It’s not easy going in there and telling people about your issues that you haven’t told to anybody. But you got to keep doing it because there’s going to be that one little spark, that one little light bulb that lights up, that says, “That’s a technique that I can use.” It’s very important to unlock what caused the PTSD so that you can forgive yourself, for one thing, and understand why you’re coping so poorly. Knowledge is power, so it empowers you. With Prolonged Exposure and re-living the instance over, and over, and over, and over, yes, I’ll say it again, over and over again, the memory doesn’t fade, the intensity behind it does. And I learned with the Prolonged Exposure by re-living some of the most scariest moments of my life when I was in Iraq, you learn that it’s there, but the intensity of the memory goes away. One of the exercises to get over that fear of the overpasses was to actually go underneath a bridge, drive underneath the overpass and face my fears, really. When you can walk through it with a trained professional — and that doesn’t mean your buddy or your buddies that went through it with you, that means a trained professional — if you can walk through it with them, they have a way of making you look at it from all the angles, not just the one perception that you have. You look at it from all the angles, and that’s what it took for me, was to look at it from many different angles. Not saying that it was right or wrong, it was just looking at different angles to give me a different mindset, and hopefully — for me, it allowed me to see things a little bit differently and a little clearer and make a little more sense of what happened that day. My thing with can’t trusting anybody, well they took me out of that and said, “Now, anybody? That’s quite a overall general statement. I mean, you trust your wife now, don’t you?” “Yes.” “You trust the people in this room now, don’t you?” “Yes.” “So it isn’t that you can’t trust anybody.” And they gave me the tools to start looking at things like that. By writing about the different scenarios that happened in my life that traumatized me, it was like releasing within myself these things that happened and coming to understand what really happened in my life and that I didn’t, it was not my fault. I really struggled with medication for a long time. That, to me, having to be on medication meant I was really broken, I was really screwed up. So I would get on it and things would get better, and I would get off of it. And then things wouldn’t be better, and I’d get back on it, and things would be better, so I’d get off of it. And I was driving my psychiatrist crazy because she was just like, “Stay on the pills!” So eventually I pushed through all of that and have since been able to lower my dosage of medication because I don’t need as much. It teaches you about yourself, and sometimes people can see things that you can’t see in the mirror, you know, that you need outside resources to help you. When I was finally able to access it, it was like I was finally able to start living again. So, my first session, I mean, I still remember it to this day. It was like the new beginning for me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *