It's not for the faint of heart.

Welcome to my slightly silly, often odd, and mostly messy life.

Monday, September 20, 2010

PTSD and My Mommy Made Me Do It...

Some of you, my dear readers and friends have mentioned that I might be suffering from some type of PTSD.

My most disruptive symptoms are: Nightmares, Frequent upsetting memories, Strong feelings of distress when reminded of the event, Irregular / fast heart rate, shaking and sweating when recalling details of the event, Difficulty falling and staying asleep, Having outbursts of anger at inappropriate times, Crying out of the blue at random times, Being hyper-focused on "fixing" things or on issues related to the court case/divorce/event, and Feelings of being totally alone and that nobody really understands what I'm going through.

Several of these are listed as classic symptoms of PTSD.

As the X's release date inches closer the children and I are all having a harder and harder time dealing with what happened and all of the changes we've had to go through since. I found a way for the kids to get free or at the least very low cost mental health counseling. Their first appointment isn't until the first week of October, but at least we are on the books and they'll be able to work through some of their fear and issues before his release if they can fit them in a few times before March.

After my break down on Friday my parents have decided...okay, my MOTHER has decided that I too need some kind of counseling. I personally think I've done very well. This was only my second real break down in a year, and the first one was actually during our separation, before he came to my house with a gun to shoot me.

My mother thinks all this "keeping it together" is really just me internalizing and trying to bury all the fear and memories of what happened. She's afraid at some point I'm going to just crack and really lose it. She called a victims advocacy group and figured out a way for me to start seeing a counselor as well. My first four visits are free, and then the advocacy group with pay 80% of the cost after that so that I can continue to get help (if need be) up until the time of his release. There is a free support group meeting each week after his release that I may or may not qualify for, to be determined by the Dr. after we have a few sessions.

I'm really not comfortable with this. I don't want to discuss it anymore. In a way I just want to forget that it even happened, but I can't. Every day there is some new disaster to deal with; lawyers - restraining orders - bill collectors - the kids fears. Something that brings it all back up over and over.

I really feel like being able to post my thoughts and fears here, in a fairly anonymous way is helping more than anything else. Just having a place to vent my frustrations relieves more pressure than anything else. It's MUCH harder and scarier to share my feelings, my guilt, my worries, and my fears aloud to someone else.


  1. I think this is great but you know that. Funny, researching that was on my to do list but now I don't have to *grin*. Yeah yeah I'll take teapot.

    Love u,

  2. The fact that you're scared of sharing it or talking about it is EVEN MORE reason why you should.

    Just think of how much better you'll respond, how much calmer you'll be, how that calmness will calm them... when your children want to talk about it.

    It won't be easy, I agree. But I do applaud your mother for taking on the research.

    You got this, girl.

  3. Burying this shit won't make it go away. Facing it and dealing with it as best you know how with all the help you an muster is the only way to go. Take advantage of the counseling, support groups and anything your mom is willing to do in the name of support.

    And if dumping here helps - do it.

    The airplane analogy is useful here too. When the oxygen masks drop from the ceiling your told to put your mask on first, THEN help others. Same deal here. Take care of yourself first, then worry about helping others. Even your kids. You're more help to them if you are healthy yourself.

  4. There is no shame in getting help. As T said, the fact that you don't want to talk about it means that you likely should. From my experience, when you're truly over something and healed from a traumatic experience, you're able to discuss it with a certain sense of detachment from the actual event. You're not there yet...but with time and the right help, you will be.

    Please do what you need to do to take care of yourself. Your family will be so much better off if you do.


  5. Your kids deserve a mom who won't forget it, and teach them that a strong woman DEALS with it. There is no shame in getting help, what happened was not your fault sweets.

    However, it would be your fault if you choose not to deal with it. So be that strong woman, go talk to someone. It's only talking, and it's what you'd want your kids to do, wouldn't you?

  6. Thanks guys for putting things into perspective for me.

    What's funny about the airplane analogy is that every time I hear the flight attendant say that I think to myself, "ya right... like I'm not making sure my kids are okay before I help myself"

    You all make really valid points though, and I know that I need some help. Every day I realize more and more that I'm not the person I want to be. I'm nervous, edgy, irritable for little reasons. I want to be the best mother I can be. I want to be the best girlfriend I can be for BLT. I want to be the best daughter and employee I can be for my parents.

    I can't do that unless I get some help.

  7. Keep writing. Its the best and cheapest therapy out there. I know that it is working for me...

    - Rick