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Topic: “PTSD”

Read Stories > Topics > PTSD

Learn more and watch videos of Veterans sharing their experiences with PTSD and what they did to get on a path to recovery.

Next Mission: College

Stephen didn’t consider getting VA help with his transition out of the U.S. Army because he felt that other Veterans were more deserving of support. But when his adjustment to student life proved difficult, VA counselors gave Stephen the tools and resources he needed to succeed in his new mission.

August 04, 2022 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service, Flashbacks

Support Comes In Many Forms

Family members, friends, fellow Veterans, clergy members, co-workers, and counselors can all provide support to Veterans going through a tough time. But no matter who provides it, one thing is clear: Everybody needs support at some time. During Mental Health Month and all year round, learn how seeking support from many sources helped these Veterans work through their mental health challenges.

May 19, 2022 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service, Depression

Veterans on Managing Anger

Veterans whose lives were affected by anger explain how they felt and what helped.

March 24, 2022 | 2-minute read

Anger and Irritability, PTSD, Depression

Hope Heals

Through Veterans Treatment Court, Ray was ordered into mental health treatment. That’s when the Veteran’s life started to change.

March 10, 2022 | 3-minute read

Anger and Irritability, PTSD, Problems with Alcohol

Helping One Can Help Many

Kyle experienced PTSD after witnessing heavy combat casualties in Iraq, where he served as a Marine Corps field radio operator. His transition back into civilian life was rough and included a trip or two to jail and a couple of stays at psychiatric hospitals. Some caring Veterans intervened, urging him to get help at VA. That’s where Kyle learned how to manage his PTSD, and he now helps other Veterans find their footing.

January 27, 2022 | 2-minute read

PTSD, Problems with Alcohol, Transitioning From Service

Women Helping Women

A new video from Make the Connection features four women Veterans who explain how group therapy with their sisters in arms led them to better mental health.

January 20, 2022 | 2-minute read

Military Sexual Trauma, Suicide, PTSD

Turning Pain Into Prose

When Sarge returned from three combat tours in Vietnam, his waking hours were punctuated by bouts of hypervigilance and rage, and his sleep was fraught with nightmares. As part of his healing process, Sarge started writing down the thoughts that were too hard to voice. His words became poems, then music, and then his salvation.

December 16, 2021 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships, Nightmares

Saving a Life With Strength and Love

Nick and Felicia’s whirlwind romance was affected by the aftermath of his multiple combat deployments, PTSD, suicide attempts, and alcohol use. But instead of giving up, Felicia summoned her strength and told Nick he had to get help. Her support saved his life.

October 21, 2021 | 3-minute read

Problems with Alcohol, PTSD, Family and Relationships

Reclaiming Happiness

Hear how Daniel, a U.S. Navy photographer, learned to manage his PTSD symptoms with VA support.

September 02, 2021 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service, Stress and Anxiety

Inspiring Stories From Coast Guard Veterans

Hear the inspiring stories of four U.S. Coast Guard Veterans who found support to regain control of their lives.

August 19, 2021 | 5-minute read

PTSD, Military Sexual Trauma, Bipolar Disorder

Losses Led to Recovery

While serving in the prestigious 82nd Airborne Division of the U.S. Army, Daniel turned to drugs and alcohol after the suicide of his best friend. Several years later, it was the death of another loved one that moved Daniel to regain control of his life.

July 07, 2021 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Problems with Drugs, Anger and Irritability

A Military Family’s Story of Support

Hear stories from a Veteran’s family about how shared experiences helped them learn to support each other in seeking mental health treatment.

June 23, 2021 | 3-minute read

Anger and Irritability, Problems with Alcohol, PTSD

Getting Help Shows Strength

A deployment with the Army in Afghanistan that led to a long separation from her toddler daughter left Nicole depressed and hypervigilant. After getting the treatment she needed at VA for adjustment disorder and PTSD, Nicole learned that she had the inner strength and resources to seek help again whenever she might need it.

June 09, 2021 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Feeling on Edge, Family and Relationships

Regaining Control Through Mindfulness

Gus had trouble sleeping and managing his emotions until his therapist introduced him to meditation.

May 05, 2021 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service, Trouble Sleeping

Grace Is a Gift for Yourself

Forgiving doesn’t mean forgetting. It means letting go of the hurt and regaining your power — and it’s a form of self-care that can enhance your mental health.

April 22, 2021 | 3-minute read

Military Sexual Trauma, PTSD, Family and Relationships

Painting a Picture of Recovery

Like many Veterans, Mike had trouble expressing himself and dealing with his trauma. Then he discovered art therapy.

April 20, 2021 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury, Transitioning From Service

Four Inspiring Stories From Women Veterans

Discover how these four women Veterans have overcome some of life’s toughest challenges and learned to thrive by taking care of their mental health.

