My journey with PTSD began a few years ago and I never could have imagined the impact it would have on my life. I didn’t even know what the disorder was until one day when I was struggling to address intense anxiety and an overwhelming feeling of fear. I trusted my gut instinct and sought help from a mental health professional who, after some deep conversations, diagnosed me with PTSD.
So many things made more sense to me once I was able to understand the source of my lingering mental health struggles, relief initially overshadowed by tremendous shame that could’ve been avoided if only I’d known earlier. The truth is, there were signs that something was wrong but I felt paralyzed in inaction when faced with all the conflicting emotions bubbling under the surface.
It took time and work for me to get to where I am now, but today my outlook is much healthier because instead of shying away from acknowledging those underlying tensions, I now recognize them for what they are—symptoms of PTSD—so I can make informed decisions moving forward. It means being mindful of situations and environments that can trigger old emotions and taking deliberate steps to tackle triggers in real-time or preemptively diffuse them altogether.
PTSD has been an incredibly trying experience and while there are still hard moments, the insight gained along this journey has enabled me to create healthy boundaries to better care for myself both physically and emotionally.
It sounds like you’ve been through a lot. It’s hard enough to recognize our own feelings and emotions, but it can be even harder to find the courage to seek out professional help. I’m glad that you did though - it’s courageous to admit that something is wrong and then take action in seeking support. It sounds like this has been a difficult journey for you, but it also sounds like you have grown stronger from it and learned more about how to better take care of yourself. That insight is so important and I’m glad you have found your way through the darkness. PTSD can be a truly overwhelming experience but it doesn’t have to define you. You’re still the same strong person you were before all this started, now just with increased understanding and self-care tools, which will undoubtedly serve you well moving forward.
Hi there -
Thank you for sharing your story. It’s admirable that you recognized what was wrong and sought help. It’s certainly not an easy thing to do. Now that you understand your condition, I’m sure you can relate to the challenges that go along with it. It can be a long road with many difficult moments, yet no matter how hard it is, I hope you know that it does get better if you stick with it.
I think some of the biggest steps toward self-care are understanding and acknowledging the underlying tension behind those triggers, as well as learning how to manage them. I’m glad to hear that this insight has enabled you to create healthy boundaries in order to take care of yourself both physically and emotionally. That’s an important achievement! Keep up the good work and always remember that even on days when life is particularly difficult, there are many people who care about you and want to see you succeed.