We lost one of our own today. I'm sure you've heard about the 22 a day statistic that is out there, purporting that 22 veterans commit suicide each day. Valid or not, Team Rubicon lost one of our own to suicide today. It's heartbreaking and enraging and terrifying all at the same time.
When Clay Hunt killed himself, I wrote about the range of emotions that wrought. I'm finding they are being dragged back up again tonight. My worry then is the same as it is now:
I don't know what the answers are. I don't know if there ARE answers. That's the scariest part of all of this. What if we do everything right - EVERYTHING - and it's still not enough? Then what? How do we keep from losing more people like Clay? I don't know.
What if there are no answers? What the hell do we do then? And what kind of message does it send to that person that is struggling mightily and doesn't have access to the resources that Clay or J had access too? These guys were SURROUNDED by people that knew of their struggles. They knew the demons these guys faced. Hell, J was ASIST trained - he was trained to know what to look for, how to help those facing exactly what he was facing.
And yet, here we are. Again.
Five fucking years later and no closer to an answer. How do I protect the people I love - that hold pieces of my heart - from this? I don't know how. I didn't know J - hadn't had the chance to meet him yet. But I'm watching my friends' hearts break over this and I'm helpless to do anything. And I hate it. I hate every damned moment of it. I want to wrap them all up in a bubble and protect them from this. From all of it. And I can't. It's not possible.
I hate this. With every fiber of my being, I hate this.