I suffer from PTSD. I was tortured and given drugs (LSD) while being tortured.
I am beginning to believe that the damage is pretty much permanent. I have tried EFT and other techniques. But my flashbacks are pretty bad. Any suggestions?
asked 01 Feb '12, 02:25
I apologize in advance for this answer because I know you're not going to like it (because it doesn't justify your beliefs about yourself) and I also know you're going to ignore it as a result :)
...but this answer is offered with sincerity and a willingness to help, so it may at least be of value to others who see this and may be more open to seeing the point being made.
Here is a list of self-talk affirmations from your question...
Those are absolute statements of belief about yourself. I can feel from your words, you completely believe them. And so your life naturally brings you more experiences that align with those beliefs.
The events you are talking about that happened to you happened a long time ago. They are over and done with.
The only person who is keeping those experiences alive for you right now is you with your self-talk, affirmations and regular focusing of your attention on those events.
If you read through many of your other questions on IQ, you'll see many other similar affirmations from you about what you absolutely believe is true for you. You might find it quite enlightening to read through those "I" statements and see how they directly correlate with what has happened and is happening in your life.
It's those constant affirmations that you make about your life that make it what it is right now, not the experiences that gave rise to them.
When you're ready to let go of your "self-justification" about why you are where you are in your life, you'll naturally attract the people, processes and events that will help you move on.
answered 01 Feb '12, 07:32
PTSD is the result of a brain - information processing attempt "gone awry".
When you encounter an "event" (external to you or internal - in your mind & emotions) which you initially perceive as a possible threat to your survival, your amygdala puts you on "high alert", body, mind & emotions. So you get the initial fight or flight reaction.
Immediately you begin scanning your environment very rapidly with all your senses, trying to detect the cause of the triggering event (This is all automatic within your mind-brain - body system & happens so fast most people who don't experience PTSD just experience a slight bump on their path so-to speak if the threat turns out to be nothing).
So information shuttles rapidly between midbrain (emotional control centres), frontal cortices (information processing & integration) your senses (rechecking for more "data"), reticular activating system (RAS - in brainstem, & which is the initiator of the first alert as it detects change in your environment - external &/or internal).
For people who do not suffer from PTSD or panic - anxiety attacks, the amygdala shuts down your high alert status (ie your fight or flight reaction as soon as it is determined there is no threat.
Or it gets you to fight or flee if the danger is real. Important for people who suffer from PTSD - If fight or flight are not possible & the danger is real, a person will freeze until the threat has ended. (like an animal "playing dead" under similar circumstances).
At this time if you are okay you would continue on in your life. If possible you might release the built up energy (say by getting very angry & striking out, or by crying & shaking "uncontrollably" - to whatever extent. This is the body's way of letting the blocked energy go so your energy can flow normally.
Animals do this naturally, unless they are prevented somehow (which can be due to different things, including physical restraint, previous traumatic experiences, or "social & cultural expectations" - you can probably think of other reasons for this).
People are often conditioned by social & cultural expectations not to "let it go", "be a man", "don't let them know you're afraid" etc.
When this happens the energy gets "stuck" in your body - mind system & causes blockages. (Acupuncture is one way to attempt to get the stagnant energy to "release" so the energy can flow freely again). This "stuck" energy can cause physical, mental, emotional & psychological symptoms of "dis-ease" on the person. The severity can be related the severity of the triggering event but will be more likely associated with with your success or failure to "release " the original energy block.
In your case, you were tortured & you were unable to resist (fight), unable to escape (flight), & you most likely had no way to release this blocked energy.
PTSD appears to be a result of a "glitch" in the amygdala such that it keeps the sufferer on "high alert" even after the feared event has passed or been understood by the mind to be harmless. It's like the "switch is stuck on". You may notice that your anxiety lowers due to exhaustion.
This dysfunction in the amygdala seems to be a chemical imbalance caused by the original traumatizing event(s). It appears to mimic minimal brain dysfunction & used to be thought to be untreatable ("brain damage" or so it was believed).
However, it can be alleviated, by "letting go" of the blocked energies in your system. EFT is one way this can be achieved, however you may have a lot of blockages due to the nature of your traumatic experiences.
There is a book by Eugene Gendlin called "Focusing", Which you may want to check out. It describes a method of "digging into" these feelings & subsequently releasing the blockages often slowly, however it will work. There are also "focusing "groups throughout the world.
Brainwave entrainment can also be helpful, however it can dig really deep & cause you to feel extremely overwhelmed. If you do try this, use focusing with it to give direction to your energy work. Brainwave entrainment can dig deeply but without focus or direction.
Peter Levine talks of this in "Waking The Tiger: Healing Trauma".
Last, but very important, you need to have the intention to get control of your anxiety, even while you don't yet know how to go about it. Without your intention (I don't mean faith or belief, although these might help) you will be "swimming against the current"
May you find your resolution...
I know it can seem hopeless at times.
Best regards, Michael
answered 01 Feb '12, 13:57
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