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That dreaded comment that cuts the deepest for me… As a Caregiver.

That dreaded comment that cuts the deepest for me… 
As a Caregiver.

So… I’ve been up for awhile now, hours throughout the night actually, coffee already done for the day. I’ve been sitting here just thinking this morning. You know, even after so many years of needing to be a caregiver, the awareness that I provide to others, the personal things regarding our lives that Craig and I share in hopes of helping others, there are still those that I can do nothing but shake my head at. I won’t judge them, but I do hope to educate them.

As much as I would not wish this life on anyone… ever, at times the thought does cross my mind “If only you could spend a few days in either of our shoes.” (NO disrespect towards Craig or anyone else with disabilities intended by any means, with any of the following. I am writing this in hopes of giving others a little insight.) Sometimes I think that would be the only way for some people to understand what life is really like for us. Just come spend some time here and see for yourself, firsthand what our days and lives consist of. Sure the first few days one with PTSD and/or other disabilities may be able to wear a mask, put on a good front, but that mask does come off eventually and real life can be seen.

You know, my husband did not ask for his disabilities and sure not the combination of disabilities he has. I never dreamed that I would ever be in a caregiver role taking care of him, especially not at our ages. We were both working professionals. But it’s the hand in life we were dealt and we do the best we both, and each of us can to make it through each day. Craig will tell you in a heartbeat that I am the only reason he is still alive, and that’s by no means a pat on the back, no one should ever have to say that, but it is what this life brings.

It never fails, every year when the weather starts warming up and I mention I got outside (which I won’t stop mentioning), someone mentions that heart gouging comment “It must be nice to be able to do whatever you want to, whenever you want to, while the rest of us are working”.

I don’t get mad at that comment anymore, it’s simply just a person who does not understand our lives. But, that does not prevent it from cutting deep when it’s said.

The old saying “the grass is always greener on the other side”, well there you have it, we would love to be the ones ABLE to go to work every day. We would love to be the ones able to take a date night without PTSD‬ and all of the symptoms on constant alert or not making it even possible. We would love to be the ones able to have family gatherings and be able to remain at them the entire time, or throw parties, gatherings of friends, attend events or school functions anytime we wanted to, etc etc etc.

We try hard every single day, just to be able to make it to the next does take a lot, but those things other people in reality take for granted, have not been a part of our lives for a very, very long time… years. It it’s not because we have not tried, and we do continue to work towards those things being a part of life again.

The comment made directly at me really shows a lack of understanding. I am a full time caregiver. That is a 24/7 “job”, without the title to call it “employment”. It does not come with retirement benefits, it does not come with being able to set my own schedule or do my own thing whenever I want to. It does not even come with a regular time to sleep. But it does come with a demanding and rigorous routine of taking care of someone else so they can still exist and function in this world, to try to live at whatever level is possible.

Those that can work, your job relies on you to show up and do your job when you are scheduled to. When your work schedule for the day is done, you are free to do whatever you want to or what you as a family or friends do together, you can go where you want when you want to once your work day is done. As a caregiver, my “job” is another human being relying on me 24/7, and there is not a time clock to punch out on. My “job” does not stop just because the clock hits a certain hour or reached a 40 hour work week. My “job” as a caregiver is here, at home, around the clock. Another person’s life depends on it, on me.

Sure, I could continue working and not be the one taking care of my husband, it is a choice a family has to make per family based on what will be best, and there is a lot involved with making a decision of what is best. But when you weigh the pro’s and con’s what do you come up with? For me, to work away from home I would have to hire someone to come in and take care of him then when I got off work I would still be taking care of him until a hired caregiver came back for me to leave for work again. That would still leave me working around the clock, as well as additional expenses which cannot go dismissed. Or, my husband would have to be placed into a full time assisted living facility, what do you think that would cause him on top of what he already goes through with his disabilities?… He’s only 44 years old now and has a combination of disabilities. I have been taking care of him for 10 years, officially through a newer caregiver program for just over 3 years. At this point in time, a facility is not an option that would be in his best interest, and his doctors back that decision. He is best here at home in a familiar environment, and with his family taking care of him. And I have no issues with that, and am thankful I can be here for him.

