Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Discussions about experiences of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

by nicole_s » Tue Feb 10, 2015 3:51 pm

Its interesting that there is a bit of a theme developing in these posts about 'retrospective understanding' about trauma- you don't really understand what you're going through particularly emotionally until often much later. My father was a Lithuanian migrant war veteran who must have been suffering from PTSD or major depression - only realised this when it was too late, when he committed suicide when I was an adolescent. Since then, had my own brushes with trauma - and now when I look back on some of my reactions, they look very similar to the PTSD checklist you find on some websites. Anyone else wondering about how to diagnose PTSD?
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Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

by bobcat » Thu Feb 12, 2015 12:55 pm

Sorry to hear of your experience Nicole. I think it is very human to not realise what you’re going through until well after the fact, even if you think you’re dealing with it at the time. I think a cultural shift needs to develop, in terms of actively seeking a diagnosis of PTSD after trauma, rather than hoping that the diagnosis will come along.

It would be nice to think that such a shift is taking place, but that may not be what some people on here have experienced (?)
Can anything be learned from other support networks? Those diagnosed with life-threatening diseases, or who have been in abusive relationships, for example, are being recognised as “at risk” of psychological factors; you mention depression which is most insidious of all as it may or may not be tied to a particular event.

I guess there are also cultural factors in play – the baby boomer and earlier generations were probably less likely to seek help than their younger counterparts. Also I think we Brits tend to want to just work through things without bothering anyone about our troublesome feelings. It’s good to be more American sometimes!

But it shouldn’t be about seeking out help - surely having suffered trauma should be seen as a major flag that PTSD is likely to follow and the support network should be ongoing...
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Re: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

by nicole_s » Thu Feb 12, 2015 3:18 pm

Hi Bobcat! Thanks for your thoughtful response:-) You're right, I think there's cultural and also gender things going on re: how comfortable people feel about admitting 'they're not coping'. I know there is an UK organisation and website called Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), it's a suicide prevention campaign targeted at men, there is a relatively high incidence of suicide attempts in young men, part of the trauma stats. CALM has thousands of followers. The overall message being, fight against 'being tough' cultural bloke stereotypes, reach out for help, talk.

But even as a woman I know recognising let alone admitting I needed help during those dark days was really tough.

I've got a good, elderly friend who looked after her wheelchair bound husband (stroke induced hemiplegia) 24/7 in his later years, and I could see how much the physical and emotional strain was dragging down her own mental and physical health. But she was very reluctant to ask for more help/ respite care, she felt guilty. I imagine a lot of carers struggle with these issues.
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