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Peer Support; The Missing Link For a Smooth Transition

Peer Support; The Missing Link For a Smooth Transition

October 27, 2015 by | 1 Comment

As I was browsing the Internet today, as I do everyday, looking for interesting articles on veterans and the like for Cigars and Sea Stories and Warrior Hall.   I remembered a gentleman I met last night at a function who has a really great business idea; and I felt he was a great candidate for EBV-D, the Entrepreneurial Boot camp for Veterans with Disabilities.  I gave him my card and told him to email me and I would send him some info on EBV-D and some other programs I thought could really help him get this product off the ground.  So I went to the IVMF website to copy the links for my new friend and I see a poll.  The poll asked:

 “What is most important for a successful transition from military to civilian life? “(Select the three most important)

 Support from family/friends

 Support from other veterans

 Job search resources (resume writing, networking, etc.)

 Technical or vocational training

 Obtaining employment

 Healthcare access (physical and mental)

 Financial support

 Access to higher education

 Religious faith/spirituality

Read more at – WEBf0WXp3bTsX5F4.99

I took the poll and hit vote. The results shocked me!  I shouldn’t say shocked, two of my three answers were in the top three but my third answer was second to last.  What was this third answer that only 19% of veterans thought was in their top three?  Support from other veterans!

That’s right, currently, only 19% of veterans believe peer support is necessary for a smooth transition into civilian life.

To me this is very disturbing, how did we get here?  How is support from your brothers and sisters in arms the 8th most important choice out of 9?!?!

As a veteran that has personally transitioned out of the military twice I can tell you it’s not easy; everyone is different, but in general it is not easy.  I know that most people getting out of the military want to distance themselves from other veterans.  All they want to do is to drop their proverbial “rucksack” and move on with life, but it’s not always that easy.  Oh it is at first but then you realize that the person you’ve become is completely different than the person you once were.  TRUST ME!  The only reason you don’t know is because you are surrounded by people just like you when you’re in the military.  When the initial honeymoon with your end of service is over you will have an oh shit moment.

I have talked to hundreds of transitioning veterans and veterans that have transitioned about this.   A lot of veterans feel as though because of their military experience they will be able to just slide into a job; that company recruiters are just waiting outside the gates to hire them.  I assure you things are better than they were but that is still not the case.

So back to the above poll, we as veterans are the answers to our own problems and issues.  You know you can count on your buddies from the military right?  Why would that change after service?  Of course there are exceptions (for all you devils advocates out there) and everyone has a different story.  We as veterans have a network that is already in place for friendship, job search resources and technical and vocational training, help obtaining employment, healthcare access, financial support, access to education and guidance in religious faith/ spirituality.  These systems are in place and available.  There are tons of organizations to help with your transition.   There are many organizations and companies out there that are veteran owned and operated.  We here at Cigars and Sea-Stories have a few episodes that may help point you in the right direction.  As always if you need assistance or just someone to point you in the right direction do not hesitate to reach of to me.

Be well,


Episode 13 and 14 with Joe Trainer Jr and Erik Carlson of 1Pet 1Vet

Episode 16 with Darrell Fusaro of Funniest thing with Darrell and Ed

Episode 22 with Will Amos of Veterans List

Episode 23 with Carlos Garcia and Tony Soloman of Cigar Night for Veterans

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