My C-PTSD Overview, In 807 Tough And Messy Words
From my first memory, I have felt like I have been made of some sort of flypaper for trauma.
I am basically housebound and have a major fear of meeting, connecting, and attaching with other people in any way other than online. People hurt.
According to the last pro I saw, I have C-PTSD with conversion disorder. My trauma timeline (a literal timeline of traumatic incidents, memories, etc that we built in therapy) began at age 2. I have a history of long-term, consistent psychological/emotional abuses from multiple family members, gaslighting, covert pseudo-incestual victimization, and a mixed bag of years of homelessness/poverty as well as clusters of single-event traumas (natural disaster, single-incident sexual assaults from an early age on, spousal/partner abuse, bullying in school, hell – you name it). The longest consistent abusive relationship I had lasted from birth until I was 31.
I also spent long periods of my youth in and out of hospitals with various physical illnesses. (I don’t think that’s a coincidence, either.) Doctors and hospitals are some of my biggest triggers.
I have lots of triggers.
I began converting when I was 22, only I didn’t know that’s what it was at the time. Since then, I’ve had some symptoms come and go and others that have never left, like constant neuralgia. I was told it was like my body went all “TILT” and some of my systems got fried. I spent some time wheelchair-bound, unable to walk.
So besides the severe PTSD symptoms, I also have neuralgia, myasthenia gravis, and tremors.
My biggest triggers, besides the medical world at-large, are pretty basic and direct. Others are really complex:
- any governmental/bureaucratic institution (like court, the Medicaid office, the police, the DMV),
- phone calls or visitors when not scheduled ahead of time
- sudden, loud noises
- being touched without my permission
- alpha-type individuals with large, forceful personalities
- being late in any way
- having to “explain myself” without reason
- being judged
- severe storms that could produce tornadoes
- certain smells, words and phrases
- anything unexpected
That last one is almost the hardest one of all to deal with. Sometimes I feel almost a kind of autism or something. Like my today has to be just like my yesterday – or at least as planned, and if not – if something throws a monkey wrench into my plan for today, I totally lose my shit. It can be something as simple as a bill that was higher than it should be or oversleeping. Not that sleep is something I get a lot of, but sometimes the insomnia flips itself inside out and all I do is sleep. Though at least with insomnia, I don’t oversleep, so I prefer it.
I heard this line once, from a favorite show of mine, “People with this thing (PTSD), they don’t believe in a just Universe.” Man, ain’t that the truth.
As I’m sure it is with everyone, my story is unique. There isn’t a single situation I have ever experienced that isn’t somehow affected by this damn illness. I don’t know how to let any of it go, either.
I also do not know how to relax. Other than right after orgasm. Which on the one hand, makes orgasm extra nice (when I can get one – yes, of course I have trouble there, too) but on the other hand, as soon as my body goes back to normal, I’m back to tension and worry. My muscles hurt all the time because I’m constantly tensed up.
I get bothered by things that have anything to do with control. Control being mine, that is. Of course, I can’t handle when I have no control, either.
I am on disability, and housebound as I said before, so I spend a lot of time with distraction. I have a couple of hobbies that bring me as much peace as possible, but sometimes even they don’t help.
I have bad days and better days. Once in a while, I have a good day. I never just kick back and enjoy a good day, though, ’cause I seem to be suspicious of it. It’s like I’m thinking, “What is going to come along and ruin this?” …because something usually does. It’s that no-relaxing thing.
It’s like if you’re on letter M, and letters A through L have been horrible? You can’t exactly just get cozy on M… and even thinking about what fun letter T would be would be all kinds of dangerous.
I guess that about covers it. Separating out the ingredients of the soup of this illness is really tough sometimes.
I don’t know if in future I’ll post specific events or not. Thanks for letting me put this all down like this, though.
While I am terrified of people, I am usually pretty lonely.
It’s like so much of it all has some vicious cycle to it, doesn’t it?