We know that when a veteran has Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), s/he is not the only one that suffers; family and friends are affected too. The diagnosis usually includes issues with lack of trust and poor communication. Veterans who have PTSD tend to keep to be loners, isolating themselves from not only new people, but new experiences. Letting new relationships develop and allowing others to get close requires trust, yet that may be extremely difficult for the veteran to handle.

There is a flip side to the coin too. Family and friends may be struggling with their own feelings of rejection or anger over the differences between how the veteran was prior to deployment and after returning home. Flashbacks may bring the war right into the home, and the resulting fear creates a barrier between the veteran and other family members.

Part of the cure for PTSD is to learn to trust again, to interact with friends and family so you remember there are people you can count on. Social interaction can be a strong healing force. Having intimate relationships can help the veteran feel less alone and reduces depression. Showing interest in and caring for a partner may also help. Nurturing others can lead to better self-esteem, reduce depression, guilt, and feelings of isolation. Sharing feelings openly and honestly is a large part of the recipe for healing.