Hello, Dear Readers! I pray this post finds you well today.
This is going to be a hard post to write for me. It’s just not very positive. Just warning you ahead of time.
First, please pray for my friend & her family. My friend’s sister passed away last night. She & her sister had a very difficult relationship, so I’m sure the grieving process will be a challenging one for her. Although she is not a Christian, she’s a practicing Pagan, she does appreciate prayers, so I know she will be grateful for any & all prayers said for her in this trying time. Also please pray for those affected by this lady’s death. Thank you!!
Secondly, I need to write this out, I think because God wants me to be less ashamed of having C-PTSD & be more open about it to help others, as I have mentioned before. Also as I have mentioned before, I am a very private person, so this is very hard for me to do. I sure hope this helps you!
Yesterday my husband & I went out shopping & out to breakfast. This should have been a lovely time, but instead, it wasn’t. I constantly fight agoraphobia (fear of public places), & it was bad yesterday. Usually when I am with someone, it isn’t as bad, but yesterday it was bad even with my husband. I ended up in tears at breakfast out of the sheer frustration of it all, & am still exhausted today. That is so rare, showing my emotions like that in a public place- I am usually good at hiding them. Things like that are why I get so angry when people tell abuse survivors to “get over it” or “shake it off.” If only it was so easy!!!! I would love just to shake it off- I hate living with C-PTSD!
Agoraphobia started for me in 1996 when my Grandmom died. I couldn’t figure out for a long time why it started, & I finally asked God what was going on with this. He told me I’ve always felt I needed to be invisible, & that started early in childhood. Then right after Grandmom died, my husband & I were at his parents’ home. He told his mother about my loss, & she changed the subject. She’s never liked me, so me losing someone I loved meant nothing to her. Her lack of caring somehow cemented in my mind that I need to be invisible, & part of that is feeling like I shouldn’t even be in public- I should be out of sight. Once God showed me this, I was able to get a handle on the agoraphobia for several years. Not perfect, but pretty good.
Last year is when I started showing so many signs of C-PTSD. And shortly after, the agoraphobia returned with a vengeance. I haven’t been able to get it under control at all. I had a panic attack in Macy’s yesterday because my husband was out of my sight for a moment.
Today I did some research online, looking for answers. I was wondering if it’s a part of C-PTSD (I learned it often is, probably because the anxiety regulating part of the brain is damaged) & how to cope. Practicing mindfulness & taking anti-anxiety meds before leaving home was all I found for coping tips. I hadn’t thought to take a valerian pill before leaving (I chose the herbal route rather than drugs), but I haven’t found mindfulness to be overly helpful. I also try to minimize outings, only go out alone on the rare occasions I can handle it otherwise I go out with another person, & get what I need all in one store rather than several whenever possible.
Does anyone have any other suggestions??