Updated: Jun 17
For years I had tried to search for a meaning to my symptoms and conditions of mental ill health, without realising the limiting self beliefs I had constructed around me and the unhelpful thinking styles that I had adopted. I am one of the many that are treated for their depressive disorders with medication. These have become mainstream in our culture today and yet with dubious consequences. If the said depressants are as effective as we are led to believe then surely mental health would have become a minor issue, not the increase in prevalence we see today.
I no longer wanted to feel the way I did and act the way I was. At 44; intellectual, successful and with many positive qualities, this was an extremely frustrating place to be.
Through all the searching, the reading, the medical interventions; it was finally one call and a few letters that gave me the biggest lifeline yet... C-PTSD (Complex Post Traumatic Syndrome). These were never words that I would use to describe my experience, for fear of undervaluing the huge emotional and psychological impact of those returning from war as veterans, who had experienced so much.
I humbly reflected back on my life experiences, which I pretty much felt reflected a normal life. But, i like many, had seriously undervalued the impact that these 'bumps in the road' had had in my life and the learned behaviour I had developed in order to cope with life.
For four years I had lived in an emotional & physical abusive relationship (with significant events within this that had severe impact on me), I had never fully allowed myself to deal with this and subsequently experienced post natal depression at the birth of my first son. Having children alone and both by emergency c section delivery is a significant trauma in itself. Like many others I divorced the father of my children, another significant trauma I had failed to give significant attention to. I had continued to live disassociating myself from these experiences with the learned behaviour that had served in the past to help me cope with the threats.
This had lead to a tortuous life of;
-Cognitive Distortions - inaccurate beliefs about myself
-Emotional Distress - overwhelm, anxiety, depression and despair
-Disorientation - Inaccurate beliefs, emotions and body sensations
-Avoidance - Denial, repression, Irritability, Social Anxiety and Anger
-Interpersonal problems - Blaming, pushing away, criticising, lack of trust
My self worth had become damaged and my thoughts invasive and intrusive, affecting my sense of person and meaning day to day. All the good feelings that I was capable of were perpetually challenged by the life's traumas.
I realised as I embarked on my journey to redefine my present and future self, that I was in no way alone in my experiences. N.E.W - Nurturing Emotional Wealth is my platform to be able to support others with my experiences in a Relatable, Empowering, Supportive, Knowledgeable and Inspirational Community.
Restoring our community is central to restoring our mental well-being, our capacity to heal one another. Language gives us the power to change ourselves and others, by communicating our experiences and define what we know with common meaning. Community allows us to regulate all physiology including involuntary functions of our brains and our bodies. For after we have experienced trauma in some way or another we experience the world with a different nervous system; the energy of our survivor is focused on suppressing the inner chaos that we now live with, to the bitter extent of our involvement in life.
Trauma can present itself in many ways; from an accident, physical, emotional or sexual abuse, victim of crime, death, war, serious illness, disaster, violence, attack are just some of the huge significant impacts, yet it is important to recognise and remember that there are other contributory experiences to trauma; such as, divorce, child birth, academic or work pressure and even moving house.
I would love you to join me at https://www.facebook.com/NEW-Nurturing-Emotional-Wealth-109070947508125 and become part of the supportive and nurturing community that I aim to put together with my Masters in Mental Health Psychology knowledge and own relatable life experiences to inspire, support and empower others to move forward in life to an emotionally great place.
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