If you are a veteran, you may feel lost and unsure about returning to "normal" life after being in the military and in war zones. You may even have been injured or otherwise negatively affected by your time in the military. While it is understandable that you may not know what to do to help yourself, there are things that can help. Counseling is one of them. A counselor for veterans can help you out a great deal after serving in the military. Get to know some of the ways counseling may be able to help you as a veteran. Then, you can better decide if now is the time to give counseling a try.
You Can Discuss Your Experiences Without Filter
One of the best things about counseling in general, but especially for veterans, is that it is a safe place to open up and speak freely. You can discuss your experiences in the military without having to filter yourself to shield others from things that may be scary or traumatic.
Your counselor is there solely to help you and a part of that is listening to your story, no matter how difficult that story is to hear. You do not have to worry about sparing the feelings of your counselor like you do family and other loved ones. You can get into the gritty details to get it out there and begin to heal from what has happened to you in the military.
You May Get Diagnosed with PTSD
Many veterans who enter counseling find that their counselor believes they have PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). Getting this diagnosis can be beneficial because it is one of the first steps towards recovering from the condition.
PTSD occurs when a person has been through something traumatic (like war, rape, abuse, or the loss of someone important to the person). They may then develop symptoms like anxiety, depression, hypervigilance, flashbacks, and panic attacks (among other symptoms). This can make life quite difficult.
Getting a diagnosis of PTSD is not something to be ashamed of. It is common among veterans and can be helped and treated. The diagnosis is the beginning of that treatment and recovery process.
You Can Get Support and Resources
Counselors are there to support you and help you with whatever your issues and goals may be. In addition to treating PTSD and other issues related to being a veteran, they can also help you to rebuild your life after military service.
You can get resources for jobs and other services, for example. Your counselor can help you figure out what you want to do with your life (both personal and professional) after service. They can be a great support and help in these departments.
Now that you know some of the ways counseling may be able to help you as a veteran, you can get your first counseling session on the books as soon as possible.
For additional information, reach out to a local veteran counselor.