Don't we all feel that way at times? I have chronic PTSD but was not properly diagnosed until I was 27. I am now 39 but at the age of 17 I set out to "fix" my family. I thought if I had an illness, physical they would see what they were doing to me and my sister. I am talking about my mom and dad. Well the "stomach" problem turned into an eating disorder and I was hospitalized. I spent many years in a hospital. Has anyone seen Girl Interupted? This is what I feel totally alone in. I don't blame anyone for switching topics or threads but I am so embarassed about being in a hospital for so long. I was sent to Kansas, away from Illinois, so that my parents wouldn't be able to influence my treatment.
Anyway due to being kept up and pretty much shut up, I didn't say anything to anyone for years. I'm guessing people knew that there was trauma in the family causing my depression, anxiety and addictions.
Honestly, I felt safe for the first time in my life. At some point I probably stopped trying to get out and tried to stay in.
Now I am paying for it. I've been out for 15 years and just starting to deal with my issues. I avoided everything. I am addicted to avoiding.
But I am getting so depressed, can't relax because that startle mode is on 24/7. Is anybody out there who can relate to feeling almost nothing but everything at the same time? Also does anyone else not remember ever feeling good?
You are not the only one. Like you other people are trying to deal also. Avoiding is part of the process. Having to keep seeing and feeling the past keeps you on edge and does not seem to let up. The lost, helpless and hopeless feelings keeps you face down. Very early trauma will rob it's survivor of knowing what feeling good is like. Take care and keep looking.
Thanks for understanding.
I realize that although talking through these feelings suck, I have to deal with them or I'll always feel like this. I also know that I can't stop them and that's what I'd been trying to do all my life. Run away from every feeling. Maybe we can get off this roller coaster ride when we stop avoiding. I think it's become a reflex for me now.
Hi Captnanny and Maybecrazy. I sent you a PM Captnanny as I'm not really comfortable posting here but let me assure both of you that is does get better with time and therapy. I spent about the same amount of time as you, Capt., did in the hospital, during the same years. My father used to tell people I was going to college and getting a graduate degree in psychology. Little did he know! My graduate degree is in PTSD. I also didn't remember my past until I was 34 and I just turned 58, I am still remembering and still in therapy. But I did take 18 years off. Once I got the big memories back and did the work in therapy, I stopped for quite a while. I am now ready to finish the work and so have gone back for the past 2 years. I can feel the end coming. I am almost through...hallelujah!
You can't avoid your past. You have to march into it and feel it. Feel the fear and the anger and find it's source. Once you have the source, you can figure out how you developed the inappropriate coping skills and change them. I've toughed it out for years having been taught that I couldn't change my personality but I could develop coping mechanisms to overcome the deeply entrenched behavior. But after doing that for soooooo many years, I have realized that I can change my personality if I want to and I'm going to. I now know where all the crazy behavior came from and why...I was coping with a very sick mother and a father who was never home. I was a small child trying to deal with the impossible and I developed some crazy ways to cope. But those ways didn't work as I got older. I've learned to modify them but I've never gotten rid of them...not completely. But I've decided this time I'm going to give it all up and re-learn. Scary but feels good at the same time.
I'm not on any meds but see a T. I just had to change T's as I changed insurance but this guy is as good as the last even though he's different. I'm 6 sessions in with him(kinda funny to someone who counts therapy years in double digits.....22 I think)and have a good feeling about him. He just came back from 2 weeks vacation and actually called me this afternoon to make sure I was coming back to him. Guess I scare him as much as he scares me. But I've already told him things I've told no one else...not because he's that good but because I am determined to push ahead. Tomorrow looks very scary as I've done a lot of work without him around and I think he'll be surprised as to what I've learned about myself these past 2 weeks.
I'd love to talk with both of you more but I am a little leery of this site for reasons I won't go onto. Just doesn't feel safe to me. But I'll post what I feel safe posting and I hope you 2 will also join me. It's a tough journey you have to take alone but that doesn't mean you can't have friends to hold your hand while going there.
Also does anyone else not remember ever feeling good?
Hi again. It seems, (in my opinion only), that when a person develops ptsd from childhood, it is so much more complicated. You, like me, are in our 40's. That is 40ish years of unravelling to do. 40ish years of using bad coping mechanisms, such as avoidance, dissociation. A lot of very hard work has to follow. Work that only ourselves can do. It isn't going to come easy. BUT, it will happen. Our whole thinking has been so deeply ingrained. I avoided also, but even an addiction to avoidance can stop........with practice.
