Double Whammy

 

How would you like to live with two vets who have PTSD?!  And you thought your daily challenges were keeping you busy. Well, last night I talked with a friend who now has two veterans living in the same house with her. Bless her heart! She and her husband graciously opened their home to a vet friend who needed a place to recuperate for two weeks after a serious surgery. Two months later, she is now pretty much out of “gracious” steam.

When we give and give (did I mention give?), we will eventually run dry.

We who love our vets and have hearts that love to give, desperately need

to learn about – and put into place – healthy boundaries.

 

I talk about boundaries frequently in Love Our Vets: Restoring Hope for Families of Veterans with PTSD (Fall 2012). For those of us who take pride in serving and always availing ourselves to all the needs of everyone on the entire planet, this truly is not a selfish concept. We need to know when to say “No,” when to ask for help, and when to draw a line for the purpose of taking care of our needs. (Needs? Oh yeah….kind of humbling that we have those. Darn.)

As uncomfortable as it was, my friend finally mustered up the courage to request that her house guest clean up after himself. And she realized physically and emotionally she needed to kindly give him a move out date.

Our needs are crucial. The paradox is that the better boundaries we have in taking care of us and asking for help when we need it, the more energy we will have to give in the long run. Whether we have one person to love or one hundred (hopefully not all in the same house), everyone benefits with healthy boundaries.

 

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