Five women, all mom’s and with a PTSD diagnosis, started this campaign.
I had written about how outraged I was that in a Google search for “PTSD” I found images of only men. Men at war. Men in combat. And brains.
No women. No children. No civilian men or women in the military.
It’s not just that I’m a feminist and women aren’t being represented at all. It’s that women get PTSD at more than twice the rate of men. PTSD is a big issue for women. The images don’t portray anything close to reality.
Not on Google or Yahoo or Bing.
After I vented, a friend (Arwen) said we should DO something.
A campaign was born.
Dawn, Joyelle Jodie wanted to get involved as well.
A collaboration happened.
We did a campaign in May asking women to share selfies with the #FacesOfPTSD and that’s it.
We decided to keep the campaign going. There’s a Facebook page.
And the best part is that if you search under the #FacesOfPTSD hashtag you see a lot of us. We are representing ourselves. It matters and it’s powerful.
The Google image results still don’t show women unless you specifically search for women and PTSD.
We’ll be around until we are represented and men who get PTSD civilians are also shown as well as children.
Note: There’s a wonderful website with this name that’s devoted to this very issue. We’re all after the goal of increasing visibility and awareness and losing shame.
More on Why the #FacesOfPTSD campaign?
There is a common misconception in our culture about who suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and what it looks like. A quick Google image search will lead you to believe that the majority of those living with PTSD are men in uniform, when the reality is that women are twice as likely to develop it as men, and it can be acquired in a number of ways. Not all wars take place on the battle field.
How can you make a difference?
Share an image of yourself— with the hashtag #FacesOfPTSD. If you don’t live with PTSD or want to go public, share one of the images posted on our page—and be sure to include the hashtag #FacesOfPTSD
· Use any of the #FacesOfPTSD campaign images if you publish a blog post or any articles about PTSD
· Know the facts. Women and children get PTSD. Women get it twice as often as men. Children get PTSD.
Men get PTSD and women in the military get PTSD, too, typically from sexual assault rather than combat.
It’s important to accurately represent the thousands of women and men living day to day, while doing the best they can to manage flashbacks, constant triggers and the debilitating medical and mental health effects of this disorder. It’s time to recognize the many #FacesOfPTSD.
To read the article that inspired this campaign go to: http://healwritenow.com/fn-gives-google-bullshit-search-results/
US: Christine “Cissy” White firstname.lastname@example.org 781-331-4679
Canada: Jodie Ortega email@example.com
This campaign is a joint initiative of
Christine “Cissy” White of Heal Write Now / How to Live On Earth When You Were Raised in Hell
Arwen Faulkner of Lilacs in October
Jodie Ortega https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J2xYSYLPuy4
Dawn Daum and Joyelle Brandt of Trigger Points Anthology
And there is a website, Faces of PTSD, that also raises awareness and pre-dates our campaign and is amazing and should be supported! We didn’t know about it when we came up with our name and are grateful efforts could overlap to team up to bring awareness to this issue.
Additional Press Coverage
- Elephant Journal, PTSD Isn’t a He
- Huffington Post, Not All Wars Take Place on the Battlefield
- Relevist, Women with PTSD are sharing selfied to show not all wars are fought on battlefields
- The Mighty, Women Are Posting Pictures to Challenge a Stereotype About PTSD