Need to know

Ever heard the phase, “Need to know” as a basis if you need to hear information?  I like watching detective and cop shows and sometimes hear this phrase.  The phrase usually means that information is being kept from someone else for confidentiality reasons.  However, if you have PTSD you need to know about PTSD.  It seems to be shrouded in secrecy and misinformation.  I watch TV show that add a character with PTSD and they are usually the worst type of version violent, unreasonable, difficult and usually a jerk.  At one time or another, I’ve been all of these but so has most people.  Sometimes I am unreasonable.  Sometimes I feel very violent.  Sometimes I am difficult and just a jerk.  But that is not who I am all the time.  I have PTSD and because of it I face daily challenges.  This is a list of things that might be helpful for anyone to know about living with PTSD or living with someone who has PTSD:

If you are on Facebook join up on the page PTSD support and Recovery.  Many great posts that encourage me daily.

Know about ptsdI blanked out comments that contained identifiable personal information.  I left in the part that gives you an indication of some of the comments.  I’m thankful I found this web page.

  1. Soldiers are less than 50% of those that live with PTSD.  Fireman, police officers, social workers, therapist, child abuse survivors are on the list too.
  2. Body memories are imprinted and triggered at any given time.  I forgot everything from my childhood but my body remembered and would react for unknown reasons.  Finding out I had PTSD made sense of my strange reactions.
  3. Often the people we trusted or the world we lived in suddenly turned on us.  Trusting people requires vulnerability I already know how much pain can be caused by trusting the wrong person.
  4. PTSD is not signed up for, it is a complex set of defense mechanisms hard wired into the mind that goes into hyper drive.  Hard to turn off once started.
  5. As much as it saddens me, every member of my family is affected because of my PTSD.
  6. The brain is hijacked by the amygdala.  The research is on going.  They are able to picture the changes in the brain of those with PTSD.
  7. Isolation is a way for me to have time to process all the information my brain took in.  A healthy person dismisses 90% of what they take in.  I’m scanning anything and everything as a possible threat.  I need alone time every day to process and sort information.
  8. Sadly yes, everyday I have challenges from the moment I go to sleep dealing with nightmares to the moment my feet hit the floor and I have to decide what to wear that day.  My mind doesn’t settle down.  Yes, it is exhausting.
  9. True.  Many traumatic events ingrains the PTSD deeper.  Or for people in the child abuse from a young age, it is all I know.  I don’t know life without PTSD.  For years I didn’t have a name for it so I called it my ‘shadow warrior’ that came out of the shadows knocked me down then disappeared.  PTSD gave me a name for what I experienced.
  10. Nope, I didn’t chose PTSD.
  11. Yes, I’m tired all the time even when I lie awake and can’t sleep I am still tired.
  12. Yes, yes and yes.  Counseling taught me the skills I need to feel like I matter.  I am thankful for my therapist.
  13. Some days it looks like a solid wall in front of me.  I feel very much alone facing my challenges.  I appreciate those that are also posting about PTSD, I am feeling less alone.  I appreciate my husband staying with me but after years there are still aspects of my daily challenge of PTSD that makes no sense to him.  No matter how I explain it, he doesn’t get it.  I agree with others say that the only ones that understand have it and sometimes that doesn’t do it either because are reactions are not all the same.
  14. As much as PTSD dominates my life, it doesn’t define me.  I am not PTSD, I have PTSD.  I believe thriving is when PTSD takes a back seat to my real interest.
  15. True PTSD started when I was 5 years old but the triggers happen everyday.  I did forget but it dogged me until I remembered.  It was a blessing to forget and gift that I remembered what I needed to know to realize I wasn’t crazy, I was adapting to an insanity.  I survived an impossible situation.  Now, I am learning to thrive.
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