Posts Tagged ‘Suicide’

35 Facts About PTSD Related Suicide



1. In 2012 over 5000 suicides in the United States alone occurred as a result of combat-based PTSD.
2. PTSD related suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States.
3. 7.5% of people in the world experience PTSD during their lifetime.
4. 5 million Americans suffer from PTSD on an annual basis.
5. Women are 2 times more likely (10%) to acquire PTSD than men (5%).
6. The majority of individuals with PTSD also suffer from further mental disorders such as depression.
7. Police officers, firefighters, war veterans, and EMT workers are more vulnerable to PTSD than traditional citizens.
8. Anyone who is suffering from PTSD is at an incredibly high risk for suicide.
9. 22% of people who had suffered PTSD from rape attempted suicide at one point in their lifetime.
10. 23% of individuals with PTSD from a physical assault event also attempted suicide at one point in their lives.
11. 24% of individuals who were confronted with sexual assault as a child attempted suicide throughout their lifetime.
12. The severity of PTSD depends on the severity of the situation and the duration of the event.
13. Aside from self-harm, sufferers from PTSD will be prone to other dangerous behavior such as violence, hatred, and estrangement.
14. 60% of women in the world experience a trauma at one point in their lives.
15. 50% of men experience a trauma at one point in their lives.
16. 11% to 20% of veterans from the Afghanistan and Iraq wars suffer from PTSD.
17. 10% of the Gulf War vets suffer from PTSD.
18. 30% of veterans from Vietnam suffer from PTSD.
19. 55% of women in the military developed a form of PTSD from sexual harassment and assault.
20. 38% of men in the military developed a form of PTSD from sexual harassment and assault.
21. 36.6% of PTSD victims are classified as severe cases (at-risk for suicide).
22. The majority of individuals suffering from PTSD are between the ages of 45 and 59, followed by 30 years of age and 44 years old.
23. 49.9% of people suffering from PTSD are currently in the process of receiving treatment via a licensed healthcare professional.
24. $42.3 billion is allocated to the prevention and assistance associated with PTSD treatment.
25. Individuals with PTSD have the highest rate of using healthcare services due to the fact that there are wide arrays of symptoms experienced from this disorder.
26. 60% to 80% of individuals who are victims of a severe traumatic event will develop PTSD.
27. 50% of outpatient mental health professionals have PTSD.
28. There have been higher rates of PTSD seen in African Americans, Native Americans, and Hispanics.
29. 1 in 5 veterans returning from combat will have PTSD.
30. 13% to 43% of boys and girls will experience a traumatic event during their childhood.
31. 30% to 60% of children who survive a specific disaster suffer from PTSD.
32. 33% of youth that are exposed to community violence develop PTSD.
33. 90% of sexually abused children develop PTSD.
34. 77% of children exposed to a school shooting develop PTSD.
35. Over 65% of children exposed to a traumatic event will attempt to take their own life at one point during their lifetime.

The Risk of going to War

From the blog

“Veterans are at 50% higher risk of suicide than their peers who have not served.

Suicide is the second-leading cause of death for post-9/11 veterans, accounting for 22.3% of all deaths.

In 2015 (the most recent year data is available), more than 70% of veteran suicides occurred outside Veterans Health Administration care. (seeking help has a stigma of weakness to this day)

Depending on branch, up to 31% of service members develop PTSD after returning from combat.”
My two cents: PTSD from war is insidious. Their PTSD could be considered complex in my opinion.

They experience daily trauma over an extended period.

We train them to kill, not how to handle the consequences.

Young men are oblivious to the mental dangers war brings.

31% get PTSD.

Would you call that an EPIDEMIC?

Suicide takes more military lives than combat, especially among women

Deana Martorella Orellana stands before the Memorial Honor Wall in Charleroi, Pa., where her grandfather’s name is engraved. She killed herself in 2016, joining him on the wall. (Martorella family)


Excerpt by Petula Dvorak ; Mon, May 30, 2022, 9:55 AM

“Suicide has been the main killer of U.S. personnel since the Sept. 11 attacks. More than 30,000 of them have died by their own hands since, during a period that saw about 7,000 service members die in combat or training exercises, according to a project from Brown University.

Suicide in the military community is at its highest rate since 1938, according to a Department of Defense report released last month.

Increasingly, those killed are women.

In 2020, they accounted for 7% of military suicides – up from 4% a decade earlier, according to Department of Defense numbers. About one in six servicemembers is female.

The reports break down the deaths by gender, age and branch, but they hardly address the dramatic increase among women.

Deana’s story was featured in 22 Too Many, a project honoring the estimated 22 military suicides that happen every day.

