Posts Tagged ‘depression’

The Dark Side of Childhood abuse

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/5559199513775223/

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PTSD has a physical side, the firing of our fight or flight mechanism, tunnel vision, higher bp, respiration and heart rate along with loss of fine motor skills.

PTSD also has a cognitive side filled with intrusive thoughts, coupled with scary and violent emotions.

Trust disappears in childhood, fear is our dominate emotion, survival mode is how we live.

This is a barren landscape for any child, few attachments develop and our self image is seriously flawed, incomplete.

Some of these traits are hard wired and will haunt us for life.

Improvement is possible however our demons will always be near and explode from time to time.

As an old guy now, I see the suffering of a lifetime because of my first caregivers abuse.

Why are some of us doomed from birth to a life of suffering?

Friends with decent childhoods tell me I should just get over it, we all have a choice.

PTSD has never been a choice for me. How do you trust friends who say things like that?

With the exception of this blog, no one I know has a clue what impact PTSD has in my life.

Some think it is weakness to let PTSD dominate me like it does at times.

You lose so called friends and it is not a nice break up.

Seems not trusting others has a purpose.

My mind has never lived a day without trauma from my earliest memory.

What does a life feel like with a decent childhood?

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More Bessel A. van der Kolk, MD

https://pixabay.com/users/newinsight2life-11560936/

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Excerpt:

“When trauma emanates from within the family, children experience a crisis of loyalty and organize their behavior to survive within their families. Being prevented from articulating what they observe and experience, traumatized children will organize their behavior around keeping the secret, deal with their helplessness with compliance or defiance, and acclimate in any way they can to entrapment in abusive or neglectful situations.

Being left to their own devices leaves chronically traumatized children with deficits in emotional self-regulation. This results in problems with self-definition as reflected by a lack of a continuous sense of self, poorly modulated affect and impulse control, including aggression against self and others, and uncertainty about the reliability and predictability of others, expressed as distrust, suspiciousness, and problems with intimacy, resulting in social isolation.

Chronically traumatized children tend to suffer from distinct alterations in states of consciousness, including amnesia, hypermnesia, dissociation, depersonalization and derealization, flashbacks and nightmares of specific events, school problems, difficulties in attention regulation, disorientation in time and space, and sensorimotor developmental disorders. The children often are literally are “out of touch” with their feelings, and often have no language to describe internal states.

When a child lacks a sense of predictability, he or she may experience difficulty developing of object constancy and inner representations of their own inner world or their surroundings. As a result, they lack a good sense of cause and effect and of their own contributions to what happens to them.

Without internal maps to guide them, they act, instead of plan, and show their wishes in their behaviors, rather than discussing what they want. Unable to appreciate clearly who they or others are, they have problems enlisting other people as allies on their behalf. Other people are sources of terror or pleasure but are rarely fellow human beings with their own sets of needs and desires.

These children also have difficulty appreciating novelty. Without a map to compare and contrast, anything new is potentially threatening. What is familiar tends to be experienced as safer, even if it is a predictable source of terror.

Traumatized children rarely discuss their fears and traumas spontaneously. They also have little insight into the relationship between what they do, what they feel, and what has happened to them. They tend to communicate the nature of their traumatic past by repeating it in the form of interpersonal en- actments, both in their play and in their fantasy lives.

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PTSD was a Submarine, out of site, stealthy

https://pixabay.com/users/conmongt-1226108/

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PTSD was a submarine for me until my mid 50’s, stealthy, out of sight, right below the surface of consciousness.

There were no flashbacks, triggers firing, or any visible confirmation I was suffering from PTSD.

Oh a trained therapist would have spotted my PTSD easily!

The sad thing about my trauma being hidden, it grew in power, unnoticed as it impacted critical parts of my wellbeing.

Vital parts of my wellbeing were severely damaged and not working for decades.

One of my major deficiencies was my ability to trust and feel good enough, worthy.

In childhood, my narcissistic father tried to take over my being, live through me, since I came into his life unexpectedly when he was 16.

I took his childhood so he repaid the favor, he never said a kind word to me, never letting me feel comfortable was his goal.

He thought it would make me a better baseball player, his ultimate goal.

So that narcissist owned me, treated me as an it, I was his pit bull he took in a cage to the fight.

My value was totally contained in my performance, showing his peers his coaching talent.

Some would call this conditioned love, that is a misnomer, there was no love, only a narcissist cold ownership of his first male child.

How do you explain love to an abused child like this?

Love is something I do not pine for, being able to trust would be nice.

I wonder if my father has any remorse being dead now, looking down or up at me.

Lots of thoughts haunt us, what is real and what is trauma?

Is there love, trust and loyalty out there?

I was birthed into violent abuse and criticism.

Love and trust are strangers to me.

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An abused childhood brain

Pixabay: Anemone123

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There are events that change a life forever, the winner of the harmful events, trauma.

Can you think of the time before your trauma? How did your mind function? You have experienced the mind without trauma, remember back and mimic that experience.

