Psycho-Babble Psychology Thread 350140

Shown: posts 1 to 15 of 15. This is the beginning of the thread.

 

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by starlight on May 24, 2004, at 12:08:33

Hi All,
Have you been diagnosed with PTSD? I think I've had this for a long time, but no therapist has ever dealt with it. I find myself in the grips of fear thinking that something horrible is just on the edge of happening. And I hate it. Like I'm driving down the road and I'm gripped with fear that I'm going to run into the concrete median barrier (which is stupid, I'm a perfectly fine driver). Or being gripped with fear that my husband is going to leave me, etc., etc.

It seems like I tend to think that the worst is going to happen or that something negative is imminent. It's kind of like an anxiety attack. If you struggle with this - has a medication helped you? Is this a similar discription to what you experience? I wish I didn't feel this way, it sucks. I think the pattern was set up in my early childhood due to abuse, but I can't figure out how to break it and it seems to get worse.
starlight

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by antigua on May 24, 2004, at 14:38:08

In reply to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by starlight on May 24, 2004, at 12:08:33

If you figure out how to break it, please let me know! I have PTSD from childhood abuse and I've been told that this hypervigilant response is totally normal. We are always on edge, running in crisis mode even when it's not necessary. My T told me last week that I have to learn that the adrenaline only needs to surge when I really need it, not all the time. I asked her how on earth I was to do that, and she said that just by knowing about it was a first step.

So, I definitely relate, but I have no answers either. I'm always waiting for something bad to happen, or the next bad thing to happen, because that's how I was conditioned.
antigua

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder**trigger**

Posted by shadows721 on May 24, 2004, at 15:19:38

In reply to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by starlight on May 24, 2004, at 12:08:33

I feel like it should be my middle name, because I have it so bad. Gosh, I know what you are talking about those urges. They seem to come out of no where land. I have them all the time. I am on meds to help the major depression and anxiety. I feel that there is no getting rid of it. It's something that I have to live with. I had it as a child, but no one realized it. I saw shadow naked men walk by my door of my room, but there was no one there! I would hear someone calling my name and no one was there. I had vivid nightmare as a 4 y/o of weird sexual stuff in a red room.

As a teen, I slept with a knife under my bed, because I was thinking someone was going to break into my house. I had dreams of it all the time. (I didn't know that's a typical sexual abuse dream) I had no memory of abuse. NONE. My mind blanked the guys out of my mind totally. As an adult, this has played Hell with my marriage. Suddenly, I would think my husband was someone else. The urges are a struggle - to jump out a car, hurt things, etc. The suicide urges are just unreal. Most of everything is a reinactment of a threat or the abuse. It's a life of internal torment. I have Dissociation Disorder too that I am trying to come to terms with. Also, I tend to always feel that tomorrow will never come or that I will be killed at any moment, so I don't put a lot of faith in tomorrow.

 

Re: PTSD**trigger** ╗ shadows721

Posted by B2chica on May 24, 2004, at 17:00:17

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder**trigger**, posted by shadows721 on May 24, 2004, at 15:19:38

Shadows. I think i learn more from this site everyday than i ever did in a class or even from my own T sessions. I don't think i suffer from PTSD so i can't completely understand but i do share some experiences.

i do see shadows ALL THE TIME, see them everywhere. It really creeps me out, sometimes the hairs on the back of my neck stands on end...creepy.
I often think someones behind me either just feeling or think i catch a glimpse of someone and i'll even turn around and gasp (ya, that'll scare'm away)

**i TOTALLY understand about the knife thing I think for about 2 years i slept with a knife under my pillow, i even got one of those cool butterfly knives, so that way if i didn't have time to get the blade out i could protect myself with the two sharp things sticking out the sides. Maybe that's why i still sleep with one of my hands under my pillow-used to that knife in hand.??

-I don't think the people i'm with are someone else, but sometimes i'll blank on who they are. mostly confusion more than fear, i have to really think and say to myself i know who they are, their familiar...then within a few seconds/minutes it comes to me. i feel relief.

>>Also, I tend to always feel that tomorrow will never come or that I will be killed at any moment, so I don't put a lot of faith in tomorrow.

