TW is this CPTSD related?

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Lostgirl

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TW is this CPTSD related?
« on: September 30, 2020, 11:27:44 AM »
Is self harm part of CPTSD?
Sometimes I get so angry and frustrated at myself that I can't help hitting myself in the head, banging my head on the wall, scratching myself ect.
My H thinks that's more of a cluster B trait that just gets me even more angry and frustrated at myself as I can't explain why I do it.
I have done things in the past whilst in flashbacks that has hurt my family, I know it's not right to take my issues from the past out on my family and I am working hard with a trauma therapist to work on these issues.
My H has been hurt and the questions often come up of why I did things, why I didn't care ect. But I just can't explain it it's like I'm 2 different people when I'm in a flashback and the inner critic is in full control of me, I don't want to do what's going on but I have no voice and I can't stop myself.
Sorry if this doesn't make sense today is not a good day

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notalone

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Re: TW is this CPTSD related?
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2020, 01:40:06 AM »
I'm not a therapist. I can only share my experience. I have occasionally had times where I hit my head and pulled my hair.

What you wrote makes sense. It sounds like you are in a lot of distress. Glad you are working with a therapist. I know it is really hard.

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Lostgirl

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Re: TW is this CPTSD related?
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2020, 08:16:55 AM »
Thanks for your reply notalone,
I find it really difficult when I can't explain why I say/do certain things that are completely out of character. I know it's all related to past trauma but that is so hard to explain to someone who hasn't experienced anything like this.

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notalone

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Re: TW is this CPTSD related?
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2020, 11:44:11 AM »
I understand that. I have found some things more helpful than others in trying to help my H to understand. The other person's capacity to understand is also a factor. May I suggest some options?

marriage therapy
bring H to one of your sessions so T can help to explain what you are going through
Books for him to read: The Body Keeps the Score, Pete Walker: cptsd from surviving to thriving
resources on OOTS
https://www.beautyafterbruises.org/what-is-cptsd   
https://www.carolynspring.com/blog/

In my situation, I think it has been most helpful when I sent my husband specific articles from "Beauty after Bruises" and from "Carolyn Spring." He has done some reading and some marriage therapy. Every person and relationship is different, so it will be trial and error to discover what combination is the most helpful.

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Blueberry

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Re: TW is this CPTSD related?
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2020, 08:32:00 PM »
Lostgirl, I don't have the energy to look it up anymore today, but off the top of my head, self-harm can be a symptom of Borderline PD but equally of cptsd. Not everybody with cptsd does it, but a fair number do. (I say that we do not all have to have every single symptom!!). I also believe that not all Borderlines (or other Cluster Bs) do it. It's just one of a group of symptoms, and some of these symptoms are shared between BPD and cptsd, although there are BPD symptoms which people with cptsd definitely do not have.

I do self-harm by pulling my hair out. I know that in my case there are many different causes e.g. I have caught myself doing it in order to dissociate but also in order to bring myself back into the real world and stop dissociating.

I'm glad you have a trauma therapist to help you navigate cptsd healing. It's not easy, to say the least.

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marta1234

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Re: TW is this CPTSD related?
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2020, 08:48:52 PM »
Lostgirl, Iíve also done self harm many times. Iíve intentionally made my hands painful, by *tw* squeezing scissors in my palms  when I was in class feeling so frustrated. I have yet to find the thinking behind this coping mechanism, so like you, I donít really know why I did this. All that I know is I was unbelievably frustrated at everything, and I just choose to do this.

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mojay

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Re: TW is this CPTSD related?
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2021, 07:26:14 AM »
Lostgirl, I apologize that my response is months late. I also self harm (SH). I used to do it quite frequently. This was my coping mechanism for when I was spiraling out into dangerous territory involving suicidal ideation. I would use SH to deal with the overwhelming frustration of being alive and in so much pain. I believe I did this to keep myself from committing suicide. I do believe SH is a part of CPTSD. I have greatly reduced my SH after a year of trauma-focused therapy, this is why I believe SH is a part of CPTSD.

I also feel like completely different people when I am in these states of mind, especially after I SH and I must clean myself up. My head feels so much more clear and I can barely remember the raging storm that had been clouding my mind and leading me down a dangerous path.
OOTS has helped me learn about Internal Family Systems (IFS), which gave me a lightbulb moment as to why I feel like completely different people when I SH. IFS also helped me understand that perhaps SH was a way to keep myself "safer" than permanently ending my life. That the part of me who SH is trying to help me release the unbearable pain in a way that will keep me alive.

It sounds like you are putting in a lot of hard work with your trauma therapist. I can tell you are in distress, especially over hurting your loved ones and I really feel for you. You are not a bad person for struggling, and you deserve to heal and lead the life that you want to live. How are things going for you now?

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Bella

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Re: TW is this CPTSD related?
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2021, 02:16:43 PM »
Hi Lostgirl.
I'm a bit late too, to respond to this. But I also want to say that what you wrote makes sense to me. Both the SH and also the part of feeling like different people. I believe both of these issues are CPTSD related. Feeling fractured, may even be a core symptom. During our trauma in childhood, we had to split off stuff from our experience, like certain feelings, sensations, thoughts,  perceptions etc. in order to survive. Whatever was split off, can show itself later in life like flashbacks. If I react way out of proportion to a certain situation, my reaction are most likely a flashback from earlier experiences. This is why reactions, feelings etc can feel so alienated and "not me". No wonder the feeling or experience is almost impossible to explain.... to others, let alone to oneself! It's very confusing,  which also is a CPTSD trait.

I know all of this is a huge struggle, so I feel for you! Hope things have become a bit better since you wrote your post.