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Topics - lexx

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Having an Exceptionally Difficult Day / sensory overload issues??
« on: October 26, 2017, 06:43:26 PM »
I don't know if there is even a name for this, but our landlady just stopped by and I'm in a really anxious state right now..

Anxious isn't really the right word..

To me "anxious" is waiting in a waitingroom to be called into the dentist office.. and every ad on the tv screens are about the various oral diseases, and every magazine has a toothbrush somewhere on the cover..

The feeling I associate with that image is what I would call "anxious"..

This isn't the same thing at all..

While I hate going to the dentist, I can get myself to go and push through it.. this isn't the same thing at all :(

The landlady knocked on the front door, and for some reason that is just something that really sets me off anyway.. as does her reason for visiting.. to talk about the cats..

Right now I'm sitting here shaking and I don't know *why* I get so enormously afraid. Why it's so hard to speak up.. the thought is there, my feelings behind what I'd like to say make sense.. so why can't I say it??

She's not unreasonable either (even if she doesn't get what I'm going through.. I mean, how could she? It's not like I've actually ever explained it to her..)

I guess all that is another "duh" realization waiting to happen at some later point.. right now I'm not seeing it..

I am just trying to find a way through right now..

Normally, I'd put on headphones to try and shut out outside sounds etc. but right now I can't get my mind to let go enough for that to work, and my senses only go more into that hyper state that I'm trying to let myself out of..

I guess I use my music (and the ability to let my mind go for a bit) like a sort of sensory deprevation unit, if that makes sense.. let the music outshout my senses for a bit.. but right now I can't shut *any* of it down and I'm worried I'll end up in the big blank wordless state that happens when I get too overloaded..  Where I feel so much but don't know what it is anymore, because the words are all gone.. Why does that hurt so much? When there is nothing or no one actually hurting me? 

Why do I equate that state with pain? Is this part of PTSD? or part of Aspergers? (or maybe both?).. How do I stop that??

I know I'll come back to myself later, but I don't want to go into that state..

Do you guys get this? How do you deal with that state?

So.. wnyway I'm looking for a different way to handle this..

.. I hope you guys don't mind me writing it down..I figured maybe it would help.. we'll see how this goes..

Thanks..

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General Discussion / TRIGGER WARNING.. about my life..
« on: October 24, 2017, 05:43:53 PM »
*TW violence, sexual situations*

Andy,

This was initially a reply to you.. Thank you for talking to me.. I think you probably get better than most people how hard it can be to take a life's experiences and try to "fit in".. For most of my life I managed, just the last while.. well things were retriggered, and suddenly I'm having a much harder time..
I ended up just typing everything that came to mind about my life just now.. I hope you don't mind this enormeous amount of text I'm about to copy/paste here.. I wish this had bever happened to any of us.. it feels wrong to say "thanks for letting me know I'm not alone" but it helps to be understood.. to connect.. to not feel so alien, maybe?
I'm not used to that, but thank you..
I was going to rewrite, clarify, etc. but no, I'm just going to post it as is..
I wrote it on a phone, with interruptions from family etc. so sorry if some of it isn't all super coherent.. it's a lot just to make a *list* never mind a logically ordered narrative.. it's basically me thinking out loud.. XD
I hope you get what I'm trying to get across anyway..

*********

TRIGGER WARNING..

*********

A lot of things happened, but my father murdered my mother when I was 4. There was always a lot of fighting.. he had a terrible temper, and he was definitely abusive.. He had old trauma of his own but ended up becoming an abuser.. of people.. of drugs.. In the end he couldn't accept she wanted to move on, and that she meant it. In this period several people died over a very short amount of time.. My twin sister.. and also my mother's brother, who in a flash of anger at a doctor flushed his meds down the toilet.. and actually really needed them.. He died in our shower.. My mom had had enough, and wanted to pull herself back together, without him. She filed for divorce and had to call the police several times because he'd break into the house.

She died not long after that.. after yet another fight.. He murdered her. He dropped my brother off with friends, and took me to his parents.. Not sure what he was thinking.. 

Her story ended up in the papers and such, but people only get a partial, srnsational, glimpse.. Seeing her picture is very difficult for me.. I look a lot like her..

His father was yet another abused abuser. They were Jehovah's Witnesses.. and while I won't go into what I think of them now, I will say that any religion that feels it's important to keep it's members away from anyone who can't be converted risks being a haven for peope such as my grandfather. He was an elder. Knowing others trusted him with their kids makes my hands and feet into icecubes. Right here as I write this.. I mean.. he died a few years ago, and it still has a physical effect on me.. I don't usually do physical sensations much. I have a high pain tolerance. The fact that I'm sitting here shivering and grabbing a blanket is very much not like "me"..

Knowing that they (Jehovah's Witness elders) seemed more upset with me going to the police (instead of to them) than with what happened to me makes me really really angry. These are people, making mistakes.. they are not every person in that religion, but it's not *them* that have to mop up the mess after,.. It's inexcusable to the children you put at risk.. and frankly inexcusable to me too. They saw me about four days out of each week. If they couldn't see what was happeningl honestly not see it, then they have no business making decisions about what person should and shouldn't be "working" with "young brothers and sisters".  My grandfather was absolutely able to charm people and put on a really good facade, but then, so can most like him.

