How do you manage helplessness and hopelessness of complex trauma

Suzetig

MyPTSD Pro
I hear you - I get that still sometimes, less than I used to but I can still be really hit if I don't look after myself when I feel overly visible. Part of my job involves training groups of people do the "being seen" thing can be hard going.

What has worked for me is firstly recognising that being seen is a trigger and then being very reassuring to that part of me (sometimes literally reassuring myself like I would a small child - it'll be ok, I know it's scary but you're really good at this, just a while longer, type messages). I'll also have a treat planned for after the "visible" thing, a nice coffee, cake, good book, movie whatever feels like a treat or feels nurturing.

I know it's horrible but the freeze/fawn thing is just trying to keep you safe, so you need to be kind to yourself and reassure yourself that you are in fact safe. Try not to fight it, cos in my experience that makes it last longer and feel harder.
 

tontoe

Learning
all I want to do is to go to sleep but I am not actually tired I am emotionally tired if you know what I mean
That rings so true for me. Sometimes sleep is what I need, but sometimes what I really need is a rest from the emotional overload. Then, sleeping is a slippery slope to an altered state - dissociation.
Try not to fight it, cos in my experience that makes it last longer and feel harder.
I realise, reading this thread, that sometimes I try to fight it so hard that I wear myself out.

It's all about discrimination, knowing what's best for me, but when I'm "in it" [dissociated] it is so hard to know - it's like having a screaming baby inside me that nobody else can hear...
 

ms spock

Sponsor
What has worked for me is firstly recognising that being seen is a trigger and then being very reassuring to that part of me (sometimes literally reassuring myself like I would a small child - it'll be ok, I know it's scary but you're really good at this, just a while longer, type messages). I'll also have a treat planned for after the "visible" thing, a nice coffee, cake, good book, movie whatever feels like a treat or feels nurturing.
I read this and then didn't actually do it for myself.

I know it's horrible but the freeze/fawn thing is just trying to keep you safe, so you need to be kind to yourself and reassure yourself that you are in fact safe. Try not to fight it, cos in my experience that makes it last longer and feel harder.
I need to do this on a minute by minute basis at this time.
 

Mit

MyPTSD Pro
I think I know what you mean. When I feel overwhelmed and exhausted emotionally I don't manage it, it manages me.

Exercise is the only thing that helps me, no matter how tired I feel. It doesn't have to be energetic. Just a gentle walk helps. If you can manage energetic even better but anything will do. I find being out in the elements, wind, rain, the sea does it for me more than other forms of exercise (I don't do gyms). When I'm out walking, swimming or whatever I try to be mindful of my surroundings, try to quiet my mind and stop ruminating.

A long hot bath too. Candles and a glass of wine and a distracting book (something easy, not a book about trauma!).

Sometimes I go to the cinema on my own. It takes a colossal effort of will (for me anyway) but I always feel different after, not necessarily better but sometimes just changing emotional pain is a help.

Those are the positive things I do. Otherwise it's alcohol, sexual self harm and over thinking. All those things keep me in my head, the previous things get me out of my head.

I have no idea if any of this is relevant, or helpful. But I'm thinking of you and sending positive vibes.
 
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