March 24, 2021 | 7-minute read

Transitioning From Service, PTSD, Stress and Anxiety

Living in the Present Can Create a Better Future

After years of moving from place to place, Brian stopped trying to outrun his past. By learning how to manage his PTSD symptoms and live in the present, Brian set a path toward a better future — for himself and his family.

February 10, 2021 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships, Transitioning From Service

Don’t Go It Alone

With the support of his fellow Veterans and therapy programs at VA, Stephen was able to start managing his PTSD symptoms.

January 26, 2021 | 4-minute read


Rebuilding Family Bonds

When Drew, a U.S. Army Veteran, transitioned out of military service, he faced depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress disorder, and he withdrew from his family and friends. Treatment helped him address these challenges, and a heartfelt conversation with his dad helped rebuild his family bonds.

November 09, 2020 | 5-minute read

PTSD, Flashbacks, Family and Relationships

The Power of Purpose and Laughter

After retiring from the U.S. Navy, Susan faced depression and PTSD. She found comfort and a new sense of purpose on the stand-up comedy stage.

August 21, 2020 | 5-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service, Depression

Torn Between Worlds

Some Veterans experience trauma over and over because sudden flashbacks won't let them leave the past in the past.

August 10, 2020 | 5-minute read

PTSD, Flashbacks, Transitioning From Service, Depression, Stress and Anxiety

Hiding Pain in Plain Sight

Despite his many professional successes, Fred couldn’t outrun the survivor’s guilt he experienced after losing an air crew in a mission over Iraq. Therapy at VA, including EMDR treatment to reprocess his thoughts, allowed Fred to rediscover an emotion he didn’t realize he’d been missing.

July 24, 2020 | 2-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service, Suicide

Learn How Veterans Got Back on Track

Maybe you don’t connect with your therapist in your first appointment. Maybe the treatment doesn’t make a noticeable impact right off the bat. Or, maybe you feel like you’re taking all the right steps, but nothing’s changing.

April 23, 2020 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service, Stress and Anxiety

Take the First Step Toward a Healthier Life

These Veterans had different reasons for seeking help, but the result was the same: After they took the first step on their mental health journey, their lives improved.

April 23, 2020 | 5-minute read

Jobs and Employment, PTSD, Transitioning From Service

Helping Hands

Serving as a Navy Seabee, Phillip escaped certain death when an unseen hand rescued him from a mudslide in Honduras. A decade later, when he found himself mired in PTSD, anger, aggression, and drug use, it was VA that pulled him up. Now, Phillip is a state-certified peer specialist, offering a helping hand to other Veterans in crisis.

April 10, 2020 | 5-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships, Problems with Drugs, Nightmares, Homelessness

Living With Chronic Pain

Marie faced chronic pain after serving in the U.S. Army and deploying to Iraq. Through group therapy at VA, she learned she wasn’t alone.

February 21, 2020 | 3-minute read

Anger and Irritability, PTSD, Trouble Sleeping, Depression, Nightmares

Stay Active After Active Duty

Hear some Veterans describe how recreational activities enhance their mental well-being — and their lives.

January 23, 2020 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service, Depression, Stress and Anxiety

"There’s So Much Hope Out There"

Lucinda, a U.S. Coast Guard Veteran, used alcohol to try to dull the pain after the death of her son. Through counseling, she’s found purpose and passion in her life again.

January 03, 2020 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Problems with Alcohol, Stress and Anxiety

An Army Infantryman’s Journey to Recovery

Hear how Tony, a U.S. Army infantryman, overcame problems with alcohol and PTSD with the support of his wife, Kacie.

December 19, 2019 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Problems with Alcohol

“If It Wasn’t for My Wife, I Wouldn’t Be Here”

After his wife encouraged him to seek mental health support, Jeff, a U.S. Army Veteran, learned to confront his anger and other challenges with EMDR therapy and recreational therapy, including gymnastics and dance.

October 29, 2019 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships, Traumatic Brain Injury

Healing Through the Power of Therapy and Art

Learn how Phyllis, a U.S. Navy Veteran, found ways to cope with her PTSD through therapy and expressing herself through her paintings.

October 15, 2019 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Flashbacks

A Series of Chaotic Mistakes That Somehow Went Right

Rick, a U.S. Navy Veteran, overcame PTSD and problems with alcohol through cognitive behavioral therapy, group therapy, and more.

August 27, 2019 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Problems with Drugs, Problems with Alcohol

PTSD Symptoms — in Veterans’ Words

Hear Veterans describe the symptoms of PTSD and discuss treatment options that help them cope.

June 24, 2019 | 3-minute read


After Crashing, Stephen Found a Community

Stephen had substance use issues and posttraumatic stress disorder. Now a community of support is helping him follow his dream of working in the mental health field.

April 18, 2019 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Problems with Drugs

Technology Breaks Down Barriers to Treatment

Jennifer served for nearly 20 years in the U.S. Army and Reserve, but she faced her greatest challenge when she returned home. Hear how support through VA TeleMental Health services helped her overcome depression.

