"The way to go..."
For a while I have been busy with what I have experienced, say to get grip on it. What I have noticed is that many therapies are based too much on thinking. But any neurologist or those with a thorough neuroscience education say that what we think is determined by lower areas and these are precisely the areas that are about memories, feelings and more that play a major role in traumatized people. I am tired of having to tell that to those who should actually know because of their academic education. Tired of disbelief the many misconceptions that tends to confirm it self, knockdown arguments to prevent finding wisdom or avoiding problems, tired of disbelieve of the experiences of victims, tired of lack of help, tired of avoiding the subject, tired of not making a good diagnosis, tired of not believing those with DID and of avoiding how we can actually help these people once and in particular with neurological insights. Tired of the DSM that is no more than a summary of symptoms and I tell you that many see no overall picture between all these symptoms, let alone advice for therapy and neurological explanation. In particular also some cognitive behavioral therapy trained practitioners, they see cognition as the only way to go. Since it is about confusing, frightful, shameful and very anxious experiences, it is mainly about feelings.
It takes time, bit by bit
In response to these experiences, many have a strong tendency to ignore their feelings and even numb them with drugs or alcohol. Releasing feelings and coming back in contact with them is painful, but must. But healing is not possible at once. If only it were that by crying hard at a psychologist, you would get rid of it. EMDR can quickly and safely extinguish the extreme fears and panic. The ratio tends to prevail when the feelings are confusing. Sometimes this tendency to rationalize can get the upper hand for some. The principle and actually the whole wisdom of Mindfullness is letting go, so natural ways open healing ways and do not bite into focusing by thinking. Inexperienced care providers who are unaware of trauma problems and all that is involved, just want you to answer and answer their questions or reassure their confusion and answers you provoke, they make you a teacher and play the game of teacher. They will never acknowledge "this is beyond my expertise or sorry, how do you see it".
Therefore do not talk to these people. Avoid the rational people who are ready with sensible advice. It is about the inner world and that is the core of everything, despite your sorrow, anger that you have, it is these feelings that are the way out. Avoid therapies and pure forms of behavior that only approach the outside and your behavior. Find people who have love and wisdom. It is clear that experiences are reflected in ultimate structures in the brain, first through consciousness, then how networks work and
ultimately visible nerve pathways, and therefore dendrites, or indeed foothills of nerve cells.I get tired of pure sec reasoning in scars and consequences that are for life, while it must be more about the way the brain could not fully develop. But the brain has unprecedented - forgotten - potentials, plasticity that if we can open doors will lead to natural healing. The brain in it self is adaptive and searches its way like nature does.I believe in the natural way of adapting of the brain as well and in a certain sense consciousness.
Learn to believe in yourself again. Believe in the small spontaneous power and wisdom of love and that this is a kind of consciousness that will guide you. It is the way of the inner that wants to be redeemed. If you just want to forget for a while, there is nothing wrong about it, but fooling yourself and playing the cheerful clown or strong man, because others prefer to see that part of you is not the way either. Understand well that many social workers, your friends, neighbors and citizens avoid painful subjects. Do not believe those who think that the consequences are in the brain or that you are permanently damaged.
What I have noticed in psychiatry is that treatment is unfortunately often medication. Do not think that you are chronic and therefore silently given up. There are simple powers in you, no matter how small, ignorant and few that lead you inwardly. I tell you psychiatry has no clue of cause for many problems, but the real solution. Don't be fooled and don't think others have the solution. The way is in you and what you had to forget the way to recovery is gentleness and love. Love and gentleness within you, it is your inner self that must come forward. Believe in this gentleness and this inner wisdom. Love and knowledge is what you have lost, really what can happen if you really told what it was like. That's scary, yes that's right, but you'll notice how scary it is, you're not going to get a heart attack, even though it feels that way you die. Working through or healing is bit by bit. Then feel again and then know how it really was and then let go again. Trust yourself, don't be hard on yourself, it has never been your fault, not even how you had to deal with it.
