Sunday, February 2, 2014In light of a mention by a commenter to my last post of Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder I can only say that I will never live long enough to “recover” from the adaptations my body had to go through to survive the trauma I experienced from birth and for the next 18 years of my life that I suffered from severe abuse.

I instinctively defend against those who suggest that the “self-regulation” that was lost to me due to the trauma I experienced as my early physiological development was altered can ever be restored to me.  It is not possible.  I can gain useful information.  I can learn to gain increasing conscious control over how I experience life in my body.  But I cannot get back again (“re-cover”) what I never was able to acquire in a safe and secure early attachment environment in the first place.

Should I have nothing else to do in this lifetime but backtrack in some attempt to repair what cannot be repaired I would still be doing very little other than chasing my own invisible tail that “professionals” might suggest that I have – which I don’t have – so for me the “point” is a useless one!  I don’t care what “diagnostic label” anyone might wish to use to describe how I ended up living in an entirely different kind of body than I would have if I had not been exposed to the horrific trauma that I was for all those years. 

Yes, I do agree that gaining “understanding” of how a trauma changed body works is helpful.  But to intimate that those trauma changes can be undone is – ridiculous – and therefore dangerous in its misleading deception.

Yes, “PTSD is a radical shift from normal self-regulation to being trapped in a constant state of alarm.”  I might find momentary ways to avert the complete recognition that ALARM is my normal, ordinary state of being, but that is so far a cry from accepting as fact that I can make that ALARM state retreat into near nonexistence that I no longer accept that a state of “non-ALARM” is even a possibility for me to reach. 


I have not studied Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD).  At this point in my life I consider only what I find of what I need to know as it is written directly within the texts of the neuroscientists themselves.  When I read even a few words about C-PTSD, even on an appearing reputable site, my inner self-defender will not let me continue reading.  I am now personally gifted with knowing what personally relates to me – and therefore APPLIES to me – and what would be helpful versus what would be NOT helpful and in fact would be harmful to me.

I am NOT speaking for or about ANYONE ELSE here.  I am talking about myself, and as I mentioned in my previous post I am very much isolated in the kind of trauma I experienced.  For example, I do not believe these words:  “Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a psychological injury.”

I know myself well enough by now at age 62 to know that what I suffer from is due to PHYSIOLOGICAL changes in the very construction of my nervous system-brain, in my “calm-stress response system,” even in my immune system due to severe trauma during the earliest very rapid stages of my development.  Certainly because the severity of the abuse I suffered never let up and lasted for 18 long years nearly all – if not ALL – of my later development was altered by the trauma in very complex ways.

I do not consider ANY of my difficulties to be “psychological” and I bristle and turn away from ANY so-called “psychologically-minded” professional who would claim to know me better than I know myself.  I have a well-honed inner truth detector that works for me.  I know when words ring true and when they don’t.  I do not compromise myself.  I owe no professional courtesy.  I do not NEED in any way to prove myself “right” nor do I need to prove anyone “wrong.”

I simply know what is true for me.

I absolutely encourage EVERYONE to find out what is true for them.  I speak only for myself — with a few cautions to others if they seem to apply.

Yes, I can agree with the whole list of what can “do this” to a person.  But if there is no rock solid trail of facts available about anyone’s earliest life going all the back to the health of their life in the womb of their mother nobody has enough information to complete the picture of what might CAUSE something called C-PTSD.  They therefore have no real clue how to “fix it” or even if it is possible to “fix it” in most circumstances where it might be found.

When something is put forth by any person or group of people as being THE TRUTH – and there is even ONE exception to that “truth” – no truth AS THE TRUTH exists in such a claim.  Researchers refer to “an acceptable margin of error.”  When I am a member of that margin I don’t buy what’s being touted no matter WHO is selling it.

Psychology as a field of study has, in my thinking, so joined forces both with the Western Medical Model and with the pharmaceutical industries that I remain skeptical of any truth supposedly discovered in the arena within which all of these “schools” operate.  Having a PART of the truth is not the same thing as having THE TRUTH – which by definition would require that ALL of the truth is known.

