My experience of this retreat comes from just that: my own story, the stories I’ve heard and accepted from others, the ones I’ve told myself over the years, I underwent brain surgery 3 months ago, and having a brain tumor removed felt like it released a host of toxic emotions that I could no longer hide from. It was like everything that I pushed down, put away in a box, and refused to talk about, was finally able to “get out.” For the first time in my life, I was forced to do nothing but sit and think, The beauty of this marriage retreat weekend was that the Raider Project pulled together a community of people into an environment where I didn’t feel ashamed of my stories. I found myself acknowledging feelings I had previously refused to think about. I found myself accepting past events. I found myself looking at my spouse and really seeing him. I found myself choosing to communicate with my husband and trust that my vulnerability will only help him understand me and love me more...
The word Post Traumatic Stress DISORDER is ridiculous. I understand the Post Traumatic Stress part but the DISORDER? Why? Does having PTS really mean you have a disorder. Maybe to a clinical psychologists who refer to the DSM IV to diagnose a certain mental health issue it can be a disorder. However, the word disorder used for veterans can cripple your mental stability.
I hope this letter reaches you in relative peace. I am Fritz Sleigher and just retired out of MARSOC after 22 years in our beloved Corps. Thank you for the retirement note. I served as an 02, 0369, 0311, and 0317 with a smattering of other MOS’ at various units. I retired as a Gunny, which will come into play shortly.
I watched your video and feel your pain. Although we have never met, I am certain that you feel each loss of life and are just as confused as to why Marines are taking their lives at an alarming rate. I’ll never understand the monumental burden of command you bear, but I am certain we both share the feeling of loss, guilt, and confusion after each suicide.
The BLUF on suicide is this: The current culture of the Corps conflicts with itself and creates an environment where those in need feel even more secluded. I re-posted your article on FB, and several peers (recently retired enlisted combat vets) sing the same tune: The Corps let them down.