We are the forgotten. I admit I feel some solidarity of the Vietnam Veterans who have been presumed by society to be, "crazy." That is what it feels like when trying to talk to someone on the phone, begging for help, begging for answers. As much as our parents tried to find some manageable outcome as a result of the war...we are the bastard children of this mess. Combat trauma has made considerable gains in recent years. Most sites dedicated to healing children of combat veterans are made towards just that, children. We aren't children, anymore. Grown adults left untreated by a man made disaster that manifested itself in our lives. To rid the torment of childhood? To not remember the physical, emotional, and sometimes sexual abuse in the home. There is no pill for that. The glossy pretty websites dedicated to helping the "kids troops" is a constant reminder that our country will continue not to really see post traumatic stress as what it really is. When the news gives us pictures of the "welcome reunion", we know the fear. The alcoholism, drug abuse, hiding in your closet, walking on eggshells,  your Mom being thrown down the stairs....the unwelcome sexual advances of a predator that doesn't remember you as a daughter.

Post traumatic stress can not be felt in textbooks or in your diagnostic statistical manual. It's felt in homes all over this country. We know the horror and we feel the war all over again, the war at home. We are skipping an entire generation of grown adults that can tell you all what it really means to grow up with post traumatic stress, the illness runs deep...as deep as the blade cuts into your skin trying to purge the demons out.

We need help. We are not children, anymore,
3/10/2013 10:50:46 pm

Thank you - we are not children - but many of us have children and in my oldest i see now, how deep how very deep it ran

3/30/2013 03:19:02 pm

These men are the best Dads in the world as you can describe in one Breath! In your next breath. What just happened! You search for there buddies as you find most are Dead! You search and wonder Why and why and you can't stop the bad things from happening. Know one knows how to fix you. You get counseling from people that don't even know what to say. I know this runs deep in our bones! The Bed time stories that you were forced to listen to.As a child you have a creative imagination. The stories become real. You visualize it as your dad in another flashback fights invisible gooks with machette, guns, knives. We see it all as they fight and as he cries on the porch because what the just happened. As he returns to the Man we alll Love so very much!

11/13/2014 09:10:26 am

This is so true. I have never really talked to anyone about it. When I was growing up as a child of a Vietnam Veteran people didn't understand my dad's flashbacks. I didn't really understand it myself. As an adult I have reflected on how the war changed my dad's life and my life as well. PTSD is real and I saw it before anyone put a name on it.

1/6/2015 01:47:24 pm

My Dearest Sisters and Brothers in this struggle,

Wow!!! A weight has been lifted and the pressure in my head and heart has been released, if only for one night...! To read my story in each one of your comments and to discover that these personal stories and pains stretch across years to culminate in 2015, is reminiscent of how GOD truly works! Hang in there my dear ones, fore these times are bringing special & new healing to daughters, sons, fathers and mothers of the Vietnam War (and other war torn families).

I would like very much to share with you other artistic and healing environments that I have participated in over the years that would really benefit from your presence and support; and I would venture to say, you may benefit from these communities as well. In turn, each of these groups would love to support you in sharing an additional platform in which you may express your pain and receive support from a loving community of caring who knows what you (and your families) ARE still going through! To think that at my age (born in the 70's) I too suffer from that which my father endured and that I cannot check the box claiming Vietnam Veteran Preference on a government job application after experiencing all of the same suffering as my beautiful father who sacrificed his eyesight, his brain, his legs and his soul in combat (and who still goes missing for days, weeks, months and years today), is very tough to deal with at times; but I know together, that we can create the change that we want to see in this world!!! The same as our father's benefits and support should never cease, so shall those of the family (mothers and children of any age) for their lifetimes; WE should in fact, receive the support WE NEED after enduring their pain.

Please visit http://www.memorialdaywritersproject.com/PoetsPage.htm to see and hear creative works from Vietnam Veterans and family. Consider coming out to the VV Memorial on the Mall in Washington, DC on Memorial Day and Veterans Day Annually.

Also, please consider participating in the Warrior Arts Cafe'. Details of the upcoming gatherings are listed in the following article: Warrior Arts Cafe,

Vets relieve anxiety, memories through poetry and song -- Gazette.Net: http://www.gazette.net/article/20141210/NEWS/141219797/1123/vets-relieve-anxiety-memories-through-poetry-and-song&template=gazette.

I hope to connect with you in the future as we have much work to do as DOVV's to experience healing and foster in healing of other "children" of present and future conflict.

God Bless You and I Pray to Hear From You!

Most Truly I AM,

Norah A. Burns

7/6/2015 12:05:03 am

I don't know how I ended up looking at this page. I can't describe the feeling that I have reading what has been written. I have always felt like such an outcast. Never could my friends understand that I spent my nights hiding in the closet waiting for him to come home. I new I would have to protect my little brother

Chris Bedford
7/31/2017 10:16:31 am

It is such a relief to not feel alone. My dad was trained in interrogation (torture) techniques and tortured us throughout our childhood. It's hard for people to understand that he was a happy drunk, the drinking numbed his pain and gave a repreive. It was the sober dad that was unpredictable and violent. It's really hard to admit as an adult the anxiety and sheer terror that comes from dirty dishes left in the sink, a junk drawer that isn't neatly organized becaused because in going to get beat for it. it's so sad that these men didn't come home to the mental health services that are avable now.

Amanda Rieck
8/20/2017 11:34:33 am

My Dad was a Marine who served at Khe Sanh in Vietnam. He was there during the seige. He had flashbacks and went through PTSD therapy at the VA. He died when I was 14 due to his exposure to Agent Orange. It was hard growing up with him having flashbacks and drinking and not knowing how to make it better. I can't relate to anyone who didn't have a childhood like I did. I feel broken and alone.

Christina Murphy
12/15/2017 11:43:31 am

I didn't know there were others out there. I'm glad to see I'm not alone. My dad was a Marine in Vietnam, a tunnel rat. Growing up he was wonderful and horrible. He recently passed from prostate cancer. He was the most tortured soul I have ever known. I will miss him greatly. I forgave him a long time ago, having realized it was himself he was really trying to hurt, not even knowing why. I hope in the end he has found peace. War sucks and we should all keep that in mind when we vote I think. In hopes that we do not needlessly pass this experience to future generations of children.

4/7/2018 12:56:34 pm

Finally some is there to listen! I never got to talk about my tramatic childhood. Where do I go to get help? There are no support groups or counseling for those of us still in pain. I have tried the VA but they only help veterans not their families. So where do I go from here? I don't know where to start! I don't have the internet at home and I don't really know how to navigate the internet. I do have facebook. But I don't even know how to leave messages any other of that stuff. Can someone please help me? Could I speak to someone on the phone? Or even better find a support group somewhere? Why doesn't the VA help us? Don't they care? Doesn't the government care? They should be the ones helping us! My dad finally got the PEACE he so desperately need. When do I get the PEACE that I so desperately need?
Frustrated, Confused and Helpless in Missouri, Robin Patrick

Amanda Rieck
4/7/2018 02:02:10 pm

Robin , you are definitely not alone. My father was a combat Marine at Khe Sanh during the 77 day seige. I have always wanted to talk to someone who had similar childhood experiences. My brother won't talk about things with me. I will always love my father he was a strong man and my hero. Yes he had PTSD and he struggled with alot of things due to his time in Vietnam, we were very close and I understood at a very young age that he had pain physical and mental. If you want you can call or text me to talk at 785-217-1272. Just leave a message and I'll get back to you.


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