Last month, three sailors on the Naval carrier USS George Washington stationed in Norfolk killed themselves in less than a week. One of them was electrician Natasha Huffman.

The very nature of the war business does little to discourage this mental health calamity.

“Women who are in these male-dominated settings in the military are trained to be strong, to push through,” said Melissa Dichter, associate professor in the School of Social Work at Temple University who published a report this year about women’s suicide in the military.

So when women are in mental health crisis, especially PTSD, they go back to the building blocks of basic training, and how they talked themselves out of letting anyone believe they didn’t belong there. The answer to everything, they learned, was to work harder. So they pushed through.

When female veterans try to find support in the civilian world, their stories of war and bodies and bombs aren’t the stuff of bonding, Dichter found. Support groups, from official meetings at VA to the unofficial ones at the VFW, are testosterone fests.

Dichter analyzed more than a million anonymized calls to the Veteran Crisis Line for her report.

About 53% of the women who called the line were at risk of suicide, compared to 41% of men, her study found.

Many had stories of PTSD and combat trauma. But Dichter found one key difference: While men were more likely to be struggling with substance abuse and addiction, most women called about intimate partner or sexual violence.

That was what ultimately pushed Taniki Richard to try to kill herself: the trauma of combat and a sexual assault that she never reported.

“When I came back from Iraq, I started having nightmares of being raped, and then it being on the aircraft,” the Chesapeake, Virginia, retired Marine and mom said in a video on Yahoo.

“One day, it just became too much. I was under so much extreme stress and pain that I just wanted it to end,” she said, so she crashed a car into a light pole outside a Marine Corps Air Station in North Carolina, “attempting to end my life.”

Richard survived. And she went into counseling, understanding that her nightmares weren’t only about the night in Iraq when her helicopter was under fire. She realized that among her fellow warriors – the family that the military became for her – was her rapist. She now works with the Wounded Warrior Project and tells her story in speeches and podcasts to help other women who survived assault.

Women in the military are dealing with PTSD, isolation and an experience so common that it has its own military acronym – MST, Military Sexual Trauma.

It’s a uniquely sinister form of abuse. It’s not like an assault by a stranger or a wicked date. Fellow warriors are supposed to be the ones who have your back in battle. The unit is about supporting each other. Imagine the danger and insecurity any soldier would feel when they are attacked by their own comrades. It’s a common theme among the women calling for help.

“In intimate partner sexual violence women often feel stuck, it’s hard to find a way out, to see a way out,” said Dichter, whose research has included interviewing sexual assault survivors in the military who struggle with the duality of attackers being colleagues.

Continued in responses



ACE study versus Neuroplasticity

Neuroscientists and therapists pontificate on the brain’s ability to rewire itself.

They say we can either rewire around the damage or create new pathways to healing.

The literature is optimistic, plasticity avails us the opportunity to heal childhood abuse.

I question their stance and rhetoric.

Reality looks different.

Kaiser’s ACE study says we are more prone to disease, mental illness, cancer, incarceration, trauma, and early death.

Soldiers’ daily suicide rates average double digits.

The military should be the front line for healing trauma.

Why have they failed so miserably?

We can train them to kill but struggle to help them cope with the consequences.

I wish we had statistics on PTSD, who heals, how fast, and what percentage?

How many of us heal?

PTSD is out of control in America and the world.

The current climate of divisiveness, violence, hate, and vitriol makes the world even scarier for PTSD people.

PTSD is far more prevalent than reported, so many are undiagnosed.




Look at the trauma inflicted on Ukraine.

That’s real life and death events, scarring a whole country.

Let’s not forget the Russian soldiers and their acquiring PTSD?

What percentage of seriously abused kids do you think heal?

Emotional Regulation: Yikes!!!!!!



Excerpt: From Bessel A. van der Kolk, MD

“The Body Keeps the Score”

“When trauma emanates from within the family, children experience a crisis of loyalty and organize their behavior to survive within their families. Being prevented from articulating what they observe and experience, traumatized children will organize their behavior around keeping the secret, deal with their helplessness with compliance or defiance, and acclimate in any way they can to entrapment in abusive or neglectful situations.

Being left to their own devices leaves chronically traumatized children with deficits in emotional self-regulation. This results in problems with self-definition as reflected by a lack of a continuous sense of self, poorly modulated affect and impulse control, including aggression against self and others, and uncertainty about the reliability and predictability of others, expressed as distrust, suspiciousness, and problems with intimacy, resulting in social isolation.

Chronically traumatized children tend to suffer from distinct alterations in states of consciousness, including amnesia, hypermnesia, dissociation, depersonalization and derealization, flashbacks and nightmares of specific events, school problems, difficulties in attention regulation, disorientation in time and space, and sensorimotor developmental disorders. The children often are literally are “out of touch” with their feelings, and often have no language to describe internal states.

