WAUWATOSA — One expert tells FOX6 News there may have been signs that accused killer Ben Sebena was in need of help. Sebena is charged with killing his wife Jennifer outside of a fire station in Wauwatosa on Christmas Eve.
Sebena, a Marine and recipient of the Purple Heart, was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In a 2010 YouTube video made by his church, Sebena told of his struggles.
Sebena opened up in the video about how he was nearly killed by a mortar attack in Iraq. He talked about his issued with PTSD — and more importantly what he said had helped him overcome those issues.
“The moment I got there, there was so much love, and so much joy in the room that all my fear left me,” said Ben Sebena in the video.
Sebena was on the road to recovery not only through his congregation at Elmbrook Church, but with the help of the local Veterans Administration. Sebena was taking yoga at the hospital for therapy. He was quoted in a 2010 magazine article about the program saying, “It’s very relaxing… My wife has supported me and this is my gift back to her. She doesn’t want me to repress feelings. I owe her.”
But Dr. Ashok Bedi, an expert on PTSD, says there were signs that Sebena was struggling. Elmbrook Church indicated Sebena had not been an active member in recent time. Dr. Bedi says nothing is more healing than structure.
“If you drop out it is always a very dangerous sign. It is important to continue that thread, that continuity, of that support,” said Dr. Bedi.
Dr. Bedi says those suffering from PTSD who are not getting support are quickly agitated and lose a sense of reality.
“Someone who has PTSD is likely to perceive a sense of betrayal by others. They easily feel betrayed, they feel overwhelmed,” said Dr. Bedi.
Dr. Bedi says PTSD is a growing problem in our society, but one that can be managed with help.