But there’s another part to being a caregiver. In order to maintain that “job” of taking care of another person, you HAVE to take care of yourself also. If you don’t, you will become worn out, overwhelmed, start having health issues of your own, and you will eventually fail at being able to help that person who needs you and relies on you.

When I state “I got to soak up some sunshine today”, it is really heartbreaking at the number of people who view that in a negative way. That is approximately one hour, one hour, of my day that I get to myself in order to take care of myself in a way that is good for me, which in return is good for my husband because it helps me maintain my personal balance and health. It’s also an hour that I have to make sure that someone else is here for my husband, that knows how to take care of him while I’m outside for that one hour. That one simple hour comes with a lot more to get it than just walking out my back door and opening my lounge chair to enjoy the sunshine.

Several years back now, that hour was only 10 minutes per day, if I was lucky. I now get one hour per day, most days but not all, and one day per week or every other week “off” when someone else is here. (As a caregiver I am REQUIRED to take a minimum of 30 days per year of respite care/time, which I do.) That is a huge accomplishment to build up to when being a caregiver. And not all caregivers are at that level of “me time”, self-care time yet.

Now, imagine working a job that was 24/7, and the only break you got was 10 minutes per day. I guarantee you, you would not survive for very long, at least not without consequences. I can make that guarantee because I myself was there once and know exactly what it causes, even with my strong will, determined, hardheaded self I am lol, 10 minutes per day is not enough break time for anyone to survive a 24/7 “job”, and remain healthy.

I will take that a little further, why do you think many of these unseen disabilities are even so? I can tell you, because one pushed themselves so hard for so long through whatever they were faced with (including traumas for many), and kept on going, many were in positions where there was not a choice, they did what they had to do, and now many of them have unseen disabilities due to it all.

Those people making the “it must be nice” comments, should be happy for me when I take time to take care of myself, or for any other caregiver or person with disabilities that succeeds in doing things that many take for granted in everyday life. Those what seem to be simple things, are in reality large accomplishments, and also ways and things to take care of themselves.

I do not understand anyone, to be blunt about it, who is jealous of a person who is a caregiver and the life they live, or jealous of one who suffers with disabilities, all because one can’t work. Those who are jealous are simply uneducated to what this life really contains for caregivers, as well as those with disabilities.

Before making comments such as “It must be nice to… while the rest of us have to work”, consideration of what that person’s life actually consists of with or beside one with disabilities really needs to take place. I guarantee you they would rather be in your shoes but are making the best of this life they know how to.

Judging another person’s life, when you in reality don’t know what their life is like unless you are seeing it firsthand beside them 24/7, is just uncalled for, and can be damaging. Don’t do it, have a heart… you would want them to if it were you in their shoes.

I am proud and honored to have the ability to be my husband’s caregiver, to be able to provide him with the care he needs, and to live this life beside him. I do miss working, so does he, but I have NO regrets of the “job” I do now. Life just changed, for both of us.

A Spouse’s Story PTSD : Facebook page

What do I do or don’t do, when he/she has PTSD?

How do I act around one with PTSD?

What do I do or don’t do, when he/she has PTSD?

So you know someone with PTSD, or maybe you don’t and you are just curious about learning.

What can I do? How do I act around them? What do I talk about or don’t talk about?

There are many questions that come up, especially if you are not familiar with #PTSD. Many people who suffer from PTSD lose their friends, many times family, all because others do not understand these very things.

A person with PTSD is no different then you or I, they have just been through something traumatic which caused them to develop PTSD. They are still human, they still have feelings, and they still put clothes on just like the next person.

So here are some of many tips that are good to know:

1. Treat them just like you would anyone else! One of the worst things you could do to a person who suffers from PTSD is to treat them like they have a plague!

2. Don’t ask insensitive questions! Like “Did you kill someone?”. One, who really wants to talk about that in the first place, would you? No! Two, you may be opening a huge can of worms that really irritates them or makes them feel bad. Why? Because maybe they were NOT military or law enforcement. Civilians can have PTSD too and traumas include a wide range of what different people have experienced which lead to PTSD.