When a child lacks a sense of predictability, he or she may experience difficulty developing of object constancy and inner representations of their own inner world or their surroundings. As a result, they lack a good sense of cause and effect and of their own contributions to what happens to them.

Without internal maps to guide them, they act, instead of plan, and show their wishes in their behaviors, rather than discussing what they want. Unable to appreciate clearly who they or others are, they have problems enlisting other people as allies on their behalf. Other people are sources of terror or pleasure but are rarely fellow human beings with their own sets of needs and desires.

These children also have difficulty appreciating novelty. Without a map to compare and contrast, anything new is potentially threatening. What is familiar tends to be experienced as safer, even if it is a predictable source of terror.

Traumatized children rarely discuss their fears and traumas spontaneously. They also have little insight into the relationship between what they do, what they feel, and what has happened to them. They tend to communicate the nature of their traumatic past by repeating it in the form of interpersonal en- actments, both in their play and in their fantasy lives.


Navigating a traumatized existence



Stating the obvious, we were innocent, helpless kids without the mental or physical abilities to escape or protect ourselves.

For me, healing looks totally different than a normal person.

Everyone talks about how connecting and trusting, having healthy social relationships are part of healing and wellbeing.

I did the opposite. Socially, trusting people was never going to happen except for an inner circle of a few.

For me, isolating from most people, stabilized my nervous system, so I could heal.

I never trusted people, never.

People betraying me, did so much damage after my childhood, I became a loner.

Finding a way to be happy without many attachments was difficult, but the alternative of a loved one betraying me was never an option after college.

I stayed alive, did not commit suicide, got up and created a private world for myself.

I am alive, I survived extreme abuse as a confused, little boy.

Terror followed me, nightmares, sweats, stomach aches, vomiting, anxiety and fear ensued.

Now, when all this explodes life goes back to feeling imminent danger is near, it exists deep inside my memories.

I can not make sense of my life and all the suffering.

Was I born to be a sufferer?

How should I endure a life filled with suffering.

Where is the worth in my life, keeps nagging me for answers

Abused kids can not escape the damage.

Any insight?

Note: I am not advocating isolating, except from your abusers, even if it is a parent until after you improve.



Military suicides up as much as 20% in COVID era

FILE – In this March 31, 2020, file photo a U.S. Army soldier walks inside a mobile surgical unit being set up by soldiers from Fort Carson, Col., and Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) as part of a field hospital inside CenturyLink Field Event Center, in Seattle. Military suicides have increased by as much as 20% this year compared to the same period last year, and some incidents of violent behavior have spiked, as service members struggle with isolation and other impacts of COVID-19 added to the pressures of war-zone deployments and responding to national disasters and civil unrest. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)



WASHINGTON (AP) — Military suicides have increased by as much as 20% this year compared to the same period in 2019, and some incidents of violent behavior have spiked as service members struggle under COVID-19, war-zone deployments, national disasters and civil unrest.

While the data is incomplete and causes of suicide are complex, Army and Air Force officials say they believe the pandemic is adding stress to an already strained force.

And senior Army leaders — who say they’ve seen about a 30% jump in active duty suicides so far this year — told The Associated Press that they are looking at shortening combat deployments. Such a move would be part of a broader effort to make the wellbeing of soldiers and their families the Army’s top priority, overtaking combat readiness and weapons modernization.

The Pentagon refused to provide 2020 data or discuss the issue, but Army officials said discussions in Defense Department briefings indicate there has been up to a 20% jump in overall military suicides this year. The numbers vary by service. The active Army’s 30% spike — from 88 last year to 114 this year — pushes the total up because it’s the largest service. The Army Guard is up about 10%, going from 78 last year to 86 this year. The Navy total is believed to be lower this year.

Army leaders say they can’t directly pin the increase on the virus, but the timing coincides.

“I can’t say scientifically, but what I can say is – I can read a chart and a graph, and the numbers have gone up in behavioral health related issues,” Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said in an AP interview.

Pointing to increases in Army suicides, murders and other violent behavior, he added, “We cannot say definitively it is because of COVID. But there is a direct correlation from when COVID started, the numbers actually went up.”

Preliminary data for the first three months of 2020 show an overall dip in military suicides across the active duty and reserves, compared to the same time last year. Those early numbers, fueled by declines in Navy and Air Force deaths, gave hope to military leaders who have long struggled to cut suicide rates. But in the spring, the numbers ticked up.

“COVID adds stress,” said Gen. Charles Brown, the Air Force chief, in public remarks. “From a suicide perspective, we are on a path to be as bad as last year. And that’s not just an Air Force problem, this is a national problem because COVID adds some additional stressors – a fear of the unknown for certain folks.”

