New to cPTSD

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SerenHybrid

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New to cPTSD
« on: November 12, 2019, 10:43:53 PM »
Hello everyone

I'm 33 and live in the South East of England. Between both parents I received at least three different types of abuse as I was growing up, although in very different ways. In my mid twenties I came to understand that what my father had done was abusive, and after several years he was sentenced to jail. It took much longer to recognise and accept that my mother has also been (and was currently) emotionally abusive due to her own mental health needs.

People who know my whole story would always have expected me to have PTSD, but as I never got typical flashbacks I didn't think it would apply. I do not have a clinical diagnosis, as mental health services are extremely underfunded in my area and I had to choose between seeing a psychiatrist for a diagnosis or receiving therapy. I have started using the diagnosis because it really helps to explain what is happening to others, and to myself. It's really only in the last few months that I have labelled these emotional flashbacks, having always experienced them.

It would be really helpful for me to hear about how other people experience emotional flashbacks, and what having C-PTSD means to you. I'm really struggling to get support from any professionals, and I've recently been signed off for 8 weeks and am desperate to get back to work.

I would also love to adopt a child some day, having worked with looked after children throughout my career. But I do worry about how this diagnosis affects parenting skills, particularly when it was developed in childhood.

Anyway, a long introduction, but the basics are that I would love to hear from anyone about their experiences, and I'm just so excited to find a community of people who are talking about this. Thank you!

SerenHybrid xx

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Jazzy

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Re: New to cPTSD
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2019, 11:49:15 PM »
Hi SerenHybrid; welcome to the forums. Sorry to hear you were treated so badly in childhood. A lot of us here have similar pasts. Although, I'm glad to hear you have accepted the reality of the situation, and are moving forward with your healing journey.

About the EFs, like you pointed out, I think its interesting that they have a way of sneaking up on you. Of course, it depends how bad they are. Some of the extreme ones are pretty easy to notice, but most of the time it is an invisible force taking over your moods and your mind. It took me a lot of work to be able to recognize them, even though I probably still miss some. To be more specific, during an EF, I usually feel unsafe and hyper-vigilant, but at the same time disconnected, and kind of going through everything on autopilot.

Unfortunately, its pretty tough to get support from professionals. Living with CPTSD is a constant struggle, that most people don't even know about, never mind understand. Thankfully, we have a good group here who does.

Take care! :)

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notalone

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Re: New to cPTSD
« Reply #2 on: Today at 01:51:05 AM »
Welcome.  :heythere:

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Snowdrop

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Re: New to cPTSD
« Reply #3 on: Today at 05:17:34 AM »
Hello, SerenHybrid, welcome! :wave:

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bluepalm

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Re: New to cPTSD
« Reply #4 on: Today at 06:30:07 AM »
Welcome SerenHybrid - I'm glad you've found this place. I found it earlier this year but I'm still excited about the find.

I think this explanation by Jazzy of how emotional flashbacks sneak up on you and how they feel is absolutely spot on from my experience:
Some of the extreme ones are pretty easy to notice, but most of the time it is an invisible force taking over your moods and your mind. It took me a lot of work to be able to recognize them, even though I probably still miss some. To be more specific, during an EF, I usually feel unsafe and hyper-vigilant, but at the same time disconnected, and kind of going through everything on autopilot.

Yes! This is it. And I feel I still miss being able to identify most EFs. It's my 'normal' and I just get lost in them. But the contributions of members of this OOTS community, with comments like this one from jazzy, are allowing me to feel less alone in my daily struggles.

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Three Roses

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Re: New to cPTSD
« Reply #5 on: Today at 09:10:08 AM »
Welcome! For me, EFs can take several different forms.

In one type, it's an overwhelming sadness that seems to spring from nowhere. After reading Pete Walker's book CPTSD: From Surviving To Thriving", this feeling I get seems to match most closely with what he calls the abandonment depression. http://pete-walker.com/fAQsComplexPTSD.html#Abandonment for more info on this, scroll about 2/3 of the way down for the paragraph that describes the abandonment depression, or abandonment melange.

In another type, I can be triggered into the "fight" type of the 4F reactions. (Fight, flight, freeze, fawn - Pete Walker again, http://pete-walker.com/fourFs_TraumaTypologyComplexPTSD.htm)

Other types of EFs can make me want to isolate myself completely for a day or days at a time. I can also feel like I have to fix or placate everyone around me in order to feel safe.

Do any of those sound familiar? I hope this info is helpful. Again, welcome and thanks for joining.
 :heythere:

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Blueberry

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Re: New to cPTSD
« Reply #6 on: Today at 11:36:04 AM »
Welcome to the forum SerenHybrid! :heythere:
Sorry you need us but as that's the case I'm glad you found us.

Check https://cptsd.org/forum/index.php?board=57.0 to see mbrs' experiences with EFs.

You don't need to have an official diagnosis to be a mbr on here.
« Last Edit: Today at 11:44:26 AM by Blueberry »