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I've never been right, and now I'm lost

I grew up knowing it two things. 1) that I had to be of use for my life to have purpose. 2) that serving my country was purposeful and useful. About 3 months ago I was Medically Discharged owing to my mental health. Now I am unemployed and feel unemployable.

To add to the burden I place on my family, I cannot get on with people. I'm estranged from much of my immediate family; I couldn't keep on being criticized or judged for things I either had or had not done. Fed up with managing relationships that were all one way. Then at Christmas I exploded at my wife's family when her sister and brothers in law openly mocked me. And now my wife has said she cannot cope with me anymore.

I've never had many friends. Many of those I feel close to are thousands of miles away. The people I am closest to I feel most distant from. I am without any utility and am struggling to find reasons to keep going. The only two I have are my little boys. But at what point do I become detrimental to their future and well-being? Surely it's better that I go sooner rather than later to reduce impact on them?

If I stay I will only bring hurt and pain. If I go...well at least it might only be fleeting. Give everyone the chance of a better world. Because all I touch I pollute. I cannot live with people.

total eclipse

SF Friend
Staff Alumni
I can honestly tell you that if you your little boys will not be ok they will always put some blame on themselves. You will teach them that giving up is the way to solve things. I am sorry that you are suffering the army can and will set you up with some therapy to help you i am sure of that. They should also help you transition into civilian life again hard to do but they will. Reach out to veteran affairs and get some support you deserve.
Thanks SF, but the Armed Forces have turned their back on me; I'm British, we only treat those inside the Military, and the Mental Health team discharged their duty to me two years ago. Being back around those people just makes it worse.
I'm on a waiting list to see a mental health nurse or counsellor. My GPs here are less than useful as they are military practitioners; they don't 'do' mental. Even tried stopping me doing a voluntary mentoring scheme with the military school where we are on the basis of my illness.

Thanks, though, for what you said. I do care about others. But I also care enough to know that sometimes people are better off when we aren't here.

Back in Apr 2017 I was in a similar space, but knew my wife had my back. I went up <mod edit - method>It's something I dream about sometimes. If I'd done it back then, <mod edit - guidelines> But I didn't because I thought I might still have some use or purpose. Not so sure now.

No. I AM sure. I don't. But my death also won't be as beneficial. Which is the lesser of two evils; inflicting them with my life, or my death?

I've been over this time and time again, and I cannot square it. Definition of madness: repeating the same actions expecting a different outcome. That's life. Madness.
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For a Phoenix to rise, it must first burn.
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Hi @Sommeboar welcome to SF. I’m sorry you’ve found yourself in such a place you found your way here, but in stumbling upon this place you have found a support network to try and help you through. Please believe that the impact on your sons by you taking your life will not be fleeting. There are people here who have had a parent commit suicide and it still impact them to this day.

I’m sure you’ve had a look yourself but after just a quick google search I’ve found the two websites. Please try and contact them to seek help.


I’m glad you’ve found us here. Keep posting ok
Many thanks. Unfortunately, owing to being overseas, accessing Combat Stress and NHS are not options... I am entirely dependent upon military healthcare (I am still an army spouse).


For a Phoenix to rise, it must first burn.
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SF Supporter
Sorry @Sommeboar I just assumed you were in the UK. It sucks you’re having such a hard time finding help, but please don’t give up. It may not feel like it but you do have so much to stick around for. Those boys need you.
I wish I had something more constructive to add, just keep reaching out to us here. We’ll listen and support the best we can.


SF Supporter
Hi @Sommeboar and welcome to SF. I also joined yesterday, just 18 minutes before you, because I also need help and know what you are going through right now. I'm also a military veteran (US), and was medically discharged after 12 years of service and know the difficulty in getting any kind of help through the military and veterans government agencies.

Not too long ago, I was only 15 minutes away from taking my life until my daughter left me a voicemail asking me if I was ok. The thoughts that went through my head about how much grief this would cause my daughter was very disturbing. That was the only thing that stopped me. To this day she does not know that I was about to commit suicide and she saved my life. I'm too embarrassed to tell her. Now when I'm in a terrible place and have thoughts of harming myself, I think back to that day and play a short movie in my mind of the sequential events of what would happen after my death from notification, memorial/funeral, future birthdays and other holidays, how my children will need to tell their children what happened to me.

