I don’t know where to start and maybe that’s the hardest part. I’ve been living with Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD) for far too long without knowing it had a name.
My struggles have come faster and more frequently every year. I never realized just how hard the trauma I experienced would affect me. It has taken its toll on my relationships, my job, and my overall zest for life — something I thought was gone forever.
Though I have not received any clinical diagnosis, many doctors and therapists alike can recognize my symptoms as those of C-PTSD, especially given all that I’ve been through in the past. Symptoms like emotional reactivity, difficulty maintaining healthy relationships, sleep issues and hyperarousal are all too common for me these days.
Though no treatment is necessarily easy or straightforward with C-PTSD, there are some things that have helped me in dealing with the pain of this disorder: reaching out to friends who understand what it feels like to grapple with mental health conditions; learning mindfulness techniques; engaging in creative activities like art and writing; surrounding myself with positive self-talk instead of negative; seeking therapy when needed; most importantly, showing compassion for myself first and foremost has been a definite game changer.
My journey recovering from C-PTSD won’t be an easy one but I’m ready to confront it head on so that I can step into a beautiful version of life free from PTSD’s ravages once again.