Abusers keep their victims silent,.. it means they teach us to smile when we hurt and to lie when someone asks us if we're okay.. We are taught to isolate ourselves, and we are taught to lie for the benefit of another. It's not unusual for those in homes and foster care to lie.. it's not because the lines between reality and fantasy are blurry, it's because that's what we've been taught. It's not easy to let people closer again after.. So when you have a choice between hurting people's feelings and lying, or between a spotlight and going unnoticed.. it's a no brainer. Sorry, getting off track, but I ended up in homes and foster care, and people always seemed so stunned about kids lying. I lied about where I went (I used to hide out in libraries and books..) others lied about a lot else.. it's not a dissociation, it's a remnant behavior as surely as any other..

My father's mother wanted "a girl" bad enough she was willing to run and hide to keep me.. so when he showed up and dropped me in her lap she did everything she could to keep me and not let the court have me placed elsewhere..

Now that might *sound* like a great thing.. someone loving you enough to run and hide you.. but it wasn't about what was best for *me*.. (or she would have left her husband for one).. and the feeling you're not.. free.. is hard to describe.. not being able to go outside in case someone would come and get me... is it kidnapping? I don't know how to answer that, but I think there might be a gray area between what is and isn't kidnapping.. all I know is that everything changed. Everything what I was and wasn't allowed changed, but the way what wasn't allowed was communicated was *exactly* the same..

What I wanted most at this time was my BROTHER.. We're still busy healing the rift that was created. We were so close.. I remember feeling safe with him. Sneaking into his room at night and getting my butt busted.. now I was alone in a bedroom until my grandfather came up the stairs. I'd listen to the creak. I could actually tell people apart from the sound the stairs made..

In the end the court decided that after all the things that'd happened, the best thing might be to leave my brother and me with the different sides of the family, figuring that the families would come together for the sake of my brother and me.. That's not what happened.. Rifts like that don't just "mend" themselves for the sake of children.. if they did courts wouldn't see the ugliness of custody battles with parents using their children as pawns to hurt one another..

One of the many moments when looking back I wonder how anyone figured this would have *ever* been a good idea...

Everyone expected me to forget what'd happened to my mother.. to my family.. My sister was gone. My brother was gone. My father was gone. My mother was gone.. They told me my mother actually "ran away" that she was actually still alive..  and that my father was in a "hospital".. They'd also told me my mother was emotionally unstable, and unable to keep a house..

Looking back, I can't imagine watching your child waste away (my twin sister) for almost four years, deal with a thouroughly failing marriage, the death of her brother, and the general stress of always fighting with my father, *and* then deciding to start again. To file for divorce, get councelling, and try to get yourself back together. I think she did a whole lot better than the woman who said it but stayed with her abusive husband, what was happening in our house, and living in denial of what her son had done..

Once I finally saw my grandmother (mother's mother) again, I asked her point blank what'd happened to my mother, and she said "I'm sorry, but I'm not supposed to talk to you about that" when I said next "She was murdered.." She said "Yes." I actually thought it was an uncle instead of my father at the time, when she said "No" to that, I told her it was my dad and she didn't deny it.. She actually got in trouble for not denying what I told her.
They'd (father's parents) made her promise not to tell me anything before they'd allow her to see me again.. Thing is.. I told her.

Once they were talking about my mother in the car on the way home, I exploded. I told them I knew the truth and also that my grandmother had tried not to tell me, but that I told her.

The fact that I not only knew, but that I thought it was his brother, who looked a lot like him (then realized that it was actually my father himself) should have tipped off EVERYBODY that there was a (visual) memory there.. I'd asked because his brother looked like him. (I was still really young at this time, so I didn't get the tip myself until the memories came back)..

I've seen sexual abuse at my grandparent's (father's father) side, and the emotional and physical crap that goes with trying to convince a child to keep their mouth shut. Fair to say I know where my father got his temper..

When I ran away from that, I obviously figured the incest was the bigger trauma. I remembered it better.. (or.. at the time, it was all I remembered)
I had a gap in my memory about my mother between the fight right before the murder, and the day right after. Both of those memories were clear, but with a big black hole in the middle. I chalked it up to how young I was, that it made sense that I shouldn't be able to remember anything from that long ago anyway, and focussed on what I *did* remember.

Long story short, I'm now in my 40s.. and a while back I was on a news website where there was a headline about someone who had strangled their girlfriend, posted the pictures of it online, and left her in the bedroom for her kids to find.. The headline included a tiny copy of one of the very pictures he'd posted..

Trigger warning? What's that??
Oh holy * did it ever trigger me!! Less than 0.no seconds at all when I saw that picture.. I had some major flashbacks, visual which is unusual for me, that filled in pretty much the blanks of the missing time I had, plus a few other ones.. all of them of me trying not to breathe so they wouldn't know I was awake.. I was so bloody scared..

It's easy isn't it? Everyone heard of fight and flight, but what do you do when flight isn't an option and fight gets you killed?

