Living with PTSD: I served in Vietnam in 196... - Heal My PTSD

Heal My PTSD

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Living with PTSD

TPHCM
TPHCM

I served in Vietnam in 1966 and 1967. I was medically discharged in 1968 for medical problems related to being shot. When I returned home I had a hard time adjusting to being back in society. I had flashbacks and nightmares. In 1988 I went back to Vietnam as a tourist. I thought I would go one time and then go back home and resume my life. But the trip had such a strong effect on me I joined up with a group from VVA who helped arrange trips back for other vets. By 1992 I was living and working in Vietnam as an English teacher and doing other jobs related to English. At the time Vietnam was just starting to open up ton the West and English was an important skill needed for business and education.

Going back helped me deal with my PTSD by replacing all my bad memories of the war with my new experiences that were much more positive. The nightmares and flashbacks stopped and for the first time in 20 years I wasn't afraid to go to sleep.

I would like to share my experiences with anyone interested. I'm not saying going back to Vietnam is the answer for everyone but it sure helped me.

6 Replies
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Nathalie99
Nathalie99Administrator

Thank you for sharing your story, TPHCM.

This is really inspirational that you came back there to help despite the trauma.

Sometimes facing the places bad things happened and having positive memories there can help a great deal. I used this idea in my recovery where I visited places like that.

You went above and beyond, going back to live there. That's much more than visiting.

I hope you continue feeling well and thank you for sharing that there is a light...

TPHCM
TPHCM in reply to Nathalie99

Thank you for your reply. In the late 80s to early 90s I made many return trips with vets who had PTSD. With only one exception they all came back home in a more positive frame of mind. It's not the only answer or is it for everyone but it can provide you with the environment you can't get at home.

Thanks for sharing your experience. What an amazing way of healing your PTSD!

TPHCM
TPHCM in reply to AnxM

You are welcome. I'm glad you read it and enjoyed it.

I'm so glad that helped you. it must have been a huge leap of faith, glad it worked.

Cheers, Midori

TPHCM
TPHCM in reply to Midori

I had made several trips back and knew that I could make a living by teaching English and doing other things related to English. So it wasn't much of a leap, more of a calculated risk. The hardest part was that there was no one to follow when it came to how do you get a job and a place to live. It was lie starting in first grade and working your way up. Fortunately it all worked out.

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