PTSD a condition officially recognized in 1980. Complex PTSD recognized in 1994, describes exposure devastating over long time, 15 years of time. Emotional neglect, humiliation, bullying, disrupted attachment, violence and anger. A lot of us, as many as 20 percent are wandering the world as undiagnosed sufferers of ‘Complex PTSD’.
1 Feeling that nothing is safe, Wherever we are, we have an apprehension that something awful is about to happen. We are in a state of hypervigilance. The catastrophe we expect often involves sudden fall of grace. We won’t necessary be killed but to all intents, our life will be over. People try to reassure us though logic that reality won’t ever be that bad, but logic doesn’t help. We’re in the
grip of illness, we aren’t just a bit confused.
2 We can never relax. This shows up in our body. We are permanently tense or rigid. We have trouble with yoga meditation – not appealing. Our anxiety has a direct link to our digestive system.
3 We can’t really ever sleep and wake up very early. Generally in a state of high alarm, as though we let our guard and now in even greater danger than usual.
4 we have, deep in ourselves, an appalling self-image. We hate who we are, we think we’re ugly, monstrous, repulsive. We think we’re awful, possible the most awful person in the world.
5 we’re often drawn to highly unavailable people. We tell ourselves we hate ‘needy’ people. What we really hate are people who might be too present for us. We make beeline to people who are disengaged, won’t want warmth from us and who are struggling with their own undiagnosed issues around avoidance.
6 we are sickned by people who want to be cosy with us. We call these people desperate
7 we are prone to losing our temper very badly, sometimes with other people, more often just with ourselves. We aren’t so much ‘angry’ as very very worried. Worried that everything is about to become very awful again. We look mean, we are in fact defenseless.
8 we are highly paranoid. We suspect other people will be hostile to us, and will be looking out for opportunities to crush and humiliate us (we can be mesmerically drawn to social media, the unkindnest and most arbitrary environment, which anyone with c-ptsd easily confuses with the whole world, chiefly because it operates like their world, random and very meanly.).
9 we find other people so dangerous and worrying that being alone has huge attractions. We might like to go and live under a rock forever. In some moods, we associate bliss with not having to see anyone again, ever.
10 find living so exhausting, unpleasant, we do sometimes long not to exist any more.
11 we can’t afford to show much spontaneity. We’re rigid about routines. Everything may need to be exactly so, as an attempt to ward off looming chaos. Change of plan = dread.
12 we may throw ourselves in amassing money, fame, work, this never works. The sense of danger and self-disgust is coming from so deep within. We can never reach a sense of safety externally. Million people can be cheering, but one jeer will be enough once again to evoke the self-disgust we have left unaddressed inside.
Those are symptoms.
Cure – partly we need to courageously realize that we have come through something terrible that we haven’t until now properly digested – because we haven’t had a kind, stable environment in which to do so (it is always hard to get one but we’ve also been assiduous in avoiding doing so). When we were small, someone made us feel extremely unsafe even though they might have been our parent; we were made to think that nothing about who we were was acceptable; in the name of being “brave”, we had to endure very difficult separations, perhaps repeated over years, no one reassured us of our worth. We were judged with intolerable harshness. Typically it may have unfolded in objectively innocent circumstances. Emotional neglect within outwardly high achieving families can be as damaging in active violence of deprived ones.
We should stop being brave. We should allow ourselves to feel compassion for who we were, that might not be so easy, given how hard we tend to be with ourselves. The root cause of Complex PTSD is an absence of love- and the cure for it follows the same path – we need to relearn to love someone we very unfairly hate beyond measure – ourselves.
YT THE SCHOOL OF LIFE
The Barista Situation – Childhood Trauma Work – Episode 9
column1 – knowing how much your inner child is running your life, triggered, activated in your life.
Column 2- what am I feeling, how am I behaving. exploratory to keep adult more in place, prefrontal. Check in yourself afterwards what i was feeling – humiliated by person, charge to that, may think you did something wrong. Did i give funny look. Feeling anxiety, shame, rage, indignation. Some people go write letter.