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Not All My Emotional Responses are PTSD Related

Discussion in 'General' started by batgirl, Oct 20, 2007.

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  1. batgirl

    batgirl I'm a VIP

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    This is a vent. While my immediate family is very good at understanding this fact, my extended family, friends and acquaintances are not always. What I'm talking about is, blaming every single emotion or action of mine on my PTSD. When I have an emotion which is not happy or otherwise pleasant, others often assume it is because I have PTSD and/or I am overreacting. The fact is, all people, regardless of PTSD, have emotions! Many of my emotional responses are normal. I am not always overreacting. Sometimes I am justifiably hurt or grieving or in pain or irritated, sometimes I am simply being assertive and letting my feelings be known. That doesn't automatically mean I am in the wrong, I am abnormal or mentally deficient. It's normal to have a wide range of emotions. Anyone would given my current situation. I'm tired of people explaining my feelings away by saying, "Oh she was traumatized". I'm tired of people automatically blaming me or my PTSD when they have a confrontation with me, rather than taking a good hard look at themselves at well, their part in things. PTSD is not a convenient excuse to use against me. Having PTSD does not define the whole of me. I am a person first, a PTSD sufferer second.
     
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  3. Kathy

    Kathy I'm a VIP

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    Evie it was quite generous of you to not include the immediate family in those who do this. I fear we are actually guilty of it sometimes. We forget you are a young lady and would likely have strong feelings about certain issues regardless of PTSD. Debra's comments last week about your lack of hair - well, I must admit as a cancer survivor myself I would be offended by such comments, and I do not have PTSD. Debra blamed your reaction on your PTSD; however, she always has been a rather "special" member of our family, hasn't she? :rolleyes: Oftimes it is easier for individuals to point the finger at others rather than take responsibility for their actions. Unfortunately, your PTSD is rather convenient in that sense, isn't it? I believe that's what's going on with some of your recent experiences. It is their problem, not yours Evie. You simply continue to do the best you are able, we are proud of your efforts.
     
  4. She Cat

    She Cat I'm a VIP Premium Member

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    Evie,

    You make some good points in your post. One of which is that not all of out symptoms(emotions) can be blamed on PTSD. We can have feelings outside of PTSD that effect us, and we don't need to even bring in PTSD into the equation.

    I'm sorry that someone was ignorant, and hurtful towards you. You have enough to deal with that you don't need this also....

    Hang in there, you are so much better than this person....Try and take it with a grain of salt,even if it is hard to do.......

    Smile, and I hope that the rest of your week is better....

    Wen
     
  5. becvan

    becvan Queen of the Blunt! Premium Member

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    I used to get that I was just acting that way because I was "crazy" now it's blamed on my disorder. I often find that I minimize my own feelings to it's just PTSD rather than an honest emotion.

    Really I think no matter what our emotions we have a right to them but it's how we react to them that is the issue. I've yet to find a good balance for this one.

    bec
     
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  6. batgirl

    batgirl I'm a VIP

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    Thanks Mum, Wendy and Bec... yeah Bec how we react is really important, I am also just learning to have better reactions. Funny Mum mentioned the situation with Debra, Mum must know it's still bothering me, because that is the main reason I was venting about this in the first place! What happened briefly was, I was in a restaurant with Debra and I wanted to take off my hat. I am bald from the cancer treatments. Debra made some remarks to the effect that it was "not nice" for me to be bald in public, that it embarrassed her and so on. My response was to insult her and walk out of the restaurant. She complained to Mum and Dad it was my PTSD. What would someone without PTSD done? Been a total doormat? :p I guess I could have reacted better, maybe I could have simply said "It's your problem if your embarrassed Debra" and left it at that. But at the same time, that was really hurtful and I feel Debra deserved what she got... and if I remember back to before I had PTSD, I was still a teenager then, so obviously not very mature, but I think I still would have insulted Debra. I never was known for being meek and mild. ;)
     
  7. pandora

    pandora I'm a VIP

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    Oh...Evie...that is awful! I am sorry you had to go through this. Some people can be ignorant without realizing this. Take Good care of yourself.
     
  8. Marlene

    Marlene I'm a VIP Premium Member

    I've had a hard time telling the difference between what's PTSD related and what's not. It's been tough because when symptoms are high, just about every emotion and/or feeling is related. Or at least it feels like it.

