Complex Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

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Complex Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
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    at the table of negotiation, (my profile doesn't show that I posted this, so if it's repeated, then I'm sorry)

    Sometimes we have wars with ourselves, maybe it's a tendency to think things have to match. Maybe it's deciding that you can't be with someone when your heart wants to. Maybe it's thinking that you have to love one thing, one language and you can't love others, because you feel like you're betraying someone, maybe yourself. Maybe it's sitting for hour arranging things because they don't feel just right in the arrangement.
    Either way, we fight battles with ourselves, make rules that feel like they absolutely can't be broken, like the whole world will come down on us if we break them.
    I'll give this example. I have 8 stones that I'm carry in a little bag in my purse. But, there are options. Sone follow the oval pattern, some feel like I absolutely must carry them, or something will happen emotionally and I won't have that particular one even though I have others in the bag that can help in a similar way. One of my inside people has a student he's teaching in his spare time that he's become good friends with, and feels something more than that, but because he's teaching this person, and he was brought up being taught that you absolutely cannot have it both ways.
    He spent 6 years fighting with himself about that. I think part of it for him had to do with his trauma history and the thought that he was absolutely the lowest thing on this planet.
    For me, it was the idea that we couldn't cary an odd number of soothing items. It started with the stones, we couldn't have more than 5. There were 5 other items that we cary so they
    had to
    add up.
    I spent days dealing with this and watching it change into something else, we
    had to have
    our number of stones match the other soothing items in number.
    I'll outline it. There were 9 possible stones that we could carry. The problem was, which ones should we carry?
    Definite ones; hematite, red jasper, amethyst, smoky quartz, jade.a, rose quartz. Possible pairings; shiva lingam, petrified wood, unicorn stone. First team = red jasper, hematite, second team = amethyst, jade, 3rd team = smoky quartz, rose quartz.
    But this didn't feel right. Those were the definite ones, but something was missing. So I arranged, worked with the less certain options for days. It felt absolutely essential to follow the rules and pattern I had set out. And then, one of the unclaimed stones, the unicorn stone, had something, maybe it was just because of what it was made of, a bit flaked off. I panicked. I thought to myself, "there are only 2 unclaimed stones that can work with any of the teams, and now this one is falling apart? Why?"
    I still have no answer for that. I finally came to an agreement with my inside people, especially one who is an organization fanatic. They kept telling me that it was ok to use some one day and some another day that were different. I thought that I couldn't. What if I broke one of them? What if I got attached to one and was too big to keep in my ELS (emotional life support) kit? It was a mess. I think it took me several weeks to come to peace with myself about what I would and wouldn't carry.
    But why? Why do we spend so much time fighting wars with ourselves when, well we're changeable, adaptable, when we can even define ourselves but know that there's a stubbornness to keep going even while it seems like nothing is going anywhere?
    I don't have answers. It's a mix of building on traits you already have, lack of object constancy , and that ever looming feeling of impending doom, like something awful is just a few days away from sending us tumbling back into the dark quicksand of decompensation and therefore an inability to keep ourselves safe, keeping us from ending up at the hands of yet another person who will hurt us while seeming like they care for and want the best for us. If people aren't reliable, at least outside people, and if we're in this isolated state, we absolutely can't go back into the smothering landslide that starts slow and insidious, then once you've accepted your increased depression or nightmares or loss of time as normal, it speeds up, towing you along with it. Spinning you around until you can't think straight, until you can't tell which way is up and can barely breathe because you're so weighed down.
    But maybe the rules we make for ourselves are allowed to change.
    Maybe we can start being more flexible.
    it's just so hard to accept when you think any change is dangerous.
    But getting wound up in our rules means our mind is racing all the time, we're constantly frustrated with our life. We're unable to concentrate,
    But there is another aspect. Maybe the reason we get so uptight about things
    doesn't have anything
    to do with being finicky and seeking to control something when everything feels like you're fighting an army all alone.
    It could have something to do with the brain keeping us in a state of intense finicky hyperfocus because it's constantly on alert for danger. It has been wire by too much trauma that both says "you're not good enough" and "you must be on alert so you can know exactly what is going and can know if you're on someone's 'target' list."
    This isn't a new concept for me. It is manifesting in some strange ways that are not obvious at first glance.
    One of the most cliche things I've hear from therapists is that you have to "let go of what no longer serves you"
    I am not fond of that phrase. When you're not even sure who or what you are, how can you even tell what "no longer serves you"? I call bs on that phrase. But I was reading a book and in that book, someone said "rules. If you make 'em, you can break 'em."
    I think that really opened my eyes. Or rather, it lead me to examine the things I become hyperfocused on. Seeing it at face value, it just looks like someone who is either a control freak, or someone who has way too much time on their hands or has obsessive tendencies and is perfectionistic in the extreme. But looking deeper, I realized that it's my brain's learned response to both the fact that very little in my life is anywhere near in my control, and my anxiety working with people like my dad who is, as someone inside put it "king ambivalent", makes me feel like I'm still in danger. Plus there's the fact that I feel like I'm just being dropped in the ocean without knowing how to swim frustrates the hell out of me. It is nice to know that there is something I can do that has an end result, even if my brain goes on super hyper focus overload sometimes.
    I've always heard you have to pick your battles, but something you have to survey the terrain of the battlefield, and talk tactics until you're blue in the face.
    I think the other question I have to constantly keep in mind is, "how long have I been focusing on this? What's beneath the obvious surfaces here?"
    #Anxiety #PTSD #CPTSD


