Imagine sending your spouse to war with a heavy heart, then receiving a life-shattering phone call telling you he’s been badly injured. Your beloved returns to your arms, but changed, broken, angry, conflicted, and in need of around-the-clock care. What do you do?
Meet the women who drew upon their inner resilience and prevailed. Their vivid personal accounts provide inspiration to those who face daunting challenges, and offer a path forward. Each one of these brave, strong military spouses shares her personal tale of reuniting, recovering, and rebuilding with her catastrophically wounded warrior.
Wounded Warrior, Wounded Wife offers an intimate look into the chaotic and demanding lives of military spouses as they adjust to living with injured combat veterans. These women are thrust into caretaker roles for service members who return home with amputated limbs, brain injuries, burns, and disabilities, with virtually no support or training. Posttraumatic stress tears their families apart, and they must wrestle with huge, imposing questions: Does he still love me? Must I sacrifice my career forever? How will this affect my kids, my sex life, my happiness?
Wounded Warrior, Wounded Wife reveals the innermost thoughts of women who faced these challenges and prevailed—to not just survive, but thrive.
Physical therapist and debut author McNally, writing in heart-wrenching detail, outlines the bitter joy that comes with being a wife of a wounded military service member. Each of the book's selected stories illustrates phases of the recovery process from the perspective of a veteran's wife. The author frankly discusses anger, traumatic brain injuries, suicide, and other issues. Challenges with sexuality fill a deeply honest chapter. McNally cites findings that post-9/11 military caregivers are more likely to be young (more than 40% are between 18 and 30), veterans of military service themselves, working, and without a support network. "With little warning and almost no training, these women have learned to serve their families as full-time caregivers while their partners try to recover from broken bones, lost limbs, severe head injuries, and other unspeakable assaults on their bodies and beings," she writes. McNally describes becoming aware of this issue after witnessing a veteran's suicide. Along with her own insights, she also shares the sage advice of a number of mental health professionals, meant as a lifeline to caregivers struggling to understand their loved ones' issues. After more than a decade of Americans fighting battles on multiple fronts, this is a deeply necessary and poignant offering. (BookLife)