can someone explain this?
Hi Karen... I can totally relate to your situation. My brother was seriously injured in Iraq in 2007 by a roadside bomb. Aside from dealing with recovery from extensive physical injuries, the worst part was trying to cope with PTSD. He refused to talk to anyone about what happened to him, wouldn't even make an attempt to talk with other soldiers about it, hated the army, the doctors, the therapists and everything really. He was so full of explosive rage. He started drinking excessively and doing hard drugs while still enlisted but recovering at home, which culminated in his arrest for possession and fighting with a cop. My family was doing everything we could think of to try to help him heal but nothing made any difference. The army eventually forced him to return to living on base so they could keep a close eye on him until he was done with the numerous surgeries and other physical rehab stuff, and his medical retirement went through. Everyone was at their wits end with him because he absolutely refused to deal with anything and was constantly violently angry amd abusive. As a last resort, his commanding officer ordered him to participate in a program that trains service dogs for combat wounded soldiers called Paws 4 Vets. That's where he met Chance. From that point on everything changed. He bonded with Chance in a way that he was incapable of bonding with any person. It gave him something meaningful to do with a remarkable animal that took the focus off his pain and used that energy buildup for something constructive. It made him responsible for something other than how horrible he was feeling. He felt like he could finally experience those emotions safely with another being who loved him unconditionally and without judgement. That program, that dog literally saved his life. It gave him a reason to heal and a reason for going through all that pain that his family and friends just couldn't provide. Its been an amazing transformation.My recommendation would be to stop pressuring your ex to seek help and instead, since he seems to respond to the dogs, try to help him find a group that trains service dogs for vets or disabled people to work with. Take the focus off what is wrong with him and instead, help him find something he can do to feel good about himself. Dogs are great for that. They offer so much love and understanding, especially when they sense someone needs them. The added benefit is that he would be doing something worthwhile to help other people instead of just focusing on his problem or letting that problem be the focus of his life and his relationships. I can tell you from experience that trying to force someone to ask for or get help, especially with PTSD, can be a futile endeavour. PTSD can make a person very combative and frustrated. Try taking the focus off that, accept its there and instead, try to help by shifting his focus to something outside of himself. Just be sure not to make it about fixing him. It may just be the catalyst he needs to heal.Best wishes to you.Ren