    Re: Submitted Articles Posted as Thoughts

    I've noticed a lot more Thoughts posted which originated as submitted Articles. I don't mind this at all. It seems to indicate that more people are submitting articles than ever before, which is exciting! Keep submitting!

    My main issue is that submitted Articles published as Thoughts are poorly formatted. Most often, submitted Articles go over the character limit of a Thought, and therefore when converted to Thought format, the content is split into Part 1/2 and Part 2/2. This means if I want to read the rest of the article, I have to search through my feed hoping it will pop up. I've tried finding the other half by visiting the writers account, but more often than not the site glitches and shows no posts at all.

    As a reader, and chronically ill person, it is distracting and exhausting to have to search for the other half of a post I was interested in. And as a writer and submitter, often the conclusion to my submitted Article is in the Part 2/2 and less readers end up accessing the conclusion, even if they were interested in Part 1/2.

    I'm curious whether other readers and writers have noticed this, and whether anyone else has found it difficult to navigate.

    #ChronicIllness #Disability #MentalHealth #Depression #Anxiety #MyalgicEncephalomyelitis #PosturalOrthostaticTachycardiaSyndrome #IrritableBowelSyndromeIBS #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #PTSD #ComplexPosttraumaticStressDisorder


    Medical PTSD and being chronically ill. I have no choice but to keep getting retraumitized.

    I wish I could protect myself from this but I’m chronically ill and have no choice. I keep walking right into my trauma. Even doctor appointments that aren’t overtly awful are still so upsetting. And I don’t know how to mediate both the PTSD and getting treatment for my chronic illnesses.


    See full photo

    Did you fall for it!?

    I know I did until I looked more closely. Hope you all have a great day and don’t let the turkeys get you down! #MajorDepressiveDisorder #Anxiety #ComplexPosttraumaticStressDisorder #EatingDisorders #TraumaticBrainInjury #MightyTogether #LGBTQIA #KetamineTreatment

    See full photo

    Remember your first time on a plane? Do you remember where you went?

    Share with us the story of your first plane trip! We’d love to hear your responses! My first trip was when I was just a few months old and we moved from Dallas to Southern California. Not so exciting but momentful nevertheless! #MajorDepressiveDisorder #Anxiety #ComplexPosttraumaticStressDisorder #EatingDisorders #TraumaticBrainInjury #MightyTogether #LGBTQIA #KetamineTreatment


    My therapist is looking for another job

    I don’t even want to post this because I feel selfish for being so sad and scared by this. I also cannot adequately describe how dire my situation is- and that sounds overstated.

    But we have been aware of it for at least two years and she is the only one who has been consistently helping me. She is the only person who has been fighting for me and everyone else has given up on my case because my situation hasn’t improved and has gotten almost unbearable even for other people- even other agencies. I am not safe and I haven’t been for years. There aren’t options at the moment and I’m stuck in limbo.

    I only briefly acknowledged how much this is going to suck. We both know she is the only consistent and safe person I have to confide in. (It’s something I have actively been working on for years) She is the first person to tell me she believed me. The extremes of my situation and the lack of options for me make it hard to even move on a good day. Now I feel even more unprotected, vulnerable, and on my own than I ever have. I feel irrevocably broken. Everything feels heavy. When I was trying to drive back after our session - I had to keep stopping my car because I couldn’t drive.

