Kathy Platoni, Psy.D. COL, US Army
Dr. Kathy Platoni served as a U.S. Army psychologist for more than three decades, doing heavy lifting on behalf of the nation as an expert in combat stress control and war trauma. She served as a volunteer debriefer to the NYPD following the attacks of 9/11, and as an on-the-ground mental health professional for troops in two combat zones during multiple deployments.
She is a survivor of November 2009 Fort Hood Massacre, and has been an outspoken survivors’ advocate since.
As a survivor of the Fort Hood Massacre herself, Dr. Platoni is an outspoken advocate of the declaration of the mass shooting as an act of terrorism. She believes that the wounded and their families should receive benefits long overdue those who continue to suffer from this act of war.
Dr. Kathy Platoni’s mission is to assist those in her care to learn and master those skills and abilities that enable them to reduce their own suffering…from chronic pain, chronic and terminal illnesses, and from any degree of psychological injury and trauma.
Trauma is so very unforgettable.
What Led to the Specialization of Trauma?
Kathy shares her journey from war protester, to grad student, to Army reservist and then to combat-tested psychologist.
A Crucial Early Mistake
Kathy talks about the importance–and challenge–of containing one’s PTSD symptoms on the battlefield, and the dangerous consequences of not doing that.
You know once you’ve worn that uniform, it’s something that transcends everything else. To do something for the greater good. To be able to serve in uniform, to open my doors to everybody who has worn a uniform… I get such a spark from that, it just drives me.
- One size does not fit all. Be open to alternative approaches eg canine, equine therapy.
- If you’re interested in working with veterans, avail yourself of the many organizations that offer specific training for veterans.
Kathy’s go-to books
- War Trauma and Its Wake: Expanding the Circle of Healing (Psychosocial Stress Series), Raymond Monsour Scurfield
- Healing War Trauma: A Handbook of Creative Approaches (Psychosocial Stress Series), Raymond Monsour Scurfield
- Redeployment, Phil Klay
- When Johnny and Jane Come Marching Home: How All of Us Can Help Veterans, Paula J. Caplan
- Quixote in Ramadi, M.B. Wilmot
- Edward Tick on The Trauma Therapist Podcast
- Lily Casura’s site: Healing Combat Trauma
- Ray Scurfield