“we support troops who resist” | May 13, 2011

oh really?

As you can see I have been processing a lot personally these days. I have been living in Denver for almost 2 years and I am familiar with a broad spectrum of activism and movement work. I moved here 2 years ago after I divorced my husband and left the Army after 7 years. Denver is much different than any of my previous environments. I have never lived in even a remotely politically correct world. The consciousness here is foriegn and confusing to traverse escpecially if you aren’t completely up on the social justice lingo and procedures.

I want to function and contribute in healthy ways.

I came to Denver hoping to find a place that could nurture me and teach me healthy models of interacting. I come with all sorts of baggage. I am anxious and hypervigilent from my Army training. I am overly aggressive, which is funny because in the military I was always yelled at for being too nice. I am especially weary and suspiscious of men in general. A veteran I know often says, “Everyday a woman goes to work in the Army, whether it is just for pt and paperwork, she is entering a war zone.” I think I behave like I am detoxing from 5-6 years in a social war zone.

So I try to show up. I go to events and I try to participate, but my ability to follow through just keeps deteriorating. Since I have been here I have lived in a hand full of groups who I initially inform of my “handicap” and for-warn, but the same cycle just keeps happening.  I try to participate by doing inconspicuous support work like setting up chairs, offering to do child care, in the collective houses I lived I would do as much of the house work as I could, but I sink.

I never show up correctly.

I am an inconvinience and a destraction.

Every community I have entered I have heard the same thing. “You need help!” …ummm yea, that’s why I’m here. Then, “We don’t have the time! We don’t know what to do!”

So where is this support people talk about? Or am I really just too fucked up to be helped? Is medication my only option?

I was on prozac for 4 days and cried the entire time it was in my system basically. Then they changed me to lexapro. I yawn a lot.

I feel drugged up and disgarded just like every other vet.

Don’t sell us that you support us. Don’t sell us there is a place for us.


Posted in Uncategorized


  1. Amazing quote from a fellow vet: “Sarah Elmer
    Everyone has good intentions while they’re being watched. As soon as those eyes go away, so do the “good intentions”. There is never any follow through. No one wants to do any actual work. And once you get caught in that grey area of ac…tually needing help, you get passed around and forgotten because getting you better is simply too much work. You either have to focus all your time and energy being your own advocate or search for new routes until someone finally listens. Both options are exhausting. With the latter, however, there’s always that tiny spec of hope that someone, somewhere will listen.”

    Comment by Lesley — May 13, 2011 @ 11:30 pm

  2. To say you are really ‘fucked’ up is ridiculous in my mind. In my experience everyone I come in contact with is really ‘fucked’ up. The people that I meet that have and are everything that anyone could want are ‘fucked’ up. To say that you need help is actually stronger than most. Again I think everyone needs help. At some points in our lives we are strong enough to be the ‘helper’. In my experience it is easier to be the helper than to be the one to say I need help. If you are strong enough and clear enough to assess yourself and say I have a problem and I need help than you are more than halfway to happiness. The next tough step is being around the people that will support you through the rough spots. I think a lot of people are willing to be there when you are strong and able to be the ‘helper’. Who is it that will when you need a helper? As far as the medication…I come from a medical background. I say that because I will not be someone that says all medications are bad. What I think is that you need to be a self advocate and make sure it is right for you. I think that medication can help in certain situations. If you feel worse or are doped up than it is either the wrong medication or the wrong dose. Sometimes it takes a while to figure out which medication works.

    Comment by Patty — May 16, 2011 @ 1:13 am

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