Unseen Heroes: Exploring the Impact of War on Gen X

11.10.23 05:18 AM By Andréa Raquel

Shining a Light on the Challenges and Strengths of Children and Spouses of Veterans


Welcome to my blog! 😊🎙️ 

My name is Andréa Raquel Young, AKA The Social Entrepreneur and SugarFreeCoach. I'm also the founder of #LivingSugarFree and Better Me, Inc. I'm passionate about helping people live their best lives, and that includes supporting veterans and their families.

Picture this: You're a military B.R.A.T. (British Regiment Attached Traveler) like me, with siblings of various ages, both older and younger. 🧳👨‍👩‍👦‍👦 You've lived a life filled with unique challenges, from frequent moves to the ever-looming shadow of a combat veteran parent. But amid the chaos, trauma, and uncertainty of military life, there's something extraordinary that sets Gen X apart. It's our ability to laugh, even in the face of adversity, to find humor in the darkest moments, and to use that laughter as a powerful form of resilience. 😄🌟

Today, I'm excited to share a new podcast series called "Voices of Resilience: Children and Spouses of Veterans." 🎧 In this series, I'm sharing stories and insights from children and spouses of veterans, shedding light on the challenges and strengths of this unique population. I'm highlighting expert insights, resources, and available solutions because I am committed to being the change. Additionally, this blog is a guide to the podcast series where you can access additional links, media, references, and ways to connect, whether you need help or want to get involved to support veterans and their families. 🌐🤝

Challenges Faced By Children of Veterans

Challenges Faced by Children of Veterans:

Children of veterans face a unique set of challenges, both during and after their parent's deployment. These challenges can include:

  • Relocation: Children of veterans often move frequently, due to their parent's military assignments. This can be disruptive to their education and social life. 🚚

  • Parental trauma: Children of veterans may witness or experience the effects of parental trauma, such as PTSD. This can have a significant impact on their emotional and mental health. 😢

  • Emotional impact: Children of veterans may feel isolated, confused, and worried about their parent's safety. They may also experience guilt and shame, especially if their parent is injured or killed in action. 💔

Spouses of veterans also face a unique set of challenges, including:

  • PTSD: PTSD is a common mental health condition that can develop after exposure to a traumatic event. Spouses of veterans who have been exposed to combat or other traumatic events may develop PTSD. This can lead to symptoms such as anxiety, irritability, and flashbacks. 😰

  • Relationship strain: The demands of military life can take a toll on relationships. Spouses may feel neglected or unsupported. They may also have difficulty communicating about their needs. 💑

  • Caregiving responsibilities: Caregiving responsibilities can also be challenging for spouses of veterans. Veterans with disabilities or PTSD may require significant care. This can be a physical and emotional burden for spouses. 👩‍⚕️

Impact on Mental Health and Well-being:

The challenges faced by children and spouses of veterans can have a significant impact on their mental health and well-being. Common mental health issues include:

  • Anxiety: Children and spouses of veterans may experience anxiety related to their parent's deployment, safety, and well-being. 😟

  • Depression: Children and spouses of veterans may experience depression due to the challenges they face, such as relocation, parental trauma, and relationship strain. 😞

  • PTSD: Children and spouses of veterans may develop PTSD if they witness or experience traumatic events, such as a parent's injury or death. 😨

Research & Resources

  • Better Me, Inc. (www.bettermeinc.org) - Better Me, Inc. is a non-profit organization that provides support and resources to veterans and their families.
  • PsychArmor (www.psycharmor.org) - PsychArmor is a non-profit organization that provides mental health support to veterans, military service members, and their families.
  • V2 National Association of Foster Youth (www.v2fosteringchange.org) - V2 National Association of Foster Youth is a non-profit organization that provides support and resources to foster youth, including children of veterans.
Veda Brooks, V2FosteringChange.org 

In an exclusive interview with the founder of the V2 National Association of Foster Youth, Veda Brooks, we gain valuable insights into the unique challenges faced by children and spouses of veterans. Brooks emphasizes the importance of community support and resources, and how organizations like V2 National Association of Foster Youth are dedicated to making a difference in the lives of veterans' families.

"Every bit of support counts in building a brighter future for these unsung heroes," Brooks said. 🤝

Building Resilience

Despite the challenges they face, children and spouses of veterans are incredibly resilient. There are a number of strategies that can help them build resilience and cope with the challenges of military life. These include:

  • Seeking support: There are a number of resources and support groups available to veterans' families. Connecting with other families who are facing similar challenges can be very helpful. 🤗

  • Building a strong support network: Having a strong support network of friends and family members is essential for veterans' families. These individuals can provide emotional support and practical assistance. 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

  • Taking care of themselves: Veterans' families should also make time for their own self-care. This includes eating a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, and exercising regularly. 🏋️‍♀️


Celebrating the Strength and Courage of Veterans' Families

In closing, I want to emphasize the impact that this podcast series aims to achieve. Through "Voices of Resilience: Children and Spouses of Veterans," I hope to shed light on the challenges faced by veterans' families, raise awareness about their unique journey, and inspire others to join in supporting them. By sharing these stories of resilience and hope, we can create a community of understanding and compassion for these unsung heroes. 🌟

A Call To Action

Raising Awareness and Supporting Veterans' Families

Veterans and their families make incredible sacrifices for our country. It is important to raise awareness of the challenges they face and to provide them with the support they need.

Here are some ways that you can support veterans' families:

  • Donate to organizations that support veterans' families. 💰

  • Volunteer your time to a veterans' organization. ⏰

  • Educate yourself and others about the challenges faced by veterans' families. 📚

Thank you for joining me on this journey to explore the unseen impact of war on Gen X, and for supporting the incredible strength and resilience of veterans' families. I encourage you to engage with the podcast series, share your stories, and support organizations who are focused on supporting our youth. So they don't have to experience the same trauma that we have from a lack of awareness and support. 🙏

1st Female Voice, 3rd US Inf.

  • Andrea Raquel is a dynamic and inspirational speaker, wellness expert, and passionate advocate for inclusivity.
  • She empowers individuals from all walks of life through thought-provoking speeches, engaging presentations, and impactful writing.
  • Andrea is the founder of Better Me Inc and TXNL, organizations dedicated to empowering others through resources, training, and networking opportunities.
  • She is a military veteran and the first female voice of the Third U.S. Infantry Regiment, receiving two Army Achievement medals.
  • Andrea is a thought leader, author, and autism advocate, emphasizing her journey as an autistic adult and promoting a healthy, fulfilling life.

Andréa Raquel