Psychological Outcomes From Abuse

To start off, I’m going to say it’s 1:30am and here I am awake, as usual.  I have had another bad night with my husband.  We were fighting though he didn’t call me names this time or tell me I’m a useless burden, he still said hurtful words.  It was calm for a bit, no words were spoken.  I broke the silence by asking if he could put the cushions back on the car seats because I was struggling with them.  They have been sitting in the kitchen for weeks now.  He said he was going to give them to a buddy at work.  His reply was that he would get around to it one of these days.  That made me angry, so I was going to put them away.  Somewhere other than in the kitchen at least.  He ended up getting up off the couch (he was laying there while I was cleaning), storming across the floor, taking both car seats and all the cushions and threw it all out the living room window.   Great, now I get to clean them up from my yard too! 😦

Okay, what I wanted to get into though, was emotional/psychological/verbal abuse causing things like Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Acute Stress Disorder (or Reaction).
I’ve been reading that it’s not that common, but it does happen.  I was reading what someone who was experiencing PTSD was going through and it started to hit home a bit.  I went to MayoClinic and took a look at the symptom list, which is as follows:

Post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms are generally grouped into three types: intrusive memories, avoidance and numbing, and increased anxiety or emotional arousal (hyperarousal).

Symptoms of intrusive memories may include:

  • Flashbacks, or reliving the traumatic event for minutes or even days at a time
  • Upsetting dreams about the traumatic event

Symptoms of avoidance and emotional numbing may include:

  • Trying to avoid thinking or talking about the traumatic event
  • Feeling emotionally numb
  • Avoiding activities you once enjoyed
  • Hopelessness about the future
  • Memory problems
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Difficulty maintaining close relationships

Symptoms of anxiety and increased emotional arousal may include:

  • Irritability or anger
  • Overwhelming guilt or shame
  • Self-destructive behavior, such as drinking too much
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Being easily startled or frightened
  • Hearing or seeing things that aren’t there

I have made the symptoms I currently experience are italic.  This is bad.  The flashbacks I get do not last days, but they last long enough to upset me.  It’s not seeing the events in my head, it’s hearing the words spoken to me/screamed at me.  This is one reason I can’t sleep.  I also have nightmares of my children dying…all the time.  I wake up in tears more nights than I don’t.  I think it has something to do with wanting to keep them safe though.  I’ve started sleeping with an Amethyst to ward off the bad dreams, it has been helping, thank Goddess!  The activity thing, well that’s been since the beginning, since he told me I wasn’t allowed friends.  My life was drained I guess.  My memory is shot.  I can barely remember what someone says minutes after they say it.  I mess up making coffee a lot of mornings; no filter, no coffee, no water, etc.  I actually forgot to put the pot back under a few times.  Irritability and anger.  Check!  I’m even irritable with my kids which makes me really upset, and then I feel guilty.  I do my best just to go take a 2 minute breather though.  It helps.  My nerves are also shot.  I am extremely jumpy.  For example, I got scared of a frog yesterday; the tiny little noise beside me.  When hubby comes home from work, when he opens the door, I jump damn near 10 feet.  Even if I know he’s on his way, I still jump.  My heart beats super hard and fast.  It’s terrible.  The hearing things and seeing things has increased.  Please do not think I’m crazy here.  This has been happening since I was a little girl.  Seeing visions and hearing people, having prophetic dreams, etc.  It’s a gift.  (Speaking of which, after dinner the other night, I was thinking to myself that my teeth felt gross and I should brush them.  My son who was still eating at the table turns to me and asks me why I want to brush my teeth!  It runs in the family!)  However, what I’m seeing and hearing is different.  This has been happening since I was young.  I believe since my great grandfather molested me.  More so after a family friend molested me and after my dad tried to kill me. (This is when I ended up in seclusion on the psych ward of the hospital.)  I was tested for Schizophrenia among a number of other things.

I’d also like to add the “When To See A Doctor” bit as well:

It’s normal to have a wide range of feelings and emotions after a traumatic event. You might experience fear and anxiety, a lack of focus, sadness, changes in how well you sleep or how much you eat, or crying spells that catch you off guard. You may have nightmares or be unable to stop thinking about the event. This doesn’t mean you have post-traumatic stress disorder.

But if you have these disturbing thoughts and feelings for more than a month, if they’re severe, or if you feel you’re having trouble getting your life back under control, talk to your health care professional. Getting treatment as soon as possible can help prevent PTSD symptoms from getting worse.

In some cases, post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms may be so severe that you need emergency help, especially if you’re thinking about harming yourself or someone else. If this happens, call 911 or other emergency medical service, or ask a supportive family member or friend for help.


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One thought on “Psychological Outcomes From Abuse

  1. Sorry to hear about your struggles. I, too, have PTSD brought on by childhood sexual abuse. I just completed a new book, “Mnemosyne: A Love Affair with Memory,” which deals with PTSD. Check out my blog to see if it might be helpful. http://www.authorllfranklin.com Your photo took my breath away. Are you receiving talk therapy? Please take care of yourself.

    Larry

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