You have a much better chance at healing than a kid abused throughout childhood.

For childhood trauma, many never knew a time without abuse, their minds were always in some form of survival mode.

We have to watch healthy people live or read books about what a mind without serious abuse feels like.

My childhood PTSD did not explode until my mid fifties, but I always had symptoms.

I was puking by the time high school arrived, my stomach and nervous system had PTSD symptoms. There was no safe place for me at school and especially at home.

Of course I hid any weakness from my father, I was terrified by that monster.

My anxiety levels were off the chart, there was no escape.

I have no idea what a mind without serious childhood abuse feels like. My mind never fully relaxes, ever, he is always on guard, always somewhat hyper vigilant.

Trust is something I tried once, it turned out to be the worst event of my life. We are terrible at picking a mate that is trustworthy.

I have read that we are incapable of having a healthy relationship, I finally agree. It is a consequence beyond our control, we did not ask to be abused as children.

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PTSD and Suffering

Public domain

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A friend asked me, what do you gain from your suffering?

I have a hard time applying that to PTSD suffering.

Whether we are a victim or actively trying to heal, suffering is part of our life.

In my opinion, childhood abuse was a sentence of future suffering.

No matter what I did, suffering and loss would be my companions.

My damage and weaknesses were glaring for me.

The best I can do is, try to heal in spite of my suffering.

Feeling I gain something from suffering, brings strong guilt feelings.

I must be doing something wrong to prolong PTSD and my suffering.

Seems to me, having courage and taking action to heal is trying to stop suffering.

An idea arrives. I can offer my suffering up to help Others heal.

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PTSD: what’s it feel like inside?

Pixabay: ninita_7
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I have learned to watch my mind and body. 

At times I can take a step back, be observer, kind of narrating what my being is doing.

It feels like a big fight has happened this week inside my head and heart.

Like always, the details are cloudy, confusing and abstract.

Exactly how our trauma was stored.

My read is accurate, childhood abuse haunts us like a ghost.

I have watched my mind try to convince me unworthiness lives at my core.

A humiliating event is the storyline trauma runs on the projector.

My complex PTSD thinks my soul is stained, damaged, faulty.

Being able to take a step back, gives me a chance to know it,then attack it in due time.

This is a battle people, PTSD wins at times.

That thought of feeling sorry for myself broke my consciousness.

I know life is not fair and others have it harder than me.

We regroup, retool and attack it.

If I have to suffer, I will suffer trying to heal.

It is not easy at times like this.
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PTSD uses thought and emotion to gain control

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PTSD uses certain emotions to gain control, yes it’s part of the Thinker, our Ego.

Our Ego wants total control, even in a person with no history of abuse. We are easy targets when the Ego has PTSD as a weapon or when PTSD has the Ego to dominate. Pick your poison.

PTSD brings guilt to our core. Why should we ever feel guilty for being abused, yes it’s all irrational.

PTSD distorts time, memory and our sanity.

Fear of the unknown, what’s going to happen, when is the next tragedy for us, reverberates within traumas thoughts. We are always on guard, danger is close, we sense.

Trauma, PTSD, has created an alternate world that has no safety or wellbeing for us. We live in a world influenced by things out of our consciousness, PTSD.

We can get trapped inside our thoughts and feelings without realizing it. No one is going to understand.

That’s the other sad part about childhood abuse, none of your friends or enemies will ever know the hell we endure. They will feel helpless not being able to stop our suffering.

Then, there is the fear, the doom, the knowing that things have never turned out ok for us.

Our memories are like Swiss cheese. A child without abuse has a vivid memory of childhood.

We have spotty, violent nightmares, emotionally devastating snippets of abuse called memory.

Good memories are not accessible for me, my memories are of abusé, loss and betrayal. If I have good memories, I am not aware of them.

That’s sad, as I read it.

So looking back has nothing but suffering for me and probably you.

We carry all the fear and ways to escape our abuser into adulthood subconsciously.

Anyone who slightly resembles my fathers behavior, jolts my nervous system.

What do you carry with you?

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Updated: Awareness: know your trauma Patterns

An example of what a functional MRI scan looks like. Brain activation is averaged across 20 PTSD patients compared to healthy controls in an emotion regulation task.

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Yes, I am drawing a pattern out of only two episodes of trauma in my life.

Here are a few patterns I notice.

The obvious, my trauma buries itself quite deeply for decades.

This pattern allows trauma to have subconscious impact without anytime spent trying to heal.

My childhood abuse did not erupt until I was in my fifties.

Secondly, the first couple of months are extremely intense.

My nervous system is agitated and intrusive thoughts seem to come at a rate of a Gatling gun firing.

I see that my whole personality changes.

One of my symptoms brings the feeling of imminent danger to my being.

It is irrational and very confusing.

Imminent danger for me is not physical, I fear the annihilating of my ego, emotional death in a sense.

I am intense, consumed and out of my gourd for a couple months.

You have witnessed this in my recent posts.

