Things to say

Friends and family sometimes don’t know what to say when I am having a bad day.  When I am having a bad day, it is difficult for me to communicate what I need.  My counselor had a talent for saying just the right thing at the right moment.  He also had a PhD and 30 years of experience.  This list shared by the Mighty is a great list.  However, please, be aware that abusers will often combine words of encouragement and love with abuse. For some people, these phrases may still cause grief.  My experienced counselor simply said, “Step forward into your life,” and I totally freaked out.  He meant to encourage me but my abuser used the same words to terrify and humiliate me.  NO guarantee these terms would work.  If you are close enough to the person with PTSD review the list when not in crisis to work out what would be most helpful.  I also share non verbal cues that help my husband gauge how I am doing.  If he finds me sitting on the couch mindlessly flipping through channels with no clue as to what I’ve seen, he offers to make dinner since I am probably in no condition to do that.


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