If they want to share their story with you, they will. Leave that up to them. Majority of the time they would rather talk about the same everyday things that the next person would.

3. Repeating themselves. Many with PTSD and/or TBI have some type of memory issues. If they do repeat something just go with it. No need to state “you’ve already told me that.” When you say things like that it makes them feel belittled and they are going to get really quiet on you.

4. Give them space. They my not always be able to keep a schedule, on rough days they will want to stay home. Those with PTSD do not like others seeing the rough side or what they battle that comes with it. Be respectful of that and something that might not happen today can always be rescheduled for another day.

5. Don’t make “fun” of anyone with a disability. One, It’s not nice or respectful in the first place. Two, You never know who it could effect or even someone else they might know.

6. Never judge them. You don’t know or understand what they have been through that lead them to PTSD so don’t judge them on something you don’t understand.

7. Have respect for personal space. PTSD can be caused by many different types of traumas. Many times a person needs their personal physical space from others. Avoid approaching them from behind without them knowing. Even touching them in a friendly manner sometimes can lead to a trigger. Read their body language, if they are joking with you and tapping your shoulder then it’s probably okay to do it back. Use your brain. 

8. Don’t put them down! One with PTSD has a hard enough time maintaining their self-esteem and sure does not need outside influence which could cause it to become worse! You wouldn’t want someone putting you down or talking bad about you, so don’t do it to them. Point out the good things don’t focus on the negative.

Would you walk up behind an elderly woman and put your hand on her shoulder? You might but if you do you stand a good chance of being waled on by her handbag! So no, don’t do things like that to one with PTSD either. 

9. Learn about PTSD! Even if you don’t think you know someone that has it, odds are you actually do! PTSD can affect anyone, it’s not only military related. It can be caused by a car accident, a rape or attack, a natural disaster, even from being in a hospital! It can be from anything that caused a trauma in a person’s life where symptoms last for more than a month. And many times you are not going to know about a sensitive matter.

10. Use your brain before your mouth. If it is something that you would not want said to you, then why say it to someone else. Every person can think before they speak 

A person with PTSD is still a person, a human being. They can throw a great cook-out, they can be a great friend, a great father or mother, a wonderful part of a family or workplace. They just have an unseen disability that causes them to react and/or view things differently but makes them no less of a person. Some of the most kindest, caring, and sensible people you will ever meet have PTSD… it makes them appreciate life more than the average person that takes life for granted. 

Take the time to educate yourself, and unfortunately… you never know when it might be you in their very shoes. Traumas can happen to anyone. What PTSD causes does bring changes to a person’s life, but you can make a positive change! LEARN now and you could change the life of someone else… or maybe even help save one!


A Spouse’s Story PTSD : FaceBook page

NOT everyone with PTSD is physically violent!

If you had the opportunity to explain something, anything, to a person who does not understand #PTSD and/or it’s symptoms well, something that would help reduce stigma and false information from spreading… What would you say?

Here’s mine:

* NOT everyone with PTSD is physically violent! 

Believing that a person with PTSD means they are violent or a threat to others is a HUGE misunderstanding about those with PTSD. Just because a person has PTSD, and PTSD symptoms include anger, frustration, flashbacks, and more, does not mean those things are out of control or not managed in all people. There are many with PTSD that would NEVER harm another person. Anger, frustration, and other symptoms CAN be managed and proper coping used so the symptoms are managed. It does not mean one does not have the symptoms, it means they have learned how to manage them so those symptoms are not physically taken out on others.

Many with PTSD also suffer from survivor’s guilt. Survivor’s guilt is when one lived but another person did not, and guilt of being the one who survived forms. Ones who suffer from this also, even in a high rage are unlikely to physically take the rage out on another person. High rage if not managed correctly might be taken out on things, objects, or even one’s self, but rarely and I mean rarely taken out on another person physically. Again, there are ways of coping with these symptoms when they do come.

Flashbacks. Flashbacks are when one with PTSD believes they are honestly reliving their trauma. They may lose realistic time, place, and even people present during a flashback and believe they are experiencing their trauma from the past, but to them it is presently taking place. To my knowledge, the only time a person with PTSD becomes physically violent towards another person during these, is when their trauma did include some type of physically altercation with another person.

However, flashbacks/the person can be grounded in majority of cases. A person can learn to ground themselves in many cases once learning the onset of symptoms and/or recognizing their triggers and learning how to properly cope when triggered. In other cases where this is not possible, it is important for those around them to learn and know how to ground them. Grounding is bringing one back to present time and place. This is normally done by talking to the person in a calm voice out of their reach, and telling them where they are, who you are, the time and date, and even letting them know they are experiencing a flashback. Repeating these things until they are grounded.

There are many, many, with PTSD that have worked hard to learn how to and do manage their symptoms well! Many maintain constant treatment in order to help themselves as well as those around them. Many have never become violent towards others.

Labeling someone as “violent” just because they have been diagnosed with PTSD is one of the most false and stigma related labels known to PTSD.

Having PTSD does not mean a person is “bad”, it simply means they went through a life altering trauma that maybe another person did not.

Before you indulge yourself  in the stigma, take the time to learn the FACTS!

A Spouse’s Story PTSD

Let me tell you a short story… Children and their Friends

Let me tell you a short story…

Yesterday my son called as he was getting ready to leave work. He asked, “Mom, is dad okay with me bringing a friend to the house? We are going bowling but I need to change first.” This is something we have always done here, if someone new is coming to the house there is a call ahead of time so Craig is aware someone is coming over.

I told him sure, dad’s been in the bedroom most of the day but said it was okay. So a little while later my son and his friend got here. I went out and met the friend, sat in the living room for quite awhile, all of the kids and I talking. Well, this friend is actually joining the Navy, and is a dog lover, so we had a lot to talk about in general.

We were talking about dogs and how I use to train. Alex came out to say his hellos then went back into the bedroom with Craig. We got on the subject of everything I have taught Alex to do that helps us. Then I backed up, said “Oh my husband is a disabled Veteran with PTSD“. Know what she said to me? “I know Brandt told me and I am on your PTSD page. I follow your postings.

WOW! That about knocked my socks off, lol. It made me feel really good actually and we had an awesome conversation! My son’s friends care enough about him and others, that they are actually learning about PTSD from this page! 

It really goes back to what I have always said, “Children who are educated correctly will be what changes the stigma.”

So, just a shout out to those of you here that know my son, you have just been adopted! 🙂 Glad you are here with us!  Mom

A Spouse’s Story PTSD

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Weak minded? Are you sure about that comment?

Weak minded? Are you sure about that comment?

This is actually a pretty personal posting, in a way, but one I wanted to address and share with everyone, which I’m sure many can relate to.

I was watching my news feed on social media last night and this link came through. It was an article regarding how weak minded people need to learn from strong minded people, basically. X number of tips that mentally strong people don’t do.

I’ll be honest, my first reaction to it was… well, I was offended! My quick thoughts was how on earth could a person who personally knows me, as well as our story, post something like that? As well as knowing how many people we both know who suffer from different mental illnesses. It was like a slap in the face to me, especially with how much time and effort I put into educating others.

Then curiosity had me, I had to read the article. I read it, and I thought about it on a personal/our life level. Really not a wise thing to do, but with articles like that, how do you not compare them to your own life? That’s what they are about. It was like reading that people do have COMPLETE control over their mental state… nightmares, being around others, etc., basically it was like saying suck it up and get over it. Honestly, I wish I had the link but you don’t need the stress of that one article lol. I use to be one that believed completely in “mind over matter”, at least until I truly understood what mental illnesses do to one, how they do or can change the way the brain functions and even in a physical aspect, and I saw and continue to see it first hand on an everyday basis, the changes they do in reality cause. My mind altered in my thoughts quite a bit as I watched my husband honestly try and still could not completely defeat mental illness/PTSD. He has by no means given up, and we work hard at him being the best he can now be, on a daily basis, but each day is a true battle.

