The Loneliness of Complex PTSD

As I sat in the Mental Health Ward following my suicide attempt I realised how lonely  Complex PTSD is and what a rather frightening mental illness it is, and the isolation that comes with it is horrifying. You can’t make anyone understand. The nurses and doctors spout words at you claiming to understand and use language which should illustrate they do but they just don’t. It’s all just perfunctory babble. They have no idea what’s really going on in your head. The confusion, the guilt, shame and frightening flashbacks which beset you daily. They don’t understand what that’s really, truly like. They give lip service to it. I know they do otherwise they wouldn’t say the things they do. They wouldn’t tell me to put it behind me, to move on, that it’s all in the past, that I can’t be hurt anymore. They are the worst words someone with PTSD can hear. It is so belittling. Never say those words to someone with PTSD them. It is downright insulting.

People around you have moved on but you can’t. You can’t. Sometimes I want the whole world to stop and stay a while with me, to endure what I am enduring. I need someone to understand this is difficult for me, and I’m not doing this on purpose. I just can’t move on.

My doctor and therapist says recovery is possible with rigorous therapy and medicines. But is it? Perhaps yes, perhaps not. I am losing faith because I’m still that trapped 55-year-old with no way out.

With post-traumatic stress disorder, there feels like there’s no escaping the monster that has confined you in isolation.

1. You can’t make people understand how lonely you are. Of course, you can’t blame people for not understanding because it’s your battle and yours alone. They can’t see that you are stuck in one moment of your life. They can’t feel it.

2. You can’t move to some place else and call it home. Every single one of us looks for a home. I’m not talking about the house we live in. I’m talking about the home in our minds. You’re lost without your home. And every other place you go to find it is just another house. You can’t find yourself.

3. Everything is a trigger. Someone says something and it reminds you of that particular moment, and there’s your trigger. You can’t visit the same place where the incident happened; it will trigger you. For me it’s hospitals. I can’t visit a hospital without getting a panic attack. This makes my life extremely difficult.

4. You’re desperate to get out of the trauma, but you just can’t. No matter how desperately you try to get out of that particular situation that made you this way, you can’t find relief. You can beg, borrow and steal for your brain, but there’s no freedom.

With all this struggle and stress, my abducted brain is tired. I’m tired. I feel like I can’t do this anymore. I’ve yet to see the light at the end of the tunnel, but it feels like forever and I don’t know if I can do it anymore. But I have to keep trying, no matter how exhausted I am, and hope in the future this girl trapped inside the nightmare can finally wake up.

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