Suicide

Suicide

This is a discussion on Suicide within the Bob & Terry's Place forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Due to @ TSKnight post about a young lady that attempted to commit suicide, I've decided to post my story in hopes that maybe it ...

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Thread: Suicide

  1. #1
    Member Array Damien83's Avatar
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    Suicide

    Due to @TSKnight post about a young lady that attempted to commit suicide, I've decided to post my story in hopes that maybe it can help someone going through dark days. With the new statistics showing suicide rates are rising, no matter where we may be in this world, we all can help and support each other. So I'll apologize for the FRAT!

    My story starts back in 2003. My wife and I had met sort of. We had known each other as her older sister and I went to school together. I was in the military and went home on leave before my 2nd deployment. We ran into each other and had a good two week fling. I thought that was it once I left. But, the powers that be decided to intervene and keep us in touch during my deployment. Things picked up fast while I was deployed. Pretty soon we were talking futures and kids and houses and the whole nine.

    During my deployment, our unit compound was hit with mortar fire. It was mass chaos. I was supposed to be "off" that day but being bored, I decided to hang out at the compound with some guys helping them. When we were hit, I saw things I will never forget and afterwards was hit with survivors guilt. I totally withdrew from anyone close to me and suffered in silence. I did not call or write my wife after it happened for a couple weeks. Looking back, what I was going through in my head was nothing to the hell I put her through. Even though I cut communication for that time period, she supported me and sensed something was wrong. She would ask if everything was ok and I would lie saying everything was fine. Meanwhile, I was screwed in the head. I never once told her what happened until years later.

    After returning home, I took leave for R&R. When I was home, we decided to get married. Things were great for a bit. But, the crap going through my head was causing me to pick fights and snap at the littlest things. We fought and fought. It also didn't help that I was bringing her to Alaska, which is the worst possible place for a mentally insufficient person I was at the time. About a year later I got orders to Georgia with a new career. With that, we would need to be separated again for about 9 months.

    Before I went off to school, we went to Georgia and got settled with a house. While I was in school, my thoughts were really affecting me. But, being a man, I was always told that men don't cry, men don't have feelings, men don't show emotion etc. I totally isolated myself from her. Even being only 5 hrs away, I would make excuses to not come home on weekends and holidays. I would spend my time alone in my room with my mind racing. I could barely sleep and had no idea what to do. Well things got worse between my wife and I. So much so that she went and had divorce papers drawn up. I came around a bit and opened very little to her to just appease her. She would suggest counseling, both marriage and individual. At every turn, I refused as I was a man and could handle my own issues. This led to more fights.

    Fast forward to after I graduated. Things got a lot worse. Wife and I ended up signing divorce papers. When that happened, I lost it. I was at the lowest point in my life. Not only was I fighting demons in my head, I was now losing something that I thought was so precious to me even though I didn't act like it much less show it. Even though we signed the papers, life became hectic to where they weren't filed. Nonetheless, I thought life was over. I was at work when I decided to end it all. I thought it was perfect. Wife was at work and had a late afternoon meeting with some clients.

    I made up a fake appointment to go home early. I got home and it was eerily quiet. I went to the closet and grabbed my pistol. I sat in the living room thinking to myself that this was it. I was done dealing with the crap in my head and it affecting my life in every way including my marriage. I put the gun in my mouth. As soon as I put it in my mouth, out of nowhere my wife walked through the door. It went as expected. She freaked out, I broke down. I dropped the gun began crying like I never have. We spent hours talking like we hadn't done in over a year, close to two years. I let everything out. She was so strong. She did call family that was close to come get my guns. I was a broken man. Next day I was in a counselor's office spilling my guts. It took about a year of individual therapy along with marriage counseling before we were on a good path.

    I cannot explain how or why she walked in the house that day. During counseling, she said she felt weird at work and decided to leave work early. At no point did she think I would ever have thoughts of suicide. This year we are celebrating 15 yrs of marriage. Thanks to her, I am still here today to talk about this. Our marriage has only gotten stronger and better. We have two kids and my family is the most important thing. I do have some bad days. But the difference is, now I know to not keep things bottled up. She can also read me pretty good after going through this process. When she sees me struggling with something she has a knack of doing something to cheer me up or divert the negative thoughts. This woman is my rock.

