So can PTSD seriously effect the children and spouses of those who are diagnosed? My ex's father apparently suffered from raging war-related PTSD while the kids were growing up. He's gotten a little better over the years, but he's still in rough shape.
Needless to say my ex seems to have a lot of mental problems. It contributed to our breaking up. I'm just trying to figure out why he was the way he was.
Yes, if the PTSD is not treated then the emotional problems get dumped on the kids and they grow up with major emotional problems too.
PTSD did not even exist as a diagnosis until about 15 years ago and even today, the military wants "proof" that is a real disorder and not just someone trying to get free benefits for life. But a group in Minnesota may have found the proof that the VA wants....changes on a test that measures magnetic changes in the brain as opposed to the regular EEG that measures electrical changes. They had a 90% positive diagnosis rate...higher than most tests so tests may be on the way to prove it. It's not inherited but experiential....you get it from being in a very traumatic situation but it does cause changes in the brain.
But as for your ex, he was probably brought up by a father bursting with uncontrollable anger most of the time, anger that lashed out at everyone and anyone. He probably couldn't love very well either. People with PTSD can dissociate and seem to be day dreaming a good deal of time as they re-live the horrors they went through so they are very distant.
I know all of this because I have severe PTSD as a result of abuse and stayed in therapy while raising my kids. I tried my hardest to not affect them but I know I made mistakes and to this day, apologize. They are both doing well and one is married with an almost 3 year old little girl. He is a great dad. My daughter has yet to marry and I don't know of she every will. I think I made my biggest mistakes with her(my first) and I so regret it but I did my best. I try to get her to go to therapy but she won't. But both kids are responsible and well respected.
If there is one reason to get help it's to not hurt your kid. As for the kids, they should recognize their parent's failings and get help themselves. The emotional abuse is not intentional so there shouldn't be any blame but each of us has a responsibility to fix our selves.The person we lie to the most is our selves. If we stop lying, then we can acknowledge the truth and get help.
It's always the oldest child that seems to suffer the most. I don't know if it's because they are the protector and take the brunt of abuse or if they are just old enough to understand it all. This terrible disease basically gave me half a man. I fell in love with the kind and funny side of him, but that other side was almost like a rage-filled monster.. he was like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Part of me blames his parents for never getting him into therapy as a child. Part of me blames the mother for never leaving the father. Part of me blames their extended family for seeming to condone alcoholism and violence. But blame does not fix anything, does it. All I can do is blame myself for sticking around for so long. Thankgod we had no kids.
The real kick in the arse? He says he'll go to therapy now that he left me. For years he refused to go, but now he goes.
Last edited by mod-anon; 07-28-2010 at 09:05 AM.
Reason: removed quote
It's not just that blame does not fix anything, blame implies intent.....that his parents intended to mess him up with their behavior. I don't think any parent, unless they are true child abusers, intends to mess up their kids. So blame does not apply. It just happened. And as I said, PTSD did not even exist as a diagnosis and is still questioned by many in the psychiatric world. I got diagnosed with schizophrenia.
The fact that he didn't go for help while you were together is just his coming to terms with the realities of life. He may have needed the kick in the a$$ to get there so be glad for him.