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I need advice on managing dysregulation

Thread starter #1
It has been awhile since I've been here. I've had someone close to me to share my ptsd experience with, so I have had help managing some of my symptoms. But this is the month I was sexually assaulted so I'm having a really hard time just existing. I'm struggling with my negative emotions being so strong and all-day consuming, that even getting up in the morning takes so much out of me.

My SO believes that burning off physical energy is a solution to a lot of my symptoms. I've tried to explain to him that no matter how much exercise I get, it doesn't stop the constant nightmares and flashbacks. I'm an active person, I hike and run almost everyday, so I know this all too well. He isn't well informed with mental illnesses, so I don't blame him for thinking exercise is a solution to ptsd symptoms. But I'm limited with what I can share with him.

So how do you manage dysregulation?
I've come a long way from my trauma, but I still have a long way to go.

Thank you in advance for the advice.
 
#2
I'm sorry an anniversary is coming up. It's no wonder symptoms are spiking right now.

I can only share what works for me:
Talking to myself - reminding myself I'm in the here and now.
I've started to use a stress toy (actually the cat's toys!) to squeeze, to have something tactile to feel and bring about other sensations to ground me.
Breathing.

Doesn't always work, but is getting better.
 
#3
I'm struggling with my negative emotions being so strong and all-day consuming, that even getting up in the morning takes so much out of me.
How are you, today? In asking, the understanding is that a chronic state is probably still ongoing... the hope is you detect that I care. Which again is hard to discern through mere text alone. I slept on my response to reading this yesterday. That usually works for me. Here is a better response than what you would have heard yesterday.
You matter. Feedback from the majority is some version of performance... Well, they aren't in your shoes. And the majority certain haven't hiked anywhere in those shoes. What is performance, anyway? What yardstick would one use? Most yardsticks aren't accurate because they aren't factoring in all of those other factors which are more likely to be understood here. What factors?
constant nightmares and flashbacks
OH.My.God.

I'm debating about how much sharing to do here.. ... so let me just ask. Can I continue? Is that okay?
 
Thread starter #4
How are you, today? In asking, the understanding is that a chronic state is probably still ongoing... the hope is you detect that I care. Which again is hard to discern through mere text alone. I slept on my response to reading this yesterday. That usually works for me. Here is a better response than what you would have heard yesterday.
You matter. Feedback from the majority is some version of performance... Well, they aren't in your shoes. And the majority certain haven't hiked anywhere in those shoes. What is performance, anyway? What yardstick would one use? Most yardsticks aren't accurate because they aren't factoring in all of those other factors which are more likely to be understood here. What factors?


OH.My.God.

I'm debating about how much sharing to do here.. ... so let me just ask. Can I continue? Is that okay?
Of course you can share! That's why I really like this place; it lets you know you're not alone when other people share.

I'm still very much struggling. I had to create some boundaries with my SO, because he has been exhibiting some toxic behavior. He is going through his own struggles right now, and I don't want the toxicity to bleed onto me and cripple me even more. It's hard since we talk regularly everyday, but neither of us can support one another if one party is tearing down the other. So I think some space will benefit us both.
So on top of dealing with the anniversary of my assault, and having to distance myself from the one person I feel comfortable sharing my ptsd with, I'm in a really bad place.
 
#5
Exercise is my best tool.

When my body doesn’t have 10-15 hours of daily exercise in me? Like I’m sick/injured? Things can go pretty sideways. My normal days -for most of my adult life- are 10ish hours of exercise. 15+ are super fun days. (Meant BOTH literally and sarcastically ;) If I’m moving from the moment I get up until I go to sleep? I’m either having a wicked fun time, or I’m having a really difficult time...and occasionally both at the same time). 4 hours is something of a bare minimum/ when I’m doing very very well, otherwise. I really don’t understand how people do 20 minutes out of 18 hours awake. Not that I don’t have movie marathons, or play video games for 3 days straight until my eyes are (almost ;) bleeding, or spend 90% of the day glued to a book desperately cramming/researching (or lost in a story). But I have to be very careful with those days. They’re fun little diversions, I suppose in the way that some people do skiing weekends, or a Sunday hike. But I’m going to be a bit touchy, emotional, and/or prone to overreact. It’s not that I haven’t tried -or been forced into, from time to time- a sedentary life... it’s that I’m simply not wired for it.

Sensory tricks are another mainstay.

Hot&cold showers, sauna&rolling in snow, cold drinks on a hot day or in a hot shower & vice versa. Scents. Music. Lighting. Tastes. The fabrics against my skin. Weightlessness (Swimming is more accessible than free fall, but if you’ve got access to a plane, trapeze, or rappelling gear? <sneaky> I have a dream of going to bed like Lara Croft harnessed up in her PJs in free fall. It may never happen, logistically, but hot damn would that be aweeeesome). Weight/heft/pressure (from pushing against a wall, to a heavy blanket, to being held, to compression gear, to massage... f*ck I miss weekly or biweekly massage! Most of my insurance companies have covered it as a straight $20 outpatient copay, a couple at 10%-20%. Man oh man, that’s the cost of coffee at Starbucks!)). Tons and tons of things that engage the senses.

Chemical Distancing

Whether we’re talking scotch & cigars, or benzos // over the counter @ my own discretion, or closely monitored by a doctor, matters not so much. It’s a bit of breathing space.

More, for sure, but these are my Top3
 
#6
I'm still very much struggling.
Thank you so so much for coming back to this thread and updating today! I honor you for that. Tough. Tough thing to do. And I really appreciate Friday’s post because he is responding as a fellow who walks the path that you do. I am coming from a different quarter. I am a Supporter. I have a different role. The reason I was debating about sharing is I have been in this role a long time. Along with that was a three and a half year moderating role on another survivor site many years ago. That is a little back story on me so I am more transparent.

A good support person is mature and stable. We have our own process for our needs that is more or less bulletproof. So we can give and give reliably. Many of us get our sense of belonging and acceptance from spiritual perspectives. This naturally leads into what could someone with my background “do” for you who is struggling so much? I asked permission expressly because this is fraught (love this word ) with potential issues for all. I am not only wearing my old, married woman hat (25 plus years ), my old moderator cap 🧢, intuition. The Kitchen Sink. That is all to try to prevent misunderstandings. Your heart is so important! I realize the push-pull of existence is not sending that message. There might be a handful of options for getting sustained, strong caring. That energy you need to be settled is something we Supporters offer. Some of us have neglected our own selves in the all our bid to secure our person. * raises hand * it is not pretty when the bill comes due. What I want to safely offer you is that I see Quality in how you presented yourself in your post. I sincerely hope that the time you spent reading this helped to acknowledge the work and effort you are putting in. I see it!
 
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