Living in Bremerton very near a naval base means there are a lot of veterans around. Many of them have been deployed into areas where there is much fighting. As a result many of them have come home with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
While I love a good fireworks display as much as the next person, what I do not necessarily love is the neighborhood variety of celebration which consists of firecrackers, rockets, shells and wheels. This variety of fireworks often emit pops, whistles and explosive sounds that send veterans (and dogs) into a state of panic.
(Image courtesy of @PTSDEducation)
Those who suffer from PTSD can have a variety of reactions to these sounds, the least of which are flashbacks and nightmares. These articles contain great information for those who may not be familiar: http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/healthadvice/problemsdisorders/posttraumaticstressdisorder.aspx. , and http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-07-02/news/ct-met-fireworks-ptsd-0702-20110702_1_war-vets-ptsd-fireworks-laws.
While I do not want to dampen anyone's right to celebrate the 4th of July, I would ask that you be aware of who is around you. If you know that you have a neighbor who is a veteran, be considerate and take your fireworks out to a more remote location to set them off.
Also, remember veterans are not the only ones who suffer from PTSD; police officers and those who have suffered abuse are also negatively affected by the accompanying noises that come with the fireworks. Try to put yourself in their shoes when you are planning your celebration. Your excitement should not come at the expense of someone elses affliction.
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Blessings and Peace,
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