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Complex ptsd

(9 Posts)
cloudyskys Fri 05-Aug-16 23:25:32

After some online research and reading I've come to the conclusion that I have probably got this. Feeling horribly low & depressed to the point where I wish I could put an end to things.
I can't see a way out of my situation or my feelings and I don't know what to do.
I don't have anyone to talk to.
I was taking Prozac last year but stopped, thinking I was ok. But things keep coming to the surface recently and I think I keep having these very low periods.
Wondering if I should go back on the Prozac does anyone else have experience of taking Prozac to help this condition?. Also I tried cbt which helped a bit but I am still suffering.
It's like I can't stop emotionally torturing myself the self hatred is immense.

Mycatsabastard Fri 05-Aug-16 23:35:03

Hi. I have complex PTSD. It's a bastard. It's lifelong. You can't be cured but you can learn to cope with symptoms.

Go back to your GP. I was on Prozac for a while but I am now taking Venlefaxine which works better for me. I have had my doze increased recently as I found I was slipping quite badly and not bouncing back within a couple of days like I normally do.

I also did CBT which helped to a degree but I do think, and this is something I find extremely difficult to do, that you really need to open up about everything before you can learn to heal. I am still struggling with that and keep it bottled up in a compartment in my head but yes, self loathing and hatred is common.

I have certain triggers which I do my utmost to avoid and this can make life difficult but unless I find the inner strength to really talk about things then I guess it will just remain the same albeit medicated.

Do think about counselling (specific to your needs), more CBT and definitely talk to your GP about changing your meds or playing around with the dosage until you start to feel better.

One thing I have learned is that I will be on antidepressants for life. I've accepted that and no longer think 'oh I feel much better, I'll stop taking them' because a few months later it's worse than ever. If I can stay on an even keel then I can cope.

Please do ask for some help as soon as possible.

erinaceus Sat 06-Aug-16 08:16:45

Hi cloudyskys

I am sorry that you are suffering so much. For me, coming to terms with complex trauma is an arduous process. It is a combination of learning about my symptoms and finding ways to deal with them at the same time as a longer term process which I can best describe as a continued rewriting and retelling of my own story until it makes sense to me.

Your GP is a starting point. Did you talk to your GP before you stopped taking the Prozac? It is very common to stop taking antidepressant medication without consulting a doctor and it is also not recommended to do this. Antidepressants may or may not help with your symptoms, but complex PTSD is complex and you may be able to talk to your GP about being referred to secondary care services in your area to access treatment that goes beyond medication. It depends what is available in your area and you may have to be willing to wait, jump through various hoops, and/or to pay for some treatment privately. I can tell you what helped and is helping me, but this is and has been something of a moving target over the years and I am a bit moment-to-moment right now.


wfrances Sat 06-Aug-16 09:52:03

i have ptsd and take mirtazapine ,the only thing it seems to help with is the sleep and appetite.
i was supposed to start on olanzapine but i have other health issues which is dictating what meds i can tolerate.
ive tried nhs emdr and felt the course was to short , just as i felt it was sinking in and beginning to work it ended
cbt didnt work , nor did anxiety management group.
hypnotherapy worked for a while on some aspects but not enough to justify the costly fee.
i have now been referred to the ocd group as its a severe symptom of my ptsd.
are you under a psychiatrist?

cloudyskys Sat 06-Aug-16 09:57:27

Thank you both for your replies and advice and sorry that you are going through this too flowers

Can I ask did you get officially diagnosed by a doctor? I went to mine before about depression for which I was prescribed Prozac and upon my request got referred to cbt. I wasn't too impressed by the doctor tbh because it felt it was more about just handing out pills which is why I am reluctant to go again I guess.
Anyway I thought that cbt had helped, and sometimes I have periods of feeling fine and positive. Then something will happen, e.g.. someone will say something or I see something, and I just spiral and almost shut down from the world. Also a horrible sense of dread and its all my fault. This can last for a while until I crawl out of it again and get back to 'normal' i.e.. not feeling desperate. Also I shut myself off from others. I feel I have to protect myself from getting hurt and I feel ashamed.
Could this be cptsd? Everything I have read on the subject suggests it could be. But I do wonder that what I have been through does not warrant this and I wonder if i am exaggerating. I just feel incredibly messed up and ashamed of myself.

cloudyskys Sat 06-Aug-16 10:03:47

Wfrances, no not seeing anyone at the moment. Or taking anything.
I hope that you find a treatment that helps you sounds like you have tried a lot. I guess that's what it's about, finding out what's right for you.

erinaceus Sat 06-Aug-16 11:35:20

Can I ask did you get officially diagnosed by a doctor?

A patient cannot get a diagnosis of complex PTSD yet. Wikipedia explains the concept of "proposed diagnosis" in the article on C-PTSD

An NHS GP is limited in the conditions that they can diagnose and treat, and the treatments that they can offer. What you describe sounds the treatment of depression and anxiety in primary care, which is something that a GP can do. If you felt better when you were taking Prozac than you do now, you could talk to your GP about taking them again.

I just feel incredibly messed up and ashamed of myself.

My experience is that it is easy for this feeling to be made worse by the way mental health care and psychiatric treatment are organised and delivered. If you would like to, PM me and I can explain what I did in terms of getting appropriate help and maybe make some suggestions for you. My experience was hit-and-miss, and in some sense it still is. I do feel better than I have done, though, and optimistic about the future.

Clonakilty Sat 06-Aug-16 19:35:50

I could have written your post, Mycats.
Cloudy, I have had lots of therapy now but will be on the meds long-term. Already been on them for more than half my life, and I am no spring chicken.
Although C-PTSD cannot yet be diagnosed, it's becoming more accepted. It is close to Borderline Personality Disorder in terms of symptoms. One day people will stop asking what we have and ask instead what happened to us. We are the way we are because of awful experiences which still affect us.
Prozac might work for you - it didn't for me so I too am on Venlafaxine. You need to seek medical advice before going back on the medication, but yes, I think you might need something. If you are feeling so low, the medication can help.

cloudyskys Sat 06-Aug-16 20:15:13

Sorry to hear you have gone through this too Clonakilty. flowers
I agree with you about it should be more about what happened to us instead of just what we have.

Bloody hell. It's really hard to take in. I'm so used to pretending everything is fine and hunky dory that part of me wants to just pretend I never knew about all this and just brush it under the carpet and go back to how I was. Blaming myself for the things that have happened and being in complete ignorance about the reality of the situation.

Even reading about BPD, I'm thinking yep that could be me. But I thought it was just normal everyday insecurities that we all have. Just feeling very muddled right now.

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