A former soldier driven to despair by post-traumatic stress wrote a heartbreaking letter days before killing himself.
Dave Jukes’s words were: “I hate my life and wish it could end so I didn’t have to hurt the ones I love.”
His widow Jo, 47, released the letter to give people a better understanding of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Yesterday she said: “It shows the battle he was having between the good man and the person he had turned into.”
Her husband began: "I’m David (Dave). I’m 49-years-old but feel like 69.
“I used to be a nice and caring guy that would do anything for anyone.
“I’ve tried so many times to take my life, but for some reason always pulled through (why).
“I don’t know how to be a good husband/Dad, when that’s all I want.”
The former Staffordshire Regiment soldier served in Afghanistan, Iraq and Bosnia and was diagnosed with PTSD in 2006.
He suffered violent mood swings, flashbacks, nightmares and survivors’ guilt and spent years self-medicating with drugs and alcohol.
Shortly before his death Jo took out a court order to ban him from the family home in Birmingham after he smashed the place up.
His letter goes on: “For many years now something went wrong, really wrong and I never saw it, or should I say I chose not to see it.
“I am labelled with PTSD and over the last few years I’ve become a nasty person. All I do is take, take, take and give nothing back, which is wrong.
“I am the only person in this house that is always right, but I know that’s not the case. I hurt the people who mean the most to me and I don’t care.
“My family deserve more and better things than they have now. I have no idea why they are still here. All the help I have ever got is because my wife has got it for me. I have no idea why she does it, but she does.
“If I have to tell the truth I’m so scared of getting help as I think I have failed. I have done more things than most people so I should be proud not feel like I have failed.
“I find it so hard when someone tells me that I’m wrong but I have to try to understand I’m not always right, which is very hard.
“I really want treatment, but it scares me so much it’s unreal. I don’t want to face the truth but I know I have to beat this to be the man my family deserve.
“But how do I defeat the thoughts in my head about death and everyone is against me? Anything goes wrong in my life and that’s the first thing I think of. I’m a good guy at heart but can switch so fast and I don’t even know I’m doing it.
“I have so much to offer, but no idea how to show it or do it.
“It’s not nice to know I hurt the ones that love and care about me (that really hurts me). “I just hope I can cope with whatever treatment they offer me, as this life is s***.
“It pains me to see what I’ve done in the past. I want to go out and not have earphones in, just so that I feel safe.
“But I will beat this with the right help and have the best family support as well.”
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