Apr 30, 2020 - 26 min
Does society's openness have costs as well as benefits? "PTSD has become better understood, but psychologists have realised that discussing trauma is not inherently or automatically beneficial." Jesse Singal explores the best way to deal with distress. "It remained culturally unacceptable for veterans to open up about their experiences in most settings throughout the second world war. 'We all came out of the same army and joined the same generation of silence,' said Karl Shapiro, an American poet laureate and veteran. The men of the 'Greatest Generation' were expected to be stoic – mid-century conceptions of masculinity left little room for expressions of emotional distress. 'They took army dogs and rehabilitated them for civilian life,' said Audie Murphy, a highly decorated American army lieutenant in the second world war. 'But they turned soldiers into civilians immediately and let ’em sink or swim.'"