March 13, 2019 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships

Prolonged Exposure Therapy — In Veterans’ Words

Veterans describe how prolonged exposure therapy helped them overcome symptoms of PTSD.

March 05, 2019 | 2-minute read


My Story, My Connection: True Partnership

Daniel and Sara, a military couple, stand by each other’s side to overcome problems with alcohol and a loss of identity.

January 07, 2019 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships, Transitioning From Service

My Story, My Connection: A New Mission

Hear how Linda, who served as a combat trauma nurse in Iraq, reached out to overcome symptoms of PTSD.

November 07, 2018 | 2-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships

A Call to Service After 9/11

Nathan was compelled to serve his country in response to 9/11. Hear his story of strength and recovery.

September 11, 2018 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Transitioning From Service

3 Things to Consider in Finding the Right Therapist

Finding the right therapist is an important step in your path to mental health recovery.

August 16, 2018 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships

A Purple Heart Recipient’s Story of Strength

“I had a new purpose in life — and that was to give back.” Hear the inspiring story of Ed, a U.S. Army Veteran and Purple Heart recipient.

August 07, 2018 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Physical Injury

Positive Change Through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy can be a powerful treatment option for Veterans managing challenges like PTSD, depression, anxiety, and drug problems.

July 20, 2018 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Depression

Q&A With Capt. Sullenberger on Mental Health

We spoke with Capt. Chesley Sullenberger, an Air Force Veteran, about his experience with mental health challenges, his work in the Veteran community, and what he hopes others take from his story.

May 22, 2018 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships

Mental Health Recovery: By the Numbers

These five numbers affirm what can be possible with mental health treatment — from scaling the highest summit in Antarctica to celebrating decades of marriage.

April 19, 2018 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships

Honoring Vietnam Veterans

This Vietnam Veterans Day, we welcome home and honor the service and profound sacrifices of those who fought or served during the Vietnam War.

March 28, 2018 | 2-minute read

PTSD, Depression

A Vietnam Veteran Finds Strength in Group Therapy

Rick, a Vietnam War Veteran, buried the trauma of war for decades.

January 24, 2018 | 5-minute read

Anger and Irritability, PTSD

Veterans on Prolonged Exposure Therapy for PTSD

Military Veterans explain how prolonged exposure therapy has helped them overcome symptoms of PTSD.

December 18, 2017 | 5-minute read


PTSD: By the Numbers

Statistics help tell the story of PTSD.

December 14, 2017 | 3-minute read


PTSD and Relationships: Supporting a Veteran Loved One

Military spouse Tass discusses her experience in helping to identify and manage her husband’s PTSD.

October 17, 2017 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships

How 4 Homeless Women Veterans Changed Their Lives

Hear women Veterans share their stories of homelessness and the assistance that helped them find housing.

September 28, 2017 | 5-minute read

PTSD, Homelessness

Still Supporting Veterans, a Half Million Video Views Later

Military couple and Make the Connection participants Hector and Trista make a lasting impact on the lives of Veterans in Minnesota and beyond.

September 20, 2017 | 4-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships, Military Sexual Trauma

A 9/11 First Responder Confronts Painful Memories

After two harrowing days of searching through rubble at the Pentagon, Cliff went home, took off his gear, and put it away in a box — along with his painful memories..

September 07, 2017 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Trouble Sleeping, Suicide

Overcoming PTSD: 3 Vietnam War Veterans’ Stories

These stories highlight how symptoms of PTSD affected three Vietnam Veterans years after the war — and how these Veterans found support for their mental health challenges.

August 16, 2017 | 6-minute read

PTSD, Depression, Nightmares

4 Powerful Stories of Purple Heart Recipients

Hear the inspiring stories of four recipients of the Purple Heart.

August 07, 2017 | 6-minute read

PTSD, Physical Injury

This Marine Shares His Story to Help Other Veterans With PTSD

Hear how Josh, a U.S. Marine Corps Veteran, learned to manage his PTSD triggers after service in an Iraq combat zone.

June 22, 2017 | 3-minute read

PTSD, Family and Relationships

Veterans: Choose Strength Over Silence

The latest Make the Connection video, "Strength Over Silence," highlights stories of how Veterans used their voices and reached out for mental health treatment to improve their lives.

May 10, 2017 | 3-minute read

Jobs and Employment, PTSD, Family and Relationships, Problems with Drugs, Transitioning From Service, Trouble Sleeping

Four Stories That Will Inspire You This Mental Health Awareness Month

Servicemembers continue to inspire us after their military service. Read four inspiring stories of Veterans who overcame challenges such as PTSD and problems with drugs.

April 24, 2017 | 6-minute read

PTSD, Problems with Drugs, Physical Injury, Military Sexual Trauma, Flashbacks, Transitioning From Service

Five Ways You Can Support a Veteran Living With PTSD

If a Veteran loved one is living with PTSD, know that this condition can be treated. Learn about PTSD treatment options, mental health resources, and more.

March 28, 2017 | 6-minute read