Dealing with my PTSD & trauma
I suffer from PTSD, depression and anxiety.
Even just typing this out is making me anxious but I feel like I just need someone to know how I feel.
I was sexually assaulted by someone that I trusted. I felt disgusted with myself and was put in the mindset that it was all my fault. It took so long for me to open up to anyone due to my shame.
It has been months now.. there are good days and today feels particularly bad. Noises still scare me so much and with lockdown and restrictions easing I feel even more scared that people will be able to be anywhere. I always feel paranoid and hyper vigilant with my surroundings.
I can't deal with sounds late at night and I feel like I can still hear and see so much more compared to others. Every time someone shouts or yells outside, every time a car loudly passes by I hold my breath and feel like I am in danger. Every time a person comes up from behind me I feel very uneasy still.
I'm glad my friends who know are very supportive but I just feel since this traumatic experience has only happened to me no one really understands what I've been dealing with. I've seen a therapist and a counsellor regarding this but I don't really feel like they fit for me, I don't feel like I was really heard or that they were really listening to my issues - I know you need to go to a few to find the one that suits you but just the thought of opening up again to someone new seems exhausting at the moment.
I suppose I just feel so robbed? And angry? And upset? - I feel like I'm not even the person I used to be anymore. I fear social gatherings, I can't go and make new friends, I can't see myself going on dates, I have major issues trusting anyone and even when I'm hanging out with my friends I always am hyper aware of everything I say, their reactions and what I expect them to react in order to feel safe. I feel terrible every time I hang out with friends and would either have a panic or anxiety attack due to small triggers around me.
Not really sure where this is going... I think I just needed to vent. Thank you for those who took a moment of their time to read this post & reply.
Hello Pinklightning, thanks for being brave enough to contact us and know that you've probably been sitting at your computer wondering whether or not to post your concern, started writing a comment but deleting it, but now you have done it, so well done.
To be assaulted in the way you've said by a trusted friend is going to make you very nervous of any sort of noise, but you certainly can't blame yourself, it was done by a person you never believed would do this and has done than broke your heart, but devastated you and not knowing who will understand.
It's not easy to begin counselling when this has happened and if I can suggest the best way to connect with a counsellor is to write down, and I know this will be so hard for you, but try and make points on who the person was and how it happened and why you are suffering.
This is better than trying to answer them when they ask 'how can I help you' because you tend to freeze and not sure how to begin.
I will be checking your comments and hope you can stay with us, take your time, there's no rush.
My best wishes.
I'm sad to hear your story. I'm so glad you have reached out to BB for support.
You are more than welcome to phone the 24 hr phoneline and speak to a Counsellor,
PH: 1300 22 4636
Or RESPECT: 1800 737 732
have had experiences like what you describe. I've felt the feelings, so jumpy I felt tingles and my heart would race, I couldn't catch my breath, & I it seemed, I needed to be always 'on guard', aware of, yet still jumping at every sound, & when people could walk up behind me, I just about hit them. I've been millimetres from doing that when someone reached toward me, apparently to touch my shoulder.
It's been a long time, and I still have some physical symptoms. Not nearly as bad as then, but sill some.
Slowly, slowly, I have become better, can understand why I feel so much of what I feel.
I could use the worst words and still not describe how horrible the experiences are like for those of us who have been sexually assaulted. Sometimes, there are just no words. But I think finding words is helpful.
The effects are deep and complicated. I do want you to know, YOU have NOTHING to feel shame about. Nothing is disgusting about you. You are not to blame. Whoever this person who assaulted you ,was the one who assaulted you. You did not do that.
I understand how difficult it is thinking about finding someone else to help you. I've done that a few times. It is always hard, but when I did find my current Psychiatrist, I felt it was worth the search.
Writing things out has been something I have done for a long time. I used to write, thinking, no one will see this, so I could write anything, no limits. Eventually, I needed feedback. Talking/writing to myself was not moving me along by then. I even took some into my Psychiatrist,(another) to read, because I couldn't speak my words aloud.
So, write here, & the people here are all here to support each other, In doing so, we help ourselves.
You say, you feel so robbed, meaning, you feel a large part of you was stolen? I get that. I don't trust, but still feel I could be easily taken advantage of. I don't want to get close to anyone. But I never see what happens, until I find I need someone, now & then & fear needing them too much. & so many emotions!
Complicated, that's why it takes time.
I'm glad you have some friends close to you. Tell them what you need , by way of what support you could use.
Meanwhile, be as kind & gentle to yourself as you can. Keep talking here We're listening.
Thank you so much for your response. It took me a few days to type up so many different paragraphs about what happened to me and I've deleted and re-typed it so many times.
Even when I am with my friends I feel like part of me thinks they would betray me too? Or they have some sort of hidden agenda because of what's happened to me.
I'm going to start writing down all my feelings about it - there are parts that I can't remember (it feels like I've blocked out some of them) and some memories are a bit muddled because every time I really think about what's happened I get really anxious once I back track to that night.
Thank you once again for your response.
Thank you so much for your reply. Reading your comment made me cry because it really resonated with me.. and I feel not as alone with what I went through.
It's like there is so much words to describe what we go through but every time I try to run it through my head I don't even know where to start. I've been meditating a bit which I find helps me not focus so much on the surrounding sounds even just for a few minutes of my day.
Yeah I feel like a large part of me had been stolen - I used to be very independent but now if I am somewhere it's really hard for me to do things alone or be in my own company. I think what really affected me the most was there were people who were there that knew what was happening to me and helped it happened to me like what they were doing was no big deal...
I woke up the next day so scared for my life and the person who had assaulted me would just laugh with their friends and pretend like nothing even happened... like I was the crazy one.
I'm going to start writing my thoughts on a journal to hopefully have somewhere to pour out what I am feeling.
Thank you so much for your kind and supportive results. They mean so much more to me than you know.
I am pleased you are trying to work through your experience and all the feelings about it. Bear in mind, it is difficult, and the working through will cause more emotions, so take your time. You set a pace which you feel best suits your needs, and whereby you can also have time to care for yourself, rest and eat, and go out, when you feel you can cope with being anxious. In other words, try to not rush or push to unlock those parts of your memory which you are not able to. It is a possibility you might not remember everything.
You have been doing so well, given how recently this happened, I am sure you will find your way through. It's hard, but I would advise a big dose of patience and as much care as you can give yourself. Whenever you feel any shame or self-blame, I want you to remember, it's NOT your fault. &, Pinklightning is a good person.