-i couldn't have put it in better words myself. I've felt this way as long as i can remember. i've always believed that i would die young (kinda putting that one to the test). EXACTLY like you said "...will be killed at any moment..." THIS i understand. I can't even count how many times i was actually thankful for this view on life. How i was looking forward to my days coming to an end. or say "at least i won't live that long" I didn't/don't even care how i go -but hopeing it's painful but quick. (i figure i deserve the pain).

Shadows, you make me feel good. I NEVER thought ANYONE in the world felt like that except me.
thank you for sharing.
B2c.

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by Speaker on May 24, 2004, at 19:49:51

In reply to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by starlight on May 24, 2004, at 12:08:33

I have PTSD and for me it's mostly flashbacks. I can be anywhere and someone can touch me unexpectedly and I'm gone...it's the wierdest thing. I want to stay home because all of this puts my emotions on edge and I never know what response I'm going to have...I hate it!!!

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by shadows721 on May 24, 2004, at 21:46:49

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by Speaker on May 24, 2004, at 19:49:51

Thank you B2. That really means a lot to me.

Speaker,

I also have flashbacks. Sometimes, I get really depressed before one comes up. Many times, I am in bed and my ears sound like I am shocked with electricity and then I am back totally in the past. I touch, hear, and feel everything as it was in the past. Sometimes, I get major headaches or anxiety before one happens. These are the total recall of abuse flashbacks.

Then there are the just total recall of general things from childhood. They come up totally unexpected. I see a child on a bike and then I see myself riding on my bike. I see the basket on my bike with the daisies on it. I see the sandles and my shorts. Then I am back here again. It's happens in a split second type of thing. I have been told that I talk like a child at times too. I hear different voices in my head from the dissociation. It's odd things that I am not even thinking about.

Then there are the nightmares with tidal waves, storms, guns going off, haunted houses, trying to hide to name a few.

I isolate a lot, because number one I don't feel well. It's trying being on guard always. I just can't hardly stand for someone to stand behind me in a line in a store. It's from my abuse. I have to keep my distance, but when you move up in the line they get closer too. I am trying to let that go, but it's difficult.

Since, I have so many triggers, it is unpredicatble how I will react. Thunder and lightning are almost a form of torture to my nervous system. I can't help but jump everytime I see lightning.

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by starlight on May 25, 2004, at 10:50:46

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by antigua on May 24, 2004, at 14:38:08

That is exactly how I feel - like it's just a matter of time before something bad will happen, and the hypervigilence is so exhausting. And constantly being hypervigilent is just recreating the scenario for us, perpetuating the way we felt back then. It sucks.
starlight

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by Beta on May 25, 2004, at 19:31:24

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by starlight on May 25, 2004, at 10:50:46

I too have recently been diagnosed with chronic PTSD. I am still earning about the problem, and am spending alot of time feeling very discouraged. I have been on meds for 3 months: Effexor XR and recently Risperdal, evidently for my psychosis. Although, the anxiety is not really getting any better, especially at PMS time, I am a total other person, and just want out of my skin. I also find that this is when I am most suicidal. Have any other women had this problem?

Also: The VA has planned on providing me military sexual trauma counseling because I was revictimized in the AF decades ago, but never mentioned it to anyone, as with the csa I endured.

I am concerned however, because the VA Drs. often mention that I should not talk about the csa so much, because my disability compensation could be denied. I am worried that I will not be treated correctly, that it is very important who did the abuse. I am certain the rape in the AF didn't help, but I am more concerned about being helped than being compensated for the rest of my life.

Any suggestions anyone?

Thank you so much for listening.

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by shadows721 on May 26, 2004, at 0:47:06

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by Beta on May 25, 2004, at 19:31:24

I have never read that PTSD gets worse with prior to menstration, but it makes perfect sense that it does. I never made the connection, but I am bedridden from depression on those days. I feel that I can relate to what you are saying about those feelings of major depression. I started tracking it and sure enough 2 days prior to onset of menstration I would have horrible headaches and feel like I wanted to die. Before I was medicated, I was to the point that I couldn't watch tv, drive in traffic, or stand to hear a phone ring. I could barely have a conversation with my family without getting in an argument. Now, that I am medicated, I can really see just how bad the PTSD got.

