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My girlfriend's nightmares

Discussion in 'Supporter Relationships' started by TheLover, Jul 13, 2018 at 3:30 PM.

  1. TheLover

    TheLover Was Nickolas Frizani

    Hi guys, it's really hard for me to write this, cause im brazilian and im still learning the English language.
    So here is my history.
    My girlfriend has PTSD and Depression issues.
    Everynight she pass through a couple nightmares.
    We just started to live together in a apartment, it's been 3 days that her's nightmares is getting worse.
    She tries to hit herself,scratch her's face and I don't know what to do.
    I tried to wake her up, but she can't couldn't hear me, cause the nightmare was so deep, that my voice couldn't reach her..
    Im totally desperate.
    She goes to psychologist every week and a Psychiatrist every month.
    She takes 2 pills to sleep every night.
    I know that is not a good ideia to wake her up in the middle of a nightmare.
    But i really don't know what to do..
    I hope you guys could give me a light, cause im almost feeling hopeless..
    I love her so much, she is the love of my life.
    I really want to marry her and have a future together with her.
    She is everthing for me and to me.
    Thanks for take your time to read this.
    And sorry if i wrote something wrong.
    shimmerz, Freida, Friday and 2 others like this.
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  3. Sweetpea76

    Sweetpea76 Semper ubi sub ubi. Moderator Donated

    You did fine :) Welcome to the forum!

    She's probably stressed by the move... it's a big change to move house, much less move in with a partner. Good stress is a type of stress too, so her nightmares may be a little ramped up if she is dealing with extra stress.

    Have you talked to her about it? Is this typical when she sleeps? Or is this new?
  4. TheLover

    TheLover Was Nickolas Frizani

    Yes, I already spoke with her a couple times, Its not commom those nightmares, is something new, but the nightmares are the same.
    It's new the hitting and scratching thing you know..
    She can't remember anything.
    She only wake up feeling pain.. That's the point..
    And she gets worried about it.
    Her cousin lives with us.
    And she helped me last night with that nightmare.
    But i still don't know what to do.
    shimmerz and Freida like this.
  5. Sweetpea76

    Sweetpea76 Semper ubi sub ubi. Moderator Donated

    Are the sleeping pills new? Sometimes sleeping pills exacerbate the situation.
    shimmerz and Fadeaway like this.
  6. Freida

    Freida Been There, Done That, Lived to Tell the Story Premium Member

    Have you asked her what she would like you to do? When hubby and I moved in together I slept with a nightlight because waking up in a dark room would send me into a panic attack. Some nights I fight in my sleep, some nights I launch out of bed and find myself in different places in the house. So I had to teach him what to do --- and what not to do. grab me or shake me? Yea - that will end up with me fighting him.
    Talking to me? sometimes it helps, sometimes I don't hear him.

    We have a pattern down now on what works best but it took several conversations and experiments to figure it out. So that might be a good starting point
    shimmerz, Fadeaway and LuckiLee like this.
  7. LuckiLee

    LuckiLee I'm a VIP

    I never wake my guy. He's told me a couple of different stories about what happened when people woke him up. Not even necessarily out if a nightmare.

    J's not physical when he's having nightmares. He's freighted, worried and panicked. He wakes up startled (among other things) and I'll calmly and quietly tell him "It's just me, Baby love. You're home and safe now. It's all over." Most of the time that's enough to reassure him and he can drift off to sleep again. Sometimes he wakes up scared out of his mind. That's when I let him wake up on his own. He's still in the nightmare. Like it all just happened. Those times it takes him quite a while to ground himself.

    Good luck with everything. I hope you can come up with a solution or two.
    shimmerz, EveHarrington and Freida like this.
  8. Freida

    Freida Been There, Done That, Lived to Tell the Story Premium Member

    @LuckiLee and hubby went to the same school of supporters -- he says that almost word for word to me some times LOL
    shimmerz and LuckiLee like this.
  9. Fadeaway

    Fadeaway I'm a VIP Donated

    For goodness sakes don't try and wake her up. She probably didn't know that she was violent in her sleep untill you guys started living together. I was clueless until I my husband moved in. It was only because he told me that I knew. I remember nightmares but not the ones that make me thrash about at night.

    If you can ignore it the best you can. I asked my hubby how he handled it and he said he scoots to the edge of the bed and puts a pillow between us as a barier.
    Freida, LuckiLee and EveHarrington like this.
  10. barefoot

    barefoot I'm a VIP Premium Member Donated

    Ask her what - if anything - she’d like you to do when this happens.

    I’d warn against touching her (putting your arms around her to comfort her or gently shaking her awake etc) as you could intensify whatever fear/panic she is experiencing and you could well find yourself on the receiving end of a smack or a kick etc.

    Being woken up from a deep sleep is very disorientating - and even more so when you’ve been caught up in a nightmare or night terror. So, waking her up isn’t necessarily going to make her feel better anyway - yes, you’ll have taken her out of her nightmare but it’s a real shock to the system being dragged out of sleep, trying to orientate yourself, feeling panic in your body from your nightmare and trying to make sense of it and then having to calm yourself down enough to be able to go back to sleep again.

    Something that works for me - though this is more for night terrors and hallucinations, which I think happens in a different sleep state to nightmares plus my eyes are open even though I am not really seeing - is if my partner switches on the light. Might be worth a try? She doesn’t do it every time - only when she’s worried for my safety eg I’ve raced out of bed and am heading for the door so she worries that I’ll fall down the stairs or something.

    It is still disorientating and when I wake up I feel very confused and then embarrassed...it isn’t a positive experience. But I haven’t fallen down the stairs yet, which is quite a good pay-off in my book!
    Freida and LuckiLee like this.
  11. EveHarrington

    EveHarrington _______ in progress. Premium Member

    Agreed, don’t wake her up. This is a HUGE no-no for me as being woken up can ruin a whole day for me.
    Fadeaway, Freida and LuckiLee like this.
  12. shimmerz

    shimmerz My silence spoke a thousand words you never heard Premium Member

    I feel like this is what will work over time. PTSD symptoms aren't something that get fixed in a night or a week. It takes time to build a sense of security and safety in new situations (which is why avoidance is the 'thing' in PTSD).

    Let her know that you are there - even if she doesn't respond. Keep the energy in the room as calm as can be. Let her go through what she needs to go through and I am certain in time that she will settle down and start to sleep well again.

    I think it is when supporters expectations (of her getting good sleep) get in the way that it adds pressure to the mix. Trust that the two of you will be able to create a sense of safety together. It just takes time.
    Fadeaway, Freida and LuckiLee like this.
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