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Forums / PTSD & Trauma / New member wishing he knew where to start and what to do

Topic: New member wishing he knew where to start and what to do

14 posts, 0 answered
  1. jonno86
    jonno86 avatar
    6 posts
    2 January 2021

    Hi ,

    This feels really strange posting to a message board, after stumbling upon an article about C-PTSD, which bought me to tears, firstly from the kindness I felt in people's posts and replies, but also for hugging myself after reading a thread which made me feel like I was not alone, and that some of my feelings, in some way, were normal.

    I guess, the thing which really stood out to me from the post I read had something to do with finally being separated from primary abusers, and being in a 'child like' state, which, if I am honest, after a lifetime of trauma and abuse, and finally, being in my own new home, alone - I am so confused as to why I have never felt worse, in so so many ways.

    My social anxiety, panic attacks, felling's of self worth and depression - have never been worse, which, which I consider what I have experienced in life, is so confusing to me and so incredibly scary.

    The past 1.5 years have been a massive journey of discovery and learning. After some treatment programs, and a lot of therapy and journaling. I have come to remember and partially understand countless things that have happened to me from childhood until now.

    My current understanding, is that being raised by a very ill mother, with multiple diagnosis's (and me obviously having my own), lead me down a developmental path, and life, which, is far from normal.

    The impact of my childhood, adolescence and adult life, during which, most of the time, I was unaware in so many of what was ACTUALLY happening, has caused so many issues, some of which can and have been diagnosed (C-PTSD, OCD, GAD, Attachment Disorder) and others which I would describe as coping mechanism's or behavior's other which I still struggle to understand.

    The most scary and confusing part is how much I have deteriorated since being alone - I feel like I am only now starting, or trying to understand, how I go about healing and becoming a functional human being.

    I have no idea what that road ahead looks like, what supports I need, how to go about it, what advice to seek.... and often, feel more confused, lost, lonely, anxious and depressed than I ever have, even when experiencing actual trauma.

    I understand that everyone's journey is different, and I know there are people far worse off than me... but, these new feeling have caused me to do things and have thoughts I have never had, which I just don't know how to deal with...

    Hoping this makes sense....

    4 people found this helpful
  2. golden82
    golden82 avatar
    435 posts
    2 January 2021 in reply to jonno86

    Hi and welcome Jonno86,

    WOW, I could have written almost every word you have. You have expressed yourself very well. I think you are more self-aware than you may realize. I think awareness is the first step. From here, you can seek support to help heal as you are doing by posting and connecting here. I am in a similar spot to you and so won't be much good to help you. I would suggest you read through some of the threads if you feel up to it. There are some here in this cPTSD section and also in the relationships section. I am sure others will reply to this post with more advice than I can offer. Also, maybe give the BB number a call to talk with a worker about where to from here for you - your options for support. If you have a GP - better if you can get one that knows a bit about mental health (mine claims too - but nope, she doesn't) shop around for a good fit for you and see if they can refer you to a trauma psych. These may be over the phone/zoom now with Covid and changes to Medicare. Do you have any of these things in place? Are you in a city where there are services? Bit harder if further out - I think then the zoom really helps.

    Well done on posting and best wishes on your path :)

    6 people found this helpful
  3. geoff
    Life Member
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
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    geoff avatar
    16453 posts
    2 January 2021 in reply to jonno86

    Hello Jonno86 and also to Golden82, it's not easy to post your comment only because you believe there are other people worse off than you so hesitate, but it's not necessarily how other people feel, it's actually how you are struggling to cope.

    We are unable to know whether person A is better or worse off than another person, so we treat all comments presented as serious, each one needs the respect they deserve.

    Any comment that is able to open the 'flood gates' and show your emotions is concerning, but in reality, it has been able to grab your attention and definitely understand that you can relate to their comment and find it heartwarming.

    To feel more confused, lost, lonely, anxious and depressed than I ever have, even when experiencing actual trauma, could be experienced because your circumstances maybe different or a delayed effect may ricochet back to you, unfortunately.

