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magz
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29 Jan 2020, 1:36 pm

Anyone else with experience of triggering PTSD you had no idea you had?
I'm still a mess after helping during school swimming classes for my daughter. I couldn't sleep, woke up with fight or flight reaction and hallucinations (I suppose I was only partially awake but it was so scary!)
I had no idea there was such a trauma, especially that years later I stopped fearing water and learned to swim with quite a pleasure. But apparently, the trauma was still there, I only managed to disconnect it from water and swimming.
It was a blow I totally didn't expect.


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IsabellaLinton
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29 Jan 2020, 2:17 pm

I was at my doctor's a few weeks ago at the turn of the new year. She had a wall calendar for January with a photographed picture of any icy river winding through a snowy field. The photo absolutely terrified me and acted as a PTSD trigger. Somehow I knew on a visceral level that the scene / trigger was connected to my childhood, around age four, but I have no recollection of what happened at that time. It was so frightening to me that I was almost hyperventilating. Even now I don't like to recall the picture and I decided I can't see my doctor again until it's February (a new calendar page).



magz
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29 Jan 2020, 2:34 pm

How do you manage with so many traumas?
A hug to ((((you))))


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BenderRodriguez
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31 Jan 2020, 6:29 am

Yeah, it happened to me more than once.

One problem was that I had no knowledge of PTSD, that was something war veterans get, right? And had no idea I was on the spectrum.

When I was a kid, the only method used to teach or make me do something was force, which turned fear into terror. So, for the most part, I started doing whatever I was asked before things got even worse. Without realising, when I was young (but on my own) I stuck to this model: however difficult or terrifying the task, my mind would instantly instruct me to push through it no matter what. I lived in a perpetual state of heightened alert and increased the pressure exponentially.

Later, when my life was much better, I learned to relax and let go a bit and suddenly I started getting violent panic attacks "out of the blue", or freeze in terror when faced with some simple, mundane task. I honestly thought I was going crazy :oops: I eventually hit rock bottom, had a huge burnout/nervous breakdown and it took me a few years to sort myself out again and figure out some of this stuff.

"A bad childhood lasts a lifetime" - it's scary to see how badly some of these sleeping dogs can still bite :(


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magz
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31 Jan 2020, 7:19 am

Oh, yes, PTSD is something that happens to war veterans and rape victims.
And dysfunctional families are not the ones with mother at home, father with stable employment, no addictions except smoking, no physical violence.
Sure.
"I have no reason to feel bad" - another mantra of my childhood.


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Amity
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31 Jan 2020, 9:24 am

Like Bender I had no idea that I had ASC or CPTSD.
I referred to trauma as 'anxiety' until last year, I knew it was more than that, but I wasnt ready to face it. Getting my head around Autism was my focus before then.
For the most part my mind knew during episodes that I was experiencing flashbacks so I believed it couldnt be PTSD. Turns out my body didn't know the difference, stored the physical memories and relived them regardless.

I'll add this GAD forum thread, as the insights shared there may help you too.
There may be potential triggers in the thread but definitely less of them than the one I started in the womens forum.
viewtopic.php?t=376778&hilit=+autonomic



Fnord
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31 Jan 2020, 9:29 am

My late father used to make a certain noise just before he'd start slapping me around. He died 15+ years ago. My boss made the same noise (a clicking sound with tongue and palette) about 10 years ago, and I felt a panic coming on -- heart palpitations, cold sweat, tightening of the throat, et cetera.

I've started making that noise myself since then, and have now become immune to it.


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magz
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31 Jan 2020, 1:01 pm

I just realized something by putting together a few parts of information about my past...

One of the greatest discovery after my psychologist broght up the topic of AS was the term "sensory overload". Finally it got a name! This horrible, pain-like sensation that made me nable to do anything but curl up and cry... but I knew no actual part of my body hurt. It's like being in horrible pain without any particular organ being in this pain. When I tried to express it as a child, I met anger and denial. When I tried to explain it to a psychiatrist as an adult, he interpreted it as delusions, reinforcing my misdiagnosis.
I have sensory issues. I'm prone to sensory overload. In the overload state, I was unable to do anything... and then I was yelled at for not doing the right things and for "crying for nothing". Yelled at. And shamed. And if it was my mother, she was very skilled in hitting exactly in weak points and this ability of her went rogue.
It's like... it's like when you were so much in pain that you couldn't work, then you got severe beating for it. Really no difference, severe sensory overload is exactly like severe pain.
And then I realized, such things do happen. They are called torture and considered basic human right violations. Survivors of such things are the "legitimate" PTSD bearers.

I have been tortured on daily basis since my early childhood. The fact that it was mainly about my not-so-typical neurology and the perpetrators probably weren't aware of what they were doing does not change to any extent the result: I'm carrying a bag of quite severe complex trauma.