Hang in there buddy!!! I know it's difficult right now but try to keep yourself busy doing something constructive. Do you have any hobbies you like to do? When I'm in a bad place and not feeling like I want to deal with anybody, I try to play with my dog or at least find a quiet place just to cuddle with him. Not sure if you like or are able to have pets but their love and compassion is unconditional and they will never judge you.

I currently work for the US government. Are there any positions you can apply for with the British government? Not sure how that works there, but in the US, they give priority to military veterans, and even more so if you were medically discharged when applying for civilian government jobs.

You have definitely come to the right place. Everybody is here to support you. Take care of yourself.

Thanks, Ron.

Yeah, I look at my two boys (2 & 4) and I just know that I don't want to miss anything. But I also wonder if the greater kindness would be to make the choice. I've gone through it in my head so many times.

We don't treat veterans the same way, here. Once you're out, it's like you were never in. For me, with my wife still serving and us being overseas, there's no opportunity to find purposeful employment, and all the support structures are 2000 miles away and unavailable without a postcode.

As for hobbies...I used to have some, but haven't for quite some time now. Going out and interacting with people just seems like the worst possible option. My whole world has been the military, all the way back to school and before. I don't know how to be civilian, or to be valid outside of it.

I keep going here and now because at the moment I know the time is not right. I don't want my wife to find me. She goes of on a training course soon <mod edit - timeline>. The nanny will have the boys. Perfect timing, really.

She's making sure I go to therapy between now and then. The same military mental health system that saw me thrown on the dungheap.

I don't like who I am and I detest what I am. I feel like a naughty school kid; invalid and towered over by the rest of humanity. I spent my career in the military being told I was wrong, and being proven right. Spent my life being treated like what I say or do is invalid, yet time and again being the foundation of everything else. The anger and frustration just makes me mean and horrible to deal with, and I cannot change that. Even my wife, for whom I have sacrificed so much, cannot stand me. So I have nothing left, except my two boys, and I really do wonder if they need me.

Horribly narcissistic, but then I'm only human, and not a very good one at that.
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Active Member
suicide is the one last thing you do for yourself, it's not the benefit of anyone else. If you are going to do it, be honest about that. It's for you. It never benefits anyone else but your need at that moment.

Kids do need you, they need to see how you handle mistakes and how to keep trying to do better despite never being perfect.
Everything in your brain right now is telling you the opposite, but it's in this stuck pattern of misleading you.

Children who lose a parent to suicide are more likely to die the same way.


Staff member
Safety & Support
SF Supporter
Hi @Sommeboar

I am so sorry that you've found yourself in this situation. It's appalling the way our armed forces are treated once they're out. I don't know how the system works for army spouses but could you see a doctor from the country you are currently in? Assuming of course that you're somewhere that has decent healthcare.

Is there any way you could come home? I'm sure you're aware that NHS mental health services are struggling at the moment but it sounds like they'd be more use to you than where you are now.

One thing I do know is that your two beautiful little boys will NEVER be better off without you. You're their dad, they love you and need you and they always will. If you kill yourself they will always have unanswered questions, they will always feel that they weren't enough to keep you here.

Things CAN get better. I know right now you can't see the wood for the trees but stick around here and we'll do all we can to support you. Keep talking to us ok?
I want to say thank you to everyone for all your kind words and attempts to help. It's nice to know that the kindness of strangers does exist.

I've been writing my thoughts down the past few days on paper, and reasoning through all my options. The conclusion I've come to is based on some pretty basic quantitative and qualitative data analysis. The latter is a bit biased, the former cold calculus.

So today I started writing my letters. I'm not afraid of what is to come, nor relieved or agitated in any way. The worst part of it is having to keep it secret from people I never keep anything from. But I know when and how.

I wouldn't ever let someone else give up without a fight. I've known a few who've taken this road before me, and I know the hurt and the damage it can do. But I also know the damage my continuation will bring. I've seen the future in the evidence of the past.

A few years ago, a man who I respect and admire said "change yourself, or change your environment". Well, I've tried both. The former never lasts; do all the self-help and self-improving you want, but unless you truly believe, it ain't gonna work. As for the latter; I'm outside the only environment I've ever known, and I'm completely lost.

So, without a trace of melodrama or hysterics, I am making my peace with death. Because I've realised that I've stopped hoping and dreaming about the future. It's dark to me, like a blind man stumbling in the dark. The light has gone. And it isn't a case of what I want or need, but of the best I can do for those around me.

