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  1. #1

    Default Suicide in the US army

    I was listening to a radio report this morning which was stating that there are more deaths by suicide in the US army now than at any time in recorded history, it was at one point as frequent as once a week and was not always personnel in combat zones or deployed to combat zones and the figures for death by suicide were beginning to exceed deaths in afghanistan.

    What do you think about this and what do you think is causing it? I mean from the sound of it Al Quida, other terror groups or enemy forces dont need to actively engage the US army because whatever is at work within the US army or western culture can kill people quicker or at least as quickly as they can.

  2. #2


    Oh wait, I actually underestimated the numbers, its actually one per day!

  3. #3
    Freaking Ratchet Rail Tracer's Avatar
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    Jun 2010


    There are a number of reasons, which I am not really the person to go to for this topic. If we are talking about the suicides from those who has rarely been deployed outside the U.S. in danger zones, or have never been deployed out of the U.S.
    I would hypothesize:
    3:"things" that happen while serving (hazing....etc.) What is even worse is that the military culture is still not ready for the "if you have a problem, let us know."

    Recruitment - From what I've been told, many military recruiters are payed by how many people sign up for the military. The more these young ones the recruiter can get by any means necessary = the more money they get. I heard stories where some recruiters WILL tell the person wanting to sign up... if they are slightly overweight or underweight to drink water/eat only a little before the exams. It means, we aren't really seeing if the recruits are prepared for military life. Even people I know that joined the Army said he was completely glad that he was officially done with the military.

    Workload - There ARE slackers. And the ones that do end up slacking, the other guys need to pick up for. Some people are forced to do double time, otherwise they'd be scolded. Again, my Army friend often complained about how he had people that were slacking so much on the job, everybody else that were doing their job... they had to do double (even the jobs that aren't assigned for the person.)

    Hazing, Culture - Many things go behind the scene. The recent one that I can think of is the bullying of Representative Judy Chu's Nephew that literally pushed him to suicide. You can also think of bullying in the form of Ideals. Muslim Americans these days are more like to be bullied for no apparent reason.
    If you are stationed in "certain" parts of the country there is still a divide between people. While the military culture states that the army should work as one, there are instances that people do not follow these orders.

    If I were to put any emphasis, it'll be 1 and 2.

  4. #4
    Senior Member captain curmudgeon's Avatar
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    Apr 2010
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    It's quite tragic, and I nearly teared up reading a particularly moving article about this in the magazine Newsweek perhaps a week or so ago. If I end up working for the VA as a social worker at any point I can't imagine that I would be able to escape dealing with this. Also I have family (both individuals with mental health issues) serving in the military. That being the case, the article really got me thinking and feeling much more than I expected.
    Jarlaxle: fact checking this thread makes me want to go all INFP on my wrists

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  5. #5
    Senior Member swordpath's Avatar
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    Oct 2007


    A lot of people that go into the military come from troubled backgrounds. Some people gravitate to the military in hopes of escaping that. Unfortunately the baggage follows a lot of these individuals, and the compounded stress and environment of the military can adversely affect people pretty severely.

    I can say first hand that military life can be very lonely.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Habba's Avatar
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    Jul 2008


    Just some statistics...

    The suicide rate of US as whole have been around is 11.8 suicides per 100,000. The number has been rather stable in the recent years, staying between 10.4 and 12.0 for the past 20 years.
    154 suicides in 155 days at US army would project 363 suicides this year, which is about 26 suicides per 100,000. So suicide rates at the US army are more than double compared to the nation as whole.

    For a comparison, Finland has 17.6, Japan 23.8 and Lithuania 34.1 suicides per 100.000
    "The present is theirs; the future, for which I have really worked, is mine."
    -Nikola Tesla

  7. #7
    Senior Member Chaotic Harmony's Avatar
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    Jul 2009
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    My husband works at the VA and one of our friends is a social worker there... Part of my husband's duties in the army is suicide prevention. He has a list of people he has to contact each week to check in with and see how they are doing.

    In his experience... One of the biggest reason for suicide was not being able to find a job. He's had to talk one of our good friends off a ledge so many times because he has had the worst luck in finding full time employment. Which caused him to spiral out of control into debt. A friend of mine told me that once a company learned he was in National Guard, they suddenly start back pedaling making excuses about why they can't hire him. The best guess is, it's the fear that they will be deployed and then they are left needing help again. The other reason was adjustment. He said that once you come home it's incredibly hard to adjust to life in the States again after being away for 12-18 months at a time.

  8. #8
    No moss growing on me Giggly's Avatar
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    Jun 2008
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    Wow, this makes me so sad, especially considering how much appreciation I have for them.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Munchies's Avatar
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    Jan 2010
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    this doesn't count the marines statistics right? Haha holy fuck they just yell for the sake of yelling, i'd bet the marine's suicide rate is higher
    1+1=3 OMFG

  10. #10
    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    Mar 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by swordpath View Post

    I can say first hand that military life can be very lonely.
    Probably the only upside for all INTP's in the army.
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

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