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Confused - PTSD From Truck Accident

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by alanmeacock, Jul 21, 2006.

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  1. alanmeacock

    alanmeacock New Member

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    First off I feel a bit strange writing like this to a community of sufferers or survivors is better I guess! Was in a car crash with a truck eight months ago not been the same since. Off work three months but not injured physically. Within five days was getting typical PTSD symptoms my doc put me on increased anti deps since I have long history of mild depression but in check with medication. Big change was and is constant anxiety, loss of self esteem, self confidence, motivation and cognitive trouble. Can't concentrate, read books etc. Its an effort writing this! Help me out here. When the lorry ran into my driver's side door..I could see it all happening but I had no sense of fear even being kind of emotionless. I could not control the skid my car was in to avoid contact, it just was going to resolve itself, the trauma. I can't get over this fact that I felt nothing at the time. I should have been terrified..a 20 ton Volvo running into my fiat punto. I've read a bit about freezing and dissociation but my Councellor over a twelve week course could not adequately convince me of what this meant...my mind cannot take in things. I know this might be referred to in other mail but I need to hear it for myself from you guys out there and espec this business of freezing. I'm seeing a psychiatrist now who has me on new meds and recommends CBT as soon as possible. Sorry to be so long and thanks for just being there. alan
     
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  3. purdyamos

    purdyamos Active Member

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    Don't apologise for being 'long'. I was much longer! Welcome! The emotional deadness you describe is textbook. I took years to understand the separation in the primitive memory between visual and emotional re-enactment. That's how PTSD works, and it's only with the integration of the whole experience that you can begin to file it away as a 'normal' memory. I get 'experience' flashbacks which are terrifying because for a long time I couldn't narrate what was actually happening. Don't pressurise yourself about feeling cold about it. It sounds like you've got good support and professionals who know what they are talking about. It'll hurt when the feelings come back, but that's the key to recovery. I hope you'll gain much insight from this site. I have. Welcome!
     
  4. Farmer

    Farmer Active Member

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    When I was burnt as a kid the first couple of seconds were clear untill the shock kicked in and then it was like the conscious part of my mind was pulled back someone else was driving my body, just flashes of images and the other sinses. Like I've learned from this site it's the different parts of the brain being overloaded.
     
  5. anthony

    anthony Renovation Aficionado Founder

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    Hi Alan,

    Welcome to the community. Freezing is a natural reaction from the mind to the body in states off unknown. I am not an expert by any means in that field, but I have chatted about it with professionals and read a bit also. Its like when someone is about to be hit by a car, they freeze, instead of jumping out of the way. Why? Because the mind is overloaded with immediate fear and emotion, instead of being able to cognitivally process the though of jumping clear. When you see someone jump clear, or remove themselves of a dangerous and iminent situation, it is generally because they are very mentally strong, and they process thoughts on the immediate occurence, and don't allow fear to cloud the judgement. Fear is a natural emotion, and your rightful to have fear when being within a situation you have no control.

    Another example is a shark presence, in that it was only discovered that people are to freeze when a shark is around, as the mind and body did this naturally, thus bringing to light that freezing caused disinterest in sharks to continue with an attack.

    What you felt is normal, and what your feeling now is normal with PTSD in check.
     
  6. Nam

    Nam I'm a VIP

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    Welcome Alan. Thanks for sharing your story.
     
  7. alanmeacock

    alanmeacock New Member

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    Thanks folks for your replies and so quick! Do you ever get to find time to sleep? It's good to know there are people out there who understand and are willing to help folks like me. I can't get to the bottom of PTSD intellectually...and as well-meaning people can be, if you've not been there, its hard for them to understand. I am emotionally dead at present but my wife is so understanding. I'm not the guy pre the trauma. I can't do things I used to do easily ..play music/ performance..couldn't stand in front of people for the life of me..would fall apart. There's some part of my trauma that has robbed that from me...I want it back one day..my confidence ,strength and understanding. But I often can't recognise the triggers that send me into anxiety and depression with all their physical aspects. Do you guys experience that too? alan.
     
