We are different than the average Kyle or Karen walking down the street. We are not better. Or worse. We are different. And I will go a step further. Combat veterans who are also or have been law enforcement officers are different than Kyle, Karen and the average veteran even.
As an acquaintance recently put it, we’ve been re-wired. Re-programmed. Re-taught how to deal with threats, stress and even down time.
Through my work, I met the “owner”, for lack of a better word, of All 1 Team. A social website specifically for veterans. They are going through some growing pains but the site is up and running. And has numerous articles that deal with veteran issues, including PTSD and veteran suicide.
One particular article answered questions for me. Directly.
For us, part of our active duty survival strategy included seeing a persons face and quickly discerning their intentions. Is this person a threat? Is this person going to engage? Do I engage with this person? Where does this person fit in the ROE (Rules Of Engagement)?
Today, we are surrounded, AND we can not make the call on peoples intentions. (Link)
As a cop, I relied on people’s faces to help me anticipate their next move. It was absolutely tantamount to the person “telling” me what they were going to do. Over the years I was able to read the micro-expressions on their face and combined with hand movement and body language pretty much tell what they were going to do. Fight. Flight. Comply. Could all be read in their faces, hands and body.
Until I read the article, I had no idea why I was so uncomfortable going to stores for example. Then it all made sense. Check out the site. Not much activity on it yet but YOU can change that.
Oh. And have a sense of humor. Click the image above to go to the website.