...so I could have flown away from all that hell ages ago, and not have it come up and haunt me as an adult years later. I'd really rather not post my real name, but "StarHawk" suits for this place. I'd rather not post my real name or my Internet nickname just for the sake of keeping this more comfortable for me. I'm from Maryland. This is gonna be... lengthy.. I have PTSD. After nearly two years (Starting May 2005) of suffering from some "unknown" chest problems and pains and being treated like a lap rat. Going from the heart doctors to asthma doctors. Only to have them tell me "we can't help, some thing's going wrong with your body, but we don't know how to fix it." I later- for the pure hell of it. Started googling my symptoms with mental conditions. And found some sites on PTSD. I broke down in front of this machine- everything the doctors swore I had or.. could have had and was tested for often got mistaken with this. So my father and I found a good therapist back in February of 2007 and she confirmed and diagnosed me with PTSD. She has taught me how to handle the chest pains. And I can over come them. But these nightmares, flashbacks, panic attacks- this constant feeling of that I'm "back in the battle field" seems to disable me more then the bloody chest problems. I SHOULD be sleeping right now but the fear of nightmares after some pretty nasty flashbacks a few hours ago- is keeping me awake. To keep is short, for now anyway. I was abused emotionally, physically, and verbally by my mother for 10-13 years of my life. No one in my family knew it was going on until my cousin (my father's brother's son) saw her strike me, some time in 95. He told his family and my dad and his mom asked me about how often it happened. And there I was, sitting down, naive as hell. Telling them everything that was going on and had gone one. Thinking it was all "normal". My father and mother's marriage was falling apart. My father left my mother, and couldn't get custody of me until 1997. Anything before January 8th 1997 is a blur in my mind. Still frames. Memories and feelings only come back in waves. I'm almost 24 years old and I really wonder how the hell I've made it this far. I was bullied in school, too, and had a very unpleasant experience with an on and off again partner when I was a teenager. I may be leaving out some parts or missing some things... but I can't sleep... and this is just the ice breaker post. I've been through therapy and I really don't think she can help me anymore. This is my own battle, and the expense of going to her would be more then half my weekly paycheck. I'm a artist, art is what kept me going all those years I was in hell. I hope to create my own animated series someday, or graphic novel. I have a very developed story in the works. I love animals, too. They were always the kindest to me as a child.