Yup, It’s On You
As far as I know, no one with PTSD volunteered to have it, and no one living with PTSD enjoys having to manage the illness.
On the other hand, I’ve experienced the positive impact of health care professionals across the country whose mission in life is to provide support and encouragement to those living with PTSD. I’ve also experienced, in my own life, how learning to manage PTSD makes for a better life experience.
The trauma that sparked the evolution of PTSD in an individual is not the result of the person having a weak mind, inadequate intellect, or being damaged. Instead, it is the result of actions or events that happened to the person where there was little or no control over preventing it from happening.
While no two people will respond to a traumatic event in the same way, a case can be made for the result of learning to manage the impact of trauma in the life of the individual.
Some think they can determine the level of impact of trauma to a person is impacted by trauma and that just makes a bad situation worse. I am reminded of some of the conversations I had early on in my journey, and how frustrated I became when the traditional “pray about it” remarks were made. I remember how insulted I felt when someone with little or no awareness around PTSD thought they had the answer to my duress. And I remember how hopeless I felt after realizing the person I thought cared about me demonstrated their lack of real empathy by trying their hand at making a prognosis about what was happening to me. While many have meant well, sometimes it’s best for people to stay away from commenting on things they have little or no exposure to.
Those who love and care about us want the best for us and sometimes that desire can get in the way of what actually needs to happen for healing to begin. The end result is often misinformed rhetoric can be a breakdown in trust in the relationship at best or the complete collapse of the relationship at worst.
What people have to understand is each person learning to manage PTSD must discover what works for them and the only way to do that is for them to do the work required to uncover their individual path to managing PTSD.
We each must own our illness completely, meaning while we do not like it we still embrace the role we must play in learning to mange it. At first it might seem unfair but as time goes on it comes apparent that the best thing anyone with PTSD can do is to take it by the horns to develop the tools necessary to rise above the trauma.
It might seem scary or even unattainable at first but with time and practice the tools you develop will become more easily accessible to you, and the pain that once invaded your very being won’t have such a deep and lasting impact in your life. Over time, and with repetition, things can continue to improve.