Military Fights to Halt Rising Suicide Rate

by Welmer on June 19, 2010

An AP article with a misleading title, “A victory as Army mounts anti-suicide campaign,” reveals what is all too frequently the triggering factor in military suicides: divorce. Family law in the US makes it exceedingly easy for women to take advantage of military spouses, offering them a raft of benefits for divorcing their soldier, sailor and airman husbands. Add that to the fact that military wives are notorious for infidelity, and there are bound to be a lot of casualties.

From the article:

Godding, now stationed at Fort Carson, Colo., and Sanders, at Fort Polk, La., told their story in telephone interviews after Godding received the Meritorious Service Medal for saving Sanders’ life.

The two soldiers were in Iraq together with a 10th Mountain Division artillery battery in 2008 when Sanders’ wife said she wanted a divorce, Sanders said.

“It was mid-deployment. Things were getting pretty hectic at the time, the temperature was rising,” Sanders said. “I would mainly call her to kind of vent. She was the only person I had to talk to. She just said goodbye.”

The “victory” referred to in the article is one instance of an aware and caring friend preventing a suicide by disabling his fellow-soldier’s weapon. We have no way of knowing how many suicides have been prevented by comrades in arms, but there have doubtless been many besides this one. In Army Spc. Joseph Sanders’ case, his friend had listened to him make a plea for help by confessing his thoughts of ending his life. Spc. Albert Godding, who took him seriously and took steps to prevent it, obviously did the right thing. Whenever anyone – especially a man – talks about ending his life it is not a joke.

Sadly, too many men are left to deal with very dark thoughts all alone in this day of the casual destruction of men’s lives by politicians, judges and wives. Many men have few people to talk to, and many have been conditioned to bottle up their emotions. Additionally, as a culture, we have been trained to feel little sympathy for men, which probably explains the barbaric treatment they often receive at the hands of their wives and the courts.

That suicide is a response to stress and ill-treatment should be obvious, but the fact that men are some four times as likely to kill themselves as women is seldom taken as evidence that men have it harder in our society. When certain policies, such as abusive, anti-male family law, clearly lead to suicide, one would think that decent people would make some effort to change them. However, for all the talk about reducing the suicide rate in the armed forces, I have never seen any evidence at all that any officials intend to make any changes whatsoever to the family law policies that have created this problem.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

farmgirl February 4, 2011 at 11:01

Okay, yeah. Some military wives are jerks – I’ve met them. The boys should be counselled before getting into those kinds of marriages.

But what about those of us genuinely frightened of our soldiers when they get back? It’s easy to blame the divorce rate on the women, but if you’re a 120 pound woman standing in front of a riling, drunken 210 pound man, that is a SCARY thing. So sometimes you see the black eyes on other women, or beat up kids, and you think about all the times he’s pushed you or thrown stuff at you while drunk, and you worry that when he comes back from deployment the PTSD is going to make it worse… yeah, divorce runs through your mind.

So yeah, some women are whores. But some servicemen are scary.

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raymondchandler March 15, 2012 at 11:04

The military is the Saudi Arabia of feminism when it comes to DV laws, male bashing, and White Knightism. Any officer who has dealt with “Family Advocacy” will tell you this.

The average “military wife” watches daytime TV all day, effs around on her deployed husband, and squanders his tax free money with a full power of attorney.

When men insist on believing their wives are pure and loyal like them, but reality shows them the opposite, the results are tragic.

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