(Wife of a Seawolf Door gunner)
This book written by Dr. Schmitt, a Psychologist who is in treatment for PTSD Co-Author, Marie LeDuc who has counseled numerous wives and families of Veterans.
The book discusses the struggle of wives and families of Veterans who fought in Vietnam and suffer from PTSD.
A Foreword …
This book should be required reading for all spouses of war veterans. The wives of the Vietnam War indeed have compelling stories to tell and a treasure of wisdom to impart to the next generation of combat wives. So much has been learned about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and its toxic effect on family life and particularly marital life. In reading these stories you will see a continuous thread binding these women together. We have already seen statistics on how many marriages are being torn apart today when soldiers come home from war. The veteran is not the same person he was when he went to war, and yet, unsuspectingly, the wife expects to see the same man she sent off. Not so. Let me reiterate that I believe this book should be required reading for all combat wives. I use the term “combat wives” to imply that once the joy of the homecoming subsides, a new war may ensue – the war to reconnect, reestablish and rebuild the marriage through loving patience, listening ears, sharpened insights and open dialogue – the ultimate battle to save the marriage. The wives in this book have their own battle scars and war wounds and have loved enough and believed enough to be the glue that held their marriages together. These women deserve the Purple Hearts, the Bronze Stars, and the commendation medals and yet all they really want is their husband’s love, friendship and companionship.
Founder, National Conference of Viet Nam Veteran Ministers
Melody Schmitt Grell
The ship would come in. The band would play. He would bring gifts.
A new toy, a doll, a stuffed animal. Not what I wanted or needed.
He wouldn’t be home for long. I never really knew him.
I became lost. Trouble was my middle name. Looked for love in all the wrong places.
Couldn’t find my way. No one to guide me.
It’s been hard not having a Dad. Regrets are many.
But there is still time to get to know my Dad.
So far I have learned. my Dad is like most parents, you do the best you can
with what you have.
My Dad is a fighter, not in the war but in life. He doesn’t give up.
He sacrificed a lot to fight for others, so it is only fair that I understand
and share him with the war that took him away for so long.
He is back now and I am proud of who he is as a person.
Yes it has been painful. It has caused tremendous grief in my life.
But I wouldn’t change a thing because my Dad saved a lot of lives in the war.
But the best part is, my Dad survived A War With No Name.
Julie Smith Koos
There are times
When I know him
I see the pain in your eyes
There is a presence
In your style
Of a past untouched
The paths that you follow
Are but shadows of a man
Darkness in your step
On soft soil
Melting deeper into shadows
That are going nowhere
Walking on shadows
Of a man you don’t know