This blog contains graphic language, content and "triggers"(sights, sounds and more). These can be disturbing to PTSD survivors. If these bother you, read at your own risk. Otherwise, thanks for the support.
Let's catch up now on more from the old blog:
Sunday, June 3, 2007
Right now dissociating is a HUGE problem. In the morning I wake up and have hyperarousal. Your mind is racing with all kinds of thoughts mixed up. Then it's a real battle to wake up and focus on where you are. Once you get past that then the opposite (hypoarousal) starts. You have no energy, can't focus and everything takes a huge effort.
Along with that, dissociating is still a real problem. People with severe dissociating have lots of symptoms. You can't focus and have no energy. Triggers can aggrevate dissociating. Triggers can be anything: sounds, colors, key words or phrases, music.
Adrenalin surges. Severe trauma is trapped energy in your body. The longer PTSD continues untreated the more this energy surges in your body with no relief. How do you deal with this? Diet, exercise and more sleep are some good starters. Then again it depends on the severity of the original trauma.Sometimes I feel like I'm going to disappear. I'll dissociate and then have no idea where I am or what's happened. You try to avoid triggers and do all the right things. It's a nice day and this s**t feels endless. What do I have to do to have some peace for a change?
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
Dissociating and Multiples
One basic rule to remember with PTSD is this. The more severe the initial trauma, the more dissociating you'll do to compensate. When most people hear PTSD, what's the first thing they think of? Rambo, vets who will go postal and blow away lots of people, etc. Instead, a large majority of the population is at risk for either getting or suffering with PTSD for many many years. PTSD cane come from sexual, physical OR verbal abuse as well.
Unfortunately in the States most people think of abuse as physical. They don't stop and think about the devestating effect that verbal can have. And how the combination of these is one of the worst things a PTSD victim/survivor can deal with.Let's clear up a big misconception. When trauma is severe and ongoing you'll dissociate to try and cope. If the trauma is really severe you'll develop multiple personalities. This is NOT schitzophrenia. That's a physical illness. Instead multiple personalities in PTSD are a way for your mind to cope with what's happening. When multiples develop (and if you're lucky) this combination will help you to somehow cope. The bad part happens when you finally realize that it's PTSD and you try to get the proper help. Most people at this point try to get all the personalities to work together so the person can function day-to-day. Can you re-intergrate all of these personalities? Yes you can. But it takes a long time and might involve a mix of treatments (EMDR, cognitive and medication). More on this later. In my case I had ongoing sexual, verbal and some physical abuse all together. Right now I have about 25 multiple personalities that fight for attention. I try to get them to listen to me and understand that, yes what happened was horrible. But if we don't work together we can't survive.
Thursday, June 7, 2007
Some Relief for a Change
Feels like my multiples are taking a break today. Hypo and hyperarousal today (along with the usual dissociating). But now there's more of a f**k no, I'm NOT going to dissociate and hide all day. No gurantee that I still won't do that. But my next session is tomorrow. So we'll see how it goes.
How Do You Survive PTSD?
Sometimes my therapist and I talk about surviving and healing from PTSD. There is no perfect cure. Everybody's different and heals at different rates. However that's hard to keep in mind at the worst times.
If you have long-term severe abuse, you'll probably develop multiple personalities. Remember that PTSD is NOT schitzophrenia. Instead it's a survival mechanism that looks strange to the untrained eye.Right now I have 25 personalities. I'm having meetings with them so everybody can talk and start to heal. Like any meeting it's a mix: shy, aggressive, questioning, curious and others. I try to reassure everybody that this is the right approach. But understandably they argue. Why should we believe that? These people treated us like s**t for years. Why the f***k should we trust them now? I try and listen and convince them that this will be ok. But many times it's a endless fight.Imagine you try to wake up and you have hyperarousal. A million thoughts are running thru your mind and you have to fight to focus. Then it takes a couple of hours before you can concentrate and not dissociate. After that hypoarousal and more dissociating start.
Every small action is a huge battle. Your fight-or-flight response is stuck. On top of that some personalities are battling for control. You feel like you're losing control of your body. You're shape shifting in some bad sc-fi movie. How do you walk from your front door to your car? You think you'll disappear. If the adrenalin surges and dissociating are really bad, you feel like you can't walk. You feel like your body will shut down.If you're in a crowded place or driving, what do you do then? It's like a bad alcoholic blackout. You disappear and then when you come back you have no clue. Where am I? What did I do? What did I say? Did anybody see me?I've had this routine 24/7 for 35 years. And most people don't understand and don't want to understand. Instead it's your fault. You're "handicapped." Just shut up and go away. You try to tell them you're not. You know something's wrong but you're not sure exactly what it is. It took me 20 years to finally find the right therapist. Still, if people find out who I am my life will still be severly messed up. So then why write this blog? I guess one answer is that I (and other PTSD sufferers) are sick of being treated like s**t. Repeatedly being raped is not something that you ask for or enjoy. Dissociating, adrenalin surges, flashbacks and nightmares are things that I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy.That's the ulgy truth about PTSD. Most people don't have time to listen to you and don't care. Instead it's go away. Or, I'll use you as a political football to help me get elected. I don't understand how this works. So odds are our viewers/listeners won't either. So just go away.If I'm wrong, prove that I am and I'll apologize. Until then that's the ulgy truth.
