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  #101  
Old 17 January 2016, 14:59
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Originally Posted by The Fat Guy View Post
Here's to a year of no one hurting themselves..


Fuck Suicide.

X1000
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  #102  
Old 24 January 2016, 20:37
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Originally Posted by CAP MARINE View Post
Just read about 2/7 in the Stan-2008. No one understands unless you have been 'there'.
Being in CAP in Nam and interacting with the people and running ambushes every night I think was a different feeling or story for us.msybe we came home with a different feeling in our heart's and mind's.
I was just thinking something like this, about 'Nam vets and WW2. In my opinion, a big problem of being deployed for 12-14 months isn't the few IED's or firefights, but the sheer amount of time not doing shit because our enemy is a bunch of sissy ass guys whose best weapon is hiding bomb under the road. I can't speak for SOF, but we leave without having put enough feet in the enemy's ass. I was in Najaf and outside Falluja in '04 and felt like I did a little something, but in '08 after spending 14 months of PSD missions things felt really stale. Add in getting cheated on, kids, worrying about having a job etc.
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  #103  
Old 17 April 2016, 12:18
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Indeed outstanding thread! I'm proud of the inspirational good stories. And saddened by some of the others. I also helped a couple of American buddies who suffered from PTSD or depression (one could say - but I agree with the guys who say the label doesn't matter). One of them at some point was living in his car. They're all doing very well now!

Like you all I'm a strong supporter of military values such as brotherhood. I do have experience with therapists because of family but I don't follow those routines or analyze. I do not problematize, victimize or judge. On the contrary. I'm definitely not a "savoir" and share my own f*ckedup shit as well.

I think what helps is different for everyone. Some need to be told what to do and are helped by guidance and mentoring. Like some examples in this thread. That's not my experience. The guys that reached out to me can not be told what to do. They're leaders themselves, more in the angry, aggressive mode. Not everyone can deal with that but I appear to be a good match and sparring partner for those.
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  #104  
Old 17 April 2016, 14:15
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^^good stuff. Thanks for your efforts.
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  #105  
Old 17 April 2016, 19:33
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Originally Posted by dutchdevildog View Post
...

I think what helps is different for everyone...
This is the crux to treatment, especially as it pertains to mental and behavioral health.

In addition, one does not need an MD, DO, MSW, PhD, or other letters to be effective. Ofttimes, just being a sounding board and empathizing as well as listening goes a long way.

Let them know they are not alone!
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  #106  
Old 18 April 2016, 10:06
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Originally Posted by 8654maine View Post
This is the crux to treatment, especially as it pertains to mental and behavioral health.

In addition, one does not need an MD, DO, MSW, PhD, or other letters to be effective. Ofttimes, just being a sounding board and empathizing as well as listening goes a long way.

Let them know they are not alone!
Sometimes a kick to the rear also.

Good post.
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  #107  
Old 28 April 2016, 11:06
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[QUOTE=Silverbullet;1058473242]This is not meant to be preachy about PTSD.

Please consider we should not be part of the stigma attaching group when posting on the subject. We need to point our Brother & Sisters to help than isn't from a quack though.

If I may suggest, something that may help is starting a camping group, I started one with Marines and Soldiers I served with that are from my State. We try to meet quarterly for one weekend. We use local State Parks. Its a way for us to get away from the "civilian" world and all the modern day technology. I hope this might help. Semper Fi!
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  #108  
Old 2 October 2016, 13:25
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I started today off with a message from a friend that a 24 yr old former Marine had killed himself last night. Two combat tours in Afghan in an infantry squad. Decorated for actions under fire.

I didn't know him, but I did....

The usual easy culprits "PTSD" and "the VA had him on meds" to alone drinking.

While not aware of the totality of the circumstances the facts appear to be once again, one of our bloodline isolated, compounded by a gov that doesn't care and is attempting to medicate a complex issue away.

I know a bunch of you are on FB and other platforms. The word needs to get out that we are the best support for our Brothers and Sisters. None of us have all the answers but the person you haven't heard form for awhile that you reach out to may the person who's life you save.

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  #109  
Old 2 October 2016, 14:30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8654maine View Post
This is the crux to treatment, especially as it pertains to mental and behavioral health.

In addition, one does not need an MD, DO, MSW, PhD, or other letters to be effective. Ofttimes, just being a sounding board and empathizing as well as listening goes a long way.

Let them know they are not alone!
May I suggest that folks watch this very short video...I think it will be of benefit as you come alongside others going through "the shit."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Evwgu369Jw
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Last edited by Silverbullet; 2 October 2016 at 14:42. Reason: Fixed Purples link
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  #110  
Old 2 October 2016, 15:35
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I got that call almost 2yrs ago (Oct 24th, 2014).
A good friend of mine, her son did a tour as a machine gunner In Afghanistan with 2/7.
He had some issues but no one thought or noticed how bad they were.
He'd even called the VA suicide line, but I guess that didn't work, he hung up on them and they're the ones who sent the cops out that found him.

I don't know what the solution is, but we have to do everything we can to help these young men and women, even if just being there to listen and point them in the right direction to getting professional help.
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  #111  
Old 2 October 2016, 15:48
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One of the difficulties in identifying someone who needs help..is that most of us want to appear to have it all together, even if we are dying inside. We smile, we act like everything is ok, perhaps because we don't want to be judged or found to be "weak." Perhaps we show a crack in the armor but even then, it doesn't sound the alarm on other's radar..and so many of us (at least speaking for myself) don't want to be intrusive.
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  #112  
Old 2 October 2016, 19:26
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Such an awesome thread. Not awesome because of the subject but awesome because it needs to be talked about.

Peer2Peer Support! I am a believer in our community supporting our community. No one else can or is qualified to. A degree in psych is not qualification enough. The same dust/mud/shit in the tread of your boots is.

If you have knowledge of a good organised program then post it in this thread here.

If you don't have something happening in your area/region, then be the solution and start a monthly/weekly coffee 'n' catch-up at a sympathetic business around town.

As a final solution, as SB says, talk to your buddies; a phone call can be the difference between someone being GTG and paying your respects at their funeral.

The thing about all this, if you help someone else, you are helping yourself. Try it, it works.

Cheers,
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  #113  
Old 2 October 2016, 19:30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Purple36 View Post
One of the difficulties in identifying someone who needs help..is that most of us want to appear to have it all together, even if we are dying inside. We smile, we act like everything is ok, perhaps because we don't want to be judged or found to be "weak." Perhaps we show a crack in the armor but even then, it doesn't sound the alarm on other's radar..and so many of us (at least speaking for myself) don't want to be intrusive.
If I may? Rather than be "intrusive" with your questions, simply be consistent with your contact and increase your frequency as your gut indicates. Often, we simply need to be aware our mates are not too busy and that we would be missed.

Cheers,
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  #114  
Old 2 October 2016, 19:59
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The thing is, never know what can trigger it.

My friends son, on the day in question he had gone grocery shopping, got treats and food for his dog, did his homework, basically everything normal.
Information that I received (admittedly 2nd hand) was he sat down and watched/watching some movie (I don't recall what it was) called the VA suicide prevention line, hung up on them, they sent the cops that found him.

Predecessors that should have been clear warning signs weren't seen for what they were, he had kicked his wife out (loaded all her things in a U-Haul), moved from Nor-Cal to Texas (limited family in Texas, mom in L.A., father in Bakersfield, brother in the Corps also).

I dunno, it frustrates me and hurts every time I think about it.
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  #115  
Old 2 October 2016, 20:19
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Originally Posted by Floyd View Post
The thing is, never know what can trigger it.

My friends son, on the day in question he had gone grocery shopping, got treats and food for his dog, did his homework, basically everything normal.
Information that I received (admittedly 2nd hand) was he sat down and watched/watching some movie (I don't recall what it was) called the VA suicide prevention line, hung up on them, they sent the cops that found him.

Predecessors that should have been clear warning signs weren't seen for what they were, he had kicked his wife out (loaded all her things in a U-Haul), moved from Nor-Cal to Texas (limited family in Texas, mom in L.A., father in Bakersfield, brother in the Corps also).

I dunno, it frustrates me and hurts every time I think about it.
Sometimes people don't let us help them...none of what you have described would trigger an alarm (without knowing the man in question). I wonder if occasionally, these decisions are made more spur of the moment..yet are irreversible once completed. In 2005, I lost a guy in Iraq (my first and thankfully last), redeployed to the US and immediately PCS'd across the country and decided to divorce after 17 years of marriage-all within 30 days. No one noticed or understood what I was going through and I did my best to hide the profound debilitating anxiety and depression-but thankfully my unit had a psychologist that I felt comfortable going to...and I needed to..but I had to take the step to reach out. I knew I needed help and thankfully I had resources that most units don't have and I was used to psychologists since they supported our mission. I think every unit should have a mental health/human performance section. Oh, and I reached out to Tracy here in PMs..and he made me feel normal for what I was going through and he probably doesn't even know how much that helped. Logging into Socnet and having people I could PM behind the scenes who understood = priceless.
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  #116  
Old 19 October 2016, 10:06
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Read this article this morning and thought it might be appropriate for this discussion:

Quote:
Veterans Need Emotional, Not Financial Investments

18 October 2016

U-Wire

Recently in one of my economics courses, we discussed returned war veterans and how there’s a recurring trend concerning their inability to reintegrate healthfully into modern western society. Experts and peers have pondered solutions, including more financial investments into rehab and mental health support, and instilling mandates that ensure vets the opportunity to find fulfilling employment upon their return from war. But are these really solutions? Or are veterans’ problems stemming from something other than their traumatic experiences in wartime? Maybe pouring more money into the issue won’t help. Maybe jobs aren’t the answer. Maybe the real problem isn’t with vets, but with us.

Sebastian Junger, a retired soldier and now author and journalist, was recently interviewed by Time Magazine to discuss his new book, “Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging.” In it he talks about how western society has evolved into a world of extreme disconnectedness and alienation, which are the roots for returned vets’ problems with reintegration.

