to accomplish at least a few of as the forces wind down, and the CiC leads by their wants, not the officers:

    In Afghanistan Solar Dryers Make Big Impact
    02/08/2013 - Afghan women in the Kapisa Province train to work with solar food dryers that the men of the area have learned to build.
    {this is a video report, in 'iframe' embed so won't here, just visit the link above to watch}

    Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

    by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:27:04 AM PST

  •  This young brother, (5+ / 0-)

    And those he's surrounding himself with, should be highlighting the 'Grammy's', unlike many called stars and will present or be presented with, They Actually Got A Message That They Put Out Extremely Well!!

    Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

    by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:45:14 AM PST

  •  The Bremmer suit says (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BOHICA, jimstaro, a2nite, Ninepatch, WakeUpNeo

    that "the protester would have been killed under Sadam" more or less.  I think that under Sadam, there was at least the basic human needs met, so therefore, no shoes.  It seems that is until America decided that they wanted to get all of the oil for pennies, there was some sense of order there.  My infantry serving son said to me that you could tell that the country had a lot going for it at sometime in the not so distant past.  

    Bremmer is a criminal just like the rest of them that drove America into that quicksand and as the author implied, they should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity.

    •  Not just Oil (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BOHICA, a2nite, Ninepatch, WakeUpNeo

      It is centrally located in the region for that and more, including the water that flows through it, they thought they could control that whole region by controlling Iraq, they think same as to Iran, reasons we placed Saddam in power as well as the Shah long ago.

      Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

      by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:54:06 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Add (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ninepatch, WakeUpNeo

      One of the reasons I've always thought we went into Vietnam and stayed, my tour was my last year of my four '70-'71, even while I was In Country, was it's border with China and close to the once Soviet Union, with China and Vietnam in constant border fights even while we were there.

      Nothing like being at the door of your cold war enemies!

      Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

      by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:56:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Think oil in Vietnam (5+ / 0-)

        They still pump a half million barrels a day there.  Look up the history of American exploration of the place and see what a future president found off the coast his name was Herbert Hoover.  I was there in 1969 in Northern I Corp.  Thanks for your service.

        •  Yup (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ninepatch, WakeUpNeo

          But back then it was cheap, and sold as sooooo plentiful and clean, and the so called cold war was the rage, growin up our school desk were the duck tape and 4mil plastic sheathing to protect us all!!!

          Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

          by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 07:46:09 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  That 'cheap and plentiful' (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ninepatch, WakeUpNeo

          Were the today's 'climate change deniers' arguments, funded by the same special interests, to not just suppress but totally block the starting growth in alternatives that we were the first to develop and use, like so many other potential profitable huge growth industries before, back in the 70's as we also had started shipping our experienced and innovative trades off to those not quickly developing those alternatives, first slowly then at extremely high volume, leaving us with very little we produce here!

          Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

          by jimstaro on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 07:56:52 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Great post (9+ / 0-)

    I like the idea of writing a letter to my PTSD...I've had it for so long that I sometimes forget it's a disorder caused by something completely outside of my control, and see it as part of my personality or something.

    I appreciate that you stated that it affects "civilians in every walk of life"-When people think of PTSD, they automatically think of a war veteran. They don't think of a victim of sexual or physical abuse, or domestic violence. We have survived wars of our own-our battlefields are in privacy of homes and bedrooms, on our own soil but to many, just as foreign as the deserts of Afghanistan and Iraq. We feel the same alienation, the disconnect from the outside world. It is important to understand our commonalities and form connections with each other. Like you,our pain is inconvenient. Like you, much of society would prefer it if we just shut up and went away.

    (I have always felt most connected to combat vets. They are the only ones who I can be around, in my darkest moments, because they never need to ask "what's wrong?".)

    You must work-we must all work-to make a world that is worthy of its children -Pablo Casals Please support TREE Climbers for victims of child sexual abuse and exploitation.

    by SwedishJewfish on Sun Feb 10, 2013 at 06:57:51 AM PST

  •  thank you for this. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bronx59, jimstaro, BOHICA, DaNang65, WakeUpNeo

    As it so happens.....this will come in VERY handy to share with a couple of vets I have in my classes who are suffering from PTSD!

