Author Topic: [feelingsdump] PTSD acting up again  (Read 408 times)

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Offline Asche

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[feelingsdump] PTSD acting up again
« on: June 09, 2020, 04:36:39 pm »
I know this isn't directly trans-related (although in my life it's practically impossible to separate the trans from non-trans things), but I've been having a hard time the past few days, mostly with despair and a general feeling of not being part of the human race.

I'm speaking up because of my interpretation of the slogan "Silence = Death."  I know this isn't exactly what the Act-Up activists meant by it, but for me, it means that if I keep silent about who I am and what is inside me, it is a kind of death and, in the long run, leads to actual death (when you lose the will to live)  So I'm going to say what I'm feeling, not because I expect anyone to do anything, but because to remain silent is to die.  Don't feel you have to respond or even read this, especially if you have trouble with this kind of thing.

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This morning, when I woke up, the phrase "I wish I were dead" kept running through my head.  It actually got annoying after a while.  I mean, I've had these thoughts, on and off,  for as long as I can remember, and I've never even taken one step towards acting on them, so I kind of feel like "put up or shut up already!"  I started thinking of them as being like your roommate's boyfriend, the kind who hangs around the living room at all hours watching Professional "Wrestling" (the Hulk Hogan kind of thing), leaving beer spills in the carpet, sticky Coca-Cola puddles on the coffee table, and pizza crusts on dirty plates under the couch, and your roommate won't tell him to leave and you can't do anything because she has the lease and you can't afford to move out.

Normally, my work occupies my mind to the point that I don't feel anything, but today I had to go somewhere, and on the way I was feeling really, really afraid, though I couldn't for the life of me say what I was afraid of.  I had a few of these episodes I have when my body reacts as if I were in extreme pain, even though I'm not aware of any pain, but I find myself clutching the steering wheel and tensing up and such.  My older child finds it pretty distressing if they see it, but I'm  usually so shot when it's over I can't feel much of anything.  On the way home, it felt more like dread -- like waiting to be executed, watching the gallows or whatever they're going to use to kill you.

One of the harder aspects of this is how alone it makes me feel.   Pain is just pain, but what causes more distress is the sense that I can't tell anyone about it.  That no one wants to hear about it, and would freak out and push me away or try to argue me out of it or tell me to go away and stop bothering them  if I said anything or showed anything.  (That's pretty much how my family reacted to anything I said that indicated that things weren't all fine and dandy.)  It leaves me feeling like I'm the only one in the world that experiences this, and then that maybe I don't really exist, that it's all some kind of hallucination (a "bad trip"), or maybe that I'm actually someone else's hallucination and will cease to exist like a bad dream when they come out of it.




"...  I think I'm great just the way I am, and so are you." -- Jazz Jennings



Complex PTSD

Offline WannaBgirl2

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Re: [feelingsdump] PTSD acting up again
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2020, 05:00:03 pm »
I too suffer with PTSD.... You are NOT alone!?!?! Thankfully I have  a caring spouse, and a good counselor at the VA.... We talk about my sexuality, my family, my military career.... Anything that comes to mind.... The biggest thing is don't give up!!!! EVER!!!!! death is a permanent solution to a temporary problem!!! Today might be the worst day..... but tomorrow could be the best.... If you quit.... You'll never know... Stay strong, you're not alone, people care! I care!

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Offline AllieSF

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Re: [feelingsdump] PTSD acting up again
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2020, 07:16:47 pm »
WannaB such great and simple advice!  Asche you have more support out here than you may think.  People here will share their bad moments and how they overcame them.  you can learn from them.  You have counselors/therapists everywhere, some even with trans experience.  A good therapist without trans knowledge is much better than nothing and can help you get over these low spots and your suicidal thoughts.  When a bit stronger you can go on a deep search for a gender specialist if you do not have the time or will power to work through this now.

I understand that maybe you were not asking for this type of advice, but it is here for you whenever you want it.  Reach out and speak out as you have just done.  It is good for you.

I truly wish you all the best. 

Hugs,

Allie
HRT - February 2017
Full Time - July 2018
Orchi - January 2018
BA - September 25, 2019
FFS - January 10, 2020
GRS - TBDDD (To Be Determined, Decision and Date)

Offline Asche

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Re: [feelingsdump] PTSD acting up again
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2020, 08:59:13 pm »
Thanks, but I already have a therapist, and she is trained in various trauma treatment techniques, which most therapists are not.  I kind of lucked out, since I originally got her name as a gender counsellor, but then it turned out that my gender issues were nowhere near as big an issue for me as the PTSD.

It's just very hard and very slow.  As Judith Herman points out, when the trauma starts in early childhood (in my case probably before I could talk), and continues for most of one's growing up, it shapes who you are.  There isn't a non-traumatized self to get in touch with.  I've been reading up a lot on trauma, mostly so I can make some sense of what I experience, and among other things, they say that people who never knew anyone they felt safe with recover very slowly, and the techniques that work for ordinary PTSD don't work.

What I keep realizing is that I've been having experiences like this all my life, but I've been very good at stuffing the experiences into little boxes and forgetting about them, and often also moving my mind to some place that is not this world (the technical term is dissociation), which allows me at least the illusion most of the time of being not so broken, but the result is that when they happen, they seem to come out of the blue.  Transition kind of pulled the lid off the boxes, which I kind of want, since I would like to be a whole person, but right now we're still trying to get me to the point where I can actually tolerate being in touch with the Hell inside long enough to do something with it.  The one time I actually got in touch with what it felt like when I was 10, my mind basically went out to lunch for about 10 minutes.  I suspect that what I'm encountering are disconnected pieces of the feelings from 55 years or so ago.  I think they're what they call "emotional flashbacks."  My therapist says I'm making progress, but it's hard for me to see that, and it's pretty painful at times.  (But there are occasional moments of great joy, too.  I guess getting in touch with one's true self has its compensations.)
"...  I think I'm great just the way I am, and so are you." -- Jazz Jennings



Complex PTSD

Offline AllieSF

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Re: [feelingsdump] PTSD acting up again
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2020, 09:37:47 pm »
Asche,

Thank you so much for the background details.  I am definitely not qualified to give recommendations.  However, I have been told more then once that letting someone know that others are wishing the best for them and/or are ready to assist, if and when they can is better than offering opinions.  So, Asche, I am here, as well as many other members, to listen to your story and wish you the best.  Rant, unload as you must.  This is truly a safe zone for all that.

Good luck and I will read your posts when they appear.

Again ... hugs,

Allie
HRT - February 2017
Full Time - July 2018
Orchi - January 2018
BA - September 25, 2019
FFS - January 10, 2020
GRS - TBDDD (To Be Determined, Decision and Date)

Offline RandyL

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Re: [feelingsdump] PTSD acting up again
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2020, 07:34:33 pm »
Hi Asche, we are here for you, and we read what you post. We care and hope this resolves for you.

Hugs, Randy

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My personal blog thread: Randy the lost traveler, finding the right road at last

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Offline Sno

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Re: [feelingsdump] PTSD acting up again
« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2020, 06:39:34 am »
You too. ?

Hon it is enough to be. And here, and now.

Please enjoy an embrace from afar

Rowan

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