    Sorry for the long story, but I wanted to post this just in case someone else may be going through something similar or anything period. No matter what, things can get better and improve. Even if you think you're alone, you're not. If you need to talk or need help, please seek it out. If you don't know where to start or go, PLEASE DM ME. I will give you my personal number to talk and help in any way possible.
    Pete63, scottync, G-man* and 28 others like this.
    Whoever appeals to the law against his fellow man is either a fool or a coward. Whoever cannot take care of himself without that law is both. For a wounded man shall say to his assailant, "If I die, you are forgiven. If I live, I will kill you." Such is the Rule of Honor.

  2. #2
    Distinguished Member Array ETXhiker's Avatar
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    So glad you made it through such an awful time. I suspect that there are more people than we know going through similar trials. Good of you to share and offer help to others.
    OldChap, Redbert31, DZUS and 3 others like this.
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    Senior Member Array DZUS's Avatar
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    Your story will help a lot of folks in a troubled place, especially some vets w PTSD and survivors' guilt. Glad you found the inner strength and the "good path".
    Armed And Harmless
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    Never give in--never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.
    - - Sir Winston Churchill, 1941

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    Senior Member Array KILTED COWBOY's Avatar
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    I have no words.
    Thank God I have never been that broken.
    I am glad that you are still here to share that story with us.
    The love of a good woman can make miracles happen
    Damien83, Sister, OldChap and 5 others like this.

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    It is gratifying to know you got past that awful stage in your life. I knew a couple Marines who committed suicide a couple years after coming home from Nam. They did not have that person in their life that helped get them past their trials like your wife did. You were a lucky man that day she unexpectedly came through the door.

    I know how screwed up one's thinking can get. I was wounded in Hue City but during my 6 weeks in the hospital all I could think about was the death and destruction I photographed there. It was like reliving the horror. I was depressed for a couple years, but never became suicidal. My wife was a great help.

    I hope that any vets here with PTSD and suicidal thoughts will take advantage of your offer. Talking to people who have survived such can be the best therapy. the experience never leaved the mind, so the mind must overcome the experience. Thank you for your dedication to serving and surviving. Semper Fi.
    DZUS, TSKnight, OldChap and 3 others like this.

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    I took courage to post your life for others to read. I do believe it will help others and I commend you for it! May God bless you and your wife and all that read this post!
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    VIP Member Array Havok's Avatar
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    Glad you are still with us today, and you were able to turn your life around!
    Damien83, Redbert31 and TSKnight like this.
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    Your a strong and good man for posting. A lot of vets these days have been through tough times. In my line if business (first responder), we loose more to suicide than we do in the line of work. For me, I have a amazing wife whose in the same line of work(ER nurse ). We can talk to each other. For those without, reach out. You need to be able to talk and not be judged. Good luck to those who need it.


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    VIP Member Array scottync's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Damien83 View Post
    Sorry for the long story, but I wanted to post this just in case someone else may be going through something similar or anything period. No matter what, things can get better and improve. Even if you think you're alone, you're not. If you need to talk or need help, please seek it out. If you don't know where to start or go, PLEASE DM ME. I will give you my personal number to talk and help in any way possible.
    Thank you for the post. You never know what encouragement can do for those thinking the unthinkable.
    Damien83 and TSKnight like this.

  11. #10
    Distinguished Member Array TSKnight's Avatar
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    Thank You for sharing your story. It took a great deal of courage to share what you did.

