Trying to appear “as good once as I ever was” is exhausting
Yes it is. As someone with a mostly invisible physical disability I know what you mean. I'm not giving up my VA benefits, but I don't make a point of looking for handouts.
Even worse for being judged, though, is the hardship that returning veterans suffer when they are victim to PTSS/PTSD. People that don't understand think that psychological trauma is something that you can just "get over it." At the risk of offending some, "supporting the troops" is more than standing up for the National Anthem. I'm way off topic, but this is a hot button for me.