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A 665-word article written by By Kim J. Clark Aka Expanding LoveKim is the mother of a veteran who loved his country and was willing to lay his life down for the freedoms in which he believed. She is the Founder and CEO of The DeMarco Project, a non-profit organization. Her life’s mission is to save veteran lives and improve the quality of life for traumatized military service persons. If you would like to support her in this work, please donate to or The DeMarco Project Facebook page.



This writer had the pleasure of interviewing an amazing military child who has secondary PTSD. Aaliyah Abdullah, the daughter of a veteran who served in both the Navy and Army, is one of the most outgoing and kindhearted people I have ever met. However, according to Aaliyah, life was not always that way for her.


When Aaliyah’s father, Khalil Abdullah enlisted in the Army, Aaliyah was nine and her sister Khalia was thirteen years of age. Before her dad joined the Army, life was good. She remembers her mother as being a sweet and loving person. Unfortunately, as with many military families, life changed and not for the better.


Aaliyah’s dad spent fourteen months as a soldier in the Army and served in the Iraq War. During his enlistment, he was deployed twice. Each time her father left home and returned the family experienced traumatic issues.


When he left home, her mother’s behavior gradually changed. Her mom became distant and angry. Her temper would flare up and over time she became increasingly hostile. Aaliyah and her sister were constantly on edge not knowing what to say or do to make things better. When her father came home, he was different. According to Aaliyah, “The light in his eyes gone. Even though he would be present, his spirit was not there.” Both parents would get agitated rather quickly and their tempers would flare up. Finally, the marriage ended, and her parents divorced when she was 17 years old.

Military Related Trauma in Children