A couple of years back I thought I couldn't remember good times either. Slowly, but surely, good times did reamerge. With all that is going on in your head, it is the bad memories that are more prominent just now. Don't be too hard on yourself.
Thanks for responding even though I haven't been posting for quite a while. I guess I have come to terms, as much as I can, that much of my life has been full of avoidance behaviors and reality was pushed away. I am facing a time now where because of physical disabilities as well I am on disability. I am going to have to find some sort of other income because the insurance they have is terrible. My injury, neck, caused me to lose two jobs. The only two jobs I was able to handle along with the emotional crap in my life.
As far as right now, I caught myself in the avoiding realm again. I am tired all the time, can't wake up in the morning unless I absolutely have to and fall asleep feeling like I can't move. So my T and I were talking about this and what it meant to feel tired as soon as I started to feel and talk about issues. Who can guess what I did? Yep I went to a sleep doctor and only told him about my sleepiness and he thought I have narcolepsy. Now I don't think I do, but years ago I would have run with this and spent months talking about how miserable it is to have another label. My T caught me when I was reluctant to go to the sleep study.
Any way, I have rambled on but am wondering about sleep problems and PTSD.
Hi Captnanny, Isitme and all the others in this boat.
CAptnanny....I also have a bad neck and have had 2 major cervical spine surgeries. Is your spine being monitored? Problems there can also cause some weird symptoms. I kept blaming myself for the weird symptoms(don't we all suspect the problem is in our heads?)and by the time I finally got an MRI I was slowly becoming paralyzed. I was proud of "overcoming" the pain of the neck problem but I wasn't...it was going away as the paralysis set in. Sometimes we really do get sick. Sometimes I have to literally battle to get my doctor to check me out for a suspected illness and I hate that. Just because I have PTSD doesn't mean I have nothing else. In fact, we have more often due to abuse or neglect.
As for the 40+ years of fighting to feel happy and get rid of the demons, I hate to say this but I just went through about 2 months of remembering this past spring...at 57. And the memories went right back to infancy. I knew they were in there for years but was never ready to deal with them. then I had a granddaughter who looks a lot like I did when all this happened. A few other triggers got in there too.
But I finally feel like I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. I've been able to understand why I wanted to die at 4 and how I keep replaying that scenario over and over always waiting for my mother to save me. But she didn't at age 4 and she never will, no matter how many times I re-enact the scene. So I can finally stop replaying it as I now know the ending will always be the same. It took until this year to find that answer.
So I really do understand and it is soooooo hard. People don't get it. they don't know what it's like to spend YEARS in the hospital because of something DONE to you. YOU weren't sick...THEY WERE, but you did the time, time you can never get back. I try not to go there...it makes me too bitter.
So I go to the good side...I survived. And that's no small thing. Both my parents tried to kill me more than once. So I figure I won. I just have to believe that somewhere God has dealt with them and I will get my reward someday.....someday.
The only thing I can offer is to say keep remembering. there does seem to be a bottom to the well and it's only there that you'll find your answers. Let's keep talking and supporting ourselves. I'm trying to overcome my reluctance to post here so help me out ladies....we can talk but not specifics.....unless we all get very brave.
How much more can we have in common? I first attempted suicide when I was 4, and had the same thing happen with my parents threatening me whenever I went a separate way then them.
Bravery, I'm up for it but at times I cower like a baby. As for my neck, I have my doctor following me very closely. It took me a long time to accept that I do have a physical disability. I was almost paralyzed by the time I went to the doctor. I had nerve damage and spinal stenosis. Two surgeries later, I do accept that I have emotional and physical problems. It was very hard to accept since I've had emotional problems that are taking so long to come to terms with let alone another major upheaval.
For me memories are coming slowly. I know that something happened to me before the age of two but can't remember. I can't push the memory to come, then I just go by facts that were told to me. I'm learning that my problems are not going to majically go away but how I handle them will get better. That's been a hard thing to change. No majical cure for me, no pill or super mom out there to make it all go away.
Right now I'm battling no job and my mother taking the money away from me until I get at least a part time job. I can't find anything so I don't know what is going to happen. My T asks why I answer the phone. I guess she's got a point. I've got enough to get by for a couple of months, then I should have something worked out.
I sent you a message jennybc, I don't know if you got it or not, I did not get yours.