Nobody at this point in the evolution of humanity can claim to know all of the truth.  We only know what has been discovered thus far, and even those discoveries are colored by the societal belief system of those making their claims.  There are biases in “science.”  Those biases create blind-spots that those of us who have been physiologically changed in our development by severe early trauma need to work to pay attention to.

In my universe any time someone uses the term “psychological” to describe the great difficulties we work with as we continue to survive given all that has happened to us even within our very body we live in I heed my own inner alert warning system that tells me I am being judged as being somehow “damaged” and inferior to the person(s) using that term “against me.”

My truth is that I am DIFFERENT than those people are.  The changes that happened in our development make perfect sense.  Without them we would be dead.  It’s that simple.  It is the MISMATCH that we experience as survivors physiologically formed in a malevolent environment between HOW we are in a more benevolent world versus how those who were physiologically formed in a benign environment are in this world that creates the complications we live with.

Any “psychological” information that we may discover on our own or that is given to us by anyone else that does not begin with a thorough presentation of these facts is not honoring us with the truth of what we most need to know.

As one blog reader has so clearly put it, “We fly with a different flock.”  We are not (for the most part and I do recognize some exceptions, my mother being one of them) sick people.  We are changed.  We are different.  We are complicated beyond ordinary due to what we have lived through and continue to live with. 

Our lives have been very difficult and they continue to be very difficult.  We have the right to receive factual information that will help us understand ourselves and one another better.  But more than anything we have to trust our own inner guidance system.  If anything we encounter along our healing journey makes us feel in ANY WAY bad about ourselves there is truth missing.

Honor yourself.  Listen to yourself.  Trust yourself.  Never stop asking questions!  Never give your inner power to anyone!


Here is our first book out in ebook format.  A very kind professional graphic artist is going to revise our cover pro bono – what a gift and thank you Ben!

Click here to view or purchase:  A STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read free for Amazon Prime customers.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are WELCOME and appreciated!


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  1. I have a lot of noodling to do here….but let me say this….no one can undo what has been done…my physical response to triggers can’t be “cured” … what I can do is seek to understand myself and my response to stimuli….and have compassion for others in addition to having compassion for myself

  2. Makes me think about the time many years ago when I was unemployed and quite depressed and my father said, “It’s not that bad, the unemployment rate is only 5%.” My response, “My PERSONAL unemployment rate is 100%”. It seems to me that most humans, who have never suffered any great trauma, just assume everyone thinks/is/feels just like they do.
    I have found tremendous help through your blogs and through counseling at the VA and using Lexapro, but I know that my therapies will not work for everyone. We survivors are quite unique, each of us, in our own ways.
    Keep on truckin’!!

    • Thank you for writing, Lisa. I was afraid I “upset” you with this post — which was so NOT my intention. Life is usually so confusing for me – whose problem is whose problem, etc. I am in the midst of some heart wrenching — and therefore probably heart growing — times. Like trying to gracefully surf through a mudslide, I suppose….

      I will indeed keep on truckin’ and thank you for the encouragement!!!!! Always good to hear your voice!!

  3. I am sorry to read this. I have an intense distrust of the western medical model and the pharmaceutical industry also, but to refuse to understand what the definition of CPTSD before discounting it completely, is unfortunate. Learning about CPTSD is eventually what brought me here to your blog which has been a huge help in finding my own voice!

    There may not be a cure available for us abused children, but learning new ideas, theories based on studying people, has helped me to understand why I am so different from everyone else who had a loving mother.

  4. A powerful post. We dont seem to ever get away from categorising people into healthy/unhealthy, weak/ strong or damaged/whole. Other cultures have fascinating insights into what westerners consider as mental problems ~ often attributing spiritual gifts to them. And dont think the way westeners think about illness.. anyway I got a bit sidetracked.xx

    • Important points! Somehow in ‘democracy’ do we foster sameness? At the same time in America we espouse ‘individuality and uniqueness’? This very paradoxical splitting is, to me, a sign of lack of health in itself. We cannot safely – and I mean by that HEALTHILY – comply to the requisites of our own culture and still come out whole!! xoxo

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