Then I read a different article this morning without taking it personally. It was actually a good motivational writing, now I was not taking it as personally, but stopping to think about it and how it does apply to life. It was about things to try or experience in order to maximize success and happiness… tips on what “strong minded” people don’t do in order to accomplish things. Actually, many of the things addressed are the same things I talk about here. But I sure don’t use the wording strong or weak minded!

As I read it I still thought, how could someone address something as weak minded vs strong minded? What does that do to the many people who have real mental illnesses? And honestly, are they even going to bother wasting their time reading something that would in reality consider them as weak minded? 😉 It went right back to my saying, wording is everything! I have been around ones with mental disabilities my entire life really. My mom taught children for 30 years that had mental disabilities, and I volunteered for many years myself, and do have a husband that has mental disabilities.

I have never viewed mental illnesses as being weak minded, and I sure won’t start viewing it that way now! This was the part of the two articles I had read that caused me to take it personally, and caused me to become offended… it was the wording of the titles, not the complete articles themselves.

See, one’s with mental illnesses are actually not weak minded at all. Many times they are actually the ones who have the strongest minds, as well as high intelligence levels. They are not weak minded, they have just been through or experienced something that no person should have ever had to experience. It’s not that they became weak, it’s that they were so strong, for so long, that the brain basically said enough is enough, then protects itself, and/or the brain itself changed. And I will tell you right now, if you know or could see what any person who has a mental disorder goes through every single day to make it to see the next, you would not and could not view them as weak minded at all! They are actually very strong minded, even though they have a mental health related medical condition. “The Best of the Best“, as I say it.

Then, some people were born with mental disorders, many cases it was in the genetics. That does not make them weak, it just means they are different then another person. For an example, take a child, or adult for that matter, that has Autism. I have met and known many with autism throughout the years. Of all of those people, I have never met even one, that did not have a special “gift”, a talent. And I mean a talent that will knock your socks off they are so precise and perfect at it. Now, is that a person who is weak minded? NOT in this lifetime! The way they function is just simply different.

Weak minded, strong minded… it’s really all just wording that is a part of stigma. I have known, as well as communicated with, thousands upon thousands of people since I myself was a child, children to adults of all ages, that have some form of mental health condition. I have never met even one of them that I could honestly say was weak minded. Just because a person has a daily battle that may be different then what you or I go through, doesn’t at all mean or make them weak. If anything, it makes them stronger individuals then we are.

Wording is everything, it also feeds stigma. My personal definition of stigma… “Fear of or the lack of education regarding something you do not understand“. If you view a person as weak minded, would it not be wise to take a good look in the mirror to see where weakness actually lies? Wording as well as stigma can be very harmful. Just something to honestly, from the heart, and with an open mind… think about.

A Spouse’s Story PTSD

PTSD vs Society

PTSD vs Society

This was something that was mentioned a few days ago and I wanted to write more about. I’m actually glad it took me a few days to write because yesterday I got an eye opener to another part of this as well and realized there is much more to this topic that needs to be discussed.

The comments were made…

I wish society understood” and
It’s hard when you aren’t in a military area“.

Both VERY honest statements!

You know, I have found that the only way for society to somewhat understand is to be taught. Even though one is not going to totally understand unless they experience PTSD or live with one who has it, they can still learn the basics of it, or any other mental illness. It’s not going to happen over night, there will still be those that refuse to learn or listen, but I have to say I personally have seen changes over the past few years that are positive.

People by nature are curious. I mean think about it, just for an example… you are in a check out line and the clerk talks to you as they are ringing your items through… “Oh what age is your child“, “I heard the weather is changing again“, “I love this product too“, “So what do you do for work?” Whatever they talk about, somewhere in there the door will open to educate.

