Veterans from all eras are reacting to the events in Afghanistan, such as the U.S withdrawal and the takeover by the Taliban. Our Marine Corps League members are also affected by this matter happening in Afghanistan. All veterans may question the meaning of their service or whether it was worth the sacrifices they made. Some of our members may feel more moral distress about experiences they had during their service. It’s normal to feel this way. Talk with your friends and families, reach out to battle buddies, connect with a peer-to-peer network, or sign up for mental health services.
Please read the below e-mail and PLEASE check out the resources that are listed. With our "battle buddies" system and these resources, hopefully all Marine Corps League members and all veterans may try to make some sense of what is happening. We owe it to all veterans to ensure their health and well-being is paramount. There are many among us that need this assistance at a time like this. As Marines as well as Marine Corps League members, we have the ability to make a difference in any veteran's life. We always step up and help our fellow brothers and sisters in time of need. IT IS WHAT WE DO!
These feelings are normal, but there is much that we can do to help others. First, let's talk to our fellow Marines in your local Detachments and any veteran that is in your life. Tell them these feelings are normal. It is alright to feel that way. But what you and I do next is most important, to continue talking to them and be there when they need us the most. PLEASE provide the below resources to anyone needing them. Don't just provide them these resources but discuss with them and even look through the resources with them and give them encouragement. We all need that.
Marines, this is our time to step up and make a difference. It is our mission, and it is just the right thing to do.
Semper Fi Marines,
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) / National Commandant
Marine Corps League
· Veterans Crisis Line - If you are having thoughts of suicide, call 1-800-273-8255, then PRESS 1 or visit http://www.veteranscrisisline.net/
· For emergency mental health care, you can also go directly to your local VA medical center 24/7 regardless of your discharge status or enrollment in other VA health care.
· Vet Centers - Discuss how you feel with other Veterans in these community-based counseling centers. 70% of Vet Center staff are Veterans. Call 1-877-927-8387 or find one near you.
· VA Mental Health Services Guide - This guide will help you sign up and access mental health services.
· MakeTheConnection.net - information, resources, and Veteran to Veteran videos for challenging life events and experiences with mental health issues.
· RallyPoint - Talk to other Veterans online. Discuss: What are your feelings as the Taliban reclaim Afghanistan after 20 years of US involvement?
· Download VA's self-help apps - Tools to help deal with common reactions like, stress, sadness, and anxiety. You can also track your symptoms over time.
· Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) - Tragedy Assistance Program For Survivors (TAPS) Is Here For You! Request a Peer Mentor or call 800-959-TAPS (8277)
· VA Women Veterans Call Center - Call or text 1-855-829-6636 (M-F 8AM - 10PM & SAT 8AM - 6:30PM ET)
· VA Caregiver Support Line - Call 1-855-260-3274 (M-F 8AM - 10PM & SAT 8AM - 5PM ET)