The active duty Air Force and reserves had 98 suicides as of Sept. 15, unchanged from the same period last year. But last year was the worst in three decades for active duty Air Force suicides. Officials had hoped the decline early in the year would continue.

Navy and Marine officials refused to discuss the subject.

Continue reading

The Connection Between PTSD and Suicide By Matthew Tull, PhD Updated September 02, 2019

Artur Borzecki Photography/Getty Images



“In the United States, more than 40,000 people commit suicide each year. Although women attempt suicide more so than men, men are more likely to succeed in killing themselves during a suicide attempt. In addition, people who have experienced a traumatic event and/or have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) may be more likely to attempt suicide.

Trauma, PTSD, and Suicide

In a survey of 5,877 people across the United States, it was found that people who had experienced physical or sexual assault in their life also had a high likelihood of attempting to take their own life at some point:

Nearly 22% of people who had been raped had also attempted suicide at some point in their life.

Approximately 23% of people who had experienced a physical assault had also attempted suicide at some point in their life.

These rates of suicide attempts increased considerably among people who had experienced multiple incidents of sexual (42.9%) or physical assault (73.5%). They also found that a history of sexual molestation, physical abuse as a child, and neglect as a child were associated with high rates of suicide attempts (17.4% to 23.9%)

People with a diagnosis of PTSD are also at greater risk to attempt suicide. Among people who have had a diagnosis of PTSD at some point in their lifetime, approximately 27% have also attempted suicide.

There Is Hope: Seeking Help

Experiencing a traumatic event and/or developing PTSD can have a tremendous impact on a person’s life. The symptoms of PTSD can make a person feel constantly afraid and isolated. In addition, depression is common following a traumatic event and among people with PTSD.

A person may feel as though there is no hope or escape from their symptoms, leading them to contemplate suicide.

It is important to realize that even though it may feel as though there is no hope, recovery and healing is possible. If you are having thoughts of ending your life or if you know someone who is having these thoughts, it is important to seek help as soon as possible.”

3 Navy sailors assigned to USS George H.W. Bush kill themselves in a week.



Three Navy sailors assigned to the USS George H.W. Bush aircraft carrier killed themselves last week in separate incidents, officials said Monday.

The commanding officer of the carrier, which is docked at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Virginia, announced the deaths in a post on the ship’s Facebook page Monday.

“It is with a heavy heart that I can confirm the loss of three Sailors last week in separate, unrelated incidents from apparent suicide. My heart is broken,” Capt. Sean Bailey wrote in the announcement.

None of the deaths occurred on the carrier, which is docked at the shipyard for repairs, Navy Times reported.

The crew members who killed themselves last week are the third, fourth and fifth sailors assigned to the ship to commit suicide in a two-year period, Bailey added in his statement.

Bailey urged sailors on the carrier to come forward with suggestions on how to put an end to the string of suicides.

“We need All Hands to engage by bringing forward your suggestions and ideas for how we can work together to prevent another suicide,” he wrote in the post, adding: “I want to reiterate that there is never any stigma or repercussion from seeking help.”



My two cents: For the last two years military suicides have averaged 20 a day.

That is 14,600 suicides!

Families, wives, husbands, children, brothers, sisters and friends are negatively impacted or traumatized.

How many children will be 50% more likely to committ suicide in the future, now that a parent has.




A world class Meditator faces capture and torture



Matthew Ricard from the book “Happiness”

After the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1959, Tenzin Choedrak, the personal physician of the Dalai Lama, was first sent to a forced labor camp in northeastern Tibet along with some one hundred others.

Five prisoners, himself among them, survived.

He was transferred from camp to camp for nearly twenty years and often thought that he would die of hunger or of the abuse inflicted on him.

A psychiatrist who specializes in post-traumatic stress and who treated Doctor Choedrak was astonished that he showed not the least sign of post-traumatic stress syndrome.

He was not bitter, felt no resentment, displayed serene kindness, and had none of the usual psychological problems, such as anxiety, nightmares, and so on.

Choedrak acknowledged that he occasionally felt hatred for his torturers, but that he always returned to the practice of meditation on inner peace and compassion.

That was what sustained his desire to go on living and ultimately saved him.




My two cents: This meditator did not get PTSD, did not become hyper vigilant, or contemplate suicide.

We do not know what thoughts (demons) any man faces but these world class meditators live life fully.

Suicide is extremely rare or non existent for these world class meditators.

In my mind, a focused meditator will not commit suicide unless there is a severe disorder or a traumatic brain injury.

“He occasionally felt hatred for his torturers, but that he always returned to the practice of meditation on inner peace and compassion.”

We let those hateful, harmful, suicide thoughts pass on through.



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