The war leads not only to the death casualties but also to the huge number of physical and moral invalids. The moral trauma is one of the main problems of the war veterans. However, we should pay closer attention to the challenges which women veterans face when they come home. The community should recognize the responsibility of providing help to these women and of creating the conditions favoring their reintegration.
This essay is devoted to the challenges of women veterans of Nevada which have been discussed on the radio program “State of Nevada” recently.
The topic of the “State of Nevada” program broadcasted on the radio on 17 October 2013 was “Nevada’s Women Veterans Face Challenges”. The situation in the state shows that the society pays insufficient attention to the problems of women veterans.
According to the statistical data, “between 2008 and 2010 alone, 14 female veterans committed suicide in Nevada” (“Nevada’s Women Veterans” n.pag.). These figures make us thinking that the women who come back home from the army face difficult moral problems which many cannot cope with by themselves.
The participants of the program were Michelle Wilmot, army veteran, artist and writer; Yvonne Betron, marine veteran and coordinator of women veterans’ programs for Nevada Depart. of Veteran Services; Ray Scurfield, psychotherapist, fellow of Combat Stress Board of American Institute of Stress, and founding director of VA National Center for PTSD (“Nevada’s Women Veterans” n.pag.).
The participants discussed the problems which women veterans faced when they left military as well as the roots of these problems. All of them emphasized the mental problem and crisis which women went through when they returned home.
It was mentioned that a large number of women veterans had high rate of homeless and suffered from the economic distress and this rate was significantly higher than the rate of the male veterans (“Nevada’s Women Veterans”). In addition, women suffered from the domestic violence (“Nevada’s Women Veterans”).
Explaining the reasons for this differences, Yvonne Betron stated that the female veterans faced with much more challenges when they came home than the male veterans (“Nevada’s Women Veterans”). In particular, women coming home from military had to return to their home duties immediately.
“They cannot wait for a couple of months to become a mother again or to become a wife”, Yvonne said (“Nevada’s Women Veterans”). This put moral pressure on them. Essentially, the majority of people were not able to adapt to such harsh changes soon.
Furthermore, the angry and overexcitetion which they experienced in the army needed time to be overcame. Yvonne said that the women had to, so to say, “jump into life” after servicing in the military forces. However, the life posed even more obstacles to them.
Michelle Wilmot, telling about her own experience, said that the severe injustice she faced while being in Iraq was so ridiculous for her that she did not have a resolution as a result (“Nevada’s Women Veterans”). Michelle mentioned the racial discrimination and sexual abuses in her combat. She said that “people came to power they could not control” (“Nevada’s Women Veterans”).
The reintegration of the female veterans with the community was a difficult process. Yvonne said that the problem was that some women veterans did not seem themselves as the veterans when they came from army. This was a serious problem because they did not recognize the fact that they needed help and often did not obtain it.
Ray Scurfield gave his own view on the situation stressing that the mental problem which female veterans faced was that they felt no purpose, they did not know for what they lived.
He added that they suffered from trauma from both enemies and comrades and when they came home, they saw that the society did not care of what they had been through; they felt forgotten, unrecognized, and did not felt accepted (“Nevada’s Women Veterans”). These factors explained the significant rise in the suicide acts which had been already called the epidemic of suicide.
Ray also told about the challenge which women faced while being in horizon. He said that they suffered from abuse very often and they had to cope with the negative and sometimes disdainful attitude of male soldiers to women in the army. The lack of support the women felt was hard to be overcame easily by them.
However, the common efforts of the social organizations are necessary to the solving of the female veterans problems. As Michelle emphasized, “the reintegration is the community issue” (“Nevada’s Women Veterans”).
In order to summarize all above mentioned, it should be said that the program “State of Nevada” touched upon a rather serious social problem of the women veterans’ adaptation to the ordinary life after servicing in army. The participants of the program gave their views on the situation and explained the challenges which women veterans faced when they came home.
They stressed that these challenges should not be seen as their own problems, they were the problems of the community as a whole and the community was responsible to provide aid to the female veterans.
“Nevada’s Women Veterans Face Challenges”. 17 October 2013. Knpr.org. Web.
“Nevada’s Women Veterans Face Challenges”. State of Nevada., KNPR, Las Vegas, 17 October 2013. Radio.