    Can I ask whether you have tried a few different counsellors over this period making it difficult to understand how to approach your situation?

    Take care.


    4 people found this helpful
  4. jonno86
    jonno86 avatar
    6 posts
    3 January 2021 in reply to golden82

    Hi Golden82,

    Thanks so much for your reply, I really appreciated your comment about being self-aware, and expressing myself well, I often feel at times I really struggle with both of those things.

    I defiantly will have a look around the forums and threads, I know that there will be a lot of valuable information in there, not only from hearing other people's experiences and journey's but also to better feel like I am not alone.

    I have been looking, or had, various supports in the past, sadly as time has gone on - the biggest support I require, seems to be the hardest to get - psychologists constantly reject my referrals and am told that I am 'too complex' and they don't believe they can help me. Which, as much as the rejection hurts, I try and turn into a positive, as some people may know, some therapy, or therapists (not intentionally), can sometimes make things worse, finding a connection with the right support workers and therapists in it itself is a journey and something I need to devote more time to.

    Currently, when things get really bad, I turn to 1800RESEPCT, LifeLine and I don't think I have phoned BeyondBlue before but certainly will.

    Thanks again for your response, it times like these with what is going on in the world just knowing someone took some time from their day to respond really makes a difference.

    Thanks again, Jonno

    1 person found this helpful
  5. jonno86
    jonno86 avatar
    6 posts
    3 January 2021 in reply to geoff

    Hi Geoff,

    I love your comment about being unable to know whether person A, or B, or anyone is worse off than another. I once heard a saying about not being able to compare one person's pain, or trauma, to another's - which for me made me understand that empathy, compassion and listening can be so powerful.

    I think the flood gates have certainly opened, and yes, it is a delayed effect. So many memories and experiences are coming back to me, and now that I have more (too much) time on my hands, and less distractions (largely that I am no longer a primary caregiver to an abusive parent, or in an abusive relationship), I find myself confronted by so so many triggers, and am trying to process too much alone in isolation.

    I have had many councilors, therapists, psychiatrists, support workers e.t.c over the years, but besides my psychiatrist, have not stuck with them for many reasons (moving around, work, other commitments, because the therapy itself is so painful), but also because of being rejected by many psychologists, because I now know I need to find one specifically dedicated to trauma.

    I have in the last couple of months had 2 plans for an interstate inpatient admission specifically for Trauma, EMDR & Dissociation, which was cancelled due to border restrictions.

    I think this week I really need to focus on finding ones I can work remotely with, and accept the current 'un-comfortability' I feel in my new surroundings.

    I know I am repeating myself, and I know that it is probably normal, and part of the journey, but it feels so strange and confusing, or even like am being a 'princess' to complain or even feel how I do because in many ways, being alone, in my own home, without reminders or commitments or ties to the people are negative influences - I thought would put mentally into a great space to start to deal with this - but strangely, every hour is still so painful.

    I know this will change, and I know this is just the start... but again, I personally (and others) hate any new or unexpected or negative feelings.

    I expected that when I achieved my goal (independence and separation) that it would result in something far different from how I have been feeling the past few months.

    Thanks again for your time and response, I really appreciate it.

    Best Regards, Jonno

    2 people found this helpful
  6. Guest_1643
    blueVoices member
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Guest_1643 avatar
    4854 posts
    3 January 2021 in reply to jonno86

    Hi Jonno

    I've seen tonnes of psychiatrists/psychologists over the years

    one said he thought i had ptsd years ago

    He rarely said much else and I never thought much of it.

    Now ten years later, all the symptoms come back raging and I've had to seek help again - and- be formally daiagnosed, with what I had all that time

    Cptsd often hides and sneaks unnoticed. It is this way sadly for many ppl. But I think once u see it with ur eyes and are open to it, healing can be quite amazing.

    I have been working on my recovery for about a year, and I don't think much about CPTSD at the moment. It doesn't affect me in the same ways. I am touched by your story and here for you.

