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  • It's like living with like a leash on, a little bit.

  • You can do some stuff,

  • but every now and then you remember that "it's" there.

  • I was living in Japan during the earthquake in 2011.

  • A few weeks and months of political unrest while I was living overseas.

  • We lived with bags by the door, ready to go, in case we needed to get out.

  • I found out in 2008 I had PTSD, Complex PTSD,

  • but I think the diagnosis should have probably been made when I was 14 years old.

  • I was raped and as a result I live with PTSD.

  • The civil war in Lebanon broke out in 1975.

  • I was only 17 years old.

  • I lived through that for about 12 years.

  • As it kind of sunk in, I started to feel really guilty,

  • because I had always associated PTSD with people who had been to war,

  • and I just didn't think I deserved it.

  • The PTSD triggers, they ambush you.

  • You don't know when it's going to come.

  • It's with the unknown everyday you wake up

  • and you don't know if you are going to have a trigger today.

  • I was at a movie

  • and there's a part where this woman got trapped in a car.

  • I had a serious panic attack.

  • There's a song that was talking about like, shooting and armed robbery.

  • And just hearing that song, like, that was all it took.

  • Something happened when I was 13

  • and when my trigger happens, in that moment,

  • I am 13.

  • Usuallly the sounds of jet planes overhead would trigger off the memory for me of those days.

  • It would make me feel weak in the legs,

  • and my memory will go back to that time,

  • trying to look after my children when they were little and protect them.

  • All I have to do is hear a jet plane,

  • and that's where my mind would go.

  • At times it has literally felt like I'm dying.

  • You feel like you're never going to get past this.

  • One of the things that's helped me a lot was group therapy.

  • This happens to more people than you think.

  • I start to have a conversation with this thing that you have.

  • I did counseling for two years in college.

  • It felt like that got my life into a pretty manageable place.

  • I am trying to build up the courage to attend a support group.

  • I would have these days where you're just like,

  • you know, there's nothing I can do to do anything that you're supposed to do.

  • In group therapy, someone called it a lost day.

  • It's such a simple thing,

  • but putting the words "lost day" to those days helped me, like, overcome.

  • And I think accepting that is really important,

  • and to just be, like, it's OK to, like, freak out.

  • And just be, like, this is scary, because it's scary.

  • And don't ever tell them to get over it,

  • because it's extremely painful.

  • It takes practice, and it takes patience,

  • and it takes faith.

  • You have to know that the fact that you've been through something so traumatic,

  • and you're here.

  • You are much stronger than you think you are.

  • Don't feel guilty when you have a good day.

  • Give yourself time to heal.

  • You can't judge yourself for it.

  • It'll never be the same, but it can get better.

  • And it's worth whatever it's going to take.

  • You can have a better life.

  • There's light at the end of the tunnel.

  • You've just got to find the right thing that works for you.

  • And getting help is not a sign of weakness.

  • It takes a lot of strength and a lot of courage.

  • And you deserve the happiness that comes with getting better.

  • My name is Kate.

  • My name is Tammy.

  • My name is Kirk.

  • [All] And I live with PTSD.

It's like living with like a leash on, a little bit.

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What PTSD Is Really Like

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    Mike NiKao-Kusata posted on 2017/06/15
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