So suddenly a lot of the anxiety I'd learned to control was just raging free.
I couldn't do what I could handle before, I crashed really, really hard.

I have hypersomnia btw. and naturally low blood pressure, so the minipress meds that sometimes work for ptsd was not possible, and anti anxiety meds meant I couldn't function because I wouldn't be able to wake up..

A lot of other things happened including a brother in law who threatened to kill my at the time 14 year old son while my husband was in the ICU in a coma, on life support due to Menengitis. He has cancer so he is very vulnerable to infections and he wasn't expected to make it. Then I get a call.. my grandmother, mom's mom, was dying.. all this one after another..

Once my husband did wake up, he wasn't the same. He had trouble telling what was real or not.. He was hearing voices (which he thought were doctors and nurses talking in his hospital room, because he thought he was actually still in the coma..
He'd had a near death experience, but his was terrifying to him. He suddenly had a lot more anxiety to deal with of his own.. He tried to put a plastic bag over his head because he wanted ton"wake up from the coma" and he figured "dying in the coma" would force him to wake up..

Bottomline is that I ended up in an emotional maelstorm.. The last few months I haven't been doing well..

My landlady (who has no idea what my past is but knows I have ptsd) said that it was nonsense to keep hanging on to the past.. and she doesn't get it.. I've done all I can to move forward.. I always have.. I feel judged for my grief.. and the fact that I am grieving..

We currently have neighbors above us that fight all the time, especially at night.. There is drug use involved, and for all his slick exterior, I've always been very good at spotting people with violent tempers..

I've been angry and just super anxious, and last night I finally put 2 and 2 together, just.. a few hours ago.. Duh, but I guess I finally get why I lay there in bed, terrified, and angry, and feeling like screaming..

There is a release in understanding it at least.. finally.. but yeah.. I'm drowning in words..

There is so much to add, but I needed to say this out loud. I don't actually know why this urge is so terribly strong now.. I mean.. it's been over thirty years!! I hate that it still gets to have such a hold on me.. I guess it has had that straight along though.. every time I didn't stand up for myself.. both afraid to hurt someone, and terrified I wouldn't he able to stop someone hurting those I love most.. it's been there all along.. The way I talk to myself.. I've come to the realization that that voice tends to be the voice of my grandfather, not actually my own. I'm learning to recognise it when that voice starts talking in my mind, and remind myself that I don't have to listen to that voice anymore. That the voice of the most hurtful, bitter, and broken people in my life has no business inside my mind and my heart. That, when I hurt, not just because I wish my mom could see my kids, but because I wish everything had gone different so they'd have the rest of a family too.. father, grandfather, everyone included.. a very big little part of me keeps asking "why?" Why was it so hard to do things different? I was and am by nature an optimistic happy person. That's my "neutral".. why couldn't they just let me be happy? Bring the happiness my kids brought me?

I know what happened isn't my fault.. of course I do.. so why do I have to keep reminding myself of that when that grief comes back to the surface? "Why couldn't I just be happy? Why, if it took so little to make me happy, did they have to hurt me like that? Take everything and everyone I love away? For what? To keep secrets? It was so needless.. and that's maybe the
hardest part..

So this is me, where I'm at right now..
I don't know a ton about C-PTSD, but so far it makes a lot of sense. I recognise a lot.. I'm looking for a way forward..

Thanks for being there..

3
Hi..

I know it's probably not the most common, but could there be categories for survivors of violent crime, war, etc?

I know, C-PTSD is about long term trauma, so violent crime might not appear to fit that mold, but crimes like kidnappings and homicide tend to occur *within* families.

Husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, uncles, aunts, children, etc.  You get the picture.. These types of things are usually not actually committed by strangers (it does happen, but family is much more common)..

These kinds of experiences tend to be the kind that turn a lot of victims into the next generation of perpetrators, so families tend to be very toxic.
They tend to have more than one disfunctional person in it, more than one abuser, more than one instance of violence, and a whole lot of skeletons in the closet..

Some people coming here may have grown up in war zones.

Some survivors of ethnic cleansing..

Some victims of child sex trafficking rings..

I don't think anyone here will be really surprised that it is very, very hard to fit into "normal" society after.. or that we have C-PTSD..

I really don't mean to trigger anyone, but I also know I'm not the only one with this kind of background.

It's very hard to talk about this, not in the last place because it's really hard not to end up making people feel very defensive (or end up being the defensive one ourselves..)

We *all* feel guilt and doubt about the things that happened to us. It's a sensitive spot that has *everything* to do with being traumatized in the first place, so it's really hard not to end up trying to "justify" why we hurt so bloody much..

I've dealt with my life by pretty much not talking about it outside of therapy, and very few people know my story, but it still does effect me just the same.

People aren't as a rule very compassionate about things they don't understand, and it's hard to understand what you don't know.

I don't want to hurt anyone, and I know I don't understand everyone all the time either, but I'm tired of going through this alone. (it's why l was asking about categories..)

I realize how sensitive this is, so I mean this as an honest question that can be answered with "no", and I'll find a different way and place..

Is it okay to talk about these things here, and where would be a safe place to do so?

Thanks..






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