By Stephanie Davis
As a psychologist, I have spent nearly my entire career working with Veterans; first with homeless Veterans diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, and for the past two years, working in suicide prevention. It is an honor and a privilege to serve our nation’s heroes.
Over the years, I have listened to countless stories of sorrow and horror, and of strength and resilience. What I have observed is that all of us are in this together; each one of us is doing the very best we can with the circumstances we’ve been given. And what makes the biggest difference, in anyone’s life, is hope. Hope that pain won’t last forever, hope for a genuine connection with with another human being, hope that tomorrow will be better.
This Veterans Day, I challenge you to do more than clap at a parade or say thank you in your Facebook post. Today, I challenge you to take that extra step and reach out to one person in your life. We all know someone who is hurting, someone who is struggling… it might be a friend or family member who has stopped returning calls, it might be someone in your social media feed who started writing about depression, or it might be that stranger you pass by every day on your way to work who just has that look… Today, this week, please take a moment to reach out, a moment to listen, a moment to care. You never know, you just might save a life.
Twenty Veterans die each day by suicide in our country. If you know a Veteran who is hurting, or if you are a Veteran who needs help, please call the Veterans Crisis Line at 800-273-8255.
Paul’s wife, Stephanie, works as a trauma recovery specialist for Veterans.