Michael F. New Jersey

Military Suicide and PTSD

My essay is all about Military Suicide and PTSD, and how we need to create more places were our veterans can get the critical help they need. We need this so our veterans can go back to the life they were living before they served in the military.

  Dear Mr. President,

“Trauma of war doesn’t end when the guns stop firing.”- U.S. veteran. This is why It is crucial that we start helping our United States soldiers that come back from war. Too many military soldiers get Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and end up taking their own life from stress. I strongly believe that the number of military suicides can be reduced if we provide help for our U.S. veterans. It is imperative that we do everything we can for them because they do the same for us!

This topic is important to me because my uncle, Joe Ferland, a U.S. Marine came home from Iraq with PTSD. He does not have a severe case, but it made me think that we really need to help normal people who come home from war and became discombobulated. In Iraq he saw many horrible things, and it has changed him forever. I can’t even imagine going to war normal, and coming back a totally different person. It is absurd that most veterans don’t even get the help they need.

Veterans must be forced to find treatment for their problems, and we need more of it! Research found by http://www.usatoday.com found the suicide rate per person among veterans is over double compared to the civilian rate. According to www.va.gov, a suicide prevention program, veterans make up 8.5% of the United States population. But they account for 18% of it’s suicides. A recent study by the VA Suicide Prevention Group found that the U.S. veteran suicide rates to be as high as 7,500 a year. A veteran statistic website http://www.veteransandptsd.com/ backtracked and found that fifty percent of the veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan got no treatment for PTSD. Out of that half that seeked treatment only half of them get minimally adequate. The informative site also explained how rates of PTSD and Suicides will only climb due to the more advanced weapons compared to prior wars.

It is very hard to live with PTSD, and it can make a normal day into the day you were deployed into Iraq. A United States veteran said,” The most normal things can seem so scary. Even though I knew they were fireworks on the Fourth of July, to me they still sounded like incoming mortars. It took me right back to my deployment…” Many veterans with PTSD can’t hold a job because the civilian world is not even in the same universe compared to the military world. For example, when someone in the workplace doesn’t follow the rules they can get very angry because when you don’t listen to rules in war you die. The Amygdala in them can go from zero to sixty in a blink of an eye, and every normal situation is an emergency. It is very hard to tell the difference from Iraq and home.

It should be a necessity that we create places where our military can get the special help they need. I hope that the next president will invest into this because these people risk their lives day after day of us. The only counter argument someone might argue is that we would need to spend money on more important things, things such as, education, unemployment, immigration, and Isis. I would argue that our military does everything for us, and they deserve much better!

Mr, Mrs President, what kind of country does not give veterans the care they need? What will happen to the United States if we don’t take care of our military? 


Michael F

Brielle Elementary

Eighth Grade Citizens

The students in the eighth grade who wished to post their letters are featured here. Students worked for several weeks in both Social Studies and Language Arts classes, crafting their arguments. They participated in Penpal Schools Decision 2016 as well as Media Literacy Week.

All letters from this group →