I sound and act like a victim, hopeless, helpless, it is embarrassing but sharing will help others push through their humiliating thoughts.

At my lowest, agoraphobic, hiding in my dark garage during the day, I thought something was going to come through the tile roof and do something worse than death.

Look how abstract that fear is. I have no idea what is coming through the roof, man, animal or alien.

My danger does not need a gender or even an origin but it is what I fear most, the unknown.

PTSD has that unknown quality about it.

The tragic memory is incomplete at the time trauma happens.

If it happened in childhood, the brain has not fully developed, storing an incomplete, distorted memory.

Somewhere in our background we need that skill that does not give up when all Common sense says it is the prudent choice.

At my lowest, Agoraphobic, contemplating suicide, a moment of clarity and strength surfaced for me.

From somewhere deep inside my head, the words, my abuser, my dad wins if I give up.

That may seem a feeble judgment by some, but every fiber in my body would not allow him to win.

In a crazy moment of crisis, I accepted my suffering, decided I would rather sit and suffer than let my dad win.

I did not realize this was a pivotal moment on my healing journey, inside my ego, that inner voice knew I would never give up.

Healing from PTSD is a war zone, expect the turmoil as part of the journey.

Ironically, surviving my fathers abuse developed the traits that helped me heal.

We have to fight for our wellbeing, fight the demons our childhoods created.

Thoughts?

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PTSD: Misconceptions of normal people are GLARING!

https://www.atrapamente.com/en/guides/post/understand-PTSD/

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Trauma is stored in fragmented, biased snippets during a perceived lethal threat..

Talking to it, reasoning with it or trying to influence it cognitively (consciously) is impossible.

Intrusive thoughts and PTSD have their own engine, their own leadership, their own schedule.

PTSD triggers and plays when it wants.

We do not control anything but our reaction.

We can resist and let thoughts go, but if you have experienced severe PTSD you know the storyline never stops sometimes.

Normal people think with their normal rational minds how easy it is to heal. Just stop thinking about it.

How nice, how clueless, how damaging.

PTSD is irrational and gets worse with their idea of control.

I been judged, laughed at and humiliated because of my PTSD.

Navigating regular life and people without PTSD is an issue that never goes away.

We do not fit in, we have periods where we are much different, much more guarded, much more concerned about our safety.

Even people who are friends, who have seen you suffer will tell you to get over it after a while.

It wears them out watching us suffer, then they get frustrated and lash out.

It just happened to me again. I cut contact and isolate, it hurts.

Trust is already hard, this makes it worse.

Normal people have no idea what it is like to hide away as an adult in your room for days, emotionally destroyed from the monster hiding inside our head.

Our minds play terror events at a rapid pace, cortisol and adrenaline flow, numbing drugs and coagulants are secreted for battle.

It is an invisible war, inside an invisible prison (PTSD).

How could we as infants escape our life sentence?

Instead of criticizing PTSD people, they should give ultimate gratitude they did not have to live our childhoods.

Peer pressure causes us to retreat, we start losing trust in people who can not understand us.

Every symptom and consequence of Childhood abuse has driven me towards isolation.

How about you?

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https://www.atrapamente.com/en/guides/post/understand-PTSD/

PTSD has exploded with old age, retirement

A rare peak behind the curtain the real me.

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Work and play always kept that demon inside, chasing me at bay.

With retirement and large swaths of time to think, I finally see my life, the big picture.

I am devastated.

Like many, we did not have a chance as little kids.

My childhood abuse followed me into college, where betrayal broke that abused little boys back.

It was stored as the most horrific thing that ever happened to me. I can not change how this was stored, the intensity or the harm or the event itself. Oh I have tried.

I never realized, I should never have entered a relationship with a partner, ever. I did not know the risk, the damage for life that would happen.

Childhood abuse left me damaged and incapable of ever handling betrayal, let alone public ridicule. My father so isolated me, I never confided in a soul.

I did not have anyone I trusted, anyone I would ever share humiliation, shame, loss or weakness with.

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I lived life inside my head, alone, since childhood. I was extremely vulnerable and had no clue.

I have paid a heavy price for loving someone. I never trusted a mate again. It was not conscious or cognitive, everytime a girlfriend or wife would go out alone, my bags were packed.

I did not understand why my gut would churn, my nervous system would go to tilt or why I suffered. This always caused conflict and suffering for me.

It was impossible for me to attach in a healthy way. But it felt like failure to be single.

I found it impossible to be close or trust any partner after college. I gave what was available, much of me had shut down without me knowing it.

PTSD was alive but I never knew it.

My cognitive rationalizations now, common sense, can not reach this nightmare. We can not cognitively reach ptsd or change it by talking to it, like many think.

It plays in a venue that thinks its worse than death. Somehow I need to proces this, integrate this, not try to change it.

Hard for an old guy to handle this level of anxiety, humiliation and outright fear, now.

How in the world do you fix this?

I have done the work, journeyed for a decade on the road less traveled and this is what remains.

PTSD does not care, we can suffer till we die.

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