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Sufferer Diagnosed 2 Years Ago After Nervous Breakdown & Feel Like Self Indulgent Failure

Hello everybody,

Well, you've got to start somewhere. I was diagnosed two years ago with CPTSD at the age of 51, which explained a lot more about anger outbursts, alcohol abuse, hyper-vigilance, constant dread etc. that misdiagnoses of depression, bipolar etc. over the years did. My wife, who is the love of my life, also clearly has CPTSD from her unstable and sometimes abusive childhood and is seeing a psychiatrist; it began to be clear to her what the nature or origins of her problems are as we discussed my diagnosis. My own parents' horrendous childhood experiences and some of their experiences as a young married couple I think contributed to them in some respects not doing an awfully good job as parents when my sister and I were little. It was lovely about ten years ago when my Aunt, with whom we spent quite a lot of time as children, said that I had been "a lovely little boy," as profound guilt and shame at being such a source of trouble and unhappiness are the things which I feel about my childhood, and a lot of my adult life too.

Anyway, two years ago I had another nervous breakdown and started down this road of understanding at least. Yesterday I was sent home from work again for a day or two to try to get some rest as it is pretty clear to me now, as it was to my wife for some weeks already, that I have been overworking and running on empty. She and I powerfully "triggered" each others' trauma responses on Saturday evening; we actually did a much better job at the then being able to talk about it and listen to each other the next day, but yesterday I felt so ill at work, nearly fainted and had a panic attack, the Doctor said I sounded like I was in shock, so I came home to get rest and now I'm lying here now writing this.

To be perfectly honest I feel like a self-indulgent failure - I can't even get a decent reason to have PTSD - I haven't been in a War, I was not sexually abused etc. I was bullied unrelentingly for years as a child and always had a difficult relationship with my parents. Still, the Doctor I was seeing two years ago after my breakdown looked pretty horrified at some of the details, so I do try to trust her judgement, God knows my own doesn't seem to be up to much snuff.

So, I guess that is about it for the moment. Thanks
 
Hello everybody,

Well, you've got to start somewhere. I was diagnosed two years ago with CPTSD at the age of 51, which explained a lot more about anger outbursts, alcohol abuse, hyper-vigilance, constant dread etc. that misdiagnoses of depression, bipolar etc. over the years did. My wife, who is the love of my life, also clearly has CPTSD from her unstable and sometimes abusive childhood and is seeing a psychiatrist; it began to be clear to her what the nature or origins of her problems are as we discussed my diagnosis. My own parents' horrendous childhood experiences and some of their experiences as a young married couple I think contributed to them in some respects not doing an awfully good job as parents when my sister and I were little. It was lovely about ten years ago when my Aunt, with whom we spent quite a lot of time as children, said that I had been "a lovely little boy," as profound guilt and shame at being such a source of trouble and unhappiness are the things which I feel about my childhood, and a lot of my adult life too.

Anyway, two years ago I had another nervous breakdown and started down this road of understanding at least. Yesterday I was sent home from work again for a day or two to try to get some rest as it is pretty clear to me now, as it was to my wife for some weeks already, that I have been overworking and running on empty. She and I powerfully "triggered" each others' trauma responses on Saturday evening; we actually did a much better job at the then being able to talk about it and listen to each other the next day, but yesterday I felt so ill at work, nearly fainted and had a panic attack, the Doctor said I sounded like I was in shock, so I came home to get rest and now I'm lying here now writing this.

To be perfectly honest I feel like a self-indulgent failure - I can't even get a decent reason to have PTSD - I haven't been in a War, I was not sexually abused etc. I was bullied unrelentingly for years as a child and always had a difficult relationship with my parents. Still, the Doctor I was seeing two years ago after my breakdown looked pretty horrified at some of the details, so I do try to trust her judgement, God knows my own doesn't seem to be up to much snuff.

So, I guess that is about it for the moment. Thanks
for sharing your story, it takes a lot of courage to be vulnerable like this. You are definitely not alone in feeling self-doubt and questioning the legitimacy of your experiences. PTSD and CPTSD can develop from a variety of traumatic events, including emotional abuse, neglect, and bullying. It's important to recognize that your experiences, no matter how small they may seem, were valid and had a significant impact on your mental health.

I'm glad to hear that you and your wife are able to support each other through your shared experiences of trauma and that she is seeking professional help. Remember that self-care is crucial in managing the symptoms of PTSD/CPTSD, and taking time off work to prioritize your mental health is a responsible and necessary step.

I strongly encourage you to check out the different forums on myptsd.com, where you can connect with others who understand what you're going through and share coping strategies that have worked for you. It's important to feel heard and validated, and this community is here to support you. Don't hesitate to reach out for help if you need it, whether it's from a trusted friend, family member, or mental health professional.
 
I can't even get a decent reason to have PTSD - I haven't been in a War, I was not sexually abused etc.

Criterion A (the part of the diagnostic process of PTSD that outlines the types of traumas that qualify for the diagnosis) does not need to be caused by war or sexual abuse. Crit A is solely about a real or perceived threat to your physical wellbeing - and many forms of bullying fully meet that definition, which means it is most assuredly just as serious as any other form of trauma.

