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Dark Humor: An Outlet

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January 1, 1970
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If you are a veteran, or you have veteran friends, chances are you've heard your fair share of dark humor. The topics and specific jokes will range in severity and levity, but for many troops outside the wire, jokes about combat all the way up to their own death are pretty much the norm.Why?It's an outlet."Hey, Dave, how do you think these SOB's are gonna die today?""Well Bob, they're going to do a shitty ambush and, then we're going to smoke check every last one of them."To the veteran that is hilarious (or maybe not, sometimes we're not that funny), but to many others, that sounds like a really horrible thing to say. It isn't though. It's young men and women who are finding a way to deal with the fact that someone at any given time, is going to try to kill them. That is a heavy subject. Um, hello stressful. The dark humor allows the stress to be released instead of it building up till it explodes.War sucks. People die.Dark humor is a coping mechanism. And we'll venture to say it's far healthier than deploying to the bottom of a bottle. So if you see some dark humor coming from the veteran, chances are he doesn't take the subject that lightly, but it's his/her way of dealing with an extremely stressful situation without letting it paralyze or adversely affect their performance.We know it may not always be socially acceptable, we know some people may get their feelings hurt. However as bad as that sounds it's much better than the alternative and we'd much rather hear a dark joke than hear about another person from our war family succumbing to the stress in a more permanent and negative way.

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