Sunday, September 25, 2016

Suicide Awareness: Something Worth Living For

Something Worth Living For
Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
September 25, 2016

Did you have something to risk your life for? Obviously you did or you wouldn't have joined the military. Were you willing to die to save someone else? Easy to guess that was a fact and you proved that one everyday you were deployed. So after all that, with the life of others mattering that much, why are thinking about taking your own life? Isn't there something worth living for?

That is the part no one has been able to explain to me. The thing is you can come up with all reasonable answers but none of them really equal to anything being any harder than combat. You survived all that. While coming back home shouldn't be this hard for you or any veteran, none of it is as hopeless as you think it is.

When I told the truth about what was going on in the Veterans' Community, folks wanted what was easy to understand. Like some saying they are raising awareness and getting away with taking a couple of headlines, quoting numbers as if they even begin to understand the report they came from.  

Anyway, after thirty four years I figured since those folks are winning attention for themselves while veterans have been losing their lives for decades, it was time to do some fabricating of my own. Most of the characters came from listening to veterans over all these years and blended with imaginary situations. They got into trouble for something worth the risk.

Everyone is talking about veterans of Afghanistan and Iraq. No one is talking about the fact that the majority of veterans committing suicide are over the age of fifty. Yet our older veterans have more wisdom about what needs to be done than the younger generation has begun to understand.

So I created a story to tell what it is like for the newer veterans wrapped in a mystery, blended with a fictitious conspiracy using homeless veterans as lab rats in order to create the perfect soldier. 

These veterans were among the eleven thousand kicked out of the Army in 2013. This came after years of prevention training, the military telling us they were taking all this seriously at the same time they betrayed the very men and women willing to die for the sake of someone else. They got away with it because the American public wasn't paying enough attention.

A group of proven heroic soldiers are transferred to a old fort taken over by a high ranking member of the Army to protect them from being kicked out as well. Each of them had multiple deployments and even though they were suffering for their service they did not leave their military family.

The story is about passing judgment, raw emotions, survivor guilt, nightmares, flashbacks and losing hope that anything will ever get better. It is also about being betrayed by some while being supported by the family they entered into when they became the smallest minority in the nation. 

Those willing to die to save the lives of others yet having to search for a reason worth living for are all over the news but what is being talked about is far from the real world they live in.

You are not like the other 90+% of the population who never put their lives on the line. They suffer PTSD too and they commit suicide, but you risked your own life because other lives mattered more. Seems there should be a "veterans lives matter" movement because obviously most of you missed that. Still you don't fit in with them now that you live everyday as a veteran. You do fit in perfectly with other veterans and they are ready to help you heal so you can pass the healing along to others. That's something worth living for!

Ask yourself a question they don't want you to think about. "How does raising awareness save a single life?" What good does it do anyone to talk about a fabricated number of veterans killing themselves when they still don't know how to heal?

It is time to change the conversation from suicides to surviving. Evidence has shown no sign of suicides being reduced, no matter how much money they spend or how many times sad outcomes get into the news. You don't need someone to tell you that you don't want to live anymore. You need someone to give you back hope so you know there is something worth living for.  

RESIDUAL WAR will be on Amazon soon so get ready to see a world they only heard about from slogans.