Understand complex ptsd (cptsd)

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Approach hiring a counselor/therapist like you would any other important decision. What makes a “good fit”?
Personality, temperament, communication style, basic core values, spiritual beliefs or lack of, etc. Religion or politics may matter to you, etc. Traditional, Feminist, Liberal, Conservative, sex, gender, culture-only you know what you need to feel to be comfortable to allow someone access to your most vulnerable “soft spots” to help you turn them into strengths…………..
It is important to know the type of mental health behaviors they specialize in; EMDR is the most recent type of therapy I’m familiar with that has a high success rate and seems to bring relief from symptoms by re-framing the experiences and/or emotions. There ARE great folks out there!!

Stem Queen

Your symptoms sound A LOT like mine. You sound like you are suffering from what I have been diagnosed with…. Severe and Chronic symptoms of PTSD (Basically its complex ptsd but the diagnosis is not in the DSM, unfortunately)


Hey there. My name’s Jenny. When last I blinked and felt more “normal” I used to be a writer and read v...
Hi Jenny.
Beautifully written comment. I too was living the life or what I thought was life until ” something happened” and my wheels fell off. Multiple therapy interventions and several years later my wheels were put back on but twenty five years later I realised the bolts had not been put on tightly and repetitive bumps in the road and one to many potholes eventually saw my wheels fall off altogether and now with broken axles, I don’t see them ever being put back on to make me drivable again. I hope you continued to post under CPTSD forum. NG


Your symptoms sound A LOT like mine. You sound like you are suffering from what I have been diagnosed with…. Seve...
Hi I have been diagnosed with c ptsd , repeated trauma from childhood onwards, I always felt that previous diagnoses over the years weren’t quite right; yes anxiety but often specific triggers, depression but not always and am able to function , work etc. Nightmares, anger, memory loss, numbness, feeling not there, all I can say is that through time I am getting better… slowly with a mix of EMDR for the flashbacks, breathing exercises to control / help anxiety ,’talking’ to my inner child and giving unconditional love which I never had and cbt to challenge beliefs and work things out.
One day at a time, never give up and know you are not alone.


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I was diagnosed complex… a forensic team was put to work on me,,,,, I can say I was hunted as a child. Id hide out in the woods, the doghouse, attic….. anywhere he couldn’t find me… I stay gone all night, My trauma was mental, emotional, it was hell. What 7 year old asks either god or the devil to take them… I did. I was burned with metal under fire…. and told I was going to die. Every day. No breaks. no holidays, no mercy. I read my papers I got and just feels like someone else…. I was told I was a survivor. I cut I woke up in the winter in the woods and panicked…. not cause the cold… because I thought he found me,,, No one would believe me he said….. I never uttered a word……. I continued on like that. I startle like no one knows…. I will never sleep a full night… and no matter hw much people want to understand… its not possible. I just need a shoulder to sit on the couch and lean on sometimes… that’s fine. I cant change anything. I have made something of the life I have left. It comes with reminders regularly. I try to find my happy things. It will destroy you like a cancer. My Jay found me with a gun …. and that was the moment I told him the short version….. years of therapy,,,,,,, triggers,,,,, am I better now? Yes. Before I never thought I could be loved….. I can. and we have our bad days… but going thru it alone was the worst.


I went through about 8 years of therapy – the last therapist was about 5 years and she was by far the most gifted. Then more trauma happened over and over and I started back sliding. I’m now struggling to keep a job because of brain fog and other trauma aspects. I have auditioned 3 therapists but they are unaware of cPTSD (one was clinically depressed and hostile, one was pessimistic and skeptical that I’d try hard enough, the last triggered defenses in me and we spent the entire session arguing).

But I have to repair myself to keep a job. I am going back to processing trauma as I learned with prior counselor but it’s slow going because I am not objective/trained. But it is helping.

I do wish there was a way to locate a therapist who could help put pieces of treatment together (help me follow through on things I think will help) and help me process trauma (I’ve had some miracles re my spiritual faith helping me break the underlying hopelessness) because I can’t be objective enough. But we can grow and heal. It may be messy and mistakes arise but it does help to fight the fight. I find that I am now contemplating approaches that I know wouldn’t work before when I was more damaged – it’s hard to see but I believe that I am making my way through the forest. There’s a way.
for me – it’s CPTSD as well. my long standing issue is touch. I don’t think I can marry again but really wish too. I am wigged out about being touched. my own children who are all lovely and caring adults – hugging them seems uncomfortable for me. I was sexually abused at around 4 (perhaps younger). my father physically and emotionally abused us kids and our mother was depressed and in her room all day. i did very well raising my kids. but they are grown and out of the house. i married a man who was addicted to many things drugs and alcohol. now divorced after over 20 years i find myself alone with the best years of my life taken from me. and my brother robbing me forever of the joy and comfort of being with someone. and to top it off I feel my soul mate was my T. After 5 years of therapy i had to break it off because it was getting pretty dismal for any hopes of something real. when i think of having a close relationship with someone I break it off.


Can someone please help me. I feel so blank and numb….life has spiralled out of control.

I have cptsd and have been withthe same phsychiatrist for ten years, I dont know where to turn next.

I feel so locked in my head even standing up seems to be a big mission. Every minute is hell. I dobt know who or where to turn next. Im in it. Im really suicidal.
I wish I wasnt.

Neal Curtis

I have been suffering for over 45 years. I have just read this article and it’s like reading my life story, CTSD does not come up in any conversation with specialists in the U.K., yet again I’m left feeling lost and aware that I’m all of the things listed with no help and no end to this inner pain.
I was diagnosed complex… a forensic team was put to work on me,,,,, I can say I was hunted as a child...

Your story sounds so much like mine, believe it or not. I too endured cruelties most people can’t even begin to imagine, including being hunted, run down by dogs repeatedly, shot at, brutalized at home and at school, going hungry, running away, juvy, the works.

It’s so rare to feel really safe and connected with others after such trauma. For what we’ve been through, we get a “Pass” on alot of things in life, so please go easy on yourself.
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