Fighting the Battle Within with Chad Robichaux

Fighting the Battle Within with Chad Robichaux

Most of us have been in a dark place at some point in our lives. What is the first step to reclaiming ourselves? How can we find the courage to move forward when it seems like there is no way out?

Today’s guest is Chad Robichaux. He is a former Force Recon Marine, a professional MMA fighter, and a bestselling author. After coming home from deployment, he was diagnosed with PTSD.

Chad became lost, depressed, angry, and suicidal. It got to the point where his children were afraid of him and he and his wife were filing for a divorce.

But Chad experienced a moment of clarity that allowed him to make the choice to step out of the darkness and into his true purpose in life. Now he helps other men as they fight the battle within.

The definition of manhood—When you come to that point where you decide you’re not living yourself, but living for others.—Chad Robichaux

Chad Robichaux

Chad M. Robichaux is the President and Founder of the Mighty Oaks Foundation, a leading military non-profit serving the US Military active duty and veteran communities with highly successful peer-to-peer faith based combat trauma programs and combat resiliency conferences.

Chad and his team are dedicated to helping America’s military warriors and their families suffering from the “unseen wounds” of combat such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Their effort is on the front line to intercede and end the climbing 22 per day veteran suicide rate and the tragic divorce epidemic in military families. To date the program has over 1,000 alumni and has reached tens of thousands active duty service members through resiliency conferences.

Chad is a former Special Operations Force Recon Marine and DoD Contractor with eight deployments to Afghanistan as part of a Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) Task Force. He has earned an MBA and is a Board Certified Pastoral Counselor with a focus on PTSD.

Chad and his wife, Kathy, have been married for 21 years, and have three children. After years of deployments their family personally faced the challenges of PTSD. They now share a story of a victory in Christ through the struggles our warriors face returning home and have dedicated their lives to sharing that story to mentor others like them.

Chad is a widely sought after public speaker and subject matter expert on PTSD, military and veterans’ issues. He has testified in Veterans’ Courts regarding combat trauma and PTSD, wrote a best-selling book on the subject and has been featured on such media outlets as Fox News, Forbes, The O’Reily Factor, USA Today, Christian Post, Focus on The Family, The 700 Club, and a short biography film by I Am Second.

In addition to Chad’s military service he has served our nation as a Special Agent with the US Federal Air Marshal Service and the US State Department as a Surveillance Detection Senior Program Manager. Chad is also a Medal of Valor Recipient for his bravery beyond the call of duty in law enforcement.

Outside of his work with veterans Chad and his sons train and teaches Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He is a 3 Degree Black Belt and a Former Pro MMA World Champion who has used his platform to advocate for civilian support of America’s Warriors returning home while competing in the sport’s biggest event.

If you have breath in your lungs, you have purpose. Despite what’s going on in your life, you can at any time step into that plan. All of this requires a choice, and intentionality, and calibrating your life to align with your purpose.

What You’ll Learn

  • Chad’s traumatic childhood and how it informed his military career
  • His start in martial arts
  • Why making a broad decision to change is not effective
  • How to segment your personal goals
  • How to make the decisions in advance before chaos strikes
  • Why Chad says that by nature, men are lazy and selfish. Men have to make a decision that it’s important to be a good dad and be intentional about it
  • How to raise our kids so that they can make healthy decisions and realign when they go off track in adulthood
  • Chad’s 2-point action plan when his kids do something wrong:
    1. Put time and space between when the incident happened and when you address it
    2. Find the lesson in it and pass on wisdom instead of acting out in anger
  • Why you should not take personal offense to your kids misbehaving
  • About his job as a Recon Marine
  • His story of being in a car chase with the Taliban and how it’s his metaphor for life
  • His unrelenting and terrifying experience with PTSD and his loss of identity
  • How he stayed with his internal battle for 3 years and almost lost everything
  • How his return to Jiu-Jitsu and success in MMA replaced the fix for his ego, but did nothing to repair the unseen wounds in his soul
  • Chad’s affair and near divorce
  • How he would sit in a closet with his family’s pictures on the floor holding a gun
  • The moment Chad realized he was the problem
  • What men need to do when they are hopeless and stuck
  • Why it’s a choice not to move forward
  • How he discovered that through all his tragedies and trauma, he did not have to let his past define his future
  • How he found hope and restoration in a new relationship with Christ
  • About his new book and upcoming film
  • His most humbling lessons he’s learned about fatherhood
  • Chad’s marriage advice
  • Using The Bible as the blueprint for marriage
  • His parting wisdom for men who are fighting the battle within
  • His mission to help military veterans find spiritual resilience


