Alternative Healing for Trauma/PTSD???

Friday

Moderator
Sadly insurance won’t cover most of these types of things but I’m more than ready to try them because I think I might have done most of what can be done with talk therapy.
OMG... When my then-husband’s West Coast company (which covers the vast majority of massage / acupuncture / chiropractic / naturopathic / nutrition / physical therapy / hydrotherapy / etc.) switched to East Coast insurance? I about lost my damn mind. I couldn’t find the massage benefits listed, not uncommon most companies only “list” a tiny fraction of what they cover (the rest is in a 3” thick binder, unique to your policy); so I called them up, and the f*ckwit who answered told me they “weren’t going to pay for my sex life”. 😳 Oh hell no. You did NOT just say that to me.

So I told my LMP. Hehehe. 😎 Who was part of one of the most prestigious Sports Med departments, in one of the best hospitals, in the country. I received a written apology from the insurance company, not long after. My then-husband’s company had already switched insurance providers, by that time. I wasn’t the only one who was treated so poorly, for calling to enquire about what’s standard medical care, on this coast.
 

Freida

Sponsor
My regime of alternative stuff

natropathic doctor (doctor, not over the counter stuff) helps with sleep, anxiety, stress, blood pressure, some pain

For sleep, anxiety and pain.
Yoga - daily
acupuncture - weekly
chiropractor - every two weeks
massage - every month

Each time I think they don't work I stop, and then get a brutal reminder of why I started down that road in the first place 😁

Bad news is that it is spendy. I'm lucky the va pays for chiro and acupuncture, but the rest is out of pocket (unless you find an insurance provider that covers it.)

If I could only do one it would be the natropath. The stuff she comes up with is amazing. Like, one of her concotions got my bp down from 140/95 to 117/70 within one week and there are no side affects. Which is good because I did not do well on bp meds.
 

Tornadic Thoughts

MyPTSD Pro
If it weren't for alternative methods, I wouldn't be here - of that I'm certain.

In my experiences (other than my a-fib/atrial flutter episodes), when left to typical western/allopathic medicine, both in the medical arena and the mental health arena, I was made much worse and never felt heard, be it trying to share my history, or trying to advocate for myself to share how incredibly problematic their "help" was becoming to my well-being.

Each of them ignored the childhood sexual abuse/teen rape/multiple instances of adult domestic and sexual violence and would go straight to prescribing meds for "severe adhd"/"severe depression"/"severe insomnia"/"severe IBS"/"severe anxiety", etc. A severe damn life, pretty much, made more severely dysfunctional and physically dis-eased with the buffet of meds I was told to take. They prescribed, right off the bat, the highest dose of vyvanse for adhd, xanax for anxiety, ambien for insomnia - and told me if I couldn't stay asleep after I took it to go ahead and take another xanax and that should do it, and some kind of pill to keep me from puking for the IBS. Then threw in a few supplements to help the depleted vitamins and minerals from taking the meds (that was the words of the psychiatrist).

I felt like I was gonna have to scrape my ass off the ceiling for a few weeks after that. Then they switched to adderall/wellbutrin/and several others I can't recall at the moment. Then switched again. None of which helped me and all of which the side effects were too intense for me to keep trying. I learned that pills don't teach skills and I stopped seeking their help. I went to a new psychiatrist approved by my insurance and he only made eye contact once, only spent 15 minutes with me as he read the notes I brought to the appt., and immediately prescribed effexor for depression, handed me my papers back, and said if it didn't work, call him for another appt. It didn't work and the side effects from it were even more intense.

Talk therapists ignored the reports of sexual and domestic abuse. They wouldn't respond to me sharing it and never included it in any discussions. One of them fell asleep while I was telling her. Another treated sessions like it was f'n bible study. Another talked down to me in a major paternalistic manner. These were the licensed professionals recommended and approved by insurance. That avalanche of attempted help just kept picking up speed as I searched for medical help for major pains and such, too. I was told I needed a complete shoulder replacement by an orthopedic surgeon, if I ever wanted pain relief. But when I went back to pick up my records, he wrote down, "No surgical intervention recommended at this time." WTF?

That's when I sought out the local sexual and domestic abuse shelter for recommendations of counselors and learned I could go to their office and meet with their highly certified counselors at no cost. That experience was the most healing talk therapy I ever had. EVER. I can go back anytime, if needed. The only qualification is that you experienced either sexual or domestic abuse in your lifetime. The lady I was meeting with is now the executive director and can no longer see clients for counseling, unfortunately. But there are others I could see if need be. That's where I learned the details of PTSD and was "unofficially" diagnosed.

In my attempts to find healing, I was fortunate enough to find various local wellness workshops that were either free or of little cost and discovered more about acupuncture, chiropractic care, acupressure, myofascial/craniosacral massage therapy, sound healing, neurofeedback, reiki, iridology, flower essences, herbal tinctures, food as medicine, breathing techniques, etc., etc. I was also introduced to a community organization that you could barter time for services rather than money, called an hOUR economy. That enabled me to experience many of the options, and then some, at no cost. I'd barter child care, animal care, house sitting, they'd use my brain machine, I'd help in the gardens, in the yardens, around the house, provide transportation, etc.