Many therapies only looked at behavior and not at what you experienced. That is why people should have the courage and daring, courage is to take seriously what makes us human and that is to feel surrounded by people who act and think in love. That's in you too. Do not think or decide that your pain and fears that are built around it must be the way live goes and is your destination. The way is discovering what you ignored, pain but also positive things like longing to be loved, cared, recognized. The clue is daring to let go, towards you who you really were and lost. Tears, with a hand on your soul that is gentle and wise.
A wise therapist who treats traumatized people is so wise that he / she is silent when words fall short, because the source lies in silence and feeling and acknowledging each other. It is not cognitive reflection, it is looking at each other and acknowledging each other with love and care that you cry and feel that there is understanding at last. It is experiencng how tired your body is of having to survive. How tired your mind is. That is the source, the well of the water of healing consciousness and wisdom that is figuratively the way.
"After having been hospitalized at regular intervals with many crisis hospitalizations - many of my known psychiatrist thought that trauma therapy would induce psychotic symptoms or make it worse - , I received 8 EMDR treatments in relation to the TTIP (Treating Trauma In Psychosis) random controlled trial and since then and after a psychotherapy I now am, I think cured. So that being psychotic seems strange and very unreal to me. So strange that I can't identify with it anymore. Often I felt regularly anxious at night - as a toddler I often got out of my bed and home, playing and wandering in the silent night. It felt for the first time - a couple of years ago - so new and calm in my head. Not that nervous awareness "what is happening there or what will others do". I have made many suicide attempts. The process of processing is a path that once you enter or start there is now way back.
Sometimes I still struggle to cry, but only now I apply a number of techniques to myself. Like when I notice that I do not feel well, I talk to myself in a caring and sweet way. Sometimes I consciously wonder "what do you remember now, what do you feel?" It has struck me that talking about what happened to many care providers is something that people prefer to avoid, fed by the thoughts that it makes you feel bad. But I know better than anyone what has happened and sometimes it does not matter to not be aware of everything at once. "Little by little I am going to discover myself." My self-confidence was often hard to find. I doubted myself, was often insecure or uncertain, sometimes doubting my thoughts - after all, I am schizophrenic.
The fact that you have or have had psychotic symptoms, partly comes from having to forget, thus suppressing grief, fear and anger associated with the memories, partly due to stress and lack of sleep. It is more of a problem associated with the signification or interpretations of what I had to conceal of thoughts and images in me. But just treating the psychosis or confusion is by it self not
enough. It also requires emotional recovery. The child in you or the fragments that I experience, asks for intuitive knowledge and the inner knowledge that it happened in the past. But also what I denied myself, avoiding emotional contact, love and care. It is again discovering yourself with your desires, feelings and needs, now without fear and shame. With only a few EMDR treatments you are not emotionally cured. Many therapists should use the term "Healing" more.
Sometimes I find CBT therapists too much in their heads or too cognitive. The world of emotions and memories has its own logic and certainly influences your thoughts. I'm already quite sure that many practitioners, the more they know what I have experienced, the more and more unspoken convinced that I should leave it rest. The right and only answer should be "never give up the child in you." Everyone has to find the answer to life. So yes therapy can certainly help, but listen to your intuition and feelings. Do you prefer a woman or man as a therapist? What does that child need in you? Because as sad and angry / anxious children we actually want to be comforted and sit on a lap.
There is still a lot to be gained in the field of insight and therapy. Sometimes I think emotionally that care providers are just as scared as the victims. I feel disappointed and not taken seriously or recognized when I see and read the many literature about the relation between childhood trauma and psychosis. It seems to me that we need more insight and thus research of psycho therapeutic interventions and psychosis. I could not find any elaborate research between psycho therapeutic interventions and positive results. Perhaps we should leave the assumption that the only reason for psychosis is a genetical or biological one. Perhaps this broad research should finally be done and make new assumptions and question this bio-bio standpoint."
