The Firefighter Deconstructed

The Firefighter Deconstructed

Christy Warren, PTSD Survivor and retired fire captain, digs into how the job can affect our mental and emotional health, the ensuing physical symptoms, and how to deal with it. Whether you’re just feeling crappy or have full-blown PTSD, or if you want to know the signs and how to help a brother or sister, we'll talk about it here. A part of Mental Health News Radio Network.

Episodes

September 27, 2022 75 min
Michael Loew was a Firefighter and Paramedic for almost 30 years. He cruised along pretty well until he was caught in the middle of the Carr Fire. The Carr fire, burned 229,651 acres of the Shasta and Trinity counties, burned down over a thousand homes and killed 3 firefighters and 5 civilians. Michael talks about his experience at the fire and the effects the danger and devastation caused for him.
This will be the last episode unt...
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Don Pemberton

Don sits down with Christy and talks about coaching first responders to create and maintain healthy lives and actions that can help PREVENT Post Traumatic Stress. He and the organization, 1st Responder Coaching, really have something here that all first responders could use--either as individuals or as whole organizations. I really encourage you to take a listen. This service has the capability to help so many people.

w...
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Retired police officer Stephanie Polizziani spent 15 years as a police officer, most of them for the city of Berkeley and then moved on to Benicia. She began to feel her life become dark. She planned on just keeping her head down on and not dealing with it. That is until her husband, also a police officer, told her she needed to get some help. Stephanie has a unique perspective as a police officer and a police officer’s wife. She s...
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Today’s show is awesome and everyone should listen to this. Shauna Doc Springer and I talk about an existing and very accessible total game changer in the treatment of PTSD. It’s called the Stellate Ganglion Block. We also talk about first responder suicide and thoughts for friends and loved ones of someone who dies by suicide.

Shauna ‘Doc’ Springer is a licensed psychologist, best-selling author, frequently requested keynote speak...
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Today’s show is all about the brain and what happens to it when it’s exposed to trauma repeatedly. Dr. Nan Herron, a real medical doctor, and I sit down and talk about why people want to drop the D in PTSD and replace it with an I - because it’s not a disorder, it’s an injury. Like a real, physical injury to your brain. Remember we had on Paula Siddens, the CHP officer who had a serious head injury from crashing her bike, and how a...
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June 22, 2022 62 min
San Francisco Fire Paramedic Danny McAtee makes his second appearance on the show. We sit down and discuss part of our first responder community that carries an extra weight daily and especially when they struggle with mental health and PTS. The LBGTQ+ community has been invisible for so long in first responder world that we need to make a change so EVERYONE knows they are not alone.
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Chris Warren is a retired San Jose Police Officer who was the negotiator on a barricaded subject with a tragic ending. When the tragedy happened, no one talked about it or really even talked to him at all. This critical incident on top of years of being a cop sent him into an rages he didn't know he was capable of. Dealing with his PTS he also learned the other aspects of his life that were eating at him. He has built a new car...
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Show Notes: Kick-ass retired Sheriff Deputy Sally Lobb sits down with The Firefighter Deconstructed and shares her story of becoming and being a woman cop, peer support and her own story of getting PTSI. I personally know Sally and know she is quick witted, smart and tough as nails. When bad shit is going sideways I guarantee you want Sally there. So if Sally can get PTSI, then anyone can get it.
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This week I sit down with Captain Paramedic Chris Moore of the Chesapeake Fire Department in the state of Virginia. Chris started and spent about 10 years as a volunteer and then moved over to working as a firefighter full time. Chris and I talk about the specific challenges that Volunteer firefighters face when it comes to mental health. Chris shares his story of falling into that dark hole and climbing his way out of it. He is so...
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The most interesting man in the world, Danny McAtee and I had a great conversation about the job’s challenges, how we don’t ask for help and put everyone else first, even at serious cost to ourselves. Danny is a retired San Francisco paramedic with the SF Fire Department. He continued to get hit (literally) to the point he couldn’t take it any more. Out in the distance he saw a couple of lights that pointed him in the right directi...
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Cassie Sexton works for First Responder WellnessCassie has extensive Law Enforcement experience in dispatch, jail, and traffic divisions. Early in her career she became eager to learn new specialties, showing natural leadership, and a passion for teaching and presenting. With her diverse background, this opened an opportunity at the local college the last few years allowing her to be a speaker for Dispatch courses, most recently, s...
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The Firefighter Deconstructed has the honor of having Jeff Smith on the show. Jeff spent 20 years as a paramedic in Vancouver, BC and launched a not-for-profit organization called The Detachment Technique, aimed at providing first responders resources and tools to understand and work through their trauma. He struggled with PTSD and almost lost his life to suicide. We get to hear from someone who was inches away from taking his own...
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Skip is a retired FF, recovering addict and now is the president of World Wide Support. Paul flew from England to get some of that Wold Wide Support. These guys talk about asking for help and their recovery, which Paul is right in the middle of. Both guests lay it all out and share their difficulties and triumphs. We also talk about the Pete Lewin’s New Foundlands emotional support programs.

https://www.worldwidepeersupport.org/

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This week’s guest is retired Kern County Fire Captain, Derek Robinson. Derek tells his story of how he reached out for help and continued to not get it, which so many of have had to deal with. He kept going forward and asking for help until he found it. Derek talks about the healing power of journaling and how it turned into a book.

Book: continue: Surviving the darkness, choosing to live
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Retired Firefighter/Paramedic Tyler Fausette tells his story of a critical incident that led to a PTS diagnosis. He struggled and struggled and ended up having to medically retire "early" due to his Post Traumatic Stress Injury. Tyler is incredibly articulate in telling his story and shares insight that we all can learn from. This is an incredible story to listen to. I highly recommend listening to it twice.
https://www.face...
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February 1, 2022 57 min
Douglas R. Brown runs into burning buildings for a living. After a horrible all he began showing the signs of PTS. His friends and family could tell something was wrong, but Doug was the last to figure it out. He finally asked for help when his marriage was about to dissolve. He began writing as a cathartic way of dealing with the day-to-day stresses of life as a firefighter/paramedic in Columbus, Ohio. Now he focuses his writing o...
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Lt Rob Hiller, of the Cobb County Fire and Emergency Services, shares his personal story of a cardiac medical condition, depression, and Post Traumatic Stress - each one almost costing him the job he loves so much. Lt. Hiller continues to walk forward as he continues to get knocked down by his body and his department. He is still working today. Fortunately, his department has accepted mental health awareness as a vital part of keep...
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Today retired firefighter Joe Bartholomew shares his story of getting trapped in a basement fire and coming as close to dying as you can get. He talks about how this fire and his 33 years in the fire service left him with PTS. He dealt with department betrayal and a cold shoulder from some of his so called brothers and sisters in the department. Joe tells us how he healed and wants everyone else suffering to know they are not alone...
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Finally! A new episode! I talk with Dave Robertson. He is the owner of FireEDGE - Fire Service Training + Career Coaching/Training Officer. He is a Fire Chief (ret) from the Napa Valley, CA. Dave and I discuss the havoc that PTS brings to a first responder and their family. Dave shares his story of finally coming to the realization that he needed help and the real reason he participated in Napa Lunches.
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Quentin Waynick started in the first responder muck when he was 15. He did everything from firefighting to dispatching to being a paramedic. He lived on top of the world....until he got angry, really angry. In fact he was fired from his job due to his anger. He lived like this not having any idea what was wrong with him - that is until her heard this podcast and realized he has PTSD and he is not alone.
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