First, the memes that caught my attention recently:
“I disagree with you. It doesn’t mean I dislike you or that I’m mad at you. It just means that like you, I have my own opinions. I won’t treat you disrespectfully just because we share differing opinions. Give me the same respect.”
“Don’t you wish men could experience the full body tension you feel when there’s a male nearby and you’re scared something bad is going to happen?”
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is a very real thing that affects roughly 5% of the adults in the U.S. at any given time. Statistics say that as many as 70% of US adults have had some sort of event that can or will result in PTSD.
I live with PTSD. It feels a lot like a ‘blame-game’ trying to figure out where it all came from but let’s face it… as children many of us didn’t have the tools to really know what was happening to us – whether it was good or bad, off the wall, abusive, or even ‘normal’ by anyone’s standards. So, I think my childhood trauma responsibility rests solely with my parents. Yes, as an adult, I can attempt to understand how they fucked up and I continue to try, but I can’t fully understand the depths of their – or my – fuckedupedness.
By the way…did I mention that I swear? You know your options if you don’t like it.
Anyway, the PTSD events didn’t stop at childhood. My first rape was at the age of 14 ½ and he took my virginity.
There was also a string of ‘not-so-nice’ men in my life both before and after I was married. Well… mostly after I was married.
Further along in life I ended up getting fired from not one but TWO jobs in a row for no better reason than “It’s just not working out.” Ummm… What? And that happened AFTER I sobered up! Come to think of it, I didn’t get fired from jobs Before I quit drinking! Ugh. The job I ended up at – again referring to Hennepin County – after those two firings was a union job and I Thought I would be safe from being fired. That’s all well and good…. In Theory… but it doesn’t account for the Assholes who think they can mentally and emotionally Abuse and harass you to get you to leave because they don’t like you.
Side note here: I was and will always be a Top-Notch worker. If someone is willing to pay me to do a job that I am capable of doing, I Always give it Everything I Have. An example of that would be the job at Hennepin County where, during the first six months, I out-performed my predecessor so well that not only did I get an Unheard-of double bump in pay, but also an award for my accomplishments!
Six and a half years later I had to go on medical leave because of all the abuse they heaped on me. Again, I’ll go into that in a later post.
On a day I thought was just another day in the life of my job there, I was leaving to go to my much-needed meeting with my therapist when my boss approached me. She was visibly angry and demanded to know where I was going (it was the middle of the day). I Reminded her that I had an appointment I had requested leave for at least a week prior to that. She waved that off and told me that I should be prepared for a meeting the next day. I was thinking it was just a staff meeting until she said, “oh, and You probably want your union rep with you.”
The trip between where I worked and the office of my therapist was approximately 10 miles. It involved me finding my car in the maze of the parking garage downtown, navigating out of downtown, finding my therapists office, and getting all the way into the waiting room. If I had not done it before, I might have ended up anywhere else. I mentally shut down after that last comment from my supervisor and don’t remember another thing until I ‘came to’ crying in the waiting room at my therapist’s office.
That was my last day of work and the last full-time job I was ever able to do.
One of the difficulties in getting over PTSD for me is the BPD diagnosis in addition to trying to differentiate between negative depressed thoughts and thoughts that are positive and productive. I’m not used to thinking positive thoughts. I wasn’t raised that way and hadn’t, until the last couple of years, figured out that the problem actually is in my thought processes. That doesn’t mean ‘it’s all in my head’ though that’s certainly part of it.
Yet another challenge is getting it through my thick skull that the shit that happened to me in the past is actually Only In The Past. Someone reminded me of that yesterday. My parents are dead so there’s no more abuse coming from them. My rapists are no longer in my life so that’s not happening either. Also, I have NO intention of going back to working for the government in Any capacity.
By the way, I did love my parents even though they really were clueless about how to parent.
Well that’s enough for today. I may revisit this topic.