"Do I have (C)PTSD or am I crazy"
To determine whether you are suffering from (C)PTSS, the impact it has on you is particularly important. What does a bad experience or experiences do with you? In addition to PTSS, you can also have other complaints. Often this is rather the rule than exception. It's the impact that makes you feeling stressed. (C)PTSS is created because you actually avoid, hence the flash backs. You can avoid by not thinking about it, not feeling it and sometimes avoiding the environment where it happened. It is often accompanied with dissociative problems, such as distortion of reality and as if you are experiencing yourself in a dream, as if situations and people are distorted. Sometimes so bad that you have the idea becoming crazy. The memories do not seem to be yours. Sometimes (C)PTSS can be triggered if something finally snaps inside you. Suddenly after many years problems arise. Sometimes it's confused with a burn-out, after all, you're no longer the same. The past grasps you, you developed fears, nightmares, insomnia, alternating moods, no one seems to understand you, your changing moods and so on. (C)PTSS never stands for itself, sometimes confusing you so much that you start to hear your voices.
Again it's about the impact, you seem to live in the past. You cannot get rid of it. Your mind is always busy with all sorts of things and thoughts and you are vigilant. Because of the related issues, I advise anyone to consult an expert. People with complex PTSD may develop eating disorders, cut themselves , have relational problems, anxieties, phobia’s, may develop a psychosis later on in life, develop an addiction and so on. These problems occur because those people are often chronically abused, maltreated and not loved or cared for during their childhood. Their way of survival is often silence, due to shame, lack of support or even being punished for speaking out or just being betrayed.
What worked for me:
The knowledge that my therapist don't reject my ways of coping, what works for me is ok. The feeling that I'm not alone. Living consciously, see it as mentally focusing on what you are doing. Listen more to music.(Our brains are designed to work, to think and to live carefully, instead of the common misconception that we are made for multi-tasking; moreover, it comes from the
ICT world). In bed letting my thoughts and feelings flow without fixing on a detail or feeling. Being conscious is like a wave, it comes and goes. To paint or draw or whatever as long as you get in contact with yourself. Develop a caring ego which can cherish and comfort you. Practice understanding yourself. Practice dealing with stress. Try to learn to enjoy in having relaxing and pleasant everyday activities. Observe your anger like a balloon filling, which can be deflated. Practice self confidence, what is good is good. Don't try to be brave or strong or act automatically. Look for and maintain contacts that feels save and good. Avoid people that makes you feel uncomfortable or unsafe. Listen more to your "inner voice"
"Let your inner child cry and feel."
All your anger, sadness, fear, shame they are all welcome. Perhaps no one told you so and maybe you need to hear it especially from one who knows. Yes it is allowed. Just let others think or say/ mean that it is better to find distraction or use extra medication. The mental-health care is mostly from what I experienced not emotionally caring in that sense, almost emotionally autistic to you. But these employees call this attitude of lack of empathy or care professional, but at home with their own children they find the same attitude rather strange. Sadness, fear, shame and anger are often intertwined.
Do not talk about it or expressing it to people or mental health care workers who do not understand or want to understand what you actually need. Often your sorrow, fear, shame and anger that you kept to yourself all these years can feel like when expressing it of really feeling it be like falling in black hole. An "empty place" in your memory. Maybe it feels like you're going to get mad. But the crazy thing really about it is
that it doesn’t happen at all. You are not going mad or going to die inside. Play some music that suits your emotions and let it flow. Learn to be nice and caring to that boy or girl within you who has a lot of sadness and anger. I allow you to feel your sadness, anger, shame and fear. Many people think that you may be emotionally disturbed, typically DID, borderline, "crazy", "a cutter", but you are not. If you keep everything to yourself, you can hear voices after years, but then you get the label "crazy" or schizophrenic with all the disadvantages. You actually became mad or sick, because no one let you allow to feel it, so you became sick of sadness and hurt, anger, shame and fear. But do not expect that after a cry, you will be free of it , but suppressing your hurt and anger will not help you, nor does to to fill you with food as a comfort or drinking a lot. We are all scared, sad and angry children deep down inside. Perhaps you think your are the only one, but there are millions like you who all experience their sorrow in isolation and may be hospitalized
To recover from abuse
Mostly abused men can doubt their sexual orientation. Men often get angry at first, what the mental health care often considers negative and then cry and feel shame. If you are abused and grow up, you have not had the opportunity to integrate your sexuality into your personality. Sometimes you allow yourself to relinquish yourself in relationships and sometimes you avoid your partner from fear of pain or just because you are afraid to get into a similar situation. If you are in therapy or if you suffer from PTSD and many flashbacks then it might be good not to have sex at all. Sex should be playful and spontaneous. Do not have sex because you are being forced or require your partner. There may be places on your body that you prefer not to be touched, tell your partner. Abuse changes besides your self-esteem also your image of women and men. Especially men have a double role, you have to communicate with your friends in a tough or funny way, while you have other feelings. Women are different in that respect. Understand that others often find abuse to be a loaded subject.