Our western advancements and associated lifestyles have been glorified for a long time. The common narrative is that we’re advanced, established, efficient and reign superior to underdeveloped peoples. Before, we gloated the superiority of colonization and trade. Then industrialization. Now we have smartphones, apps, television, Netflix; everything needed to live safe, comfortable and entertained lives. But these springs forward in technology and innovation have come at a cost that not many people seem to notice, or at least acknowledge. We’re losing the ability to connect deeply with other people, which is something vitally innate and necessary to our being.

We’re living in an age where people experience intimate interactions and events through Snapchat, postpone engaging with family because they’re trying to stage the perfect selfie and forgo genuinely talking with people they love because that once-peaceful form of connection is boring and there should be a TV on in the background. It’s impossible for people today to break away from their own delusions of socialization and meaningful association to actually be present and engaged.

So how does this so badly affect war veterans? Junger emphasizes calamity and how it has been shown to positively impact human beings. He says that disaster has the potential to boost mental health because it forces humans to band together collectively and cooperatively in order to survive. We’re social by nature, and the level of teamwork it takes to overcome something as disastrous as an earthquake, tsunami or terrorist attack creates a bond among people that runs deeper than what we’re used to. It feels good because, at the core of our essence, we desire feelings of connectedness, worth and purpose that helping others through a tragedy can provide. When those involved in the military undergo training, combat, etc., they’re thrown into situations that demand a very primal level of teamwork and interdependence. Upon return, especially when dealing with past traumatic experiences, it becomes too much for vets to cope without the steady, strong, “I’d lay down my life to help you,” kind of mindset the military provides. Our western society just doesn’t live that way.

So maybe the hardships of war aren’t entirely to blame. Maybe financial investments are actually the cheap cop-out. Maybe what we really need to do is be present, understanding and serious about connecting with other people, especially those who have seen tragedies we can’t even imagine, no matter how many war movies we’ve watched on Hulu. Nothing is a substitute for genuine, uninterrupted connection. So, be there — be present, be mindful, be deeper. Do it for the people who’ve been through things that make that new season of the show you’re obsessed with seem painfully unimportant. Because there’s more to us than this safe, yet shallow life we’ve grown used to, and it shouldn’t take a tragedy to understand that.
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  #117  
Old 19 October 2016, 13:04
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That's deep, and quite profound.
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  #118  
Old 19 October 2016, 13:16
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Praying for those veterans who are hurting to find peace. I do not know who they are but God does.

Peace and blessings.
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  #119  
Old 19 October 2016, 19:43
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Just lost a very good friend. Had TBI from an IED. He was sort of a legend in my community, one of the very few who were qualified to fly in all three platforms. He worked for me for a while, was very proud to see him make Chief.

I wish he would have called me first....

Fair Winds my CPO Brother
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  #120  
Old 19 October 2016, 20:31
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Earlier this year, I was at a conference where one of the topics centered on the work of the SOF Care Coalition. One of the speakers was not part of the staff but a retired senior NCO who shared his story. He shared his struggles, what was taking place at the time in his professional and personal life that spanned several years. Through numerous deployments and training, he convinced himself he was well and on and on. He admittedly lied to his unit psych, teammates and himself. His issues compounded where he made some poor choices operationally. As he was talking, it hit me as I could relate to so much of what he was saying. I tried to discount the thoughts in my head of needing to do something about my condition.

On the flight back, my thoughts drifted back to much of what was shared by him. I've sent several Soldiers to get assistance, had opportunities to intervene on some but getting help for myself seemed a challenge. I felt in order to be a better dad, partner, leader, I needed to take the step. Thankfully, I had someone to reach out to, a retired CSM and half assed sent an email asking to talk. He replied almost immediately. That call led to getting some outside assistance.

Fast forward, it was a good decision on my part due to someone having the courage to share their story. I'm not necessarily saying one needs to lay out their entire biography to everyone. In my position, I don't shy from sharing my story. Key leaders have visibility of my calendar and see my appointments and I freely speak of some things. I still have my clearance and am quite comfortable with who I am. If someone thinks less than for getting help, so be it.

I had a younger NCO in my office not too long ago that asked to speak with me. The NCO had been struggling and performance was going down hill as noticed by some peers. I asked the NCO if he felt he needed help. He didn't want to seek help because he felt it would impact his clearance and he would be perceived as weak. For clarity, I asked him if someone was getting help, you'd consider that person weak? He rogered up. I then asked if he felt I was weak? He responded, "No". I then proceeded to show him my calendar and shared part of my story.

A stranger shared his story that led me to get assistance. In a way, he made himself transparent and impacted one life. Unfortunately, I've lost several Soldiers resulting from the demons they wrestled with. Some, we were able to help. I know my openness has led to some getting the help they needed.

If there is someone reading this and struggling, reach out. Send a PM, you may feel alone as if you are the only one dealing with some shit but I guarantee someone here has gone through something similar. Within this community, there are folks with some reach and can get you some assistance.
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