  8. piglet

    piglet Well-Known Member

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    Hell yes!!!!!!!! Every day. And as Anthony will tell you, much of the time the triggers are events that are coming up, as well as those you have already met.
     
  9. anthony

    anthony Renovation Aficionado Founder

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    Absolutely Alan, and very well said. As Piglet said, you will learn to identify your triggers, and more often than not, you will also learn to discover what may be causing anxiety and symptoms, could very well be something that is coming, even months away, but your mentally thinking about it now, and getting distressed all the way up until the event, when suddenly everything disappears after the event, then we begin thinking about another major event in our lives to stress us and cause anxiety.

    We can help you come to terms with many of these things, I have no doubt. I completely know what you are saying about needing those who truly understand, ie. other sufferers who walk the path, hence why this place was created, because I felt the same urges and requirements to help myself, which meant most others with PTSD require the same support, direct from those who experience the same symptoms daily.

    Glad to have your here Alan, and look forward to chatting with you more, and hopefully helping you out with some of your symptoms.
     
  10. alanmeacock

    alanmeacock New Member

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    Thanks!

    Thanks Anthony and you other folks for welcoming me so warmly. Means a lot to me.
    Alan
     
  11. Nam

    Nam I'm a VIP

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    Hey Alan,

    The rest of us aren't the same either. We will never be back to the person "pre trauma". The nice thing is, some of us actually like ourselves "post trauma" better. I know it's hard to believe, but there are positives. They just come with a lot of recovery.

    I too, love to sing/perform, has my husband (plays guitar). You just made me realize that I haven't been on stage since my ptsd started. But I really think I could do it now, in fact, that would be exciting! I believe that you can have your confidence, strength, and understanding back. It may come back in a deeper sense or in a different form. I know that I am stronger now then before the trauma. I don't have as much confidence, but I still believe that it will return. Understanding? Now that is loaded. Understanding yourself, or others? or both? I certainly understand my illness and myself much, much better then before. And a part of me understands other people better too, but I have a much lower tolerance for ignorant and uncompassionate people.

    That tells me that you have at least an inkling of emotions! So, technically, you're not emotionally dead. Isn't that nice to know?

    I hope the very best for you. I know it's hard to see the light, but you will see it soon. Sometimes the light fades and returns, but believe us, that there is light there.
     
  12. anthony

    anthony Renovation Aficionado Founder

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    Your welcome. As Nam so well pointed out... from that statement, your not actually emotionally dead just yet... just temporarily confused and lost maybe...
     
  13. alanmeacock

    alanmeacock New Member

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    a new person?

    Hi...taken some time out lately. Nam when you said we won't be the same as we used to be...I kind of felt affronted by that...but thinking about it I guess a change for the better would be a good thing! But afterall I find it hard to think of memories before the accident anyway. It's as though the trauma, has become a fresh start point. My shrink thinks the anxiety is hindering memory and concentration. I just know that now I can't do the things I used to do so I guess its natural to want to get back to that condition when I could do things. Understanding is another issue. I'm a need to know kind of person, perhaps you're all like me, questioning all the time. But I've learned to get to know that there are no easy answers to the way I feel daily. Perhaps I should just go along with things and kind of shut down mentally? But I would resist that and that would compound my dis-ease.
    Help!
    Still have trouble with triggers nine months on...read about and my councellor mentioned 'the body remembers.' So in a trauma our mind does not take in everything only the most immediate danger, but our bodies with all the ancillary senses going on like touch, smell, hearing, skin temperature etc are taking in stuff also but which is not registered with our normal mental recognition routes. Obviously what we see is probably most important. So anyway things I don't know about can still send me into anxiety, a smell,etc but I won't recognise it! Am I making sense here! Does anyone have this problem? I know there are books about this better buy one.

    alan
     
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