If someone close to you has recently returned from deployment and shows signs of trauma or difficulty readjusting to civilian life, here are some ways you can help:

  • Encourage treatment. Offer to drive him to an appointment or attend a therapy session with her.
  • Be supportive and respectful of your service member’s need for time to adjust.
  • Don’t force your method of coping on your relative or friend.
  • Avoid being judgmental or telling him to “get over it.”
  • Know that you cannot solve the problem; you just need to make yourself available.
  • Try not to be defensive when discussing decisions made around the house while your partner was gone. He or she may need to hear that it wasn’t the same doing these things alone.
  • Offer practical help with daily activities.
  • Keep up with family traditions and celebrations.
  • Relieve your own stress. Turn to others for emotional and social support and take part in physical activities such as exercise, yoga, or meditation.

Order a free brochure to help families manage the common challenges of military life: " 7 Tools to Reinforce Military Family Resilience"