One of the challenges of looking for help is finding someone that understands PTSD. The second challenge is the mistaken belief that they can fix you. I started counseling with the vague idea that going the therapist would magically fix my problems. Doesn’t work that way. A good counselor in my opinion shares with you how to fix yourself. Their job is to help guide you through a maze of emotions and behaviors. They can do nothing without your cooperation. My first counselor described the relationship best, he was my coach, I had to run the course. I encountered people that are looking for an ‘easy button’ to fix all their problems. Or they want everyone else to accommodate their triggers, phobias, and challenges. It doesn’t happen. My sister, Judy, told me that there is a group of PTSD survivors that want to pass laws that remove triggering words from being used. Wow. For me they would have to remove the words, “step forward.” I suspect if you combine all the different verbal triggers people could say nothing. Really. Each person has their own set of triggers that will effect them. It is truly impossible to eliminate everything that might hurt someone. The task would be similar to trying to remove every sticker or needle from a desert. So instead, counselors, webpages, and books teach people how to protect themselves. How to watch out for danger areas. How to back away from trouble spots. How to walk away from abusive people and situations. (Sometimes how to run away to fight another day.) Others teach how to embrace the suck. How to desensitize a sore spot. How to set boundaries. How to say no and no is a complete sentence. The list of things we do for ourselves is endless. Really. For each difficulty there are multiple ways to defend yourself and fight back. From my abuser I learned helplessness from my counselor I learned options to power….my power….the power my abusers convinced through lies that I didn’t have. My counselor taught me about my personal power and how to use it. I am forever grateful to an awesome counselor that taught me I am worth fighting for and how to do it.