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Tales From the "Dread Zone" - Isolation After Conflict

Discussion in 'Supporter Discussion' started by Lima Tango, Jun 4, 2006.

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  1. Lima Tango

    Lima Tango New Member

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    Hi Kerrie-Ann,

    Here's the story I said I'd tell you.

    You would understand when I say that the spouse is very committed to avoiding as many blow ups as possible because the back draft is so debilitating on everyone! But with the best will in the world you just can't avoid all situations.
    Well consider this; for many years GT and I used to play a game called "Hunt the Veteran". It went like this. We'd have a major league barney and as the tension got too much he'd head out and go to ground somewhere on our 15 acres fully confident in the knowledge that unless he wished to be found he wouldn't be. I'd trail around in the dark calling out to him because I wanted him home probably because I was feeling guilty or because I felt I'd lost the advantage or some such stupid thing. Who knows?
    Years before we'd agreed not to drive off in a vehicle due to the potential for disaster in a heightened emotional state. So hiding from me was obviously the only escape he had recourse to.
    I, of course took this as a personal rejection.
    And so it went until just recently when he disappeared for a number of hours and nothing I did could persuade him to come out. He stubbornly remained out of reach. He came in 4 hours later very cold but Calm.
    The next day we talked things through as was our usual routine and in the course of the conversation he suggested getting a bedroll together for just such emergencies. Well of course I bristled at this. However, I thought about it before opening my mouth to offer a curt suggestion as to what I thought about his idea. The idea when viewed from the experience of the night before seemed to have much more merit when viewed with less emotion. It was a good idea if only to provide us both with space to calm down.
    We've since had occasion to test the "bedroll strategy" and with great success all round.
    Just think I'd been doing just the opposite to what I should have been doing all these years. Who said you couldn't teach an old dog new tricks!

    Cheers LT
     
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  3. permban0008

    permban0008 Policy Enforcement Banned

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    Anthony used to do his own version of 'going to ground' but that usually involved lots of alcohol. I am glad he doesn't do that anymore. Alcohol and PTSD should never be mixed, its a really bad combination. We havent' really tried the 'bedroll' technique although we have slept at seperate ends of the house on plenty of occasions but we seem to have got past that. I don't like going to bed angry, not because I don't want to remain angry if I feel it is justified.........but it ruins my sleep!!

    Its a good thing when you can learn alternative techniques of dealing with the usual crap situations. Like you said, the one thing you should have been doing was the opposite of what you were doing. I used to be like that when Anthony and I fought a lot, I used to follow him continuing the argument in the hope that I would get some resolution. Of course all I got was more grief for my trouble. These days I just walk away, simply technique, really effective, took me bloody ages to learn. I like hearing about other peoples strategies for dealing with their partners, it helps keep the humour alive. Thanks for sharing.
     
  4. Jen

    Jen Well-Known Member

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    Loss of memory

    Hi its been a while since I posted. At last my husband is seeing a counsellor last night was the first time he has spoken to me about his feelings in a LONG time.He tells me that there are times throught the day when he finds himself standing wondering what he is doing and cant remember what happened ten minutes before.
    Can this become worse surely this is a worry for sufferers. What about driving a car and the mind wanders off?
    Jen
     
  5. anthony

    anthony Renovation Aficionado Founder

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    The mind does wander off Jen when driving a car... well, it used to for me anyway. I think we are cognitively still aware, but we do certainly daze away at times. It does get less as one works through their trauma and symptoms. It is progressive as part of learning and getting oneself better. If a person doesn't want to get better from their PTSD, then I imagine it hangs around. Honestly, I still do it at times, though nowhere near as bad when my symptoms where out of control.

    Thats great news that your husband is talking too you about what he feels.
     
  6. permban0008

    permban0008 Policy Enforcement Banned

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    This is good news Jen, counselling is a good step and talking would surely help. I just commented on this statement to my husband and he stated that 'he doesn't really feel anything so what is there to talk about?' I commented that 'I find it almost impossible to believe that anyone can be comfortable with the fact that they do not feel a range of emotions'. Do you find this one of the most frustrating aspects of being a partner with PTSD? It really ticks me off because not only do they not discuss their feelings but it makes it almost impossible and inevitably not worth bothering for you to discuss yours. This is fantastic for those with PTSD as they do not have to confront emotions, their own or anybody's. Frustrating for partners, as you begin to feel like you have no worth in the relationship. Really the communication link is made even harder by the fact that even if they were open to discussing your feelings, at the least, you can expect little or no understanding or support as they are, in Anthony's case at least, operating from a platform of no understanding. It is a kind of a continual guessing game the whole time. If only those with PTSD could see the potential benefit that communicating would bring to their world. I would have to surmise that this is one of the really big issues that is the decider between relationships surviving or not. I am generally a communicator and I find this is one aspect of PTSD that I just do not cope with well.

    In my case I am not interested in the gory details of why Anthony has PTSD, as he would never share that with me anyway. All I am interested in is a basis of communication where our lives and our marriage would not be so bloody hard. Everything that you have to discuss, in my situation, creates tension and generally conflict. In the whole time we have been together there have been two occasions only, where we have had a decent discussion about issues where I haven't felt under pressure to keep quite in order to avoid conflict OR where I haven't been shut down by the dismissal technique.

    Anyhow, sorry that is my vent for the evening. It is particularly pertinent at the moment as we are expecting our second child in November and I find this is a time, as I did with Alexander, when you just need that little bit extra.
     
  7. Jen

    Jen Well-Known Member

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    Hi Kerri Anne
    Thanks for your reply a baby on the way, hope everything is as well as it can be with you!
    My husband said to me that he needs to be around me all the time I say we work together all week I need my space he says he knows this.
    He seems very insecure I suppose its remorse for what he put me through a couple of months ago.
    I am going to go up to Innisfail for the weekend to spend time with my sister. He can have the weekend to himself I told him I am only a phonecall away.
    Jen
     
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