I want to focus on one troubling truism that research has unfortunately made quasi-axiomatic: It's not the deployments -- their intensity, their frequency, or their number -- that contribute to the epidemic of military suicide.
All of us can do our part to prevent suicide. Reaching out means: first, paying attention and noticing when people are showing signs that they could be at risk, and second, taking the time to let people know we care.
It is about time we talked about suicide. If we pay attention to this serious issue, we can help people before they reach the point of feeling suicidal and provide greater support for family members who lose someone to suicide.
The all-volunteer military has been hit by a growing wave of sexual assaults and suicides. As usual in the U.S., most attention has focused on how to control the problems, rather than why they are happening.
According to Pentagon figures, 349 military service members took their lives in 2012. Every one of these deaths exacts an incalculable toll -- from the victim's families, from their military units, and from our society.