When First Sgt. Simon Sandoval lost two Marines in his platoon during a deployment to Iraq, the loss gnawed at him.
“How did everything get so messed up? Was it my fault? Could I have done this differently?” he asked himself.
Eventually, he began drinking heavily, lost interest in maintaining his health, and pulled away from family and friends.
These invisible wounds can be the hardest to heal. They are certainly some of the hardest to talk about. Booz Allen Hamilton's work on the web-based Real Warriors Campaign, a program of the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE), is helping change that, along with addressing the stigma of seeking care among the military community.
“It’s a public service initiative designed to encourage service members, veterans, and military families to seek care for psychological health concerns,” explains Katie Duthaler, Booz Allen's deputy project manager.