  •  Asthma and PTSD (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jimstaro, DaNang65, WakeUpNeo

    Few people know that many chronic medical conditions correlate with PTSD onset. The JAMA has linked asthma with PTSD. "Children and adolescents with asthma have a 2-fold higher rate of a depressive or anxiety disorder." over the control group.

    •  -continued- (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jimstaro, WakeUpNeo

      Which is to say, you're not alone.
      I had asthma for ten years. I haven't been diagnosed with PTSD, but I've woken up a dozen nights sweating from dreams of being strangled or choked. Things like this still put me on edge. That doesn't take a doctor to figure out.

      I doubt anyone would call this poetry, but to me it's an accurate description.

      Drowning and asthma

      Terror is hell. Panic moves in, takes over, insults your friends, doesn't pay his share of the rent, and feels free to bust up your furniture just for giggles.


      Drowning victims are probably the most dangerous to try to rescue. In a panic, drowning victims are likely to claw at rescuers and climb to the surface at all costs. NEVER attempt a direct rescue of a conscious drowning victim without proper training.
      One minute, he is swimming along happy. Having fun in the sun. Then something unexpected catches his attention: a gulp of water, or a brush against his leg from something unseen. Even nothing at all can start the process because it only takes a little fear to upset the long smooth strokes of an efficient swimmer. First, it's a little fear and a short stroke to get his head above water, only that doesn't solve anything because he is still coughing from the first gulp. The milfoil the brushed his leg is now wrapped around his foot. After a second of head and shoulders above water, he is quickly sinking back down.

      All these attempts at a quick resolution, accumulate a large pile of creeping consequences, quickly draining energy reserves, complete disregard of swimming form, and he has set himself onto a course of attempting to achieve an unreachable goal. Climbing vertically out of the water is an impossible feat for even the most adept swimmers. he didn't stop to consciously consider the impossibility of it. But, that is precisely what drowning victims instinctively attempt. Rationality has taken a vacation and refuses to answer the phone. He moves in quick succession from startled jerks, to concern grasps, to desperate climbing, to panicked flailing.

      The strangling sensation of an asthma attach is not around the neck but lower in the chest below the collar bone out of reach to manipulation.

      I was always able to mitigate the wheezing with a conscious effort to breath calmly and smoothly, which is not to say its' easy. Gasping only makes it worse.
  •  My dear gentle friend - (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bryce in Seattle, jimstaro, WakeUpNeo

    I haven't been around much in the past few years and that's not by accident. But, I saw the title and your name as the writer and I had to stop in for a few minutes.

    I am a survivor - well most days, but I'm not a vet.

    I know about not being able to stay asleep and working my ass off to teach my body how to sleep again -and how much lack of sleep can f**k with my head. I know about the nightmares. I know about feeling that it's not safe and no one around me understands one iota of what that means. I know about the booze and the drugs - especially my favorite, acid.

    I know about "living dangerously" in never ending cycles of self-abuse because it felt good, or more accuratley, that it felt familiar, normal. I know what it's like to be talked to in ways I didn't want to be talked to, and touched in ways I didn't want to be touched.

    I know never to say "I understand" to someone whose road is different than my own.  I know about the rage and feeling as if I can't get any air down into my lungs. I know about dissociation. I know about sleeping with a loaded .38 on the nightstand.

    In 16 years of living with "the bitch" as I call my journey,  I've picked up a few practical ideas/tools that have to do with the diagnosis, not the experience.

    And I know that all the hard work to learn how to live in the moment can be crushed in a few words.

    A member of this community, who will remain anonymous, told me never to talk to a military man or woman about PTSD because it would piss them off. I was shattered.

    To say I felt betrayed doesn't begin to explain, I just know that it threw me into a 6 month long hell that had me sleeping in my closet, shaving my head, not bathing, and all t he other ugly things that "the bitch" brings along.

    Thank you, dear friend, for acknowledging those of us who traveled our own highway to this hell regardless of our traumas. Thank you for speaking to my soul.

    I have to go now I'm crying big hot tears that are rolling down my cheeks - I know you know about those. Time to stick my face out the door to feel the cold air and reconnect..

    You are loved my friend.


  •  Thank you, jimstaro (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bryce in Seattle

    for this diary and your ongoing advocacy.

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