I continue to use many of the above as needed, some of which I can easily do on my own without needing a practitioner present. Having built those connections several years ago makes it possible to receive lower costs than if I were just now seeking them without previously knowing them. How do I pay for it? I was able to save money when I was still working full-time, and have an incredibly supportive and generous husband, and when my mom passed, the sale of her estate afforded me options of having my needs met for a bit without worry (knock on wood). My nervous system is beyond grateful for finding what became true and genuine healers into my life and helping me recognize that what I'd been taught to trust as the only "legitimate" places to seek help can be some of the most dangerous. Grateful to have had a chance to learn, unlearn, and still be able to talk about it.
 

Mee

MyPTSD Pro
I think that lumping and alternatives together doesn’t work for me. Personally I don’t go for reiki. But I can see- even as a skeptic- how it might offer some sort of relational benefit. grouping it with massage -for example, feels weird to me.
 

Sues

Confident
I'll definitely let you all know!

I'm really hoping it helps me with my current therapy. I'm having a hard time facing the really bad stuff in EMDR, and I've of course saved all the really bad stuff for last, and that's where we are at right now. 😞
I was able to do the equine therapy, and I wanted to update any of you who are interested in hearing about it. I went into with an open mind, but I didn't know what to expect or how it would work. It was a wonderful experience.

The atmosphere when I walked in and throughout the session was so calm, safe, and welcoming. I felt good, and I was actually happy for once. I've never done any somatic work before and the therapist walked me through some body scans. I have a tense shoulder that improved and loosened up after our work.

So much stress fell away and I was able to work with the horses to let go of issues I wasn't expecting to come up. One of the horses would breathe loudly and slowly at times to remind me to take deep breaths. It was subtle, amazing, and relaxing.

I learned that connection doesn't always mean touch. I learned to share space with the horses and be able to connect to them and their steady calmness. They were my rocks, and I leaned on them throughout the session.

The horses took me for a walk around the arena and spent time with me as I worked through issues. They gave me space to work through things in my head. It's not just that they were not rushing me, it's that they weren't in a hurry. That kind of way of being is so nurturing. It gave me the time (that I didn't even realize I needed) to feel feelings, to come to terms with them, and to eventually learn to let them go.

With all of the abuse I've been through, I am tense, bracing for the next trigger, worry, or problem. I have a hard time letting go. I heard the words "Let it go" in my head. The horses showed me that day that I could let go. At first I didn't know how I was going to do that, but slowly I figured it out. The whole time the horses stood with me, calmly supporting me without saying a word.

Afterward, I felt a huge relief and I was so calm and happy. My goal was to take the horses calmness with me and to be able to tap into it later on. I've been able to do that. I've even used it in my weekly therapy to help. It's continued to help me and made a huge difference in my life.
 

RNrecovery

Learning
I was able to do the equine therapy, and I wanted to update any of you who are interested in hearing about it. I went into with an open mind, but I didn't know what to expect or how it would work. It was a wonderful experience.

The atmosphere when I walked in and throughout the session was so calm, safe, and welcoming. I felt good, and I was actually happy for once. I've never done any somatic work before and the therapist walked me through some body scans. I have a tense shoulder that improved and loosened up after our work.

So much stress fell away and I was able to work with the horses to let go of issues I wasn't expecting to come up. One of the horses would breathe loudly and slowly at times to remind me to take deep breaths. It was subtle, amazing, and relaxing.

I learned that connection doesn't always mean touch. I learned to share space with the horses and be able to connect to them and their steady calmness. They were my rocks, and I leaned on them throughout the session.

The horses took me for a walk around the arena and spent time with me as I worked through issues. They gave me space to work through things in my head. It's not just that they were not rushing me, it's that they weren't in a hurry. That kind of way of being is so nurturing. It gave me the time (that I didn't even realize I needed) to feel feelings, to come to terms with them, and to eventually learn to let them go.

With all of the abuse I've been through, I am tense, bracing for the next trigger, worry, or problem. I have a hard time letting go. I heard the words "Let it go" in my head. The horses showed me that day that I could let go. At first I didn't know how I was going to do that, but slowly I figured it out. The whole time the horses stood with me, calmly supporting me without saying a word.

Afterward, I felt a huge relief and I was so calm and happy. My goal was to take the horses calmness with me and to be able to tap into it later on. I've been able to do that. I've even used it in my weekly therapy to help. It's continued to help me and made a huge difference in my life.
I am so glad you had a positive experience with horses. I firmly believe horses saved my life. I started riding as an adult after I came down with bipolar. Between the mood cycles and medications I had to take time off of work and school. I couldn't think of anything that I wanted to do, no reason to actually live. I got hooked up with a program that needed volunteers. My connection with horses had gotten me through very difficult times. It has also brought amazing people into my life when I know I wouldn't have had the energy to make human connections on my own. I hope you get to continue this connection.
 
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