Which has led me back to a place I thought I had left some 17 years ago. The realisation that in all that time nothing had really changed is quite breathtaking. It just goes to show that, somewhere deep inside of me, something is at best calibrated wrongly, at worst broken. I cannot be fixed, and I cannot stand the face I see in the mirror every morning. I cannot ensure the hurt and disappointment, pain and exasperation on my wife's face, or the anger and resentment o see from my boys when I fail in my paternal duties. There is no choice in this, only knowledge of what must be done.
Sorry you're feeling this way. I know how shitty the system is there. Yet, I feel you're angry at the Military, the Mental health system, your wife, your in laws. All for failing you. You don't say why you were discharged from military. Is it PTSD or something else? As far as the best case for everyone around you, I have to humbly disagree. You'll be gone, while those left, will forever try to piece their lives together, all the time wondering what if? Nothing will be the same for them. Even for you. I understand your frustration. But, you can always talk to us. It may not be the same as therapy. But, you're not waiting 6 mths for an opening. Maybe, others here will have some suggestions for you. You're not the only one suffering there.


Well-Known Member
I don't feel at all qualified to offer anything here but I wanted to add my voice to others and say please don't leave your sons. Your reasons are thought out, they are logical, they make sense but if you went ahead and did it, your wife would be devastated and grieving and that would impact her ability to look after the boys. It would not play out the way you have planned. How will they be treated by family, friends, teachers? You don't just disappear, like a problem solved. You will leave behind a huge vacuum, one that will never be filled. Your boys will forever wonder who you are and wonder at their own identity. I had to deal with a trauma when I was extremely young. I look at photos of me at the time and I look like a happy smiling little girl but the pain inside was too much to bear. I thought my parents had died. I thought every time I came back from school I'd find an empty house. I was walking back home from work one day, in my 20's and had that same thought, when it suddenly hit me that I've been thinking that for so many years and not questioned it or thought it abnormal. Children can suffer depression and pain and still look normal but it will always be there and with suicide your wife and sons will forever wonder if they could have done something and forever wonder why they weren't good enough to keep you from doing it. Children feel. They don't reason, they won't be able to express it but the pain will be there. Please for their sake stay.


Vanity of Vanities
I have PTSD plus other things so I will give you this.

There are really in my mind 2 choices for you.

The first choice is the best and would be to hang around for them until you die of old age and get to see your grandkids and live a happy life and love your kids and grandkids as long as you have them.

The second choice is not the best but at least it is something. Since you have two young boys, then you have to try your best to at least hang on until they are 18 or so and they will be men then you can talk to them and let then know how much you are suffering and then they might be able to help you since they will love you because you are their dad and no one can take that away from them. Try to listen to them at that time of how they know you and from at least that time you can make your choice on how much this is worth living or not.


SF Artist
Staff Alumni
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Sommeboar, there's never been anyone in my life who I thought it would be 'best' for me if they took their life. Even my father, who, unlike you, really was a bad person. How about you? Has there ever been anyone in your life that you sat around thinking, 'Wow my life would be so much better if X committed suicide!'? Of course not, because it's not a real world situation, that's just warped, delusional depression 'logic'. A family member killing themselves is never best for anybody, it's always the worst for everyone. No matter how you try and rationalize it, it would always be an irrational and illogical act of violence that would not only do immediate harm to you, but also long lasting harm to the people you love the most.


Primate Admin
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Your sons will be irreparably harmed if you were to take your life, man. You are bypassing that in all your statements. You think that because you hurt so much and can't find the answers right now that it's going to just be okay because you won't be here to deal with the fallout from it. And you won't, that's true. But your wife will and she'll also be there with 2 young boys while she questions every minute of every day for the last few years of her entire life. She'll question what she could have done, why didn't she do this, why couldn't she see that, etc. You think that writing letters to people will somehow alleviate some of that pain but it's pointless, the letters do no good. The pain is a knife turning itself in the side of those people for literal, actual decades. And your kids have the legacy of their dad killing himself - which in turn makes them 17 times more likely to do so later on in life. It's now socially acceptable behavior to them in some weird way, even though they are small.
My mother killed herself. My sister might very well follow. I could too. It's a pretty heavy legacy to leave. I hope you get it together here quickly.


Active Member
this makes me wonder why the hell I try to keep myself around. To be frank about it. If a guy with kids and a wife feels he has to throw in the towel, what chance to I have as a spinster with bone and eye disease and PTSD.

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