New Center Counsels Vets With PTSD
A group that counsels veterans with PTSD now has a permanent home in San Antonio. At the new Veterans Center, vets are learning from other vets how to heal.
For the past year, the San Antonio chapter of the PTSD Foundation of America has been meeting in borrowed space. Now thanks almost entirely to donations, they have a home in north central San Antonio.
Tom Clutts, the managing director, knows the importance of vet to vet counseling returning military will receive here. He served in Iraq and was diagnosed with PTSD nine years ago.
“I was married, had five children. You can imagine a house full of elementary school kids,” Clutts says.” All that stress just added to the stress I already had coming back from combat. My kids would come up and simple questions like, ‘Hey Dad, can you help me with my homework?’ and I would flip over the table and start throwing things around the house and storm out and go get drunk.”
Now he serves as a mentor. He says 74 percent of U.S. military have some degree of PTSD. Twenty three veterans commit suicide every day. He says vet to vet counseling is one of the most effective ways to heal.
“As a veteran is overcoming his PTSD, the natural tendency is for that veteran to start to give back to other veterans. That’s how the peer to peer network works,” Clutts says.
The new Veterans Center provides free mentoring for vets and their families.