Military Sexual Trauma (MST) - Veteran Health Indiana
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Veteran Health Indiana

 

Military Sexual Trauma (MST)

Military sexual trauma is the term used by VA to refer to experiences of sexual assault or repeated, threatening sexual harassment that a Veteran experienced during his or her military service.

MST includes any sexual activity where a Servicemember is one (or more) of the following:

  • involved against his or her will -- he or she may have been pressured into sexual activities (for example, with threats of negative consequences for refusing to be sexually cooperative or with implied better treatment in exchange for sex);
  • to consent to sexual activities (for example, when intoxicated);
  • physically forced into sexual activities.

Other experiences that fall into the category of MST include:

  • unwanted sexual touching or grabbing;
  • threatening, offensive remarks about a person's body or sexual activities;
  • threatening and unwelcome sexual advances.

The identity or characteristics of the perpetrator, whether the Servicemember was on or off duty at the time, and whether he or she was on or off base at the time do not matter. If these experiences occurred while an individual was on active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty for training, they are considered by VA to be MST.

Although trauma can be a life-changing event, people are often remarkably resilient after experiencing trauma. Many individuals recover without professional help; others may generally function well in their life, but continue to experience some level of difficulties or have strong reactions in certain situations. For some Veterans, the experience of MST may continue to affect their mental and physical health in significant ways, even many years later. Some of the experiences both female and male survivors of MST may have include:

  • emotional health problems such as strong emotions, feelings of numbness, trouble sleeping, difficulties with attention, concentration, and memory, problems with alcohol or other drugs, difficulty with things that remind them of their experiences of sexual trauma, and difficulties in relationships.
  • physical health problems such as sexual difficulties; chronic pain; weight or eating problems; gastrointestinal problems, and headaches.

Fortunately, people can recover from experiences of trauma, and VA has effective services to help Veterans do this.

We are here to help you address your experience of MST, respectfully and confidentially.

Your local Veteran Health Indiana MST contact:

Jennifer Fox, LCSW

MST Coordinator

317-988-3449

Jennifer.Fox2@va.gov

 

Your local Women Veteran Program Manager

Judith Kelly

Women Veterans Program Manager

(317) 988-4642 judith.kelly2@va.gov

 

Your local Vet Center contact:

Marlene Sweet, LCSW, Director

Indianapolis Vet Center

317-988-1604 marlene.sweet@va.gov

 

Your local VBA MST contacts:

Indiana (Indianapolis Regional Office)

Kimberlyn Tutt Kimberlyn.Tutt@va.gov

OR

Gregory Shemwell Gregory.Shemwell@va.gov

 

Your local VBA Indiana Women Veteran Coordinator

Laura McKee LaMckee@dva.IN.gov 317-232-3919

 

Printable documents for your reference:

What is MST, and how does the VA help you?

Military Sexual Trauma: Stories from Survivors 

How does a Veteran get help? 

 

Contact Info

Location

  • VAMC, D wing, Room D5025

Contact Number(s)

  • 317-988-3449

Hours of Operation

  • Mon - Fri, 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.