Cindy McCain in a recent interview, made some statements that will send a chill down the spine of at least 1/3 of the military family members of Soldiers stationed in Iraq. When discussing the types of symptoms which these soldiers have, she said “The guys who had the trouble were the 18-year-olds who were drafted…” and went on to say John did not have these type of problems because “he was trained.”
Implied in that statement is that the 1/3 of the Iraq veterans who suffer from PTSD do so because of poor training or preparation. As a psychologist who has often treated PTSD this is an alarming statement for me to hear. PTSD does not come because of weakness of the victim or inadequate training. IED’s and rocket propelled granades do not discriminate as to whether or not you are a graduate of Annapolis or a raw recruit. If your buddy loses a leg or his life while sitting next to you, it’s not likely you have had adequate training to deal with that.
McCain has gotten “D”s and “F”s from most veteran’s groups for his failure to support adequate health care or to get behind funding for PTSD, or other psychological treatments. But Cindy does not have to worry because, in her world view, her son is safe, since he is not a raw recruit. Let’s hope for her sake she never has to learn the truth about PTSD.