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River City


Crayon Eater
May 27, 2020
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I wanted to post this here, as I am slowly working towards enlarging the group.

River City is a Marine Corps and Navy term which stands for Reduced Communications. The origin of the term is unknown. River City is a communications blackout: no communications in or out, unless deemed necessary to the unit, due to either operational concerns or a unit taking casualties.

River City was selected because it represents my personal isolation and struggles with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as a veteran. For years, for a myriad of reasons, I refused to let others know what was truly going on inside my head. I locked myself down in a self-imposed communications blackout, not allowing others to see or know what was going on inside. The self isolation led itself to the point over the past few years where I seriously considered on a daily basis about blowing my brains out; as another individual I spoke with put it, the only issue was the geometry problem...where do I put the gun and what angle should it be at to ensure a clean shot. The fact that I didn't is nothing short of a miracle.

I have bitched, moaned and complained for years about the broken system until recently. I realized I have no right to bitch about it if I'm not willing to do something about it. Enter River City.

The Mission of River City is multifaceted, with all facets working towards one common goal. To provide healing to veterans struggling with the effects of PTSD. Within this mission, the individual elements consist of the following:

Support veterans of all branches of service and all service periods by offering practical assistance in healing their PTSD.

Edit the narrative that has been born of Hollywood and the media of the veteran with PTSD. PTSD does not automatically mean veterans are unstable mentally, just one wrong look away from going on a alcohol-fueled rampage, nor does it automatically mean veterans with PTSD are automatically going to be homeless and unemployable. This does not mean that these conditions don’t exist, but everyone’s experience and reactions are unique to the individual.

Education. Education in of itself will require a split approach, as the goal is to educate the civilian public, the government, military leadership and health care professionals.

- Civilian public: those who have no experience with the military or have never served do not have the point of view from a veteran or active duty servicemember. In truth, they never truly will, but in order for them to support true healing from PTSD, they need to be properly educated.

- The government: the government has acknowledged that a problem with PTSD exists, but they have little to no awareness of the problem. Within the mission of River City, acknowledgement is defined as merely recognizing that a problem exists, while awareness is defined as having a fundamental understanding of the problem, and being able to provide even rudimentary practical solutions to the problem.

- The Military: much like the government, the military has acknowledged that a problem with PTSD exists, but has yet to be able to provide any practical solutions to either the healing process or the preventative process. Many of the processes are nothing more than a check in the box, or a knee jerk reaction designed to show that they are addressing the problem, while not actually providing any tangible evidence that they are effective in dealing with the issue.

- Health care professionals: last but not least, are the health care providers. The military health care providers are typically at a slight advantage merely due to the fact that they deploy with the servicemembers, experience many of the same things as servicemembers do, and are able to relate. The disadvantage is that many of the military health care providers are not deeply involved with the servicemembers and veterans who are dealing with their PTSD. Civilian healthcare providers can be at an extreme disadvantage, as they don’t truly understand the culture and tribal impact that the military services have on the individuals who served in them. This culture, combined with the trauma experienced, as well as the physiological effects of deployment plays an extremely important role in how to effectively treat the individual. Healthcare providers as a whole need to understand that there is no one treatment or therapy for all, and that while it may be more time consuming, each individual that reaches out will require treatment tailored to their individual personality and experiences.

One main key point that needs to be addressed early on is the issue of Constitutional rights of every United States citizen. The reason for this is not be political, but is a key issue within my own struggles of dealing with PTSD, as well as at least a few others. I want to address the 2[SUP]nd[/SUP] Amendment; the Right to Bear and Own Firearms. River City will support the 2[SUP]nd[/SUP] Amendment, as I support it.

There are times when the fear of losing this Constitutional right has kept a servicemember or veteran from seeking the help they needed in the moment. This needs to be addressed, and a solution needs to be provided. I honestly can say right now, I don’t have an idea how to fix this, and while that may be a failure on my part at this time, I do plan on opening a dialogue on this, and finding a practical solution or workaround. For those out there who do not agree with this point of view, I understand. I spent 14 years of my life defending your right to disagree, and I stand by that.

The end state of River City is to become the nation’s largest effective non-profit organization dealing primarily with PTSD, able to effectively make change at the national level for veterans past, present and future. River City will be able to provide support to get servicemembers with PTSD the help they need, and to enable the military to effectively minimize the effect that PTSD has or will have on active duty servicemembers. River City will be able to provide effective education and training for military leaders, governmental leaders and health care professionals of all walks of life to effectively and holistically heal the effects of PTSD.

Practicality is key. If a solution is not going to be practical, meaning it will not work in the real world for whatever reasons, then the solution is not a solution, it is a problem. Solutions need to be practical. Research into the social and cultural effects must be accurate, for River City to be effective.

My own past experiences have shown me that anyone can have a great idea, whether it was the lowest ranking individual or the highest ranking individual. I never hesitated to listen to one of my junior Marines if they had an idea; if it was a good one, then we would find a way to implement it. If it was not a good one, then I would find a way to take the time to explain to them why it wouldn’t work, and we would discover a way that would. I plan on bringing this same mentality to River City, and plan on finding others with this same mentality to come on board with me for the journey.

Due to the fact that I am currently working a full time job, I'm easing into this extremely slowly...I am running a Twitter page, as it's the fastest and easiest to keep up on while working. Within the next year, as long as everything pans out, I will be unemployed, and at that time I plan on jumping in headfirst into the deep end. If any of you are willing to jump in with me, even if it's just a matter of helping spread thoughts and opinions right now, I'd greatly appreciate it. I do plan on starting up a podcast at some point soon, as that's something I can do fairly quickly/easily, and get it going. Right now it's inches, not miles. One contact at a time.

I can be found on Twitter under River City @RiverCi85486397. Thanks

Seth Hopper
I read at least 80%

I know a bunch cuz I also have PTSD and have worked at the Austin State Hospital (Texas Certified Peer Specialist) plus volunteering at the VA with some organizations trying to help with PTSD..

I think that Mirtazapine, and Clonidine help a lot .. but not as much as MEDICAL Marijuana

I'm on all 3

Clonidine's big thing is it reduces flash backs and nightmares.. I still have messed up dreams, but not as bad as they used to be

I dont remember how many people with PTSD have been active duty.. but I think they are only half or so..

I do remember that 7-8 percent of the population gets PTSD

I was not allowed to be a Marine like my dad, becuz my left arm is disabled.. can't hold a rifle correctly, they wont let you in..
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