    She isn’t leaving yet and when she does, she is going to help me with that and the transition to whatever the next thing is. But it just doesn’t feel worth it anymore. It hasn’t for years but I keep feeling my future closing in.

    I know other people have probably been here before. This post doesn’t feel like it comes close to how devastating this is.
    #CheckInWithMe #ComplexPosttraumaticStressDisorder #Agoraphobia #PanicAttacks

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    If you had to give a presentation on a topic you are passionate about, what would it be?

    Here's your chance. You have a captive audience to talk about your favorite subject for ten minutes. What is the subject and what do you want us to know about it?

    For me, it's Celine Dion. Aside from being one of the greatest selling female singers of all time, she is one of the nicest humans on the planet. I have had the opportunity to meet her twice, and both times she gave of her time and person generously to every single person there. She's also overcome great adversity to be who she is today so I admire that in her.

    Your turn!! Have fun! Teach us something!

    #Trauma #PTSD #CPTSD


    The warning signs I didn’t miss

    I recently left a relationship that felt unsafe despite the fact that it left me with less housing stability when I have almost none

    I keep writing these out. There are so many.
    Here are a few

    *His behavior entirely changed when he was angry- he was indignant and irrational. He angered easily. We was irritable and blamed his angry outbursts and irrationality on insomnia.

    *My days were entirely consumed by attending to his needs- his laundry and helping him sleep and talking to him about his needs. He required all of my attention.
    He self sabotaged by drinking excessive and unhealthy amounts of caffeine (for instance double shot espresso and a bang [energy drink] in just a few hours)
    My health rapidly and severely declined- I was only able to eat about 500 calories a day and could only sleep about four hours. I was catatonic most of the time. I dissociated a lot more, I felt paranoid, I could not make sense of anything, my executive functioning significantly declined. I had no working memory. I felt lost all the time. I felt extremely hopeless
    I started hitting myself and left bruises on my legs- I couldn’t control my body

    *When I tried to talk to him about something that upset me, he made it about how I said it

    *I stopped being able to process anything in therapy- the one place I do feel safe

    *I felt like he was doing things specifically to get a response or reaction from me
    *He “didn’t know” the most basic of life skills and would not do anything to “learn”
    *I was not the only one who struggled to reason with him
    *he demanded a lot of energy and attention from everyone in his life

    I was only able to eat about 500 calories a day and could only sleep about four hours. I was catatonic most of the time. I dissociated a lot more, I felt paranoid, I could not make sense of anything, my executive functioning significantly declined. I had no working memory. I felt lost all the time. I felt extremely hopeless
    I couldn’t talk to my therapist
    I started hitting myself and left bruises on my legs- I couldn’t control my body
    When we talked about moving in together- we spent an entire night talking about why I would not just “give him my entire disability check” and then he would “give me back the money I needed when i needed it.” He ended up asking his friend and his friend told him he was wrong- then he continued to argue with me about it

    He would talk in circles in what felt like an attempt to keep my attention on him
    Nothing made sense
    He twisted what I said
    There were periods after fighting when everything was so good again but it never stayed that way
    I knew if we had plans together- it was likely he would start an argument with me and I would be too sick to do the activity. And then he would fight with me about that, oftentimes with me sitting catatonic. Sometimes he would demand “why aren’t you saying anything!?”
    We agreed to disengaging when things were becoming too bad and I was dissociating. I was the only one to try to do that, despite me reminding him many times
    He always had the last word
    The one that clarified everything for me was when we were going to an event for a project to help me share my story he started an argument with me and I almost was too sick to go. On the way there, he drove erratically. I knew he would deny it. But I was like “this is INTENTIONAL. And this is intimidation as a means of control. This is coercive control.”
    I realized as long as he was around, I was going to have to give up the things I wanted or needed to do because he would make it nearly impossible. Even things he wanted to do too.

    I have been through dating violence and domestic violence before. I know the process of re-remembering all the things that in hindsight are so clear and obvious. I’ll probably post more as I work through this.
    #ComplexPosttraumaticStressDisorder #Agoraphobia #PanicAttacks #DomesticAbuseSurvivors