abuse, childhood abuse, childhood sexual abuse, Complex post traumatic stress disorder, complex PTSD, domestic abuse, fear of abandonment, marriage, mother issues, post traumatic stress disorder, PTSD, relationships, trust issues
I am probably triggered every single day by something. Relationships trigger me, period. The beginning doesn’t trigger me, it’s the middle. I am married now to an awesome man, I love him very much and I know he loves very much me too. He does a lot for me and our kids and our family. He works tirelessly day in and day out, so I can stay home. He cooks, cleans, dotes on me, but my inner self feels alone today. I have major trust issues, likely due to watching my mom’s relationships and my own past relationships.
My first marriage ended very abruptly due to my ex husband’s infidelity. I had to find out in an awful way and my mind goes back there often. I feel bad sometimes that my husband even has to put up with me.
My complex PTSD was built because I have layered traumas, not just one or two, but multiple. Why? I don’t know.
Layer one: I watched my parents get angry, yell, scream and throw things at each other. I had to console my mom from a very young age, she used me as a counselor. My mom would pull my hair and call me names when I was little.
Layer two: My mom abandoned me and my sisters and my dad at age 8 for another man leaving us with our dad to fend for ourselves.
Layer three: At age 9 my mom wanted us back and we moved in with her and my stepdad who sexually, physically, mentally, and emotionally abused us. My mom did nothing.
Layer four: Hot air balloon accident that almost killed me and my middle sister at age 13. I still have flashbacks but don’t like to talk about it.
Layer five: At the age of 15 my step dad almost killed me by strangulation in an alcohol induced rage. I had to move back in with my dad and new stepmom and leave my sisters and mom behind.
Layer six: Also at age 15 after moving back in with my dad my mom would not speak to me and said I caused the problems between her and my stepdad. They would send me family pictures of them all together, we had never taken family pictures when I was there.
Layer seven: At age 16 I told my dad about the abuse, my dad got custody. My mom’s dad (my granddad) forced her to leave my stepdad, a day later my granddad died from a heart attack.
Layer eight: I had a baby at age 18, I loved her and still do! I fell in love young with her dad. He was a drug abuser, but he loved me. He lied to me all the time about where he was and hid the drug use from me. His mom (my daughter’s grandmother) died tragically when I was 19. I remember my daughter’s dad crying and I wasn’t there to console him, I felt emotionally numb I was so distraught. We all loved her. I still feel bad about not being able to comfort him.
Layer nine: Car accident at age 25 on a highway going 70, head on. I almost lost my daughter, and when I looked at her slumped over in the seat I thought I had for a split second. I have major fears of her now being at the age to drive. I still have flashbacks of that accident and can’t talk about it without getting really upset.
Layer ten: At age 26 I married and divorced my son’s dad. We were on and off for five years. He physically and mentally abused me. One time the physical abuse put me in the hospital. He was never faithful to me but always came back begging me to take him back. After he cheated on me once we were married I had finally had enough, filed for divorce and never looked back.
Layer eleven: I jumped right into another abusive relationship upon divorcing my ex husband. I ended up in the hospital for a week while I was with him after experiencing a swallowing problem that got so bad I lost 15 pounds and got down to 92 pounds. I later learned that trouble swallowing is a result of childhood sexual abuse and in this relationship with him somehow I was triggered back to all of that. I lived and dealt with his drug use and abuse for three years and my dad finally coaxed me into leaving, thank goodness.
Layer twelve: In my 30’s my mom and sisters have abandoned me because I started speaking up about our past and because I’ve realized how much my mom needs to take responsibility for the abuse and neglect of my sisters and I. My mom and two younger sisters all started shunning me about the same time. None of them came to my wedding.
So these are the layers of trauma that have defined my life. I may have left some stuff out, but those are the major ones. I know I’m a strong woman, I mean look at what I’ve gone through, and for the most part I am balanced and happy, but I have days when I am definitely not, and I don’t know how to handle myself on those days. Emotionally I feel like I am weak, although mentally and physically I feel strong. I know I’m a good mom, good wife and a good friend, but when I’m scared of things all the time it makes it hard. My husband is aware of my triggers, and is sensitive to them. Anyone else deal with issues like this?