About

Love After War is about supporting intimate relationships for wounded service members, veterans, and their partners.

 OUR VISION

“We were concerned about what our relationship would be like. We had always wanted to start a family”

Veteran Aaron Causey and spouse Kat Causey, on adjusting to catastrophic injury.

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Love After War: Supporting Intimate Relationships for Wounded Warriors and Their Families. Our documentary will showcase the real stories of individuals and couples who are surviving and thriving after catastrophic combat-related injuries. In their own words these folks will share how they overcame relationship issues and restored emotional closeness and physical intimacy. The documentary will also feature professional insights from experts in the field of sexuality and disability. 

The Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs do their best to support these families but our wounded service members deserve all the help that we can give them. Help us create a safety net that will:
  • Prevent unnecessary dissolution of marriages and committed relationships
  • Support wounded singles who want to establish a long-term committed relationship
  • Improve the quality of intimate relationships, parent-child relationships, and other relationships
  • Improve overall psychological health and quality of life
  • Stem the tide of suicides associated with failed intimate relationships
  • Connect participants to community health and support resources

"For the guys out there that are struggling with the intimacy issues or coping issues the best thing I can say is take the help that’s out there. If there’s none immediately around you seek it out because there are people willing to help you.”

Army Sgt. 1st Class Aaron Causey, disabled veteran

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We will also create an online community where veterans and caregivers can connect and bond with others who are facing similar challenges. This will create ongoing supportive relationships and provide access to relationship-building tools to strengthen marriages and other relationships. After the video is done we will start work on the Making Love After Making War online community. If we exceed our goal for the current funding campaign we will start work on the website immediately. If not, the website will be our next project. Among other things, the site will include:
  • Video stories
  • Educational content on restoring intimacy in the face of serious combat related injuries like burns, amputations, genital injuries, traumatic brain injuries, PTSD, and spinal cord injuries
  • Private forums, both general and condition-specific, for wounded veterans and for their intimate partners
  • Expert advice from qualified sexuality educators, counselors, therapists, and marriage and family therapists
  • Referral to local in-person resources

 

WHAT WE NEED NOW

Production costs for the documentary will run $56,000 to cover the following expenses:

  • Travel and production costs to conduct video interviews of six or seven couples that have successfully navigated their way back from injury to intimacy.  Expenses to include mileage, hotel, and per diem costs for shoots within states surrounding Georgia (AL); airfare, rental vehicle, hotel and per diem costs for shoots that are further away (IL, CO, MO, KS, CA, MD).
  • Production costs to include rental of sound and lighting equipment, one to two persons per diem on location.
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"Failed intimate relationships contribute significantly to suicide, intimate partner 
violence and child abuse, reduced quality of 
life, homelessness, and substance abuse." 

The RAND report Invisible Wounds of War: Psychological and Cognitive Injuries, Their Consequences, and Services to Assist Recovery (2008)

 

We have the expertise to get this done.

Dr. Mitchell Tepper

Dr. Mitchell Tepper is a sexologist who has been living a full life with spinal cord injury for nearly 35 years. He has long been personally and professionally dedicated to ending the silence around sexuality and disabilities. Dr. Tepper has been working with wounded veterans since speaking at the Road to Recovery Conference for wounded veterans in 2006. Through spearheading the Wounded Troops and Partners: Supporting Intimate Relationships Conference in Washington DC in 2008, he was successful in getting the issue of sexual health and intimacy for wounded warriors on the national radar. He assisted the Bob Woodruff Foundation in organizing their High Impact Collaboration Conference, From Injury to Intimacy, in 2014. He has been instrumental in the implementation of couple's retreats within the VA system and in training members of the Sexual Health and Intimacy Workgroup at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Dr. Tepper has published peer reviewed articles in medical and sexual health journals on comprehensive sexual health care for catastrophically injured warriors.

Dr. Tepper, producer of Making Love After Making War, has also produced the critically acclaimed Sex and Paralysis Video Series. 

Mark Schoen Producer

Mark Schoen received a Ph.D. from New York University’s Human Sexuality program in 1980. While enrolled in New York University Schoen spent two summers in Uppsala, Sweden studying Sexual Health Education at Uppsala University.

  • Working as a Health Educator in the early 1970’s in a New York public school system he developed a Sexual Health Program and began producing short films.
  • In 1979 Dr. Schoen established Focus International, a company devoted to producing and distributing sexual health films primarily to universities and clinicians. He produced many of the popular, early sex therapy films, wrote the children’s book, Bellybuttons Are Navels and produced the award winning film of the same title.
  • In 1998, The Sinclair Institute hired Dr. Schoen as Director of Sex Education. He moved from New York to Chapel Hill, North Carolina. From 1998 – 2006 he produced more than thirty films that are currently in distribution including the best selling revision of The Better Sex Video Series.
  • From 2006 – 2009 Schoen served as one of 16 members on the National Advisory Council on Sexual Health led by former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher.
  • In 2007 Dr Schoen moved to Pasadena, CA started working as an Independent producer. During this time he produced and directed Betty Dodson: Her Life of Sex and Art. This film won Best Feature Documentary at FilmOut, San Diego (2008) and won The American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists Best Film Award (2009)
  • Dr Schoen served on the Board of Directors of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (2007-2008) and continues to serve on the Board of the Foundation for the Scientific Study of Sexuality.
  • Dr. Schoen is the Founder of SexSmartFilms.com, an online resource for preserving, archiving and streaming sexual health films. There are currently more than 350 films that are being viewed worldwide.
  • He recently produced an animated short film The True Story of How Babies are Made that received the honorable mention from The American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists Best Film Awards (2010).
  •  Schoen received the Distinguished Public Service Award from the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (2010) and the AASECT (The American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors) Professional Standards of Excellence Award (2010).

Dr. Schoen is quoted in many publications and has appeared on numerous television & radio shows during his career.

Antonio Garcia, DP and Editor of Pilot Interview

Antonio is a filmmaker at Georgia State University who has had three films shown at the Cannes International Film Festival.

Accolades

The pilot interview for Making Love After Making War was chosen to be screened at the annual conference of the American Association for Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists. Here's their reactions to the film represented in a word cloud:

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We can’t do this without you. Wounded soldiers need your help. Contribute now and get this crucial film out to the people who desperately need it. All contributions get amazing perks, from personal shout-outs to Love After War merchandise to Executive Producer credit. If you’re not ready to contribute yet, spread the word to other people who are.  Share this campaign today through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, anywhere and everywhere you can. Are you or someone you know a disabled veteran or caregiver? Your story is extremely important. Please contact us! Have a question or a suggestion about the project? Please comment!
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