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Bravo5150
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31 Jan 2020, 1:06 pm

magz wrote:
I just realized something by putting together a few parts of information about my past...

One of the greatest discovery after my psychologist broght up the topic of AS was the term "sensory overload". Finally it got a name! This horrible, pain-like sensation that made me nable to do anything but curl up and cry... but I knew no actual part of my body hurt. It's like being in horrible pain without any particular organ being in this pain. When I tried to express it as a child, I met anger and denial. When I tried to explain it to a psychiatrist as an adult, he interpreted it as delusions, reinforcing my misdiagnosis.
I have sensory issues. I'm prone to sensory overload. In the overload state, I was unable to do anything... and then I was yelled at for not doing the right things and for "crying for nothing". Yelled at. And shamed. And if it was my mother, she was very skilled in hitting exactly in weak points and this ability of her went rogue.
It's like... it's like when you were so much in pain that you couldn't work, then you got severe beating for it. Really no difference, severe sensory overload is exactly like severe pain.
And then I realized, such things do happen. They are called torture and considered basic human right violations. Survivors of such things are the "legitimate" PTSD bearers.

I have been tortured on daily basis since my early childhood. The fact that it was mainly about my not-so-typical neurology and the perpetrators probably weren't aware of what they were doing does not change to any extent the result: I'm carrying a bag of quite severe complex trauma.


Did your family members pick on you about your sensory overloads?



BenderRodriguez
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31 Jan 2020, 1:17 pm

^
I think most people are just really insensitive about it and think you're exaggerating - a strong light doesn't bother them for instance, so they can't conceive it can bother you so much. They basically think you're a drama queen or attention seeker :shrug:

It's really hard to explain to people how bad one single thing can be, never mind a constant and concerted assault in a way they can understand - in my experience, they either accept it or not.


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magz
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31 Jan 2020, 1:30 pm

Bravo5150 wrote:
magz wrote:
I just realized something by putting together a few parts of information about my past...

One of the greatest discovery after my psychologist broght up the topic of AS was the term "sensory overload". Finally it got a name! This horrible, pain-like sensation that made me nable to do anything but curl up and cry... but I knew no actual part of my body hurt. It's like being in horrible pain without any particular organ being in this pain. When I tried to express it as a child, I met anger and denial. When I tried to explain it to a psychiatrist as an adult, he interpreted it as delusions, reinforcing my misdiagnosis.
I have sensory issues. I'm prone to sensory overload. In the overload state, I was unable to do anything... and then I was yelled at for not doing the right things and for "crying for nothing". Yelled at. And shamed. And if it was my mother, she was very skilled in hitting exactly in weak points and this ability of her went rogue.
It's like... it's like when you were so much in pain that you couldn't work, then you got severe beating for it. Really no difference, severe sensory overload is exactly like severe pain.
And then I realized, such things do happen. They are called torture and considered basic human right violations. Survivors of such things are the "legitimate" PTSD bearers.

I have been tortured on daily basis since my early childhood. The fact that it was mainly about my not-so-typical neurology and the perpetrators probably weren't aware of what they were doing does not change to any extent the result: I'm carrying a bag of quite severe complex trauma.
Did your family members pick on you about your sensory overloads?
They denied existence of my sensory overloads, I "had no reason to be so hysterical".


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magz
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31 Jan 2020, 1:33 pm

BenderRodriguez wrote:
They basically think you're a drama queen or attention seeker :shrug:

That's exactly what I heard about myself. In judgemental tone, obviously.


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IsabellaLinton
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31 Jan 2020, 1:37 pm

Magz this is a really insightful topic. I was just thinking about the same possibility with my own trauma trigger re: the picture of snow on the calendar. As a child I was forced to spend a lot of time outside with my family in the winter despite the fact I have extremely strong sensory aversions to sunlight on snow (it blinds me). I always felt sick but was told to suck it up. I was treated like a party-pooper because I would cry about the glare of winter days.

Perhaps that's what the calendar picture triggered for me, rather than some deep dark "forgotten trauma". It was a picture of a snowy day and a blue sky and my body remembered what it was like to feel helpless with light sensitivity.

I was wondering about the overlap of "sensory issues" and "trauma".

Of course not all my trauma is from sensory abuse, but I bet a lot of the childhood ones can be connected in some way.

Hugs to you for your insights and your pain.



BenderRodriguez
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31 Jan 2020, 1:58 pm

magz wrote:
BenderRodriguez wrote:
They basically think you're a drama queen or attention seeker :shrug:

That's exactly what I heard about myself. In judgemental tone, obviously.


I hear you, as a kid they used to yell at me or hit me if I was crying or even trying to avoid such things.


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IsabellaLinton
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31 Jan 2020, 2:01 pm

I told an adult family friend to f-off when I was seven years old. It didn't go over very well.

In retrospect, I think he had been bullying me because I cried so much being in the sunny snow.