My counselor recently told me I have Complex/Chronic Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
At my most recent appointment, not quite a week ago, she told me this as a fact: “You have Chronic PTSD” and read me the official diagnostic criteria for this condition. Based on what she read and the analysis she shared with me, there was no way for me to deny it.
It has taken me five days to process that enough to talk about it here. I knew she assumed at my first visit that I was struggling with what she called “anxiety and PTSD,” but I didn’t understand everything that meant.
Given the decade of war (this week) that this country has been engaged in, PTSD has been in the news more. I have extended family members who have served several tours in that war and are now receiving treatment for Complex PTSD.
Is what happened to me “as bad” as what happened to them? I keep asking myself that question, and being struck with a feeling of guilt. I tell myself, ‘No. The trauma of war is a completely different thing. How can it be the same resulting condition?'” But I know what she read fit what I have experienced.
I need to learn more about PTSD and it’s treatment. I recently learned about this article that explains how the U. S. Military is using yoga to help in the treatment of veterans with PTSD. I know it has helped me. I know it helped me get through the panic attacks I experienced. And I know the breathing techniques I have learned helped me compose myself after this weekend’s awful dream.
The challenge for me will be dealing with my body as a trigger, in addition to triggers out in the world, and rebuilding my trust in the doctor/patient relationship. I am sure I will write about this more in the future.
Here are the first few resources I have found and plan to delve into soon:
- National Center for PTSD
- PTSD after childbirth
- One in Three Post-Partum Women Suffers PTSD Symptoms After Giving Birth
- Birth Trauma Association (Another resource from the UK — are we behind in “The States” or are they ahead? Amazing!)
I remember when I first found out I had PTSD, and that was just over a year ago. It still feels like a shock but it has ebbed and flowed in how much I worry or feel shame for having it. The thing that made this shame or worry much much worse was delving into the world of the Internet and reading stories and stories about people who have it and have had it for years etc. I just want to share that with you because, perhaps it was a vital part of my journey (it was certainly needed at the time) but also surround yourself with stories of people that have overcome it, worked through it, or are working through it.
Comparison is such a natural part of us all, but another thing that can make everything feel more shitty. Hope you feel supported.
I’m here if you need. Please ask anything you want re PTSD, or anything else! big love x
Thank you so much!
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