Relationship I think I triggered my wife’s PTSD

throwaway13

Learning
I’m pretty sure I triggered my wife’s ptsd a month ago. When we first starting getting serious 7 years ago she told me she suffered a trauma when she was a young adult and was diagnosed with ptsd. She said she was better but went to years of therapy.

Fast forward to June of this year. We are having a rough patch in our marriage. I’m pretty sure it’s due to several layers of stress in our lives that’s not being handled properly. We go to marriage counseling and I’m being portrayed as a monster. Even the therapist said something to my wife about that. I figure that the time to bring up her ptsd would be in front of a trained professional like a therapist. Big mistake, wife shuts down and now there’s a wall around her.

What’s my next steps to help us heal? Give her space? She is refusing to go back to marriage counseling.
 

throwaway13

Learning
I think postpartum issues deal with bonding to the baby or separation anxiety. I really don’t see that right now. Just her isolating and projecting control issues along with fear and trust onto me. What lead me to believe it’s ptsd is when I mentioned it she lost her shit in a therapy session
 
Oh wow, 3 1/2 year old and 10 month twins? How much help does she have? Do you think it's possible her stress cup is overflowing with that? Just a suggestion.. but if she is overwhelmed with that ( and it is a reality of ptsd to be overwhelmed when the stress cup overflows), that would make you both right? That is, she is correct in acknowledging stressors not related to ptsd, and you are correct in seeing her collapse due to the overwhelming stress and all that implies when she has ptsd? Because that would also explain perhaps partly why it was ok 'before'? Before you didn't have a 3 1/2 yr old and 10 month twins. I think 10 month old twins alone would be overwhelming for most people. And also when the number of kids are greater than the number of parents. So when you said to the counsellor it's because of her ptsd, she may have interpreted as you are unaware of what it is taking to mange and care for the children (and herself/ yourself). Even though you can be correct about the ptsd. Maybe its wasn't as much about outing as overlooking the forest for the trees? That is, what is a huge source of stress for both of you? And definitely exhausting for both of you. (Which is both stressful and doesn't allow for stress to be released when downtime/ happy times lose their priority/ no ability or opportunity to have many. Even sleep deprivation contributes to that.)
 
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throwaway13

Learning
Oh wow, 3 1/2 year old and 10 month twins? How much help does she have? Do you think it's possible her stress cup is overflowing with that? Just a suggestion.. but if she is overwhelmed with that ( and it is a reality of ptsd to be overwhelmed when the stress cup overflows), that would make you both right? That is, she is correct in acknowledging stressors not related to ptsd, and you are correct in seeing her collapse due to the overwhelming stress and all that implies when she has ptsd? Because that would also explain perhaps partly why it was ok 'before'? Before you didn't have a 3 1/2 yr old and 10 month twins. I think 10 month old twins alone would be overwhelming for most people. And also when the number of kids are greater than the number of parents. So when you said to the counsellor it's because of her ptsd, she may have interpreted as you are unaware of what it is taking to mange and care for the children (and herself/ yourself). Even though you can be correct about the ptsd. Maybe its wasn't as much about outing as overlooking the forest for the trees? That is, what is a huge source of stress for both of you? And definitely exhausting for both of you. (Which is both stressful and doesn't allow for stress to be released when downtime/ happy times lose their priority/ no ability or opportunity to have many. Even sleep deprivation contributes to that.)
Definitely exhausting, and I’ve been helping out as much as I can when I’m not at work. And her mother is constantly helping. Maybe she did see me as blaming her, but I was sure to include all the layers of stress involved in out lives. From being grounded by our government for 2 years because of Covid, from moving and buying a house and throwing twins into the mix. Huge stress factor that just compounded over time. Stress cup has been overflowed for sure.
 

throwaway13

Learning
I’m at the end of the rope. I had to let it out today. With her isolation and projecting fear/control/trust issues onto me I had to tell her. It was the first time I used the term “PTSD” for her condition. I’m pretty sure she’s devastated right now but she had to hit rock bottom before she realized what was going on in her head. I’ve never seen her look so sad in my life, it hurts me but it had to be done. I told her don’t get help for me do it for the children. I gave her multiple sources for why I firmly believe the PTSD was triggered and let her know that the PTSD is running her and she’s symptomatic. Like other members of this forum said, I’ve got nothing to lose at this point.
 
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