Hear from fellow Veterans and First Responders who have taken the leap of faith.
This program was a much needed therapy that I didn’t realize I actually needed. Once I trusted the process within a structured environment, it felt like a weight was lifted . I carried so much guilt, pain and bottled feelings for years and didn’t realize I was still carrying it. I didn’t felt like I was alone on my journey anymore. Now my journey begins with a great support system to guide my way. Each day I will utilize the tools learned and lean on my support system as needed.
From the minute I got there I felt calmness, something I hadnt felt in the months since my trauma. The mentors were absolutely amazing and my tribe became my family. Thank you for the life changing experience.
This journey is totally worth the leap of faith! Coming away with a group of bonded warriors, who understand each other, and can continue to support each other is priceless. I’m no longer alone.
The Battle with showed me that before I can fix the world around me, I needed to fix what was wrong inside me. They showed me how to forgive myself so that I can learn to grow stronger for my loved ones. I am extremely thankful I went through the course.
The structural model The Battle Within should be the standard by which all similar programs are created. Absolutely transformative experience. It is humbling to see so many who give so much for the health and welfare of the veteran and first responder communities. This experience will change your life if you open yourself and trust that you are in good hands. The single most important decision I’ve made in my life.
This place saved my life from either depression/suicide, heart attack, or stroke at a young age. It’s the closest thing to a cure (it’s NOT, you have to put in the work too!) for PTSD if you allow it!!
Although our cohort had performed different types of service, we all had very similar issues. Collectively we were task-oriented/mission-focused people who had learned to stow our feelings in order to get the job done. That armor/coping skill is super effective when there is a crisis, but we never learned to take it off...so it became super self-destructive when we were no longer in a crisis situation. As a result, our bodies rebelled; resulting in all sorts of weird symptoms or we chose other ways to cope with the built up emotions like drinking, drugs, anger, or sabotaging personal relationships. Most of us were pretty good at hiding our messed up responses, and felt like frauds. Many of us had or were having anxiety or depression, rage out of proportion, and were spiraling in our life. Some of us never had any prior contact with the mental health profession, others had tried suicide in the last year. Someone that loved us put us in contact with The Battle Within. Many were reluctant to go or were coerced into going by loved ones. All were afraid of being vulnerable and not belonging. At the end, every member of our cohort agreed that this program had saved their life-even though some did not know it needed saving, or did not believe themselves worthy of being saved. Thank you to the amazing instructors and volunteer mentors at The Battle Within for setting us on the path to living. If you are reading this, and are unsure if this is right for you: trust the process. The hardest step is actually going. You can always leave after the second day. But if you stay, you will be glad you did.
This amazing program changed my life. It has provided me with the tools and a simple shift in perspective that helps me express and deal with the grief before, during, and after my time in the service. I know now that I am not alone and don't have to heal alone.
Gulf War Veteran
Before coming to The Battle Within, I prided myself on my ability to deal with death and trauma. As a paramedic and police officer, I encounter it professionally and personally daily. I came with an open heart and mind, and I learned I am a master at compartmentalizing trauma, a skill I learned at work to focus on the task at hand. My takeaway was that I need to be more intentional in dealing with these events rather than push them aside.
Paramedic and former Police Officer
Before the Revenant Journey, I did not feel my military deployments warranted the feelings or levels of distress I was experiencing over the last 15 years; however, by working with our cohort, I quickly realized that I was in the right place. We validated each other's feelings and experiences to move past those feelings and into a space where healing could begin. I am eternally grateful for my opportunity to participate. Do not hesitate to sign up; it will really change your life.
Iraq War Veteran
Oh man, just being out of the program, I can see many valuable things I learned and how things can shift with time and the right approaches. It takes time, just as the trauma that brought you here took time to build. However, allowing your loved ones the time to process their trauma will allow for great healing on the backside. It doesn't mean it will happen right away or there won't be any setbacks. There will. But acknowledge it, validate it, and let the healing begin as I am beginning to see it take place in my heart and my family's as well.
Iraq War Veteran
The Battle Within has changed my life. I can honestly say that the most painful fraction of my loneliness is now gone. Loneliness I wasn't even aware of. I'm no longer alone in this Battle within. I don't have to heal by myself. I have my cohort brothers and all of you that my friends is real POWER!
I began my journey during a deployment in 2010-2011. Little did I know it would lead me directly to The Battle Within.
My adulthood has been centered around violence and immediate action, rarely allowing me to experience many "good" days. Recently, a marriage counselor introduced me to the opportunity The Battle Within offers; I'm more than thankful for that. Before knowing about this amazing organization and the amazing people that would become my family, I was truly lost. I took all the blame for the things going wrong in my marriage. I felt nothing in life was worth anything and viewed myself as a failure.
The Battle Within changed my life! I thought nothing or no one could help me; TBW proved me wrong and reminded me there are people who care for me. I no longer wake up believing that I must hate everything and everyone around me to protect myself. They helped me learn to smile and love people again. Because of their leadership and support, I attained healing and closure I had never thought possible.
I encourage anyone struggling to give TBW five days of their life. Five days to walk through your own Revenant Journey, and you will see life in a whole new way!
I came to The Battle Within as a last-ditch effort to find something that would give me the tools to deal with my PTS and keep going. I had grown up being on the receiving end of nearly every kind of abuse, and after 2 1/2 years working in Fire and EMS and many difficult and traumatic calls, the line of duty death of a brother was my final breaking point. I knew I had to get help quickly, or I would end up dead. Desperate, I reached out to a friend who gave me the number for a crisis hotline. The hotline pointed me to The Battle Within, and a little more than a week later, I found myself driving to Kansas City.
