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Old 10-18-2018, 07:57 PM   #1
confused412
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Hello everyone,

I am a wife of a man diagnosed with complex PTSD due to years of physical, emotional, and mental abuse as a child. He is in therapy but feels like he is at a standstill in his therapy and is considering quitting. He feels his therapy is opening up a can of worms he had long sealed off and is now experiencing mood swings, rages, and amnesia. As his wife, I want to support him, but I have no idea how. We are in marriage counseling and our therapist says talking through communication problems is helping him (she is also a PTSD therapist, certified in CPT and EMDR). He does not see it as helpful, and to be honest with you, our relationship has become a lot more volatile since he has been in therapy. Not to the point of physical incidents but I definitely feel like his emotional whipping girl. I am starting to feel like I can't handle this anymore. I feel like the climb is never ending and I will never get over the mountain with him. Today we were discussing his therapy and our progress in marriage counseling and he shut down... his final words being, "maybe its time for death!" I have no idea what he meant by this and when I asked him he replied, I'm done talking and began watching TV, offering no explanation for his comment. Is it time for his death, is it time for my death, is it time for his father's (his abuser's) death? IDK. I am looking for some emotional support in our journey and am looking for possible support groups for spouses of PTSD sufferers. Facebook groups, or local groups in my Pittsburgh area. I have googled it but can only find support for sufferers of PTSD or for military spouses which doesn't really fit my situation. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you
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Old 10-19-2018, 07:21 PM   #2
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Hello confused: I noticed this is your first post here on PC. So... welcome to PsychCentral.

Two other forums, here on PC, that may be of interest to you would be the relationships forum & the psychotherapy forum. Here are links to these forums:

https://forums.psychcentral.com/rela...communication/

https://forums.psychcentral.com/psychotherapy/

I'm afraid there's not a lot I can offer with regard to what you are experiencing with your husband. However here are links to a selection of 10 articles, from PsychCentral's archives, that I thought might be of some help or at least interest:

The Unique Features of Complex PTSD

C-PTSD and Interpersonal Relationships

Stonewalling in Couples: When You or Your Partner Shuts Down

https://blogs.psychcentral.com/savvy...ssistic-abuse/

https://psychcentral.com/lib/affect-...on-and-c-ptsd/

https://blogs.psychcentral.com/welln...dium=popular17

https://blogs.psychcentral.com/welln...nship-burnout/

https://blogs.psychcentral.com/welln...dium=popular17

https://psychcentral.com/resources/

https://psychcentral.com/blog/talkin...about-suicide/

I hope you find PC to be of benefit.

P.S. One additional on-line resource I have seen suggested here on PC is the website 7 Cups of Tea. If you're not familiar with it, you might check that out. Here's a link:

https://www.7cups.com/
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Old 10-20-2018, 10:04 AM   #3
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Default Re: Support for family members of PTSD sufferers

I have PTSD from childhood abuse.
I'm not in therapy for it. Might though. I just take medicine.
I think it depends on a person's personality. He gets angry. I cry.
It's probably painful having the old memories being brought up.

Does he do individual therapy where it's just him and a therapist?
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Old 10-23-2018, 01:02 PM   #4
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I can only imagine how tough this must be. I'm so sorry for that and I'm praying for you . I think it's great that you are also taking some steps to reach out so you feel supported. I know that you aren't the only couple experiencing this so I hope you can find that support. I think psych central is great for that.

I'm sorry but I don't have much advice to offer. I suffer from Cptsd from childhood trauma, and I've only just begun to understand it's effects on my life. All I can do is share what resources I've used that have really helped me. If you decide to use them I hope they can be of some help.

This site has really helpful information for understanding Cptsd/ptsd:
Healing Complex Trauma & PTSD

I also appreciate Pete Walker's site and his book Surviving to Thriving really provides a lot of education and guidance about the recovery journey from Cptsd.
Pete Walker, M.A. Psychotherapy
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Old 10-27-2018, 11:04 AM   #5
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Confused, NAMI is the National Alliance for Mental Illness and provides support groups for families who have loved ones who suffer mental illness. They also provide support groups for those of us who have mental illness. You do not have to be a member to participate. All state affiliates are volunteer supported and like this forum site, they can provide valued support options from people who have experienced what you and your husband are living now. Especially, compassion and understanding.

Search online for a chapter near you and check it out. My family wasn't interested in participating because they "know" there's nothing wrong with me. I can tell you being loved does make a difference for anyone who suffers from Mental Illness. PTSD is hard to understand due to numerous involuntary emotional and physiological responses to triggers and various symptoms. The fact that you are seeking support for yourself indicates you have a lot of love for him. Keep searching and don't give up!
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