Monday, June 11, 2007
Permenantly Scarred Or Not?
For long-term PTSD sufferers one fear never goes away. Will I always have this? I hear many people who don't have PTSD say everybody is responsible for your own health. In a perfect world, yes.
But what happens when you try to do the right thing for your health. And everywhere you turn nobody listens to you. Or, you're penalized by not being able to get decent AFFORDABLE health insurance. And no pre-existing conditions.Not all but many therapists either don't have the proper PTSD training. OR they just don't care about it. You think you have it and try to get help. When you can finally reach someone maybe they don't listen or don't care. For 20 years I looked for the right person to help me. Along the way I was misdiagnosed, overmedicated and told to just shut up.Finally I realized that while I was a sober alcoholic I was strung out on 4 prescription meds. I tried every 30-day program I could find. But again no one would help me. So finally I said f**k it. I'll do it myself. I came up with a 30-day withdrawl plan and did it. It was the HARDEST thing I've ever done in my life. Imagine going thru this, severe PTSD, looking for a new job, family s**t and on and on. But remember, you're on your own. Nobody wants to deal with you.Fortunately now I'm drug free. However I still have PTSD (and maybe always will). If you want to get help, any therapy session for PTSD is considered "basic therapy." If you do anything else (holistic diet, exercise, acupuncture, etc.), that's NOT covered by insurance. Now to the rest of the civilized world that has national health care this is allowed. But in the U.S. greed and huge profits say otherwise. The rest of you are on your own
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
What Makes PTSD Even Worse
I made an important decision today. Tomorrow I'm going to see my holistic doctor about getting some blood tests done to check for Celiac disease. That's when you have no tolerance for gluten.
Where do you find gluten? In anything with these ingredients:
white or wheat flour
milletmalt or malt flavoring (NO BEER!)
hydrolyzed vegetable or plant proteingluten stabilizers found in prepared meats like hot dogs and others.
What are some common symptoms?:
abdominal bloating and pain
joint painheadachesnerve damage (tingling or numbness)muscle pain or cramps
heartburn or reflux disease
tooth discoloration or loss of enamel
Many people believe that severe long-term stress (like PTSD) can bring out Celiac disease. I have at least half of the above symptoms. So after the blood tests either I don't. Or I do which will REALLY piss me off. Sexual abuse, verbal and physical abuse, alcoholism, PTSD. And now MAYBE Celiac disease too? I've asked various doctors, nutritionists and others about the effects of long-term stress on your body. Right now there's no scientific proof that this will make you more suceptable to cancer and other diseases (although you would think that it could). With Celiac disease, several sources say that severe stress could come out because you're genetically pre-disposed for it.Right now I feel really robbed by being bombarded with all of this stuff. I don't want to feel like all this has cheated me out of a chance to do what I really want. The logical part of me knows that's not true. But sometimes the emotional side has trouble with that.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
Started the Gluten Free Diet Today
Went to another session today. More soon about what EMDR is: the myths, truths and the ignorance of some therapists who can't or won't use it. My therapist and I talked a lot about feeling beaten down all your life. Ongoing rapes. Trying to get help. No one has time to listen or help. Eventually you feel like you never had a family or real friends. Some people then use various drugs and other ways to try and cope. Fortunately for me I'm now drug free. The bad part? You have nothing to hide behind now.I thought about going to get gluten blood tests done for Celiac Disease. I talked to some people online and did some research. To really get an accurate answer you need 5 tests and not one. Can't afford that, the doctor's appointments, the biopsy of your small intestine, etc.
So instead I started the diet today. I'll do it for two weeks and see how I feel. Either I'll feel great and keep going with it. Or I'll stop and go back.At the moment I'm thinking I'd keep going. There's some research that says gluten can aggrevate PTSD symptoms. What are some symptoms that it can't alleveate? The flashbacks to being raped. The humiliation of being treated like a f*****g piece of meat. Then while the sick m****rf****r who raped you kicks back after getting his rocks off you wonder what will happen to me? If this happens to you when you're a little kid, it only takes one time to permenantly scar you (both physically and mentally). Yes later on you can go through various therapy and learn some nice little coping mechanisms that may at times help you a little. But you NEVER EVER forget the abuse AND how literally everyone around you says it's YOUR fault so just go away. Don't be so f*****g sensitive. You're f*****g driving me crazy. Nobody gives a shit about what you think or what you feel. JUST SHUT THE F**K UP! Ok, so I'll just go away and won't disrupt your nice ever-so-busy life then? It's your fault AND you're not allowed to be a normal human being with perfectly normal feelings, fears and concerns.
I'm not sure if I'll ever forgive these assholes.
More coming soon.