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Can a Relationship Work If PTSD Is Suffered and Healed Within It?

Discussion in 'Polls' started by anthony, Apr 29, 2007.

Can a Relationship Last Beyond Healing PTSD?

  1. Yes, if both have not cheated, physically abused one another and both heal.

    30 vote(s)
  2. No, not a chance in hell.

    5 vote(s)
  3. Yes, even if either has cheated, physically abused or not healed together.

    9 vote(s)
  1. anthony

    anthony Silently Watching Founder

    The big question with so many relationships is, can it work after the fact!!! When relationships endure the stress of uncontrolled PTSD, both parties are hurt, pushed emotionally, mentally and even physically in every attribute; but can they really work if a sufferer heals within them?

    I think they can, but they come with stipulations IMHO, being:
    1. Physical abuse must not have been encompassed
    2. Cheating must not have been encompassed
    3. Both parties must heal together, and honestly heal and forgive the past
    I believe that if a sufferer / spouse has cheated, abused physically or refuses to heal the past pain endured, then a relationship just has no chance of longevity, and both parties are fooling themselves. IMHO, if a person heals and any of the above are encompassed, then new relationships must be formed where new and constant selfs are introduced, not such a dramatic change in attitude and personality, and to heal PTSD is a dramatic change, ie. normal self > PTSD uncontrolled > Heal. Even from PTSD > Heal is a dramatic change, being people meet when wild and uncontrolled, then when they heal they realise all the things they were doing where wrong, thus they stablize, they become what they want to be, not what they where doing to avoid the pain, to suppress the emotion.

    What do you think?
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  3. Marlene

    Marlene I'm a VIP Premium Member

    Here's my two cents thrown into the mix.

    Basically, it depends on how much both parties want the relationship to work and how hard they're willing to work to meet that end. I've heard it only takes one person to destroy a relationship (not too sure about that) but I definately know it takes two people to make one work. Relationships, even under ideal conditions, are hard work. Throw in PTSD and it's even more work. Relationships that do not have a solid foundation built on support and trust have trouble withstanding other major life changes as well (i.e. illness, deaths in family, financial, careers, etc.)

    My PTSD has been one of the toughest strains my marriage has had put to it. Just the sheer frustration of damn near everything changing so quickly when my symptoms went out of control. Me not knowing what's happening, him not knowing, having all of the rules changed and no one gave us a new rule book. Once my symptoms had gotten more under control and I was feeling better, I asked my husband why he stayed, why he put up with so much from me when I had been at a point I couldn't even control myself, felt like running because at the time it felt like it would have been easier for my family to not have me around. His response is something that I play in my mind quite a bit. He said 'I take my vows seriously. One of the vows was 'sickness and health' and you've been sick. Why would I leave?'

    I've worked very hard to heal. I know I still have a ways to go, but I'm light years from where I was almost a year ago. One reason was for myself. Another reason was for my husband. I felt if he could put up with all he did and be there for me through all of this, then I owed it to both of us to work as hard as I could to get better.

    The question presented was 'Can a relationship work if PTSD is suffered and healed within it'? My answer-yes, if both partners want it badly enough and are committed to each other.
  4. Jim

    Jim Well-Known Member

    Voted for #1. Suppose #3 is possible, but both parties would be miserable in my opinion.

  5. permban0077

    permban0077 Policy Enforcement Banned

    I am a polar opposite on so many levels to what I was. Some of it drove my husband nuts and some of it was why he fell for me. Some of it still remains but on a much lower level. I was abusive at times when it was not known what was wrong with me. I was absolutely horrible at times attitude wise and general treatment. Sometimes my temper gets the best of me still if my schedule does a sudden shift or something is unexpected (not abusive as I try to separate myself to cool off). So obviously I am still in healing. He is dealing with me coming out of relapse. I have as a result to meds and depression gained a lot of weight.

    The relationship is stronger than it ever was now besides that. He has been through hell and back and he knows it can happen again. But he has made me very confident we can weather any storm now.

    He got close to leaving before I was diagnosed and shit really hit he fan. But he stuck it out and he leaves not a shred of doubt in my mind how much he loves me and we will always be together. It feels like he has fallen in love with the new me.

    How can I not be in love with someone who has been strong by my side through this and bend over backwards for me to function?

