My name is David Bauer (Bruno) and I have been with Naval Special Warfare for 38 years—first as a SEAL for 31 years and as the Director of Plans and Doctrine at the headquarters for the last seven. My journey covered tours at SEAL Teams ONE and FOUR, Development Group, SDVT-ONE, NSWG-TWO, and my current position at HQ. I was involved with multiple deployments, which of course included combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. Though much of what I experienced was very fulfilling, the tragedies and physical injuries have caused me significant depression. This depression resulted in some serious episodes of panic attacks and repetitive suicidal ideation, which have grown in frequency over the last 12 years. My condition has not responded well to the conventional treatment, including counseling and antidepression medicines. What has helped is my one-on-one therapy and coaching with Kristin and Guy.
Like many people struggling with depression, I managed my professional life with a grin-and-bare-it facade. By the end of 2020 the situation became extremely difficult, and I was seriously close to losing my wife of 33 years and destroying myself. The intervention by Guy and some of my other brothers saved me from imminent death. Guy then connected me with Kristin and the two of them have helped me discover a way to start loving who I really am. The depression disorder may be something I will always cope with but the support and therapy I’m fortunate to have is making things manageable—I’m optimistic about my life.
Kristin’s approach with me in our weekly sessions represents the first experience that I have had where a therapist understands the complex nature of my struggle and what being a SEAL means. She cuts past my defensive armor and focuses me on the base elements driving my negative internal dialog; the voice that tells me that I do not deserve love. My personal connection with her has made it safe for me and she is a blessing in my life. I am eternally grateful for the care that she provides me with as are my wife and sons.
This is real LIFE SAVING help for me and my brothers!