Saturday, June 9, 2012

devastating military suicide rate

The above link sends you to a pretty depressing article about the suicide rate of military service members. Unfortunately it's back on the rise again and nearly one veteran has killed him or herself everyday in 2012.

I am not a military member and I have never served my country in combat. However, as a civilian looking in (and one who herself is struggling with depression, anxiety, and PTSD), there are a few suggestions I'd like to make. Obviously we need to work harder to protect our soldiers from hazing, beatings, "friendly fire," etc. We also need to provide better education and protection to prevent sexual assaults (and I don't mean educate potential victims, I mean teach soldiers how to not rape each other).

Those issues are ones that I will likely address in other posts. Today I want to focus on what can be done right now. Right now, we can make sure that VAs are fully staffed, that they don't see funding cuts while dealing with so many new veterans. Right now we can support groups trying to help veterans get and keep jobs, since financial stress is playing a major factor in some suicides. Right now we can help veterans we know and be good battle buddies for them as they reenter civilian life. Right now we can educate ourselves on the warning signs of suicide.

THEN we can put pressure on military leadership to change the culture within the military to one that supports seeking help.


  1. This is a unique approach. Do you think this is a step in the right direction?

  2. I hadn't heard about that. Thanks for sharing. As an outsider reading the studies, it sounds like the military needs a culture of openness and support. If we can learn to build that by watching the awesomeness that comes out of much of the black female community, I think that's a great place to start. Also, +10 cool points for linking to an article at the Grio.