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This year there were 154 suicides committed by military personnel in the first 155 days of the year. This is an alarming number and it is projected to rise. Nobody really understands the reason for the spike other than it is still considered a sign of weakness to seek help for mental stress related issues caused by the Iraq/Afghanistan War. This is truly a sad state of affairs for our veterans who return home to the country they defended and lost friends and relatives in the process. So I would invite every one to say a prayer for the troops not only to keep them safe overseas but also back home. Let God speak to them and tell them it's alright to seek the help they need. And if it's not too much trouble next time you see someone in uniform tell them thank you for their sacrifices. You never know, you might save the life of someone who would die for you with those two simple words.
5 Time POTW--Gringo Mafia Director of Guerrilla Warfare
6-Time POTW Winner, 4 time at BGI and 2 at 24/7
Ah , for the good old days,
when no one cared if the baby burners returned from Nam,
much less committed suicide afterwards. (sarcasm).
Prayers and best wishes for our vets.
Thank every service man you meet,
for their service.
You hit the nail on the head. During my 20 or so years, if you went to "Mental Health", you were stigmatized as weak. They don't call it Mental Health these days but it is hard to overcome the stigmatism that almost all service men and women feel comes from showing this weakness. Most internalize their feelings and resort to risky behavior and substances, both legal and illegal, to cope with their situation.
I am a psychotherapist since 1987 and was a pastoral minister for ten years before that. I have always had at least a couple of war veterans on my caseload for years and do today. It is very unfortunate that good behavioral health treatment carries such a stigma in the Midwest. I have known many veterans that I wish would get into psychotherapy. If we were on either coast, it is considered a status symbol. People there spend Thursday night happy hour discussing their analysts with pride at their courage to go somewhere to take a good, long , hard look at themselves.
IMO, it is not hard to see why the suicide rate is so high. The suicide risk for a veteran is as high as the rate for elderly, single males and young gay teens through early twenties. It is also very high for alcohol and drug abusers, again which sees high proportions of our male and female vets among its numbers.
There are many reasons that this is going on today even more than after Nam. I watched the D.C. fireworks on July 4th and the tribute to our veterans. It was heart-breaking and brought tears to my eyes to see their obvious unhappiness, the hollowness behind their eyes, the pain carried there (I have seen a lot of it in my office.), all the while attempting to show pride and a sense of dignity.
When I see service women and men, I thank them. When flying around the country and I know that they are on their way to the Middle East, I tell them that they are in my prayers and wish them Godspeed. At ND games, I sing America the Beautiful with the best of them, loud and clear. I cheer with the flyover. During the armed forces games when vets are asked to stand, I applaud and thank any of them that are sitting close to me.
I am a professional and a person that values spirituality. I am a very staunch Democrat. I am insulted at the mere thought that Democrats do not support our troops or do not respect them. I respect them so much that I want them home. And alas it takes a Democrat in office to make that happen. ND men and women should be highly educated, and I expect more ability for critical thought and intelligent discourse that refuses to make war a black/white or a good/bad issue. Yes, there are many Democrats who may question the wisdom of a particular war, the purported reasons to fight it, or the way it is being conducted. (There are many Republicans who have secretly done the same.). To question their patriotism and more importantly, their loyalty to our country and our troops, is a tremendous insult. It needs to stop.
If intelligent, respectful discussion cannot happen on an ND board, then there is little hope it can be had anywhere.
I take solace in the thought that we can be united for the Fightin' Irish vs, Michigan, USC, etc.
Sorry. Did not mean to post this twice.
of course, we've all heard a lot on this. i may be wrong, but i thought i read where only 38% of these suicides had served overseas. that opens a whole "nother can of worms.
Very good "OT" post.
I do hope that all seek help, but I also recognize that sometimes psychotherapy doesnt really help. Many people have sought help and it has not changed their situation at all. Their future has been permanently altered and they cant live with that. So while I reiterate that I do hope that some feel relief over time with "help"(of many forms), I hope more are able to live with a permanently altered state and find peace here on Earth until it comes to them in a more eternal form.
Calling the wife and family is not fun. Once is too much. I've tried to be there. It's really really tough. Hugging a guy as he falls apart makes you feel things you cannot describe. Finding him on the ship lifeless will never leave you. Losing shipmates from the USS Cole makes you really not care for "those" that fight so cowardly. It is a sad fact. All I can say is be genuine when you say thankyou. Visit a VA hospital. KISS. I have to stop writing....... Sorry if I went off.
2 time POTW winner on some dates I can't remember from 2yrs ago at BNG,
POTW: 1/3/11- 1/9/11, 6/20/11-6/26/11
My nephew did 4 tours in Iraq/Afghanistan as a Sapper. He came home and they put him in a recruiting office and he hated it. He requested a return to Afghanistan which was granted.
A few days after he was granted the transfer, he committed suicide on 8/1/10. He was a great young man.
This post was edited by 100yardlie 21 months ago
Partisan much ??
" I respect them so much that I want them home. And alas it takes a Democrat in office to make that happen."
Glad I did not need a shrink.
Might have committed suicide if assigned to you.
Although kidding, and was too stark a gallows humor and "got ya"
to pass up, you might seriously consider referring military/vets to someone else.
"Although kidding"? This was about "got ya"?
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