Civil War History Shows Stress of War…

by | Apr 4, 2012

Quote from above link and article, April 2, 2012, 12:30 pm

A Burden Too Heavy to Bear


“Cocke may well have been the highest-ranking Confederate soldier to die by his own hands during the Civil War, but he was not alone. The historical record is peppered with cases of soldiers, Northern and Southern, taking their own lives. While most suicides likely occurred as a consequence of what was then called “battle shock,” quite a few took place in camp, even before being shipped off to the front.”

Civil War medical records also refer to “Soldier’s Heart” considered PTSD in our time, “Battle Fatigue” during WWII, and “Shell Shock” in WWI.  I write in my book, Reconciliation: A Son’s Story, about the history of PTSD going as far back as the civil war.  America is in a state of “shock” from generations of war.  Families are affected with secondary PTSD as a result of exposure to the behavior of returning combat veterans who suffer from anxiety and depression, and often act out with anger symptoms.  Life after war is an expression of a moral injury.  Humans know the difference between right and wrong.  And when soldiers are trained to kill and do so it takes a person’s moral compass out of balance.  War and the Soul, by Dr. Edward Tick, is an excellent read on this subject.  I could not put the book down once starting to learn about how our combat veterans feel the “soul leaves the body” following experience in combat and the trauma connected with killing and bloodshed.

Steve Sparks
Reconciliation: A Son’s Story

About the author

Steve Sparks is a retired information technology sales and marketing executive with over 35 years of industry experience, including a Bachelors’ in Management from St. Mary’s College. His creative outlet is as a non-fiction author, writing about his roots as a post-WWII US Navy military child growing up in the 1950s-1960s.
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