Not everyone is prepared to talk about it, especially when it comes to feelings. Therefore, talk to men or women with whom you feel comfortable with. Recovery also means that you need to act more on your feelings and needs. Abused men often have difficulty experiencing a romantic relationship. Men have more difficulty to feel and express their shame and sorrow. Also, remember that men and women have more in common than differences when it comes to feelings, but that education through role modeling men learns to cope differently with their feelings. One man is more macho than the other. Likewise, not all women are equal. It may mean that you should stop hurting or using each other. See recovery as a path. It takes time to express the sadness and discover yourself. The boy or girl who you buried deep down for years has to live again. Finally, alcohol is often used to relax (PTSD is a stress disorder), but too much in combination with anger and sometimes flashbacks can sometimes lead to depression and for you awkward situations.
Cure or recovery:
This question can only be answered if we know how we define cure or recovery. If your known with the mental health care one knows that cure is not common and reachable. The mental health care uses medication that can only repress symptoms and are not the cure. Mostly it will alter on a very broad spectrum the functioning of the brain and does not alter that specific part of the brain that needs to be altered. Most medication has also unpleasant side effects. We must stop trying to obtain cure and stop thinking in disease and thus cure, but more in possibilities to obtain a worthwhile and meaningful life. Empowerment is the key word. Certain mental health problems can be treated with a clear and certain effect. But cure is most often not the case. I'm not against medication, I'm against not using psychologists in guiding and treating patients where their influence is clear and positive. In many cases we prescribe only medication as a result of less available therapists or time for the patient. In the Netherlands a great group is under treated and some groups are over treated. In fact what we call chronic are the results of not knowing to deal with these clients. Instead of acknowledging our shortcomings we blame the clients in a certain way. In our country in most cases psychiatrist earns more money if he prescribes drugs or medication instead of prescribing therapy which could be a better alternative. That has a lot to do with the mental health care being under influence of a marked in which health and treatment has a market value. We tend to grow towards a system like that in the US. For instance ADHD - a known problem - whereby guiding
parents and CBT can have abetter effect than medication alone in some cases. But in many cases medication seems the only answer. Concerning PTSD; if we only address the symptoms and not if the client is stigmatized and thus has a victim-role with a risk of being victimized again we miss a important issue to be addressed. In fact a client can also act abusive due to feeling and thinking being powerless and thus thinking that way about the results of his behavior. Child abuse is a common risk factor for domestic violence. Also the opinion of the client concerning his attitude about women, men, safety, sex is also important to address. So cure should be more than reducing symptoms. Recovery is broader than cure. Child abuse alters the prism of communication like light through a prism let us see the many colors, so the prism of communication is in fact trust. That prism is not working good if someone else has abused us. We feel shame and disgust, so shame can become a second person in ourselves. Most victims feel a lost child in themselves detached from the actual. Child abuse let us feel worthless and not loved for ourself. We must have trust in ourselves and others if we communicate especially if we interact in love or in friendship. Victims have problems with power and being powerless. We as humans are social beings in which a decease is not standing alone. So recovery is more likely the case, individual recovery of painful experiences and social recovery. Social in case of study, work, interest or hobby's. Victims must answer important questions like can people be trusted, is the world save, must I forgive the perpetrator(s).