    2 people found this helpful
  7. Elithia
    Elithia avatar
    41 posts
    3 January 2021 in reply to jonno86

    Dear Jonno86,

    Others have posted some really eloquent and helpful reponses to you, and I can't add much except to say that I recognise myself in so much of your story. The pain you're describing, of finding yourself unexpectedly thrust into a psychological and emotional quagmire, just as you were expecting relief, is so familiar! It's the pain of recovery... as in, you are recovering parts of yourself. And that's scary and hard, and it definitely brings up a lot of anguish. After more or less unconsiously living out my own childhood traumas for much of my adulthood, I was devastated by how hard it was so fight for my recovery. I remember sobbing to my psychologist that I'd already had it bad as a kid, so why did recovery also have to feel so rotten??!! Take heart that you are absolutely heading in the right direction at the moment. I know it feels like unpleasant work, but in time you'll find the peace and happiness you crave. And thank you so much for posting your story... you've reminded me to stay the course too!

    Elithia x

    2 people found this helpful
  8. jonno86
    jonno86 avatar
    6 posts
    3 January 2021 in reply to Guest_1643

    Hi Elithia,

    Thanks so much for your reply, I literally have tears rolling down my face.

    I don't know how to best say this, but I know I need to really stand up for myself, for my rights, for recognition of the things which have been done to me - even the ones that (this might not quite make sense), the things I have done because of the developmental effect that being raised by, and associated with, and dating - people who, sadly, in hindsight, could see that I was a broken person who would do whatever it took to feel any kind of recognition, appreciation or 'love'.

    I know this recovery will be hard, and I know I am strong, or I would not be here today.

    The strange things, is that recovering from this, is literally, or seems to be (at the beginning) harder that beating or overcoming addition (one of my past demons).

    I never thought it would be easy, but I did not think it would be this hard - but again, I need to remind myself - \the first steps are probably the hardest, and most confusing, and certainly the most confronting.

    I can't thank you enough for your reply.....

    Best Wishes, Jonno

    3 people found this helpful
  9. jonno86
    jonno86 avatar
    6 posts
    3 January 2021 in reply to Guest_1643

    Hi Sleepy,

    Thanks so much for your response.

    Maybe similar to you, I was diagnosed years ago - but, refused to believe, the reality of what I was being told.

    For longer than I can, or care to remember (my youngest memories), are neglect, abuse and trauma.

    I guess as a coping mechanism I told myself that I preferred to think of myself as a caring, giving and helpful person, who, while being a 'victim' (ugh, I hate that word), got more out of putting up with it, and knowing that I was strong and resilient.

    Getting out of the situations that I knew were unhealthy, or that I was trapped in, did not seem possible (and I did try) but then also, at the same time, I let it continue - because at the time - I did not know the long term impact that it would have on me. In a way, it felt like an addiction, it have me a purpose, I felt like it gave me meaning, or a reason to wake up.

    Now that I am alone, and on this journey of recovery, it it very different from what I expected (not that I knew what to expect).

    I know these uncomfortable feelings I have, are things that for the moment, I need to sit with, accept, and find the right people (which includes this forum) to help me.

    I guess it was silly to think that once I was finally away from the 'bad' people, I would just become a 'normie' (my nickname for people who have lived lives which I imagine are not full of as much pain as I, or people like us have experienced, or do, on a daily basis)

    Hoping this makes sense...


    2 people found this helpful
  10. geoff
    Life Member
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    16453 posts
    3 January 2021 in reply to jonno86

    Hello Jonno86, a very comprehensive post and it's pointless someone who cares about their parent they are looking after, is not good mentally or healthy if they disrespect everything you try and do to help them, it demoralises you and leaves you with any positive thoughts that turn on you with negative thoughts breaking any strength and the resilience you once had, in other words, it will turn a confident person into one who's not sure what to do, the breeding ground for depression of any type.

    We do happen to let this continue, hoping that tomorrow will be better, but normally it may not and only feasters your own mental health.

