Endless battle of invisible wounds

  • Published
  • By 2nd Lt. Megan Duenas
  • 341st Missile Wing Public Affairs
Imagine living through a terrible tragedy and then being forced to relive that tragedy each day. This fear, frustration and stress are what Airmen with post-traumatic stress disorder deal with on a daily basis.

Jean Irvin, a Recovery Care Coordinator at Malmstrom Air Force Base, makes it her sole purpose to help heal Airmen with these invisible wounds.

“We use the continuum of care to anticipate the needs of a recovering service member while providing individualized support and care management – we are boots on the ground,” said Irvin.

Some Airmen with PTSD feel worn down from their endless battle of stressful emotions and are seeking for someone to help restore their faith, which is exactly what Irvin offers to service members. She can provide Airmen with a variety of treatments including professional therapy, healing programs and even retreats for the whole family. These retreats focus on creating new memories for Airmen suffering with PTSD.

One of Irvin’s recovery service members explained how their retreat at Lakeshore Lima Foxtrot positively affected him and his family.

“This opportunity was not only beneficial to me, my family had a great time with their dad and husband,” said one of Irvin’s recovery service members. “It had been a very long time since I had a worry-free mind and environment.”

Irvin feels it is vital for everyone to be aware of PTSD to develop a greater understanding and overcome any myths or misinformation surrounding it.

“These are real people with real issues,” Irvin explains. “Just because an Airman has PTSD doesn’t make them mentally weak, it actually makes them stronger for they have survived whatever traumatic event caused the PTSD.”

For more information on PTSD and recovery care contact 800-581-9437 or afwounded.warrior@us.af.mil.