How about when the one with PTSD is with you out somewhere? They might stand back away from others, be looking around a lot, quiet… As you are checking out you notice the cashier is glancing at them off and on, BINGO! Your door just opened! “Oh it’s okay, his (my) PTSD is just causing him (me) to be a little more alert today.” When you act like it’s not a huge deal, just a part of life, and calmly toss it into conversation, you might be shocked how one’s curiosity takes over and they start asking questions! By your calm response you just took the awkwardness out of the equation of their curiosity and opened the door to educate.

I personally go to pretty much the same stores for shopping or take out. People get to know you. Every single one has opened the door for conversation. You know what I hear now? “Hey, how’s your husband doing?“, “I haven’t seen your husband in awhile, you need to tell him to come in with you and see us.“, “Tell Craig we said hi and miss seeing him.” Once in awhile Craig will venture out for a quick trip with me, when he does people greet him with a smile, ask him how he’s been doing. And they always ask new questions! They don’t treat him differently, don’t treat him like he has the plague, they treat him like they indeed care.

Curiosity is there and over time I have used it to educate without people even realizing it. They don’t carry stigma or judge, and if they did it’s not there now. I had one lady tell me she was so happy I had talked to her about PTSD, because she met someone else that also has it and they are now friends! She said she doesn’t know as much as I do, but it was enough that the term PTSD did not bother her.

I went last week to our local BBQ place for takeout. First thing I heard was, “How’s your husband doing? We haven’t seen you in several months and were concerned about you all.” Stigma is fading and people are caring. And their curiosity causes them to want to learn more.

It’s not about preaching, or lectures, it’s just about being human and sharing small parts of your life. Many times you might be shocked when one says “Really? I have a friend/family member that also has PTSD.” And you can see the almost excitement of them hearing that someone else understands and knows what PTSD is. You just made them realize they are not alone!

I have to be honest with my personal opinion on the military areas. I personally think us not being in a military area has been easier. There’s not, or as much, stigma already placed on PTSD. It’s not a secret that there is stigma with the military, why? Because PTSD can in many cases effect a serious, life or death situation, job. That is pretty much the bottom line for it. That part of stigma is not in civilian society. So to me, it’s been easier for us. I do dearly miss being around military families and the bonds formed, I will never say that is not so. Civilian life is different then military life, but when it comes to PTSD, it just seems easier. Again, people are curious because it’s not something they may hear about every day, or they only hear what is reported and want to learn more from firsthand experiences and opinions of what life with PTSD is like.

Now, I want to talk about something else that really got brought to my attention yesterday regarding society and mental illnesses. I was watching a program and have to admit I was in total shock! It was talking about lack of room for ones with mental illnesses in facilities, which is an honest fact. Now, I will say up front rather quickly, I understand if attempted suicide is involved or situations where one has to be in a facility, so by no means dismissing that. But I heard SO much more in this program. It was like the whole society focus of placing someone in a facility was the only option! There was not any talk about what they try at home, outpatient treatment, therapy, etc. It was all about why there are not more beds available. Personally, that bothered me! I understand the reason for the focus, but it still bothered me.

We are not living in a society like it was 50 years ago or so, where if you had a mental illness you were just locked away! There are SO many things now that help with mental illnesses that people are able to live a somewhat normal life, be out in public, have jobs, be with family, there are medications that help, all sorts of therapy, etc. That program and what was being said made me feel like I was listening to people from decades ago! How UNFAIR! I happened to be sitting with a group of veterans during the program and know I was not the only one thinking this way, I heard a sarcastic comment, “sure just lock everyone up, great solution”. As we watched, we could see the lack of education regarding the illness at hand as well as lack of how to manage it. It was honestly sad. Sure, one may have to have inpatient care, maybe some guidelines need to change for safety reasons of length of stays, and more beds are indeed needed, but that does not always mean a person has to stay there forever!

To listen to one say that they fear a child becoming an adult and there not being laws to where a family member can place them in a facility unless they harm themselves or someone else… I’m sorry, but that bothered me. Why would anyone want them placed in a facility and take away the chance of them living as close to a normal life as they can? In cases where others do need help managing their medical, and cases where the need is there to prevent one from getting to the point of harming themselves or others, why not put legal documentation or guardianship of sorts into place for possible what if times? Wouldn’t that be an easy solution but at the same time allow the person with a mental illness a chance to see what they can do on their own? My personal opinion, it goes back to education and management at home. It’s okay to have the fear of the what if’s, the concern is an honest concern and not dismissed by any means, but you should not let your what if’s run someone else’s life, it’s just not fair to the individual. Goes back to my saying, have a plan and a back up plan, there is no law needed for that.