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The Biblical Meaning of Masculinity

The Biblical Meaning of Masculinity

Jeff Hemmer is the author of the book Man Up!: The Quest for Masculinity. He is also a pastor, a husband, and the father of six children.

We don’t usually do spiritual topics on The Dad Edge podcast, but whether you’re spiritual or not, you will get a lot of value from today’s show. We’re going to talk about what it means to be a spiritual leader in your house and go beyond the “Sunday School” versions of the Bible to explore the true masculinity of Jesus.

'How do I know that I’m doing the right thing as a father? As a husband? What does it really mean to be a man?' – @jeff_hemmer #men #dads #fathers #spirituality Click To Tweet

Jeff’s story

Jeff says he had an average upbringing. He had faithful loving parents who were very supportive of Jeff and his brother. They are still married today. Jeff never questioned their support.

He and his wife have been married for fifteen years. They were high school sweethearts and neither of them has ever dated anyone else. Their sixth child on the way in August. Jeff says it’s rarely quiet in their house, but each child brings something wonderful to the family and they muddle through the chaos together.

When Jeff had his first child, his son who is now nine years old, he realized that even though biologically, he’s a man, he never knew what it meant to be his own man in a society that values people for their sameness.

He was struck that the church should have been teaching and talking about manhood, the differences between men and women, and the dynamics of a family. He had to seek resources outside the church to explore masculinity like The Art of Manliness, Order of Man, and Jack Donovan. He also looked to the Bible for examples. He was dumbfounded that very few people in the church taught about this robust biblical masculinity.

Jeff doesn’t claim he’s an expert. He still struggles with the things a man needs to learn. It’s his journey, and he’s not to the destination yet. Jeff says all men are on a the same road. They are always learning from fellow travelers. Some have made mistakes. Some have succeeded and encouraged others. Jeff’s at a point now where he has learned wisdom from his experiences and is passing it along to those who are slightly behind him on the road. This is why he wrote Man Up!: The Quest for Masculinity.

'Masculinity is fundamentally about giving.' – @jeff_hemmer #masculinity #men #dads #fathers Click To Tweet

What You’ll Learn

  • How writing his book helped him become better in all his roles as a man
  • How he was able to acknowledge the ways he wass prone to fail as a father, husband, and man
  • An example of perfect masculinity you can find anywhere else
  • How softness is selfishness
  • How true masculinity is the opposite of selfishness, to be and instrument for the good of others
  • The biblical duties of a man : protect, provide, and procreate
  • How Jesus was an example of masculinity
  • How Jesus is both the solution for men’s failings, and also the example of what a perfect man is and does
  • Mind-blowing insights about Adam and the Original Sin
  • Why men have to be called to something higher to lose their selfishness
  • How Jesus on the cross is the ultimate display of masculinity
  • About the real Jesus who was rough around the edges, who called people out, and confronted religious leaders of the day
  • About Jesus’s band of brothers and how they helped him
  • What fathers need to do as the spiritual leaders of their households
  • How to model Christianity to your kids
  • How dad’s should serve as the pastor of their families
  • Jeff Hemmer’s parting piece of dad wisdom
'Children are a discipline in learning patience.' – @jeff_hemmer #parenting #children #kids #discipline #manhood #fatherhood Click To Tweet

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