I've had PTSD for about 32 years now. ((I refuse to say I "suffer" with it. darn it. lol Even though it's trashed my life.I won't give it the benefit of saying it's kicked my butt, completely.)) Been in therapy forever. I've made a lot of breakthroughs and changed some bad behavior, but when it comes to PTSD, almost nothing has ever changed how I feel about the traumatic events, or the illogical garbage connected to what most consider "normal" activities. I have tried exposure therapy, EMDR, CBT. Literally nothing has changed when it comes to the ptsd experiences. They happen all the time, no matter what the situation, and avoidance has been the only way to really handle it so I function as a human. I guess.
A few years ago, I was doing exposure therapy about 3 times a week w/3 caring doc types from the same company. We worked on this for about 6-12 months. (Difficult during summer as I have other responsibilities and it has to be put on hold.) I aggressively, actively tried my best to face my fears - and when I read about folks being able to handle things after 10 sessions or something - I have to laugh - I have never had that kind of relief.
I'm surprised to see there's a forum about ptsd! Not long ago, folks were generally concerned about privacy and medical issues and usually wouldn't even email regarding the topic, due to privacy concerns. - So, where I am very leery about posting for that reason, it's also amazing to see I am not alone. It's *such* a pain in the butt (ptsd). Been dealing with it longer than I ever did before it happened. It's connected to something that means a darn lot to me, and I have never been able to disconnect the trauma from the activity. (Mother and her absolute bonkers church group cast "demons" out of me for years because I would 1) spend time in my room reading and 2) because I was seen as being "evil" and 3) **this is the big one** that I could draw better than a lot of other folks and they taught me it would be used "to hurt people". Everyone has a skill in life and sustains them, for me - drawing was it, and I'm terrified of doing it.
As much as I *know* and understand that the fears are irrational, that others are able to do similar activities w/out being 'cast into hell' or whatever, and the world doesn't end when I do any kind of drawing or painting - I have not been successful in undoing the trauma and how it relates to artwork in general. I'd literally try anything at this point. Exposure therapy, however, unfortunately, does not seem to be doing the trick. They say it works. Makes me wonder if the therapists don't know how to change it, really//like they're doing the trauma desensitization wrong? I was reading about some folks' experiences w/ET and actually learned a few things from the founder's responses on the forum! It makes me think the therapists over the years have not been doing something correctly in regards to the trauma.
Anyway. I think it's real stupid. I really hate it. I know the fear is irrational and I probably won't die, and yet when I attempt to do the stuff I avoid - my defenses are so amazingly strong in trying to 'save me' - that I can barely function, and sit crying a lot, still not really capable of doing any type of art.
There have been a few successes, where I wanted to go out and run a few miles so badly, that I told myself I didn't care if I was going to have a meteor hit me while I was doing it - I was going to do it. Real bad experience before I left the house - the cat seemed to know something was wrong with me at the time, and rubbed on my face as I was crying. I was super grateful. She kinda woke me up.
Everyone here has my utmost respect and I wish you success and peace in your life. <3
Welcome to the forum ! I hope it helps you with your thoughts and feelings.
Ah! Thank you very much!! :)
I found all kinds of things!! Forums called: Avoidance, Dysregulation, Hypervigilance! My gosh, I can't believe I'm seeing this! I can't wait to read these and see what I can find. I hope folks that are successful in dealing with this stuff post there, too! I want to know how. lol!! :)
I was very afraid to create a name and place for myself when I first found this site. (Much yet, talk.) However, I quickly discovered that it felt sooo good to find out that others felt like me - even if the circumstances were different. It was such a relief for me to know that I wasn't crazy because of what I thought about me.
I know that your welcome here and am sure that you will find support for what bothers you. Welcome.