    Once you're living alone, your life changes and it does feel like jumping into a box of balloons not knowing what to expect, but eventually little by little you appreciate people who are trying to help you through this, although it takes time, because every day is different.

    You certainly are not alone.

    Take care.


    3 people found this helpful
  11. jonno86
    jonno86 avatar
    6 posts
    4 January 2021 in reply to geoff
    Thanks for the response Geoff, I really appreciate it.
    1 person found this helpful
  12. Mishmo
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Mishmo avatar
    50 posts
    4 January 2021 in reply to jonno86
    Hi Jonno,

    I can relate to so much you are expressing. I am still on my journey of healing also... feels like its truly never ending. I myself found the most amazing psychologist who helped me oh so much, then sadly just before covid she retired. So also on the hunt for a new one. Hard finding another so amazingly helpful as she was. But the aim is to not give up. With so many complex problems, like i also have, they are far and few between, or not taking new patients. I hold hope, till then I find these forums somewhat helpful, helps me vent my thoughts, find others or reading of others with probs similar to myself, and take it all day by day.

    I wanna say, Im ever so proud of you for coming as far as you have. I personally know how hard it is just getting to where you are now. Its a up hill battle for sure. So easy to just give in and give up at times, but truly incredible to keep fighting also, feels empowering.
    I was doing great, now not so much... its been like 2 steps forward, 1 back kinda healing... still in a forward direction. But atm, I am feeling kinda stationary and lost. But telling myself thats OK... its better then going backwards entirely. And I will not allow myself to do that either. So being stuck is ok for now thanks to covid.

    Sorry for my rambling, my mind does that... joys of cPTSD. Oh and triggers.... yep they suck! But working out what they are and learning to not give it all my energy has been what I am working on atm... covid is not helping me mentally either.

    How bout you? How are you today? How are you travelling? Do you have any self learnt coping skills?! Ot any you may have learnt from online info or any specialists etc that you find helpful?!
    3 people found this helpful
  13. ecomama
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    ecomama avatar
    4567 posts
    5 January 2021 in reply to jonno86

    Hey jonno

    A warm welcome to the forums.

    I know your thread title said you didn't know what to do or where to start but clearly you have made massive headway by separating from the abusers.
    Many ppl don't do this (and we know why, it's nearly impossible to do) but you HAVE so you have started your healing process.

    Whether you know it or not.

    I'll give you some pointers, hopefully meeting you 'where you are'. Know we are always here to support you.
    * no it's not sunshine or normie land on the other side - you have a lot of recovery to happen.
    * you will heal more and more IF you put in the work. Being here is really positive.
    * the "answers" to your recovery will not come from one magical psych or med, it will come from you knowing what helps you and feeling empowered over time to SEE those things and DO them.
    It's like your own jigsaw puzzle that you need to find the pieces for.
    IE sure you can get help from ppl but there's no ONE thing that will cure you - "complex" is the key word here.

    * DO self-care (we have a self-care thread and we are NOT experts either!).
    * get a living thing to care for from a plant (visit gardening thread) to a bird, kitten, dog (there are threads on these too). I'd start with a plant. If it dies, throw it in the green bin and get another - all good, you're trialling that's all.

    * IF YOU CAN make 1 IRL connection per day. Whether it's saying hi to the shop assistant, making a MH call to a helpline or for an appt, texting of phoning a friend. Maintain your interactions.
    * If you can't then maintaining your BB connections is very important.
    Take what you want and leave the rest.

    I'm talking to everyone now including you jonno...
    Just for today know that who you are and what you do today is ENOUGH.

    YOU are enough, in fact you're amazing.

    You've got this jonno

    3 people found this helpful
  14. Elithia
    Elithia avatar
    41 posts
    7 January 2021 in reply to jonno86

    Dear Jonno,

    how are you doing? I've been thinking of you. How have you been travelling these last couple of days?

    If you'd like to talk, I'm here.

    Best wishes,

    Elithia x

    1 person found this helpful

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