Calling All Heroes
Veterans Day is observed on November 11 each year, no matter what day of the week it falls. This federal holiday honors all American veterans — living or dead — although it’s largely intended to thank living veterans who served honorably during war or peacetime. This is unlike Memorial Day which pays tribute to American service members who died in service to their country or as a result of injuries incurred during battle.
Changing Times, Changing Words
People often say ‘thank you for your service’ to a veteran as a sign of appreciation. However, a recent survey found that 70 percent of veterans between 18 and 29-years-old said the phrase ‘thank you for your service’ makes them feel uncomfortable or awkward. Only 24% of veterans 65 years or older stated that the phrase is not favorably received.
Why is the response different depending on age? One explanation is that with an all-volunteer military, veterans may not feel the need to be thanked for something they signed up to do. Yet, thanking those for the sacrifice that comes with serving in the military is appropriate – but perhaps by not merely saying ‘thank you.’
Be A Hero
John F. Kennedy said, “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” This is certainly true when it comes to supporting America’s veterans!
With a quick Google search, you will find ways to help veterans and their families. Consider volunteering at a local VA facility or veterans’ organization. Or making a monetary donation to a non-profit serving the veteran community. Become aware of mental health and substance abuse resources for veterans such as:
- Coaching Into Care – a VA program that provides a coach to help family and friends of veterans figure out what to say to a loved one to help get them into substance use or mental health care if needed.
- Veterans Crisis Line (Suicide Prevention) – see how to recognize the signs of a crisis and find support for veterans.
If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, call or text 988 or visit the Lifeline Chat to connect with a trained crisis counselor. Press 1 if you are a veteran, family member or friend.
- Newsbeat: current healthcare news, MI hospitals’ patient safety scores fall, caregiving’s financial burden, and ketamine for pain.
- Heavy Burden: veterans’ health – lung cancer screening, testicular cancer and mental health.
- Gimme Shelter: the drivers and impacts of homelessness, and seniors at risk.
- Heroes Welcomed: including my personal favorite, Can Horses Help Veterans with PTSD?
Enjoy the weekend!
Suzanne Daniels, Ph.D.
P.O. Box 1416
Birmingham, MI 48012
Office: (248) 792-2187
Email: [email protected]