I would also encourage you to re-examine thinking of trauma in terms of "decent reasons to get PTSD." PTSD is a medical disorder, that happens for reasons, but aside from the moral implications of interpersonal violence, should not be assigned a value judgment (whether or not someone's PTSD is caused by a "decent enough reason." Mostly, it is caused by trauma, and most trauma is inherently meaningless, random, chaotic and violent.)

Regardless, welcome to the forum. 👋
 
Yup - that’s a pretty typical way to feel about our own trauma.

Sorry to hear you’ve got so much on your plate. But glad you found us:)
thank you.

Criterion A (the part of the diagnostic process of PTSD that outlines the types of traumas that qualify for the diagnosis) does not need to be caused by war or sexual abuse. Crit A is solely about a real or perceived threat to your physical wellbeing - and many forms of bullying fully meet that definition, which means it is most assuredly just as serious as any other form of trauma.

I would also encourage you to re-examine thinking of trauma in terms of "decent reasons to get PTSD." PTSD is a medical disorder, that happens for reasons, but aside from the moral implications of interpersonal violence, should not be assigned a value judgment (whether or not someone's PTSD is caused by a "decent enough reason." Mostly, it is caused by trauma, and most trauma is inherently meaningless, random, chaotic and violent.)

Regardless, welcome to the forum. 👋
Hello Weemie, thank you. I know you are absolutely right, of course. All the research and scientific understanding supports what you say, and on an intellectual level I agree 100%. A couple of years ago I read the stats on "life outcomes" for childhood bullying victims and felt that, given those rather horrifying statistics, I felt I'd really don't a pretty good job over the last thirty years - still married, I hold down a good job which I do well and and in which I am lucky enough to be able to help people a lot, I have two amazing sons of 20 and 16. Besides, it's not me who diagnosed myself - the Doctor who carried out the tests said I scored 55, or something, which apparently in the upper end. I'm going to have to work on this one, though, as knowing and knowing with conviction seem to be two different things.👋
 
I felt I'd really don't a pretty good job over the last thirty years - still married, I hold down a good job which I do well and and in which I am lucky enough to be able to help people a lot, I have two amazing sons of 20 and 16

All very worthy accomplishments. I can relate as well with the looking up of statistics. It can be very helpful to determine where you are on the spectrum. Those for the type of trauma I experienced were equally bleak, but I have been pleasantly surprised by how psychosocial outcomes can actually change for entire populations of people as we grow more familiar with how to rehabilitate others and integrate them into society meaningfully.

The outcomes I studied in 2007 do not reflect the same outcomes, even within the same specific individuals, of 2022. So that does inspire hope, even though my own outcome is particularly unsuccessful (no education or employment, no ability to live independently, limited connections to others, etc). According to averages, I should be dead or in prison, so I count myself successful! Heh.

Trauma, especially formative trauma (that which occurs during childhood development) can be extremely destabilizing to our nervous system, so it is no surprise that children who are bullied have worse outcomes than those who don't. It would also stand to reason that a big part of bullying is the invalidation of your emotions, mocking/teasing, etc - which only further solidifies the narrative that it's "not a big deal."

Our brains are fantastic survival mechanisms, and even though it doesn't feel good to feel like it isn't a big deal, it is objectively easier to handle that fact than it is to be completely aware of just how harmful and cruel other people have been to you, that have left you with permanent medical issues through no fault of your own. Our brains try to minimize trauma as best as possible, including by literally denying it was traumatic.
 
Welcome !! Somewhat similar in that suddenly mid 50's everything seemed to go wrong. Now I can see why, at the time -tired, worn out, nightmares, eating problems, and more I was really just putting one foot in front of the other. I had not idea I had PTSD until I took a break from work and was doing some reading. While writing the book the author did some research and found she had PTSD. I checked all the boxes in the PTSD chapter and well.....went looking for help.

One thing I found here that helped a lot is this article.
 
hello and welcome to the site
thank you

Welcome !! Somewhat similar in that suddenly mid 50's everything seemed to go wrong. Now I can see why, at the time -tired, worn out, nightmares, eating problems, and more I was really just putting one foot in front of the other. I had not idea I had PTSD until I took a break from work and was doing some reading. While writing the book the author did some research and found she had PTSD. I checked all the boxes in the PTSD chapter and well.....went looking for help.

One thing I found here that helped a lot is this article.
Thank you for the recommendation. I can't say that everything has gone swimmingly up until now, as life, marriage, career and fatherhood has felt like a never-ending succession of crises, but in some respects things do seem a little easier now I have a realistic idea of what the problem is. The problem is acting on the intellectual knowledge, and not responding to "triggers."
 
To be perfectly honest I feel like a self-indulgent failure
in my strictly personal herstory, the emphasis here was on "perfectly." my control freakitis --yet another ptsd symptom-- demands perfection in all things. never mind that perfection is a matter of opinion. one soul's perfection is another soul's atrocity.

then we get to "self-indulgent." is being less than perfect self-indulgent? at the start of my recovery, i thought so. even being merely human was self-indulgent.
 
Thank you for the recommendation. I can't say that everything has gone swimmingly up until now, as life, marriage, career and fatherhood has felt like a never-ending succession of crises
Yes, it's a difficult thing and you wonder if something is wrong and to find out it is.....difficult.
 
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