Relationship How do I support partner with CPTSD

Hello. I'm not sure if I'm posting in the correct area- apologies if I'm not. I came across this site as Ive been searching for information to help me understand and support my partner who has cptsd, in the best way for him and to try to see things from a perspective I don't understand.

So I've been with him 9 months. We have talked seriously about our future and see it being with each other. I didn't know he suffered until he had a second angry outburst and i said there is obv something not right. He told me he does have cptsd and that he's kept it a secret all his life from his family and friends. He's 53. He had therapy years ago but that lapsed. During that time, he cut himself off from his family. (who he had a very troubled upbringing with diff abuse) and has never spoken to them again. As well as abuse in his childhood, his mother passed when he was very young, and he is also a war vet. After his second and last outburst he finally started seeing a therapist that specialises in war veterans and cptsd. Which I'm really proud of him for doing. He said he needed a few days to get his head together, and that was 4 weeks ago. I'm struggling to learn his new language as in he says he misses me and wants me to hold him but when I say I can come over, he says he has to see how he feels. He still is social with mates and will go out, and he had a friend to stay for about 6 nights.. He leaves lovely voice notes and we txt or chat thro the day. When we've spoken on the phone it's as if nothing has changed, we are still really close and chat about normal stuff and have a laugh... . He says he doesn't mean to be off or push me away- he's working thro stuff. I try to reassure him the best way I can, that I understand, it's OK, and that he does deserve this love that he really wants, and he needs to do what's best for him, I can wait.... But its hard to know what he is actually saying.. To leave him alone or to hold him etc as he says both. ... . I asked him if he can just tell me if he needs space/ wants to be left alone, or if he wants to see me as he confuses me with the mixed messages. From this site I know its a push pull/lovebomb /ghost thing and it's helped for me to learn that.. I'm trying to see things from his perspective and not take things personally but when it's only me that knows what's going on and only me that he hasn't seen. It's hard not to feel isolated, hurt and upset as well as being thankful that he trusts me with such precious information.... His therapist says he masks his feelings, and I think because he hasn't been shown love from anyone(even partners) and he says he feels that from me, I realise I must trigger all these huge emotions for him. I try and let him steer the relationship and start the convos, but I also send a little txt if I've not heard from him for a bit so he knows he's not been abandoned too. From what's been said I think he worries to see me incase he behaves badly. That doesn't upset me when he de regulates, it's not him, it's not his fault. I see past this injury and love the man for what I know him to be and I stay calm. How do I navigate all this so I can support him in the best way? And are there any tips for me so I don't get upset when it feels like it's a personal thing when I'm left feeling its only me he won't see. I appreciate its going to be a long hard road but know that education, understanding and compassion is key. If any of you that suffer or support can halo me, I would be very grateful.. Thankyou x
 
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Survivor3

MyPTSD Pro
Hiya @Birdhouseinmysoul and welcome to the site 😊.

The part of "feeling like it's personal when your the only person he won't see" worries me...

Your quest to find support in the best way to support him and love him is admirable but the relationship seems a bit one sided. Is he maybe being a bit too selfish and taking you for granted without reciprocating your effort into the relationship?
 
Hiya @Birdhouseinmysoul and welcome to the site 😊.

The part of "feeling like it's personal when your the only person he won't see" worries me...

Your quest to find support in the best way to support him and love him is admirable but the relationship seems a bit one sided. Is he maybe being a bit too selfish and taking you for granted without reciprocating your effort into the relationship?
Thanks so much for taking the time to reply.. Genuinely dont know. I know his therapist said he needs space from triggers. As far as I can see he does go out and does put on a front but hasn't seen me.. He said he needs time, he needs to be selfish and I need to take his healing seriously...he says he doesn't and can't behave how he has been with me ... like I said, he says he misses me, but it's his choice not to see me. I live 30 mins away from him, and his best mate lives hour away. I know his therapist told him that that relationship was toxic and so he hasn't rang him, but answered his call and had one chat since. So it's me and him really, but we do speak a lot. When I asked what can I do, he has said keep being me,he just needs time. I know his long time partner was abusive to him and he says with his last gf it was also nowhere near what he'd call a relationship. We were before his outburst so so close, we never had a cross word or fell out and enjoyed being with each other... His brother killed himself from the abuse and I know he is taking this very seriously, he's doing 121 and talking therapy twice a week, he is doing homework that she gives him and listening to soothing music. Am I wrong to feel that he's pushing me away even tho he says he isn't. Should I expect more??.. I feel he has a slight phobia about seeing me so am considering just popping over for 5 mins and leaving.just so he physically sees me /me him. Tho it may backfire and trigger him so I'm not sure... After the first time he triggered (b4 I knew what it was) he cried for hours as didn't want to lose me and when I held him he said that was what made him feel better..whixh is why I'm thinking of doing it... I just remember how things were, how great he is and how close we were before he started this and I'm trying to give benefit of doubt, but I'm struggling.. Espesh today when he's been quite quiet and hardly spoke. He always says good morning first and good night and yest after therapy he hasn't done either.. He sent me something via a txt , and when I replied and asked how his day has been he hasn't replied but read the message. It is selfish behaviour but he's been told to do that. But it's left me feeling all sorts of emotions and not knowing really what to do.. . X
 

Sweetpea76

Moderator
How do I navigate all this so I can support him in the best way? And are there any tips for me so I don't get upset when it feels like it's a personal thing when I'm left feeling its only me he won't see.

Look at giving him space as a loving act. He needs space to feel better, and you are giving him what he needs.

And honestly, it isn’t personal… Not if he still communicates with you and wants you around otherwise.
 
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