I feel your sense of safety is of the utmost importance in your situation. Your concerns are very understandable. Is their anyway you can see a counselor of your own choosing outside of the VA?

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by starlight on May 26, 2004, at 13:19:24

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by Beta on May 25, 2004, at 19:31:24

Don't give up your compensation! See someone outside of the VA if possible. My experience with the military is that, if they can link something to before you joined, they will deny you disability saying that it was a pre-existing condition.

Getting help for your issues is definitely very important, but the military looks for any way they can to not pay you, and disability is for life. Having been medically discharged from the Air Force for a severe eating disorder, I know this very well. The psychiatrist I had in the AF deemed that my condition was due to the circumstances I was raised for, and not as a result of the military (even though they have strict weight guidelines which had a lot to do with it) so they denied me any disability and got rid of me since they didn't treat eating disorders.

You might not be able to see the importance of that now, but later on, you might wish otherwise. Sounds like the docs are steering you in the right direction so be very careful about that decision, be very patient and don't do anything until you've had plenty of time to think about it. I would wait until after your disability compensation has been decided and then you can weigh the benefit of being treated by the VA or privately, as it's my understanding, once disability is ruled on, it's a done deal.

Best of luck to you.

starlight

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by TexasChic on May 26, 2004, at 15:48:44

In reply to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by starlight on May 24, 2004, at 12:08:33

I sometimes wonder if I suffer from it. I was reading an article about abuse, and one thing really stood out to me. I was like, that's it, that's what my childhood was like. I had never been able to put it into words before. Here is the discription:

"Ambient Abuse
The fostering, propagation and enhancement of an atmosphere of fear, intimidation, instability, unpredictability and irritation. There are no acts of traceable explicit abuse, nor any manipulative settings of control. Yet, the irksome feeling remains, a disagreeable foreboding, a premonition, a bad omen. This is sometimes called "gaslighting". In the long term, such an environment erodesáthe victim'sásense of self-worth and self-esteem. Self-confidence is shaken badly. "

Do you think you could have PTSD from something like that? I know I still have that foreboding feeling sometimes. And I'm always worried something bad will happen to me or someone I love. I also have the fear about running into the barrier on the highway. Just everything yall said sounded so familiar to me. I wonder what the difference is between having Anxiety and PTSD?
Anyway, I'm just thinking out loud. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by shadows721 on May 26, 2004, at 21:27:50

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by TexasChic on May 26, 2004, at 15:48:44

I am not a therapist; but if you have the symptoms of Ptsd, I would say you have it.

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder ╗ starlight

Posted by Beta on May 27, 2004, at 17:09:57

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by starlight on May 26, 2004, at 13:19:24

Thank you very much for your insight. The VA has scheduled me to begin "military sexual trauma counseling" next week. So, your advice it that I cancel the first appointment, and look for treatment elsewhere? So as not to jeopardize the compensation? The "stickler" there is finances.

Is a pension a "given" since they have labeled me GAF 45 out of, what is it? 90 or 100? That was
quite eye-opening to say that least. I have always been quite a "functioner", running from it all evidently.

I have also applied for SSA, and will continue to look for any state benefits available to me.

These VA claims can take a year, is that true?
Thanks for your thoughts.

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posted by starlight on May 28, 2004, at 12:15:44

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder ? starlight, posted by Beta on May 27, 2004, at 17:09:57

I know they can take a while to process and I understand the money thing. I would take a hard look at what the doctors have advised you to do in order to keep your entitlements. I can't give you any advice on whether or not to keep the currently scheduled appointment. Do you have a base lawyer? A lot of therapists will have a sliding scale financially for people with money issues.
starlight

 

Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder ╗ starlight

Posted by Beta on May 28, 2004, at 23:43:43

In reply to Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, posted by starlight on May 28, 2004, at 12:15:44

Thanks so for much your information and time. It will be interesting to see how this works out. The VA is evidently effective at treating PTSD, so I maybe be lucky there.

I still find it amazing how all this can effect us so intensely; not only to realize it yourself until decades later...

My worst symptoms are major depression, anxiety, tremors, and hypervigilance.

Thanks again.


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