Local Veterans Talk About Experience With P.T.S.D.

By: Christine Kennedy
By: Christine Kennedy

It is the unseen battle wound, but one that can no less impact a veterans life for the rest of his or her life. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Sure, you've heard of it, but to really hear what it's like to live with it is something quite different.

From the Vietnam War, to Operation Desert Storm/Desert Shield, to Operation Iraqi Freedom men and women here in the east are suffering from P.T.S.D.... Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Don Overton Heads up a local support group for vets suffering from the stress disorder. You could say he's got a double whammy. During the time he served in Desert Storm/Desert Shield he lost part of his hand and his vision, but he says the worst injury he received was the invisible battle wound also known as P.T.S.D.

His battle isn't necessarily the same as other veterans who suffer from P.T.S.D. The disorder affects veterans in different ways. For Benjamin Story it's going to bed. Richard Rogers can get to sleep, but has nightmares. Bobby O'Daniel's P.T.S.D. is triggered by everyday occurrences.

O'Daniel, Rogers and many others who have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder say a lot of the negative feelings come from things they've seen and their greatest fears exacerbated.

In reality, what they really couldn't stop was their need from isolation. Each one says their initial response to P.T.S.D was to shut the blinds and simply become an introvert.

While not everyone who suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is a war veteran, there is a growing number of young men and woman from our military who come back from war either being diagnosed with P.T.S.D. or not knowing what's wrong with themselves. The good news, there is help for all veterans. In our area it comes in the form of conversation.

In Greenville on Monday night at 6 P.M. there is a support group meeting for people who suffer from P.T.S.D. Meetings are held at the Vietnam Veterans Building at 2805 Cemetery Road in Greenville. For more information contact Bobby O'Daniel at 252-414-2024.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Anonymous on May 4, 2009 at 11:51 AM
    What is so bad is I have seen some people with so call PTSD that were just off their rocker and saw a chance to get free money from the tax payers. After they went out of work on disability they lead a normal life living off others.
  • by Enough Already Location: NC on May 3, 2009 at 05:57 AM
    It's all about context. It seems to me that no one can have a different view other than the norm on this blog or on the entire web site. That's why I don't post here very often. I know that here in ENC, everyone is to honor and respect those who serve in the service and have served. There are those who don't. The last time I looked, there was not a federal law prohibiting that. That is one of the principles that makes our country and our Constitution unique. Maybe if a few of you would quit practicing false patriotism and quit going along with everything some right wing entertainer or journalist says, maybe you could see things differently. Rob and Tim have the right to voice an opinion. Talk about closed mindedness and narsistic wanne-bes. There are plenty on this site and in the whole state. Hate to see you go, Rob. I've read your comments and they are radical, but you have to courage to say what you feel. Don't listen to these people. They only listen to what they want to hear.
  • by GBHB Location: I SUPPORT ROB and LOVE AMERICA. on May 2, 2009 at 10:11 PM
    Mel-it is hard for soldiers to defend us when they are invading countries and being used a world police force. I think it is funny people think just because our soldiers are fighting somewhere they are also fighting for our freedoms lol. Our military is being stretched thin and is being used to push some politicians personal agendas. I feel sorry for them because they are puppets. We should value people like rob who see through the propaganda and call it like it is.
  • by Tim Location: La Grange on May 2, 2009 at 09:07 AM
    I'm a Gulf War vet and have had experiences with PTSD. In a way, I believe "Rob's" comment has been taken out of context. I believe what he was trying say was that the vets need to get the help they need themselves and lose this "you owe me" attitude that some veterans have. The VA will not help because you are a statistic and a number. Quite frankly, they don't care. Lobby groups such as the VFW and the American Legion are only interested in membership dues and flag waving patriotism. The support groups are great, and if it takes professional help outside of the confines of the military establishment, then get it. Furthermore, Ms. Kennedy should show a little more restraint and not use her status as a journalist to voice her political views. Everyone, including you, Ms. Kennedy, has the right to an opinion, and some may be more radical than others. "Rob" has a lot of courage to voice his own opinion without fear. That is rare in an area where views other than the norm are not welcome.
  • by Christine Kennedy Location: WITN on May 1, 2009 at 06:46 PM
    I've posted a blog in regards to some of the comments on here. Please head to the news blog to read.
  • by Mel Location: G'ville on May 1, 2009 at 03:50 PM
    Rob, you should be grateful you live in a country, defended by the veterans you so ignorantly mock, that allows you to freely display your small-mindedness.
  • by Susan Location: Winterville on May 1, 2009 at 11:41 AM
    It's closed minded people like "Rob" who spread hatred and cause conflict! The local VET group is a place to get help and some peace of mind. Unless you have walked in the boots of a soldier or have seen the pain on a Veterans face, DON'T JUDGE! Our soldiers are heroes based on the fact they will fight for ALL of us whether or not they believe in the war. These men and women are human beings with mind, body, and soul that have starred hate, death, and destruction in the face! They have been mentally and physically beaten down. How dare someone call our Vets "so-called heroes"! I'm sorry Rob but your comment makes as much sense as a flea fart!
  • by Dave on May 1, 2009 at 06:26 AM
    I really cannot STRESS how devestating this condition can be.
  • by Rob Location: NC on Apr 30, 2009 at 08:15 PM
    What we don't need is another generation of veterans, or our so-called "heroes", feeling sorry for themselves. One was quite enough with the Vietnam vets.
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