To say the least this is a subject that I could write about forever, but just a few points I wanted to share.

Society has come a long way from the way it use to be. I am seeing many positive things, even though there is still a lot of work to be done. And the more things reported (rather good or bad) leads to more doors opening for real education. That program yesterday was a prime example, there was a huge conversation which came from it. I see the positive that has happened in our life with our community, negative reports and such have not changed that at all, except at times it brings new conversations with people asking more questions and wanting to learn more from someone that is real life standing in front of them. 😉 That’s not a bad thing.

A Spouse’s Story PTSD

I want to wish you a HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Where ever you are around the world…

I want to wish you a HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

My New Year’s Wish…

May your New Year be filled with love and compassion for and from those around you.

May you have the strength to find and use coping skills, and for those closest to you to have the strength to use their’s as well.

May relationships heal and families mend.

May communication grow stronger with each breath taken, with words of kindness to work together without judgement or criticism.

May you have peaceful sleep come with your nights, and symptoms decrease.

May motions lead to emotions, and the numbness fade away.

May your physical health grow stronger.

May education and awareness grow greatly.

May stigma continue to vanish, at the least… one person at a time.

May the suicide rate decrease to zero, and people know they are not alone!

May everyone who suffers or feel as if they only survive PTSD and other mental illnesses/disorders, re-learn how to LIVE!

As I always say 😉 the list is long, but I think that’s a fair start within reason.

Have a SAFE and HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone!


A Spouse’s Story PTSD

Why do people fear others with PTSD or other mental disorders/illnesses?

Why do people fear others with PTSD or other mental disorders/illnesses?

It’s actually rather simple. Fear comes from the unknown and lack of understanding/education. Stigma!

You can’t, or shouldn’t, judge people based on just a term. If you do, you probably are cutting yourself short of a possible new friend, a relationship, or just meeting someone that is actually a good person.

Just because someone suffers from a mental illness/disorder does not make them a bad person, it just means they have been through something someone else hasn’t or maybe they inherited or developed something that you didn’t. But it doesn’t make them bad, it just means their life is different then your’s may be.

A lot of stigma comes from media outlets, who mainly report the bad episodes surrounding mental illnesses. You know, everything in life has bad that could be attached to it, but there are also the good things that you might not hear about as much. Then stigma comes from it being passed from one person to the next. Basically people taking what someone says without doing their own research on the topic or actually meeting and getting to know people before placing judgement.

Kind of sad actually, especially considering there are so many people in this world that suffer from some form of mental illness, but yet would do anything for another person and are some of the kindest people you could ever meet. I mean think about it, that person has been through more then the average person, they know suffering, they also know altering life to survive, and they appreciate life to it’s fullest possible.

Just because some people have issues or outbursts from time to time doesn’t make them necessarily bad or all people bad. The stigma and stereotyping people just because they have a mental illness/disorder is just outright wrong. And if you are one that does this, you are really cutting yourself short of having many wonderful people in your life.

So, what do we do about it? We keep educating others. The more people learn, the less stigma there will be. You take the time to care in general. If you have time to sit on your phone or sit at your computer all day posting funny things, then you obviously have the time to care about another human being, many other human beings. And what about you, yourself? What happens one day if you develop a mental illness? Don’t say it won’t happen lol, mental illnesses can happen to anyone. And if you don’t believe that one, ask anyone who suffers from one. I guarantee you at some point in time they said the same thing, “That could never happen to me.” How would or are you going to feel if it does happen to you? I bet you would like like the stigma that comes with it. Just something to think about. 

Take the time to care. It only takes a few minutes of precious life to learn, and you might just save the life of another person in the process… FACT!

A Spouse’s Story PTSD