The Veteran Spouse Perspective with Janet Austin

Janet Austin understands first-hand the experience and struggles associated with being the spouse and caregiver of a combat veteran. Her husband, Bill Austin, is a medically retired Master Sergeant who has served over 30 years in the Army and Air National Guard before being medically discharged due to his diagnosis of PTSD and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) following his last tour in Afghanistan. Since his discharge, Janet has tirelessly advocated for military families and others suffering through combat-related trauma through the Facebook group she created, PTSD The Truth In Numbers. Additionally, Janet is a staunch advocate for service dogs, largely due to the tremendous strides she has seen with Bill’s former service dog, J.P., and regularly speaks at various events to educate others regarding the laws on service dogs for military veterans.

Janet joins us today to share her experience as a military wife while her husband was serving overseas and the emotional turmoil military spouses endure when their husbands or wives are fighting for our country. She explains why military wives often take their spouse’s post-combat PTSD-related outbursts personally and why it’s critical to remember their outbursts have nothing to do with you. She explains why many civilians don’t understand the emotional impact veterans and their families experience and why she felt compelled to avoid discussing these challenges with others. She shares why they chose not to display Bill’s military accomplishments after moving to Montana, the difference between mental health issues and educational issues for military veterans and their spouses, and how post-combat PTSD impacts the children in military families. She also explains how military veterans can benefit from receiving a service dog, the difference between a therapy dog and a service dog, and the legal requirements that must be met to receive one.

“Don’t take it personal – it’s not you.”

Janet Austin

DISCLAIMER: The information and content shared in each episode of the Stigma Free Vet Zone are for informational purposes only. The Stigma Free Vet Zone hosts, Mike Orban & Bob Bach, are not, nor claim to be, medical doctors, psychologists, or psychiatrists and should not be held responsible for any claims, medical advice, or therapy/treatment recommendations mentioned on this podcast. Any advice mentioned or shared by Mike Orban, Bob Bach, or their guests is strictly for purposes of bringing awareness to the veteran community and the services available. Please speak with a medical professional before taking any advice or starting any therapy or treatment discussed or shared on this podcast.