Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips? - Talk About Marriage
Physical & Mental Health Issues Marriage and relationships are difficult by themselves, but coping with physical or mental health problems can make things even more difficult.

User Tag List

 5Likes
  • 2 Post By EllaSuaveterre
  • 2 Post By Vinnydee
  • 1 Post By Nugget
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread
post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 12:08 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: U.S.
Posts: 30
Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

Good morning all,

Does anyone here have any experience with a relationship with someone who has PTSD?

My wife was assaulted several years ago (before we married) by someone she knew - this person engaged into a physical altercation with her and they nearly killed each other before the guy just up and left. this left my wife with a certain level of paranoia, and some heavy duty PTSD - add to that some head injuries that took place during the altercation and what we have as an end result can be, at times difficult to deal with - and partly (i believe) it is because of my inexperience with a situation like this.

I met her about 20 years ago when we were both teenagers but we never dated, as time went on we both went out separate ways and not until a few years ago we got in touch with each other through a mutual friend, started dating and eventually got married late last year. She is currently taking medication for the anxiety but i wanted to see if anyone could give me some pointers with living with someone with PTSD.

I know it cannot be a cakewalk but i would like to see if anyone has had experience with living/marrying/being in love with someone with PTSD that could may be give me some pointers on how to help them!

Our relationship is awesome - i just want to be able to be more supportive in ways that help her when the bouts with PTSD come up

Kukuy is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 02:31 AM
Member
 
EllaSuaveterre's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 518
Re: Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

I can help. I have, myself, been traumatized and- firstly- it's very very sweet that you want to help and you're taking initiative to do so and your wife should count herself very, very lucky.

Secondly... whoof, where to begin.

Figure out what her triggers are- things that remind her of what happened to her. Some triggers might just make her feel all creepy-crawly and squeamish. Some of them might make her a little emotional. Some might startle her. Some might send her into a full-blown panicky, screaming, sobbing, incoherent mess wherein she literally thinks she's back at the time and place the trauma occurred. Ask her- on a good day when she's feeling fine!- about her triggers. If she tenses up when you ask her, "Does ____ trigger you?" that's probably a yes. If you think something might be a trigger, but you don't know and you don't think it's a good time to ask her, assume it is.

Once you've figured out her triggers, act accordingly. This usually means to approach the issue gently. Very gently. And if you can, always ask her if she wants to be exposed to a trigger before you expose her: "I read that this movie has a rape scene. You're sure you want to watch it with me?" And if she says yes, and triggers during the rape scene, ask her if she wants to turn it off.

If she wants to avoid her triggers, for the most part let her. It's not your job to play exposure therapist. However, if she's not currently seeing an actual therapist and her reactions to being triggered or her efforts to avoid triggering stuff are extreme. Ask her gently if she'd consider getting help. Approach this gently, and don't accuse her of being "irrational" or "crazy" or anything: "I know dogs frighten you, and I'm rather concerned about how scared you get around them. I can see that our neighbor's chihuahua terrifies you. Do you think maybe getting therapy might make it easier to live next door to Paco?"

If she triggers in public, hold her hand. Maybe stroke it. If you're close, maybe whisper something soothing in her ear. Tell her she's safe with you.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
EllaSuaveterre is offline  
post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 03:32 PM
Member
 
Vinnydee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Southern USA, but longtime NYC boy prior to our move.
Posts: 687
Re: Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

I came out of the Vietnam War with PTSD. I would dream and punch my wife in the middle of the night thinking she was the enemy or when she tried to wake me up in the morning. Poor women had a bruised forehead when I woke up in time to move the point of impact of my fist. She used to hold a pillow over her face when she woke me up. I have been on anti anxiety medications for about 40 years now.

I currently take medications for depression and anxiety. They have helped me a lot. The turning point for me was accepting the use of medication to control my anxiety. Over time it got better. I rarely even think about the things that happened long ago. I still have some problems, but I have led a good life. Throwing myself into my career helped a lot too. It took up much of my time and gave me other things to think about. I wish you luck with your wife.

I sometimes teach women how to shoot guns and self defense. Some were victims of violence by strangers and exes. Nothing turns a liberal into a stout believer that we are responsible for our own safety, then being exposed to violence. It is easy to say ban guns when you have never had to learn the hard way that the police cannot help you when you need them. They just cannot be everyone at once.

I will suggest that you talk to your wife about taking some sort of self defense class and/or learn to shoot and carry a gun, if legal where you live. My wife carries a gun and feels much safer for doing so. Just basic non gun self defense courses can build confidence and that is a big help. Pepper spray is also an option if trained how to use it. I wish the both of you luck and if you work on it, PTSD does not have to take over your lives.

Many prefer to drown in a pool of their own morality rather than seek the safety of a different morality.

Last edited by Vinnydee; 04-30-2017 at 10:23 PM.
Vinnydee is offline  
 
post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 04:17 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 4,265
Re: Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kukuy View Post
Good morning all,

Does anyone here have any experience with a relationship with someone who has PTSD?

My wife was assaulted several years ago (before we married) by someone she knew - this person engaged into a physical altercation with her and they nearly killed each other before the guy just up and left. this left my wife with a certain level of paranoia, and some heavy duty PTSD - add to that some head injuries that took place during the altercation and what we have as an end result can be, at times difficult to deal with - and partly (i believe) it is because of my inexperience with a situation like this.

