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#PTSDChat

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Kate & Rebecca (of WhoaMedia) created #PTSDChat a few years ago to help those suffering in silence and isolation to find a place that was safe, supportive where they could share their problems, connect with others and feel like they were part of a large tribe of warriors.  As the chat grew to become what it is now, both took a step back to allow it to become more than the “Kate show”.  Kate continues to write and support the team with blogs on topics that come up, researching and interviewing those with experience or expertise in the areas.

Sharing with PTSD Peers: the how to and managing other’s triggers

Share your story. Talk about it. It will reduce the hold it has on you. On and on it goes, with everybody poking at you to unburden yourself of your trauma.  Some are doing it because there is a genuine desire to help, exposing you to the details of your trauma by retelling it does over time and with repetition, reduce the power it has over your body and mind.  Some do it because they are nosy bastards and want the details to get a vicarious rush from it all: aka, trauma whores.  Others are peers who know that by walking with you and keeping you going, talking, that you will gradually get through the darkness into the light. Exposure therapy is the cusp of the argument to share your trauma story.  Expose you to it as often as we can and slowly, bit by bit, it will be reduced…

Dealing with the trauma of the #TorontoAttack

For most of my life I have had an irrational fear of smells, sounds, things and touch which my brain had stored away as “warning signs” that bad stuff was about to happen.  EMDR unlocked pandora box after pandora box of stacked horrors neatly stored behind the walls that my brain and body had carefully crafted to keep me alive.  This is what we refer to as Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. My earliest trauma that we could access was my mother using, the vehicle I was in, as a weapon. For those of you who have been part of or witness to this appalling horror in Toronto where an unhinged human used his van as a weapon, I can only help by providing you with the tools, the experience and the ways to fight back that I have learnt. ANGER & RAGE If you are a cop, a firefighter…

Child Abuse – how I survived and how you can too

“Child abuse or child maltreatment is physical, sexual or psychological maltreatment or neglect of a child, especially by a parent or other caregiver.” That’s the definition but what is the reality?  I can only speak to my experiences.  My childhood was never going to be stellar given that I was born in Rhodesia in 1970 during what was going to be one of the bloodiest, nastiest African Civil Wars.  Placed for the most part on an isolated coffee estate on the Mozambique border with a father and mother who swirled in a toxic violent alcohol fuelled hell, was clearly not a great start either.  I have lived with the rumours that I wasn’t my father’s natural child, his will on his death confirmed it.  The fact that they were both capable of incredible acts of violence and cruelty, well that was something I was going to enjoy for the first…

Friendships & PTSD: should I talk about it with new friends?

This is a question I have been asked quite a lot and most recently from a friend who has scars from cutting.  When you meet somebody you think may become a friend do you blurt it out?  Tell all.  Get it over with: rather than investing time in this person only to see them dash away when they found out, maybe just get it over with now? It’s taken me a while to read on this subject, think on it and work out how to answer. The first thing I looked at is why do we have friends?  Is it important?  And if so, why. Intuitively we all understand that we require human contact, we are programmed to be part of a herd not a solitary hunter.  More than this studies show that human closeness is FUNDAMENTAL to our mental well-being, the lack of it we term “loneliness” may not…