    It takes someone willing to work at getting better and a truly special soul to stick it out through the worst as the treatment the partner normally gets is not warranted or should be expected to cope with. Good souls and true love can make it work. No doubt in my mind, as long as the PTSDer is working on healing as like I said my relationship almost ended before I was diagnosed and we knew what was going on and how to treat.

    It was hard in the worst of it but we are happy. We now have laughs, cuddles, and pounce on each other to tickle the other, tease... We have moments we act like kids again. Far from miserable. You kind of fall in love again once healing starts.
  6. piglet

    piglet Well-Known Member

    Can you add a 4th choice - haven't a clue! Never had a relationship, other than for a few weeks when I was 15 - my brother threatened to beat the crap out of him, so I got dumped damn quick!

    I'm pretty sure that those in the realtionship would change drastically. I guess it depends on whether one person still loves the other when those changes have happened.

    I think relationships that start when someone is mid-ptsd might not succeed - basically because there might be a victim-rescuer thing going on. Once the ptsd is healed, a rescuer is no longer needed, and the former victim will resent being treated like they once were.

    There are some deep and interesting aspects to this poll!!!!
  7. Sapper

    Sapper Active Member

    Well, my feeling is, marriage is tough enough even if both partners are working 100% at it, problems or illness notwithstanding. Yes a marriage where only one partner was healed could last, people stay together for all sorts of unhealthy reasons. But would it be a truly happy marriage? I think not. One or both partners would be fooling themselves IMHO. If I am willing to work on myself constantly and grow as a person, what kind of life would I have with a woman who was unwilling to work on herself? Not a very happy one. I think #1 is the best option if you want to be happy in the long term, and honest with each other as well.
  8. Kathy

    Kathy I'm a VIP

    After nearly 38 years of being with the same person, 35 of those married, I can attest to the fact that healing of both partners is crucial for long term success and happiness. At least in our case it was, and we have had our share of troubles, most notable being Jim's alcoholism. Perhaps others will have a different experience, but I can not imagine the thought of putting up with an unhealthy partner all these years and still feeling happy myself.
  9. anthony

    anthony Silently Watching Founder

    Ah... experience Kathy, thank you for your comments.
  10. msktaylor0207

    msktaylor0207 New Member

    i acutally think it depends on each individual. i tell my husband all the time that if i wasnt such a strong, stubborn,loyal and supportive person, hed be screwed and id be gone. neither of us have cheated, but there has defintately been emotional and physical abuse between us because of his PTSD. it has been the most difficult road to travel, but its one that i have chosen to take because i love my husband and care for him and want to see him out of this deep dark hole. its been 3 years since his deployment and back in july was the big HIT our relationship was not ready to take. but with intense therapy for him and myself, i do beleive our relationship will survive. but it takes so much will and heart to push through. and i dont think very many couples could handle it in the long run. weve had our good times, but most definately had some bad ones too.
  11. indigo~in~0z

    indigo~in~0z Member

    dont know, but currently under investigation...

    already present ptsd exacerbated by husbands baggage of tricks...

    we are striving/wishing for your anthony's example no.3 -
    Both parties must heal together, and honestly heal and forgive the past ....
  12. sweetface

    sweetface Member

    I read the book Receiving Love and it's awesome. Basically healing can never occur alone. We heal when we trust another and are intimate and can function in that intimacy. After I was raped at 19 I spent 12 years doing spiritual work and therapy and avoided all men. No sex, no nothing, but was hit on constantly because I was pretty. But it wasn't until I bit the bullit and made myself go into relationships to have my issues brought up. I have been constantly retraumatized by my fathers abandonment issues and that is a stronger PTSD than the rape. So, for me, my major healing can only happen IN a relationship because the PTSD is triggered IN the relationships, not out of them. So, in the book Receiving Love, it discusses the epidemic that being alone heals - no it doesn't, being in a loving relationship does. We were not meant to be alone.
  13. Torqueo

    Torqueo New Member

    I voted for option 1.
    My boyfriend and I have been together a year. And he knows everything (trauma-wise) thats ever happened to me. He's been wonderfully supportive. He's woken me up when I've had nightmares, he's calmed me when I've had night terrors, he's held me when I'm having panic attacks, and leads me away from something that reminds me of the traumatic experiences when my feet are glued to the floor... I must say, if it wasn't for him. I'd have given up by now.
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