When I arrived, I was terrified of trusting anyone and scared of the unknown that the coming week held. By the end of the first day, I found myself feeling completely safe and unconditionally loved in a group of women for the first time in my entire life. For the first time, I could talk about my pain without worrying about anyone telling me that I cared too much or that I should just suck it up and not let it bother me. The ladies in my cohort stood by me every step of the way and have continued to stand by me every day since. When I started the week, I felt I couldn't survive another day... And when I left, I had joy, peace, and hope that I had forgotten ever existed or was possible!
My journey since my cohort hasn't been easy in the slightest. But now, I have the tools I need to not just cope with the pain but to process it and heal from it. I've learned that I'm not alone, that it's okay not to be okay, and that there really are people who will help me when I need help.
I don't have to just survive anymore; I get to actually live life again!
My background is in law enforcement and the USMC. After 15 years, I was all kinds of broken without even realizing it. At some point, I wasn't myself anymore, just happy or mad with a hair trigger between the two. All that changed during the Revenant Journey.
TBW taught me about stress's physical and mental effects and, more importantly, how to aggressively combat them. Most importantly (to me), they helped me figure out that traumas were holding back relationships with my wife and kids! My relationship with my wife and kids is now better than I ever dreamed.
I waited 3 years before contacting TBW and going to a cohort. I wish I could hit rewind and go back to when TBW was first recommended to me; they gave me my life back! What they taught us during the Revenant Journey instilled renewed hope and physical and mental relief.
Do your family, and yourself, a favor - drop the excuses. Join a cohort. Don't wait. It'll be one of the best decisions of your life!
After 10 years in law enforcement, a heartbreaking divorce, and other emotional traumas, I found myself going through the motions of life in destructive ways. I had found alcohol, bad relationships, negative thoughts, and a lack of compassion, which had become my "norm."
This program was recommended to me, but I didn't think I needed it. I showed up on day one on a mission to gather information to present to my command staff about the program. By day 2, I found myself surrounded by other women who had endured similar traumas and were hurting just as badly as I was. These women became my sisters forever and taught me it was okay not to be okay and that it's okay to ask for help.
This program helped me find the strength to be vulnerable with those closest to me, instead of trying to hold all my emotions inside. I not only have a better, more positive relationship with myself but with them again as well. After learning the tools taught through this program, instead of just going through life's motions, I can now find joy in it.
I've since been blessed with the opportunity to return to the program to mentor others on their journey. After enduring my own journey in the program, I have found that helping others learn the tools I gained is healing in itself. This program, hands down, saved my life on many different levels. It feels so good to be alive and enjoying life again. I've not felt this alive since I was a child!
Being in the Military, a certain stigma is associated with not being macho. It's seen as a sign of weakness to act or talk about issues one may have with PTSD. I fell into the same rut and didn't tell the truth to the medical providers when I came off deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. I, like many, had been living a lie and not seeking the help I needed until the pressure of it all came crashing down a few years ago, and I went to the VA.
I went to The Battle Within training with hope and some skepticism. I sure am glad I went. There's a bond with your brothers that can never be achieved by talking to someone who hasn't served. The training we received is priceless, and the friendships we built will be long-lasting. We are not cured of all the demons we battle every day, and there will still be triggers that set us off again, but the tools provided will help us cope and keep us moving forward.
After three tours in Vietnam and for the following 52-odd years, I was abusive and hateful, loved my whiskey, and embraced my drugs at the expense of my friends and family. I was consumed with guilt and anger about returning when so many of my friends didn't. My heart and soul were as dead as the warriors I saw and attended to in the field, which was a normal numb feeling. My daughter, wife, and grandchildren suffered but couldn't understand why and at rock bottom, it almost cost me my marriage and family.
Reluctantly, I came to spend 5-days to attend the class, and through the loving care and instruction of the staff, my life was turned around. Love replaced hatred, compassion replaced indifference, giving replaced self-indulgence, and my world became a joyous place to exist.
With the help and tools I received during my class and my doctor's advice, I have stopped all my happy medication and replaced it with meditation, breathing, and the never-ending TBW support group. There are days of relapse, but now I have the tools and support to combat the beasts of the past, and they no longer dictate my life, thoughts, feelings, and attitude. At the Battle Within, you will be encouraged to trust the process, learn unconditional positive regard, and gain the tools necessary to regain control of your life.
You will realize a self you thought could never exist again. A self that you, your family, and your friends can love. They will see the difference in your eyes, a lasting change.
Others could see I was not okay; therefore, I was pointed toward The Battle Within. I knew I had issues like anger, anxiety, depression, lack of self-worth (to the point of wishing I wouldn't have to wake up any longer), massive controlling issues, etc. I battled with the idea of even needing a program like this, so it was easier to shrug it off. I truly believed I was okay with how I was; for the darkness that covered me for so long was who I was, my self-identity, that it truly felt like there was no one else underneath. Every fiber of me reasoned with myself and my spouse on why I wouldn't go. The morning I pulled up and saw these random guys, I was like, nope, not for me. I got out of my car anyway and walked up to begin my journey, the journey that the little boy inside of me needed so badly. Throughout the week, I found myself again, with a sense of peace, the ability to be in the moment, regulate my anxiety/anger, and so much more. This I knew I would be able to take with me back to my wife and kids to begin the healing process and the real journey we all deserved. I leave you with this. I may have come alone, but I left with 10 other brothers added to my Wolf pack and 2 very important mentor wolves that guided us all along the way. Never forget you are worthy and never alone!
It was a life-changing experience that gave me the opportunity to hit the reset button. It saved my career, my family and put my mind back in sync.