The Big Story Blog

Women and post traumatic stress

Posted at 11:00 AM on December 13, 2011 by Paul Tosto

CNN has a good story today highlighting the struggles of women returning from the Iraq war.

Here's an excerpt:

It wasn't until five months after Army Staff Sgt. June Moss returned from the Iraq war in 2003 that her real battle began. The horrors of the war -- witnessing decapitated and burned bodies amid mass destruction -- led to post-traumatic stress disorder.

"I do notice when I'm stressing out that I start having dreams about what I saw and how I felt," says Moss, now 40 and retired from the Army. "It does come back as if to haunt you."

The percentage of women in the military has doubled in the last 30 years, with more than 350,000 serving as of 2009, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs' latest figures.

With more female troops in combat, there has been an increase in PTSD diagnoses: One in five female veterans suffer from PTSD, according to the VA.


About Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto writes the Big Story Blog for MPR News. He joined the newsroom in 2008 after more than 20 years reporting on education, politics and the economy for news wires and newspapers across the country.