Valley vets battle PTSD during the holidays

The holidays are usually a time of joy to be spent with family.

But for veterans suffering with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), the holidays can have just the opposite effect.

When veterans who have just come back from war and even those that have been out the service for years reflect about their friends and loved ones, it's not always a happy memory.

Harlingen veteran and author Fred Rendon said many veterans, including himself, just want to get by the holidays.

He said those that suffer from PTSD find it hard to be around too much noise and large groups of people, even if it's just family.

Veterans can also feel a heightened sense of sadness when with thinking back about their friends and fellow soldiers that were killed in action and did not make it back home to their families.

Rendon said he's suffered from PTSD for over 40 years.

He does as much as possible to help young veterans stuggling with it as well because he says not enough people understand it.

"You're constantly stressed out, Rendon said. If you go out and have an accident, you know that feeling that you have for just a few minutes, well imagine being like that all the time, all the time, day and night you wake up it's like that you go to sleep it's like that."

Rendon said PTSD is still too often disregarded as something that's not a serious illness and that there is not enough medical help.

The Harlingen veteran wrote a book called Echoes Of PTSD, in which he details how PTSD affected him for 30 years until he received treatment.

He said veterans suffering from this need as much help as they can get to help avoid tragedies.