I’ve decided I’m going to start a book club of sorts for The Body Keeps The Score. Partly because I told a few friends about it and, since it’s heavy reading, reading it together to process it might be more beneficial. Partly because if I have to suffer, so do others. It’s a very triggering book for me. I’ve been taking lots of notes and I’m going to be asking Charon a bunch of questions regarding it.
Like, how do I know what’s the Autism and what’s the PTSD? There’s so much overlap of symptoms that I don’t know and I’m kind of scared that I don’t even have Autism, it’s all just PTSD and it’s just so drastically changed my brain and stuff that I don’t have any hope of getting better, or being ‘in remission’.
To that extent, on remission, there’s ample evidence that there is no full ‘cure’, just tiny bit better every time. I’m just… What. No. I don’t like that. I mean, I knew that before. It’s not new news to me. Charon and I discussed that when I was doing the Exposure Therapy. ( Which, by the way, I’m 99% certain I did absolute shit at because I’ve been increasingly anxious lately and also because I did absolute shit at it.)
I hate this book because it scares me and it makes me sad and it triggers me. I’m reading it because I need the information it’s providing me. It’s total bullshit that it’s so triggering, though. It’s triggering and it’s disheartening to read all these things that are so me, that are so intrinsically me that I would never have guessed that it’s because of the trauma/Trauma I’ve been through.
I feel sad and disheartened and hopeless. It’s not even like I can blame medications on any of it because I quit the Viibryd and stuff. What am I supposed to do? I don’t want to be just this. I thought I was more. I thought I was a person that had many different aspects and different things contributing to who they are, not someone whose core self is based on trauma-related coping mechanisms. How am I supposed to recover from that? How can I be a better me like this?
For a lot of people with PTSD, life is divided into 2 sections, the Before and the After. Since my entire life is basically Traumatic events with small reprieves, there’s no real Before, just tiny Breaks. There’s no baby Sarcastic Autist that was free from abuse or neglect. Even now, there’s emotional manipulation and abuse from my mum.
And it really gets me because I’ve always been treated this way. Okay, I used to be treated much worse. But if I’ve always been treated like I’m not good enough, like I’m worthless and hopeless and useless and a waste of space, if I’ve always been told that, I have a really hard time believing it’s not true.
If someone says they think I’m a good person or that I’m worthy of love and acceptance, my gut reaction is to ask ‘why’. Even if they give examples, even if they say it’s because everyone is worthy and deserving of love and acceptance, I want to know why me. I’m not that special. I get told all the time I’m going to hell, that I’m a pervert, that I choose a lifestyle that goes against God, that I’m wrong for my very existence. And that’s just for the Gay Enby thing. It’s not even touching on how I fuck up all the time.
I don’t know. I just feel a lot right now and I’m having a hard time sorting through it all. I hate this book.
-The Sarcastic Autist
As a person who has had PTSD and who places themselves on the autistic spectrum, I have come to understand there are things you naturally hyperfocus on to the extent that it warps your perspective. Those times I was really going through having episodes back to back, it felt like that was all I was and all my life had become.
You becoming more anxious and stuff is actually a sign the therapy was working. To my understanding, PTSD at it’s core, has to do with a part of yourself that protects yourself from feeling feelings and living hurtful experiences completely. Ironically, that’s exactly what you have to do to get through it.
You are way more than all of that. Sometimes, that is just so far away from your current reality, you just can’t believe it.
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I’ve got to admit to you, when I read your comment, I laughed because it is exactly what The Body Keeps the Score is basically saying. You are on point, my friend. Feeling feelings and letting myself handle the flashbacks without pushing them away is something I’ve been working on because I find it’s less draining to deal with it that way, rather than avoid everything at all costs. When you are constantly running away from everything, eventually you collapse from exhaustion, you know?
Is it okay with you if I show your comment to Charon, my therapist on Monday? You really put into words what I’ve been experiencing lately. Thank you.
Yeah, of course
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