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Why Won't the PTSD Sufferer Get Help?

Discussion in 'Supporter Discussion' started by desert4now, Sep 21, 2006.

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  1. desert4now

    desert4now Active Member

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    Hello Everyone,
    If the PTSD sufferer knows there is a problem, knows what the problem is, knows PTSD affects and hurts others around them, why will he not try to get help and make changes? Is that also part of the disorder?

    Hubby is so intelligent so the fact that he won't get help of any kind, baffles me! Is it wrong of me to think if he gets help, then he won't have an excuse for his actions and words? I don't mean to be mean but it is so frustrating.

    I must admit, I'm jealous of those who's partners are seeking help. Mine doesn't seem to want to get to that point. I just really want to understand. I'm emotionally exhausted and so tired of hurting. Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Lately, I'm afraid to address this issue with him at all...add that to the list of other things I would like to talk to him about. Let's face it, even idle chit chat with him scares me. Kerrie-Ann I think my kicking boots fell off this week. I need help getting them back on. I feel beaten up.
     
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  3. superd

    superd Member

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    Desert

    My experience has been that it is a matter of not wanting to acknowledge that the people/circumstances which did this to them can still have so much power over them on a daily basis.

    It can also be that they know they will have to face the event head on to truly process it, and that is very frightening to them, as it would be to any of us. I truly believe that the pain of everyday life eventually has to outweigh the potential pain of facing the event for them to seek help. And that may only come after all other ways out are explored, such as drugs, alcohol, medication, etc.
     
  4. desert4now

    desert4now Active Member

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    Superd,
    Well said. I'm very afraid of
    I am so grateful my hubby does not drink, will not drink. One of the reasons I was attracted to him in the first place. But I am afraid of infidelity and just plain shutting down.
     
  5. superd

    superd Member

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    I have never understood how infedelity can be used as a way to self medicate...if it were me, and I did that to my wife, that would just add guilt on top of everything else I was dealing with.
     
    kabeh394 likes this.
  6. permban0077

    permban0077 Policy Enforcement Banned

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    superd, wow you have picked up quite a bit haven't you? Very well put and you sound like you may be getting ready for the ride your wife will put ya'll on once she starts to heal. Good for you!

    He put it so well I only have very little to add to that. You know you have it, but you can still be in denial because you feel inferior and weak because you were not "strong" enough for this not to happen to you. It is a denial in my opinion likened to addictions, until you are really ready to do something about it yourself and readily accept the fact you have a problem there isn't much that can be done except lovingly nag until he gets it... I don't know if you have to treat guys the same as women to seek help. And to answer plainly, yes, because of said reasons.
     
  7. superd

    superd Member

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    Ha!

    Sometimes I THINK I know so much...and then the rug goes right out from under me. I just pick up on things, and I'm a very curious man by nature, especially when my mental health depends on it. My wife has been patient enough over the time we have been together to allow me to ask her questions...she really can be very patient with me sometimes. She is a great woman, there are just times when she is really struggling that I kind of get lost in her PTSD, and her unwillingness to acknowledge it...that's really all I want, I think, is for her to say yes, I have PTSD, and it rules my life right now, and yours as well, but I am going to get control of my life back, and then we'll get on with our lives again. Too much to ask?
     
  8. permban0077

    permban0077 Policy Enforcement Banned

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    That depends on when you ask... sometimes it can be. I know that was about as clear as mud. We all have a hard time acknowledging we have it. I said to my husband yesterday I wonder how much scanning my brain would cost? He asked why, so you can see it? I said yes. That way I "know" if I really have it. He said besides the fact you have every symptom in the book? I don't think so dear... you have it accept it.

    It is very hard to accept it even when docs tell you so. I still have a hard time swallowing it. Even though threapy is doing what it should since getting treatment.
     
  9. Jaynea

    Jaynea Member

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    Hi everyone I just peeked in...I've been wondering the same thing about getting help. I just spoke to my husband and asked him if he thought that this was it for him for the rest of his life? Wasn't it worth trying again to get some help? ...We've been down so many dead ends in the last five years....
    Does anyone even know any REAL treatments? My husband will not take anti depressants and talk therapy didn't work. For awhile EMDR seemed to help.
    But lately it seems he's worse....

    Desert4now...thanks for opening this topic which has been on my mind
     
    kabeh394 likes this.
  10. permban0077

    permban0077 Policy Enforcement Banned

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    Cognetive Behavior Therapy is helping me. Downside is my depression is getting worse at a lighting speed and they have me on theraputic doses of zoloft that I did not want now. There is a self help book that is the same guidelines my doc uses for treatment of depression and he has me reading it, Feeling Good. I trust this docor a lot so I got it. It claims to help PTSD too. It has a hand book they sell too for exercises but my doc said it wasn't really needed, I got it anyway. Claim it is supposed to have as much success of treating depression as drugs and longer lasting effects once getting through it. I won't be able to tell you the results of it for about a month for me though.
     
  11. Nam

    Nam I'm a VIP

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    I'd like to think that I'm through the worst of it (GOD, I hope so..), but thinking back on it, I'm trying to think of what made me go get help. For me, it was a choice. Either I get help with whatever I had (I didn't know at the time), or die. It was that simple. I couldn't take it. Now, that doesn't mean it was easy. Oh no. I sat in that parking lot looking at the freaking "Pschiatry" sign and willing myself to go in. I tried to tell myself to just open the door. I knew that if I opened that door, first off, I'd be admitting something was wrong. I've worked so hard on this image. I've perfected it, and now, I'm psycho? Second, if I went inside, I'd have to tell whatever stranger they assigned me why I was feeling that way. How am I supposed to do that? Telling it outloud is the equivelant of throwing myself off a cliff. I seriously felt like I was going to die. My rational mind was telling me the truth...that I'm not going to die, but my body betrayed me. Thirdly, I'd have to succomb all control and let it take over. That meant taking drugs so that I wouldn't think I'm being killed all the time. Which meant not thinking at all....
    It meant that I would be worthless as a mother and as a wife and that my family would have to take the burnt of my illness.

    I hate to make it sound so bad...but it so totally SUCKS! The only thing that he is doing right now is prolonging the illness. He can shut his door to it as many times as he would like, but it will not go away. Instead, he needs to accept it and learn to live with it. In time he may learn that his new self with ptsd isn't so bad. True, some changes had to be made, but life is at least enjoyable again.

    I do believe that some of the previous posts have it right. The steps to healing...
    1. Acceptance of ptsd (reality)
    2. Get Help (whatever it is..)
    3. Accept Help (Which means actually telling the truth...the whole truth during therapy sessions. Spilling it...all of it...)

    All of this is very hard. And...if your hubby is very intelligent, he knows all of this. He's stuck. He can't go back, and if he goes on, he'll have to go back anyway...(you know?), so he'd rather stay right where he is.

    Golly, I bet I sound confused....but I really do hope that it gives you some understanding of what goes on inside a PTSD'ers' mind when about to go over the cusp into accepting the illness. It really is a struggle.
     
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  12. anthony

    anthony Renovation Aficionado Founder

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    Well said Nam, well said.

    Yes it is part of the disorder. Knowing you have a problem and accepting you have a problem are two very different things.

    Absolutely. I had opportunity myself when my PTSD was uncontrolled, but then my heart simply said "no way", so I just stuck with the alcohol. It is just another method attempting to suppress reality, no different from alcohol, drugs or gambling, all of which are used to suppress and deny what is really wrong. Facing fear is one of the minds toughest challenges.

    Not really... but for her it is much harder to actually do. PTSD is stronger than her at present, and until she can bury PTSD itself enough to heal, I doubt it will happen. The idea of initial medication is to help control the mind enough to cognitively accept what is happening and get help. As help improves the mind, you come off medication. Alcohol, drugs, gambling, etc etc just hinder the process, hence why most programs will not touch a sufferer until they have all suppression methods reduced and controlled to acceptable usage, not abuse levels.

    Jaynea, there are lots of methods to help PTSD, EMDR being one, though also very risky. CBT is the general method, however; it must be done by someone who really knows what the hell they are doing, or else it is worthless. If the sufferer cannot really open up or relate with a counsellor / physician, then they need to change, they need to be pushed to improve, not just hope some magic cure will fix them, because there is none.

    Your partner will never completely be fixed as such, as PTSD is not like that. PTSD becomes part of you, and you must learn to work with it, not just think it no longer exists and normal life can continue, because you will simply fall down again, just as your partner is / has now (getting worse). A sufferer must get every single piece of trauma out of them, fear nothing traumatic from their past, then that is only a part of the overall treatment. A sufferer must continue to educate themselves, talk regularly about any issues, ensure their stress and anxiety is managed, maintain good diet and exercise or interests, but the brain must be kept active, alert and be capable to recognise when a symptom is coming through, analyse why the symptom is occurring, then manage the symptom and control it, not merely disregard it and suppress it.

    PTSD management is a lifetime strategy, not something you just do for a few years or months, think its all better then wonder why you fall down again. PTSD is for good... and if not managed constantly, it will win every time if allowed.
     
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  13. Jaynea

    Jaynea Member

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    Veiled....I'd like the name of that book. Was it Feeling Good?

    Nam: What you said was EXACTLY what he said last night. He told me he died when he was buried at the WTC. I think my acceptance lately is helping. I thought if we accepted it, he would never get "better"....Now I think accepting it is the first part of getting him to accept it as well....Let me tell you...there were lots of tears from both of us this past weekend.

    Anthony...Thanks...I think I'm going to have my husband read your reply. It cleared a lot up for me.
     
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