04 Mar PTSD and Addiction
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
PTSD is a difficult state of mind when you have been in a traumatic event, and you relive the moments repeatedly. You may have feelings of wishing you had done something different so you would have won the situation. You also have feelings of anger because you were not able to defend yourself against someone who hurt you. This can be a bully who attacked you verbally or beat you while you were physically compromised.
Soldiers who have been part of very traumatic battles, often relive the moment when a friend was killed while standing next to that friend. Sometimes this is called “Survivor’s Guilt.” It is the sense of wishing that there had been something that could have been done to save his life. Or the soldier wishes they could have killed the enemy in retaliation for killing the friend. Or the soldier wishes it was him that died, and not his friend who has a wife and two kids.
While you remember the event like it happened yesterday, your emotions fluctuate as you examine the situation repeatedly, looking for that way where you could have changed the outcome. PTSD happens to those in regular life who experience unexpected traumatic events caused by someone who injured you in some manner.
If you had a boss, for example, who called you ugly names while you were at work, you do not forget that anytime soon. You may forgive that boss, but you never forget what they said or did. Years later, you still run that event again and wish you could have humiliated the boss in front of everyone, just like the boss humiliated you.
If you lost your job and were not able to get another job that was better, you may harbor feelings of anger and helplessness because you had no control over it. If you meet someone else who acts like that boss, and you have not resolved in your mind how to understand what happened, the new jerk in your life could trigger your emotions, causing you to lash out in anger.
Sexual assault leaves emotional scars on females that must be addressed, even if it is years later. These events are never forgotten. Physical abuse in marriages also causes problems as over time, the woman either allows herself to emotionally disappear or she becomes emotionally warped, due to increasing built-up anger that has no expression until it explodes.
Abusing Alcohol or Drugs to Kill the Pain
Some people are happy drunks while others, particularly those with emotional trauma, do not do so well. Drinking too much can make you depressed or it could make you angry, especially if you return to dwelling on the bad moments in your life. So, you drink more and more until you figure you can go to bed and pass out.
That is also not a good idea as you might have a reaction to something in your system and begin vomiting and you could choke to death without knowing what is happening. If you are getting to this point, you are addicted to alcohol and you have PTSD. You need to ask for help so you can adjust your life and live better.
Alternatively, you might turn to drugs that help you be happy or put you in another place where you are not thinking about the traumatic times in your life. The problem with both drinking and/or taking drugs is if you feel wild and free, even if you could take on the world, so to speak, you may be at risk for sexual promiscuity or other risky behaviors.
You want to have fun with one of the people you are with. You like him and you feel safe. Or you want to find someone unknown who puts forth that he thinks you are fantastic and beautiful. The reality is you have no idea who this man is, and he looks at you as the next woman he plans to take out to the woods 10 miles out of town and kill. If you find yourself in this position of engaging in risky behavior, it is time to take stock of your life and get help to move past your emotional disturbances.
Coming to Terms with Recognizing You Need Help
PTSD, in any of the previous scenarios, is a manifestation of emotions that you have not come to terms with. Along with talking with a psychiatrist or therapist, you can uncover what is really behind the things you do. You must also address your need for taking drugs or abusing alcohol, all of which put you into another state of mind, but not the right one. It is like trying to escape yourself and perhaps be someone else, someone who represents what you wish you were.
Call Pacific Bay Recovery Today if You Need Help
San Diego addiction treatment center can help you with any substance addiction and/or mental issues you might have so you can regain a happy and functional lifestyle again. Call us for a free consultation and to set up an appointment to start getting help as soon as possible. 619-350-8220.