    I've been working on telling the difference. It's been a matter of fine tuning on myself. Some things are obvious, 'in your face' from PTSD. Others are tougher to put into a definate category. I'm finding that just working on this day by day has been the way I'm figuring this out.

    Lisa

    BTW-Evie, I still think that you were nicer in that situation than I could have been. Family or not, a nasty comment like that has no place.
     
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  9. cactus_jack

    cactus_jack Well-Known Member

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    BatGirl, I think we all feel that. I know I do. Here's a cyber-beer fo ya!
     
  10. Damiea

    Damiea Well-Known Member

    LOL I would have been insulted too! I am sure I would have said something and done something near the same! LOL next time she was around I wouldn't wear a hat no matter where you all where at!
     
  11. permban0077

    permban0077 Policy Enforcement Banned

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    Well, I think PTSD or not anyone would have likely called the person a jackass and left. Besides who would really want to share a meal with someone after that?

    That said I am always cloudy over what is my PTSD vs. normal emotional response? When I get pissed off I can go off to the deep end at times (I have vastly improved here). Then I think it is my PTSD rearing it's head rather than me reacting normally. Especially if guilt is in play later I know I have it to work on. Since you did not tear through ripping off table clothes on the way out screaming and for good measure kicked over a coat rack, well you behaved very well and not PTSDy at all. Very few of us are saints and would leave at with anything less than an insult. You did very well IMO.
     
  12. John_R

    John_R Member

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    I agree with everything said here. Not everything that I feel is PTSD, and there are jerks out there that are insensitive to everyone, and sometimes good people could act like real jerks.

    The key issue for me would be "Now what?" Now that this happened do I have techniques and a strategy for dealing with how I feel, and resolving the issue if I care to resolve it at all. I can hold on to a resentment forever, and that doesn't serve my well being at all. I can shut that person out of my life too, but then if they are a family member or someone that I have to see on a regular basis it becomes extremely stressful to function.

    If it's a person that I care about then I have two things I need to deal with. 1. The initial hurt, and 2. The act of betrayal I feel because it came from a person that I care about.

    Because I know myself so well I would not want this to develop into more then just hurt feelings. If I don't deal with it then I risk my well being over it and no insult is worth that. I know how hard it is for me to not let hurt feelings turn into major resentments. I would play this tape over and over in my mind until I work myself into a rage over it.

    People can be sadistic. When a person pulls a practical joke on someone they are embarrassing and humiliating a person and enjoying it. Then when a person becomes upset, the person who pulled the practical joke says "I was just kidding" in an attempt to undo what they just did. TO LATE! It hurt.

    If you're anything like me, then I would suggest in trying to talk about this with that person as soon as possible to avoid a normal and justified anger and hurt to turn into a full blown PTSD attack.

    John
     
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  13. batgirl

    batgirl I'm a VIP

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    Thanks everyone, I'm really glad to know others would have done the same or worse. I agree it is hard to know if an emotion is PTSD related or not, but I guess I am saying I am starting to recognize when my feelings are justified. And in those instances I'm sick of people saying I'm crazy or overreacting when I try to defend myself.

    That's actually a really good point. I was quite controlled considering what I've done in the past. I have been in rages before, where I've physically assaulted people. I could easily have done something like that in response to Debra's comments. I guess Debra is just lucky I didn't.

    Thanks for that Lisa. A couple of people in our extended family have tried to say I should apologize to Debra to "keep the peace" as she is a family member and has problems herself, but I say NO WAY and Mum and Dad agree with me.

    Thanks John, I totally understand what you're saying here, I have had several times where I've let something go, not resolved it, and it's turned into a huge resentment and/or rage, and I am learning to be more honest and assertive with people now. The only problem in this case is, Debra has "problems" of her own, which she refuses to deal with. Talking to her would likely just make the situation worse, because all she wants from me is an apology for insulting her. She will not take responsibility for her part in it at all. Talking to her in that situation will just make me more angry I think. I'm willing to leave the situation as is, I'm already feeling better about it because my immediate family is supporting me.

    Oh lol thanks. Now I can get drunk! I don't handle alcohol well at all, one beer is enough to make me drunk, definitely!
     
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