Relationship Girlfriend is working through trauma

R

Rockguy

So my girlfriend of a year just told me that she has been recently working through some trauma. This came after she had distanced herself from me since i had trigger her unknowingly. She has told me that she needs time and space. We agreed to take physical intimacy off the table for awhile (ie. Sex) however she wants to go slow and build up with cuddling etc.

It hurt to know communication broke down between us and to not know that she was not looking forward to seeing me. I had no idea this was going on.

She and our relationship is incredibly important to me and I feel very lost and confused on what to do. She tells me she wants space and time yet later she wants to see me and wants to lay in my arms. Now I have no idea what space she needs ??
 

arfie

MyPTSD Pro
hello rockguy. welcome to the forum. i live on a very rocky farm and often wonder if i would do better to turn it into a quarry. you want a job?

sorry. . . couldn't resist. . . getting back on topic. . .

please don't feel hurt when communication break down between you. periods of radio silence are typical of any long term relationship. triple so for a ptsd relationship. at the onset of an episode, it is somewhere between difficult and impossible to know, much less find words for WTF is going on. how long will it take to work through any given episode. i'll bet dollars to wishes not even god knows. what kind of space does it take so to accomplish the healing miracle? again, i'll bet not even god knows. there sure are allot of moving parts in the equation.

both sides of the ptsd help desk have rough chairs to fill. the best thing you can do is just be there for her with lots of votes of confidence.
healing happens, hon. let it happen to you.
small steps, big faith and lots of prayer.
 
R

Rockguy

hello rockguy. welcome to the forum. i live on a very rocky farm and often wonder if i would do better to turn it into a quarry. you want a job?

sorry. . . couldn't resist. . . getting back on topic. . .

please don't feel hurt when communication break down between you. periods of radio silence are typical of any long term relationship. triple so for a ptsd relationship. at the onset of an episode, it is somewhere between difficult and impossible to know, much less find words for WTF is going on. how long will it take to work through any given episode. i'll bet dollars to wishes not even god knows. what kind of space does it take so to accomplish the healing miracle? again, i'll bet not even god knows. there sure are allot of moving parts in the equation.

both sides of the ptsd help desk have rough chairs to fill. the best thing you can do is just be there for her with lots of votes of confidence.
healing happens, hon. let it happen to you.
small steps, big faith and lots of prayer.
Thank you for that.
 

Sweetpea76

Moderator
It’s not going to make sense to anybody but her. It’s the push/pull.

I’d just follow her lead. It also couldn’t hurt to just ask her how much contact or communication she wants.
 
R

Rockguy

It’s not going to make sense to anybody but her. It’s the push/pull.

I’d just follow her lead. It also couldn’t hurt to just ask her how much contact or communication she wants.
Yeah I need to ask her. It's hard because I don't want to over communicate and bug her.
 

EveHarrington

MyPTSD Pro
Yeah I need to ask her. It's hard because I don't want to over communicate and bug her.

You could say “I know you need your space and I have every intention of giving you what you need, however I am unclear as to what kind of space you need. Do you want to have no contact for awhile, or do you still want to talk in the phone or text, or do you have something else in mind?”

This way she knows that you aren’t going against her wishes, you are just unclear as to exactly what her wishes entail.
 
R

Rockguy

You could say “I know you need your space and I have every intention of giving you what you need, however I am unclear as to what kind of space you need. Do you want to have no contact for awhile, or do you still want to talk in the phone or text, or do you have something else in mind?”

This way she knows that you aren’t going against her wishes, you are just unclear as to exactly what her wishes entail.
Okay that's a good way of asking.

How do I help control my anxiety of her pulling away so hard. At first it felt like she had lost interest in me. Granted she has told me to trust her that our relationship means alot and she loves me and wants to continue. However I've always looked more for actions than words. Don't get me wrong I do trust her fully.
 

Sweetpea76

Moderator
How do I help control my anxiety of her pulling away so hard.

You’re going to have to decide if you want to live like this forever, because if this is how she handles stressors she is going to do this over and over again.

As far as anxiety goes, this isn’t about you or the relationship. She has PTSD and this is part of it. Once you come to terms with that it gets easier. She needs space to feel better, so giving her that space with no drama is a loving act.

It’s not for everybody, and that’s OK. And even if you adapt to it there will still be times that it is hard or hurts… like missing special occasions or emotional numbing. Your partner is mentally ill, and this is part of it.
 
R

Rockguy

You’re going to have to decide if you want to live like this forever, because if this is how she handles stressors she is going to do this over and over again.

As far as anxiety goes, this isn’t about you or the relationship. She has PTSD and this is part of it. Once you come to terms with that it gets easier. She needs space to feel better, so giving her that space with no drama is a loving act.

It’s not for everybody, and that’s OK. And even if you adapt to it there will still be times that it is hard or hurts… like missing special occasions or emotional numbing. Your partner is mentally ill, and this is part of it.
Thank you for that info. This is all very knew to me and I'm working on being better at recognizing and handling this on my end. I care deeply for her and want to support her.
 
R

Rockguy

You’re going to have to decide if you want to live like this forever, because if this is how she handles stressors she is going to do this over and over again.

As far as anxiety goes, this isn’t about you or the relationship. She has PTSD and this is part of it. Once you come to terms with that it gets easier. She needs space to feel better, so giving her that space with no drama is a loving act.

It’s not for everybody, and that’s OK. And even if you adapt to it there will still be times that it is hard or hurts… like missing special occasions or emotional numbing. Your partner is mentally ill, and this is part of it.
I thought more on this and also wonder how do trust in what she's telling me verse the actions I'm seeing from her? It's definitely hard and it definitely makes me feel bad and wonder if she's going to forgot about me.
 

Sweetpea76

Moderator
If you like actions think about this…

It would be easier for her mentally to just cut you loose and be alone. She is sticking around in some capacity. That is hard work for an isolator.
 
R

Rockguy

If you like actions think about this…

It would be easier for her mentally to just cut you loose and be alone. She is sticking around in some capacity. That is hard work for an isolator.
Yeah I didn't think of it that way. Thank you for that insight
 
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