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London, ON N6J 0A8
This list was compiled by spouses of officers for spouses of officers. The London Spousal Support Group is a group of individuals who meet twice per month to offer support to spouses and partners of officers with PTSD. This series of tips for spouses of officers with PTSD was developed as a collaboration between members of this group. We hope that these life experiences will help you think about ways you can find balance as the spouse of an officer.
While people will experience a range of emotions after trauma, a PTSD diagnosis is characterized by a series of symptoms following exposure to a traumatic event, including intrusive memories or dreams of the event, intense distress when exposed to reminders of the event, and avoidance of internal (memories) and external (places, activities, etc.) reminders of the event. Those with PTSD often experience feelings of anger, guilt, or fear, and over time report problems with concentration, sleep, and within interpersonal relationships. While anyone can develop PTSD, it has been found that rates of PTSD are higher amongst uniformed first responders and military members. PTSD can be a daunting diagnosis to navigate not only for the first responder, but also for their spouse and family. The nature of post traumatic responses are bound to impact home life.
If you or your spouse are in distress or need emotional support immediately, please call 1-833-677-BOOT (Boots on the Ground Support Line for first responders).
Written and edited by Jerrica Hunter, Registered Psychotherapist at Archways Centre for CBT and the PTSD London Spouse Group. Originally written for and published in the “Observer” (London Police Association) and reproduced here with permission.