Courtesy of Gawker is the story of one soldier’s last words.
Here’s a snippet:
Thus, I am left with basically nothing. Too trapped in a war to be at peace, too damaged to be at war. Abandoned by those who would take the easy route, and a liability to those who stick it out—and thus deserve better. So you see, not only am I better off dead, but the world is better without me in it
This is what brought me to my actual final mission. Not suicide, but a mercy killing. I know how to kill, and I know how to do it so that there is no pain whatsoever. It was quick, and I did not suffer. And above all, now I am free. I feel no more pain. I have no more nightmares or flashbacks or hallucinations. I am no longer constantly depressed or afraid or worried.
This is hauntingly sad piece to read for a number of reasons. The two that first come to mind:
1.) It’s a damn shame that we send soldiers to fight in unjust, undeclared and immoral wars and then when they return, we allow them to fall through the cracks. Now, granted, it’s a volunteer military and many within that apparatus will never even see combat. However, for those that do, it quite obviously imprints upon their minds and hearts.
2.) There are a plethora of misconceptions surrounding mental health, illness and suicide. One I wanted to highlight here is the misconception that suicide is “selfish.” People ought to realize that those who commit suicide do not do so on a “spur of the moment” type impulse. It’s not something where you just wake up one day and kill yourself. No, typically, a person that kills themselves arrived at that point after years and sometimes even decades, of internal suffering. It’s a prolonged process that for an alarming number of veterans and otherwise, leads to suicide.