I met her about 20 years ago when we were both teenagers but we never dated, as time went on we both went out separate ways and not until a few years ago we got in touch with each other through a mutual friend, started dating and eventually got married late last year. She is currently taking medication for the anxiety but i wanted to see if anyone could give me some pointers with living with someone with PTSD.

I know it cannot be a cakewalk but i would like to see if anyone has had experience with living/marrying/being in love with someone with PTSD that could may be give me some pointers on how to help them!

Our relationship is awesome - i just want to be able to be more supportive in ways that help her when the bouts with PTSD come up
I suffer from PTSD after being involved with an assault, if you read my posts there are a few when I talk about it. Anyway it's difficult because your body reacts like you are still in the moment when you are not. There is no predictor at least for me, one minute I am find the next boom my heart is racing. It can also lead to aches and pains in your body for no real reason. Mine is usually in my stomach. For a long time I had hyper vigilance, eventually I just keep quiet about that. That has gone away with time. I am about 10 years out. I also took medication for a long time. I don't anymore and I may trigger a little more then when I was on it but not enough to keep me on the meds.

So when she triggers the best you can do is to keep her grounded, help her feel safe and again this is her body reacting not her actually going through any danger. It's not fun, but you get used to it. For me it's very rare when I trigger anymore. Normally I need to be under prolong stress before hand. And even then it's only for a few moments, I no longer feel afraid because I know what is going on, so I just ride it out. I am usually tired afterwords, it kind of feels like I ran a marathon.

There used to be specific things that reminded me of the event and trigger me but that was only for the first few years. Then it just became a sudden panic attack, again I believe this is chemical because that only happens when I am under a prolonged period of stress like a big even at work. I suspect my brain is damaged (others on here probably agree ) or over worked maybe to compensate for the injury in some way, so it can't keep up producing enough serotonin when I am under stress.

It's a hard deal. Good luck to you.

Last edited by sokillme; 04-30-2017 at 04:52 PM.
sokillme is offline  
post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 04:57 PM
Moderator
 
EleGirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: New Mexico
Posts: 33,689
Re: Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

How does her PTSD manifest? That is important to know.

My father had PTSD from WW2. If you woke him from his sleep, he would come out of it trying to beat you up. So we kids used things like broom sticks to wake him up. That way we were far enough away to run off before he got his fight on.

I have PTSD from some things that happened to me. If anyone comes up behind me when I'm concentrating it will jump and scream. At work people learned to never enter my office without knocking first. There is more to it than that, but just letting me know that they are approaching keeps me from going down the pit of PTSD.

Surviving An Affair -
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To Create A Passionate Marriage -
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
EleGirl is offline  
post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 05:08 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: UK
Posts: 1,883
Re: Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

Has she been diagnosed with it? What are her symptoms.
Diana7 is offline  
post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 05:14 PM
Forum Supporter
 
SunCMars's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North Coast Nationalist-burg, U.S.A.
Posts: 2,794
Re: Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

Quote:
Originally Posted by EleGirl View Post
How does her PTSD manifest? That is important to know.

My father had PTSD from WW2. If you woke him from his sleep, he would come out of it trying to beat you up. So we kids used things like broom sticks to wake him up. That way we were far enough away to run off before he got his fight on.

I have PTSD from some things that happened to me. If anyone comes up behind me when I'm concentrating it will jump and scream. At work people learned to never enter my office without knocking first. There is more to it than that, but just letting me know that they are approaching keeps me from going down the pit of PTSD.
Get your hearing aid fixed. I have snuck up on you dozens of times.

Um, no response.

Maybe I will put those metal heel "U" plates on the heels of my shoes...... the type the hoods wore in the 50's.

Avatars are stealthy beings, Eh?

This....This is the nub of the stick that pokes me in the eye when the light of day energizes my optic nerve....SunCMars.... The Allegory of the Cave--> On this, I did a '180' and stepped out.

The Lion in Winter. Invictus..By Will, Shall... Saved from harm by my friends.
SunCMars is offline  
post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 05:18 PM
Forum Supporter
 
SunCMars's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North Coast Nationalist-burg, U.S.A.
Posts: 2,794
Re: Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

I too have PTSD...what else is new.

I religiously Conceal Carry.

Have license will travel....Paladin II, three, four, ka-blooey.

This....This is the nub of the stick that pokes me in the eye when the light of day energizes my optic nerve....SunCMars.... The Allegory of the Cave--> On this, I did a '180' and stepped out.

The Lion in Winter. Invictus..By Will, Shall... Saved from harm by my friends.
SunCMars is offline  
post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 08:46 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 5
Re: Partner with PTSD... pointers, tips?

Learn her triggers and do your due diligence to avoid them. Ask her to look into EMDR therapy. It helps.
Nugget is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on Talk About Marriage, you must first register. Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

Important! Your username will be visible to the public next to anything you post and could show up in search engines like Google. If you are concerned about anonymity, PLEASE choose a username that will not be recognizable to anyone you know.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
The Top Five Relationship Tips Couples Tend to Forget VS Glen Home Page Feature News 0 04-18-2017 12:49 PM
you did it for other men, but not me? nogutsnoglory Sex in Marriage 2775 03-15-2017 01:35 PM
Different sex drives Mollymolz Sex in Marriage 120 03-10-2017 12:09 PM
How to Love a Partner Suffering From Depression VS Glen Home Page Feature News 0 08-24-2016 07:54 AM
Tips for Keeping the Passion Alive in Your Marriage VS Glen Home Page Feature News 1 04-17-2016 04:28 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome