“But she’s got warrior skills: hyperawareness, hypervigiliance, adrenaline-sharp quick scanning for danger, for triggers.” This is a categorical claim that explains the symptoms Brannan is currently having. These “warlike” skills show that Brannan has caught them from her husband Caleb, who once served in Iraq. Hearing triggers and quickly scanning for danger is a sign of PSTD, since Brannan is always paranoid.
“Standing behind a sweet old lady.” Assuming this old lady was sweet without actually knowing is a claim.
“And as slippery as all that is, even less understood is the collateral damage, to families, to schools, to society- emotional and fiscal costs borne long after war is over.” A claim that all families suffer from the aftermath of war. Also, that all soldiers who come back deal with emotional and fiscal costs after the war is over with.
“Caleb has been home since 2006, way more than enough time for Brannan to catch his symptoms.” The symptoms of PTSD is related to a common cold by using the term “catch.” Making a claim that you can catch the symptoms of PTSD just as fast as you catch the chicken pox or a common cold.
“When a sound erupts- Caleb screaming at Brannan because she’s just woken him up from a nightmare, after making sure she’s at least an arm’s length away in case he wakes up swinging.” A categorical claim of the symptoms describing PTSD. The loud noises frighten Caleb because he’s paranoid from hearing gun shots from war.
“Even when everyone’s in the family room watching TV, it’s only connected to Netflix and not to cable, since news is often a trigger.” Claiming that the only thing on TV is the news. Also by watching the news might scare Caleb and make his symptoms worse since the news might have violence on it that he doesn’t want to see.
“She has not, unlike military wives she advises, ever been beat up.” PTSD can cause a person to be a lot more violent and lead to domestic abuse.
“When we hear Caleb pulling back in the driveway, we jump up and grab their strings, plunging the living room back into the usual necessary darkness.” Another one of Caleb’s symptoms is sensitivity to light. Being in the bright light might make it harder for Caleb to concentrate and he’s used to the darkness from war.
“It’s kind of hard to understand Caleb’s injuries.” Implies that it’s hard to understand people who suffer from PTSD and that’s it even harder for Caleb to deal with his PTSD since no one is capable of understanding why he has it.
“Whatever is happening to Caleb, it’s as old as war itself.” PTSD is categorized as “whatever” since no one can really identify it and since Caleb has been home for so long he needs to let it go.
“diagnosing PTSD is a tricky thing.” Diagnosing a person with PTSD just because they are always hallucinating, panicking, violent, sensitive to light, etc. is a very complicated thing to do because that could be signs of other disorders such as Bipolar Disorder or the result of a malfunctioning nervous system.
Time is up!