When I visualize a traditional therapist’s office, and then a military boot camp . . .
. . . I come up with two very different images.
It might seem obvious to those of us within the helping professions that, in order for treatment to be effective, we need to match the intervention to the person sitting in front of us.
But what if our own life experiences are so vastly different from our client’s that we’re barely speaking the same language?
And, is it possible we don’t even realize the degree to which unfamiliarity with another’s way of life impacts our ability to offer help?
That’s the situation my good friend Belleruth Naparstek found herself in when working with soldiers suffering from symptoms related to PTSD. She discovered that the typical approach we, as practitioners, take when working with soldiers didn’t translate well into the language and customs of the military.
I admire Belleruth because she didn’t allow unfamiliarity with military culture to stand in the way of getting help to wounded men and women who truly need it.
Her work offers an example of what can happen when we reach far beyond our own cultural inclinations and open our hearts to connect with the unfamiliar.
Take a look at the video below to see how she and one particular soldier bridged their communication gap in order to help him begin to find relief from PTSD.
Every time I post this video, people have asked where they can find these resources, so here’s the link.
Now I’m not an affiliate or anything, and if you decide to purchase anything from Belleruth or Health Journeys, I will not receive a commission. It’s just good stuff and I thought you’d like to know about it.
And there’s one more reason . . .
. . . according to the National Institute of Mental Health, millions of people in the United States suffer from
PTSD, but less than half of those diagnosed with the disorder have received treatment.
As we think about the sacrifices of men and women who have laid down their lives in military service, I also want to highlight the challenges that many face when they return home.
If you or someone you know is suffering from symptoms related to PTSD, I hope you’ll share this video with them.
Now I’d like to hear from you. How might Belleruth’s experience in working with Sergeant Rauls change your approach with clients suffering from PTSD? Please let us know in the comments section below.