    I believe the timing of your Wife walking in was God taking a hand in your life because He still has plans for you that are not yet finished.
    There are no coincidences in my life. At least that is what I believe. Too many times things happen that are statistically impossible, yet there they are.
    God gave me a second chance. Since then, I have done my best to use the experience He brought me through, to help others live through their own trials.
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    Member Array Damien83's Avatar
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    To all.......I do believe that God intervened that day. Everything lined up perfectly for me to do what I was set on doing. Yet my wife walked in at the exact moment to save me. She has been nothing short of a blessing in my life. There are no words or actions I can say or do to thank her enough. When we talk about it she says she didn't do anything special. But in my eyes, she is the real hero. From being a military wife, multiple deployments, me isolating myself from her to everything else.......she is the strongest woman I know. IMHO, all military wives are some strong women.

    I forgot to mention in my OP that I learned a great deal from that ordeal. The most important one I learned is the ripple effects suicide has on a family and loved ones. In that state of mind, it's a selfish act. People dealing with those thoughts don't seem to realize how that decision can cause so many other issues after they are gone. Shortly afterward I felt horrible because I was only thinking of myself. I didn't think about my wife, my father, mother, grandparents, in-laws, friends etc. that would have been devastated if I had accomplished it.

    Thank you guys for taking the time to read and comment.
    TSKnight and Sister like this.
    Whoever appeals to the law against his fellow man is either a fool or a coward. Whoever cannot take care of himself without that law is both. For a wounded man shall say to his assailant, "If I die, you are forgiven. If I live, I will kill you." Such is the Rule of Honor.

  13. #12
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    Thumbs up

    Stay strong.
    Great that you're now in a place where you can help others.
    Damien83 likes this.
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    Thanks for sharing. I've known too many military colleagues that took the easy way out. I wish they had reached out for help or had someone intervene. The death of friends, family, and loved ones devastates all those close to them. It is particularly hard to deal with when it's by their own hand. You are lucky to have such a strong woman in your life. But of course, you already know that.
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    Ex Member Array CG11's Avatar
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    Damien83, thank you for your courage and willingness to help in posting your story. It is, aside from details, quite similar to my own. My third tour of Nam brought me home with survivors guilt and a rage I could barely control. I had no idea what was happening, and at that time no one wanted to even admit to being a Viet vet;every employer just assumed you were messed up. I choose risky activities for recreation, not caring, selfishly, of what might happen to me. I was blessed in that I did not get seriously injured or killed. (racing motorcycles, etc.) Unfortunately, I believed as you did that as a man, I just had to suck it up. I fought it, alone, for several years, until a violent confrontation with myself brought me to a point of understanding in which I was able to recover over the next few years. I wish I had had the courage, and/or knowledge, to seek help; it would have put me on a better path far sooner. The guilt and rage are gone; the memories reconciled, and at 70, I have been at peace for many years. Folks, if you are suffering these feelings, rage, guilt, etc, seek help - the living hell that comes with it can be put to rest. Thank you again, Damien83; it's a story I suspect many of us should have already posted.
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  16. #15
    Member Array Damien83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spclopr8tr View Post
    Thanks for sharing. I've known too many military colleagues that took the easy way out. I wish they had reached out for help or had someone intervene. The death of friends, family, and loved ones devastates all those close to them. It is particularly hard to deal with when it's by their own hand. You are lucky to have such a strong woman in your life. But of course, you already know that.
    I agree. Too many active duty and veterans deal with these thoughts. Statistics show 22 veterans a day commit the irreversible decision to end their lives due to the overwhelming thoughts. One is way too many. Suicide is such a taboo subject and it doesn't need to be. While I was active duty, there was the stigma that asking for help hurt your career and your security clearance. In the final last 5-6 yrs before I retired, I was seeing this stigma being reversed. I always encouraged any of my troops dealing with issues to either go to mental health or call the military onesource number to get to see an off base provider. Still I think that stigma remains.

    I donate to a couple of agencies that support active duty and veterans treatment programs that also specialize in awareness. If anyone is interested, let me know and I will post them if you decide to donate or possibly help.
    Whoever appeals to the law against his fellow man is either a fool or a coward. Whoever cannot take care of himself without that law is both. For a wounded man shall say to his assailant, "If I die, you are forgiven. If I live, I will kill you." Such is the Rule of Honor.

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