Jack: A Veteran on the Road to Recovery

Jack came to Bethesda House as a broken, dishonorably discharged vet.  His story is one of unspeakable horrors that began as a young boy when he was viciously raped by a family member and continued to deteriorate until he found himself in Iraq battling more than just a foreign enemy.  Jack’ only solace in life came from a bottle and in the end even that turned on him.   While on guard duty, still feeling the effects from the previous evening, Jack was approached by three Iraqi civilians.  They were ordered to stop several times in their native language, but they continued to press forward until Jack shot and killed them.  Given the fact that the civilians were unarmed and Jack had alcohol in his system, he was court marshaled and received a dishonorable discharge.   Back in the States, Jack made several efforts to turn his life around. He made countless attempts at sobriety but inevitably went back to the poison that controlled his life.

Jack’ Case Manger knew he would never be successful in sobriety as long as he was only being treated for substance abuse. Jack’ history of trauma needed to be addressed if Jack were to have any hope of a substance free life.

His Case Manger had difficulties securing an appointment with a psychiatrist and into a rehabilitation center that would address both his mental health issues and substance addiction. The waiting lists were long and Jack was quickly spiraling out of control. During the unending process of securing the appropriate treatment, his Case Manager spent many evenings in the emergency department with Jack. His demons haunted him daily and by nightfall he flew into drunken rages that became dangerous to him and to others.

After exhausting all apparent avenues, his Case Manger explored out of county facilities. After locating a facility that could address both the mental health and substance abuse issues, Jack was immediately transported to the facility.

After completing his treatment, Jack returned to his community and was able to receive services from an outpatient mental health facility.  Jack participated in programming five days a week and he has been sober for over 24 months; the longest period of time he ever experienced being sober.

His Case Manager met with him regularly to discuss his program and assist him when he experienced difficulties.   Once stable, Jack moved out of Bethesda House’s supportive housing program and into the community. He continues to obtain services at Bethesda House and with support becomes stronger every day.