Monday

Military Domestic Violence

Let's face it. Our government sent thousands of men and women into battle. They didn't know what they were getting into when they arrived in Iraq. Of course we sympathize with them, and we pray night after night they come home safe. And when they do, everything is different. He or she has changed. They are not the same person you remember.


Is it their fault? Why place blame, because we can certainly point fingers. But the bottom line here is that you will be affected one way or another upon their return, and a lot of times, it isn't positively.

Short tempers. Anger. Resentment. Grieving for lost comrades. Why did the government send me there? Why is my life ruined? I can't cope with life now. My spouse or partner doesn't understand. Why did I get injured? I can't work now. My partner wants love and affection. I can't give it anymore. All I see is bloodshed. All I see is pain and anguish. No one understands. My life will never be the same. I wish I would have died. But I want to live. But not like this.

If you see signs of any of these symptoms, or have heard any of these statements, it is a very tragic reality of witnessing and being a part of a war.

Nonetheless, your partner MUST seek psychological care, because the situation can become so out of control, that it starts to impact you and your family. Although we give them great respect for their amazing sacrifice, it does not give them the right to begin abusing you and your children.

You have to make a choice. And if you are the spouse of a military person, you might look into contacting the Ombudsman at the closest military station. Tell them of these verbal, emotional, psychological, or even physical domestic violence immediately. Do it when your spouse is not aware of this, and be careful. The military SHOULD take this issue seriously and recommend a course of action. You can also contact the local Chaplain on the military base. Try both.

The majority of the time, you are not looking to press charges, you just want your spouse to get help from a counselor. Sometimes medication might even be prescribed, but that can only be decided by a physician.

No matter what, you must take care of yourself and children first. Do not aggravate your spouses already damaged psyche or yell. If he or she is quiet, do not push to talk unless they want to. You do not know what is going on in their head, and remember, they are forever changed.

Signs of domestic violence when returning from war can come when you least expect it. So be cautious of the situations and types of things that upset your spouse or partner. If the relationship is starting to have problems, try and work together to see how you can make the situation lighter, happier, and fun again.

If the situation escalates to physical violence, you must leave with the children immediately. Do not stay. And do not return until your spouse or partner has received professional help.

This subject is such a touchy one, and no one wants to address it. But it must be. There are more soldiers returning home every day. And we do not want them or you to become another tragedy or victim of war.

Submitted By: Adrienne DeVita, Military Domestic Violence

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God didn't put you with an abusive mate. Your flesh did.

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