Tuesday, June 5, 2012

A Troubling Problem

Friend of a friend knows someone who served two tours of combat, and is suffering serious PTSD problems.  This veteran apparently drinks himself into the can't remember next morning what happened state, and becomes aggressive and scary.  His roommates, when he starts to drink, sneak upstairs to his room, unload his guns, and hide the magazines.  He has already had one serious DUI-induced traffic accident, but has not yet taken any action that would legally justify disarming him.  In addition, he is not particularly rational about the subject of how drunk he gets, and how he behaves in this state.

The roommates are, understandably, concerned.  My concern is both public safety, and that a young man who is suffering the consequences of serving our country may do something stupid to himself.  I know that some of my readers are veterans, and some have probably struggled with PTSD.  Any suggestions for a strategy for helping this young man realize that maybe he needs to have someone babysit his guns until he can work past this problem?


  1. There is help for him at the VA. The VA has it's own Hot Line. I can look up the number if you want it.

  2. I know that there's help for him at VA. But how to persuade him that there is a real risk that he might do something stupid while drunk?

    I can understand why he might be reluctant to get official involvement, for fear of being permanently disarmed, when perhaps a year or two might be enough.

  3. PTSD treatment for Veterans found ineffective.

    Eli Lilly made $65 billion on the Zyprexa franchise.Lilly was fined $1.4 billion for Zyprexa fraud!
    The atypical antipsychotics (Zyprexa,Risperdal,Seroquel) are like a 'synthetic' Thorazine,only they cost ten times more than the old fashioned typical antipsychotics.
    These newer generation drugs still pack their list of side effects like diabetes for the user.All these drugs work as so called 'major tranquilizers'.This can be a contradiction with PTSD suffers as we are hyper vigilant and feel uncomfortable with a drug that puts you to sleep and makes you sluggish.
    That's why drugs like Zyprexa don't work for PTSD survivors like myself.
    -Daniel Haszard FMI Google-Haszard Zyprexa

  4. Suggestion: his friends should sit and drink with him, and video the scene, right up through when he gets stupid drunk.

    Then make him watch the video when he is sober.

    This could just freak him out - but there may be scripts that could take the edge off the confrontation. For instance, have a friend get stupid drunk too, and him be the supposed "star" of the video - the exposure of the target's stupid drunkeness being just a coincidence.

  5. The only person I know with PTSD was doing much the same until another vet convinced him to try marijuana instead. The difference is striking; he is employed and back in control of his life.

    I don't know what the long term effects of marijuana are, but he was definitely on the road to death drinking the way he was.

  6. Recent studies have found that if patients with PTSD take a beta blocker (propranolol was used in the study) half an hour prior to going into a psychotherapy session in which they were asked to recount the situation that led to their PTSD, they were able to recall the traumatic event without experiencing the adrenaline and stress hormones associated with the memory and in doing so subsequent recollections were less psychically painful.

  7. I know that into the 1930s, it was considered acceptable medical practice to convert alcoholics into opiate addicts, because the long-term health consequences were less severe. I could believe that with a devil and the deep blue sea choice like this, pot might be a better choice. Both alcohol and marijuana have serious mental health risks, but so does failing to get PTSD under control.