#PTSDDaddy’s Double Edge Sword
Knowing what you got wrong is a double edge sword.
What do I mean by this? Simply, knowing what you got and that it is a lifetime diagnosis is good and bad. Hear me out…
I fought very hard no admitting to PTSD. Let me explain though that finding out I had it and finally admitting I had it are two different things. When the wife and counselor agreed that I had PTSD I was mad at both and at this time I KNEW I had PTSD but I did no ADMIT I had PTSD. I spent several weeks attempting to counter-argue my counselor and wife about it. I found out more along the way of what PTSD is and why it is and eventually came to a point I had to ADMIT I had PTSD. Admitting you have PTSD is no easy ask for a bad ass such as myself. Especially after hearing about it over and over and more and more. I will tell you this, one of my hardest battles with PTSD is NOT letting all the information and stories dictate who I am or who I will become.
It is very easy to fall into what I like to call “the trap” of having PTSD. This is where you go, “oh hey I was an asshole today but it’s ok because I have PTSD”. Really? I get to shove off being a complete ass to one little thing that nobody can cure so I just let it happen and everyone else should be ok with this? Not happening! Or does it? How easy would it be for me to say “look I don’t like people, they make me uncomfortable and I get a bit triggered and overwhelmed so I’m going to stay inside and not work, not socialize, not do anything that I have to be face to face with people, and it’s ok because I have PTSD.”? I would LOVE to not have to deal with people there are several stupid people who waste my oxygen breathing and they make me very angry. I cannot stand to look at them, to talk to them, or to be anywhere near them. Does not matter everyone has to deal with stupid people and people in general to get through day to day living. I am a man I need to provide for my wife and children and I’ll be damned if I hide under a rock the rest of my life and tell my kids and wife “well the rest is up to you”.
I have heard complaints from a few spouses of assholes like me saying “he just gave up, he sits and drinks all day”, or “he doesn’t do anything but play his video games, he won’t even look for a job”. To these guys I say this… “Man the fuck up!” I can say that because I put my man pants on, and face the PTSD world head on day in and day out. Yes there are times where I am exhausted or it is just too much for one day. I get that, I do. As my daddy told me right before I joined the Army he said “Son, you signed up for a hard job, there is no quitting. You will make it or you will die trying. Those are the only two honorable options.”
Since when did honor get lost amongst men today? No wonder women treat us like a bunch of “metro’s” wearing skinny jeans and man buns and not leaving the house because the stupid people scare us? First of all I’m not scared of people I just hate the look they give me when they are a dumbass and I am nearby. I guess I have this look that broadcasts the fact that I despise them and want to go home or do bad things to dumb people. Look people, I have made the choice (yes it’s a choice) to get up go to work and do the best damn job I can. You cannot succumb to all the stories of what we are with PTSD and what the symptoms dictate we do.
The easy thing is to read about PTSD and know that self analyze. We are all WEB-MD experts in this day and age of Googleverse. Understand that reading about a trigger, and relating to that trigger, does not make having that trigger and reaction to the trigger in any way shape or form “normal” or “okay”. Reading about the trigger, and relating to that trigger, should make us more aware of when shit is going bad and assist us in stopping ourselves, getting a moment to get down off that trigger induced adrenaline panic stricken reaction, and work our little damaged brains into recognizing what is going on and controlling ourselves emotionally. My “go to” emotion is hate and anger. I’m good at it. I almost get a trill out of it. It’s incredibly powerful but in no way shape or form necessary to react to most of my triggers. I react out of anger then innocent people get hurt like my wife and kids. Once the anger grenade goes off a little gets on everyone near me whether they deserved it or not.
I guess the point of this article if not clear by now is this. It’s very easy to learn that you have PTSD so you start acting like you have PTSD and reasoning that the actions are justified. I get this, I understand this, I refuse to let it control me. I hit a point, a horrible mentally psychotic and scary point in life where I had to decide I wanted control of my brain back. This is not easy, and I know it’s not an over night decision. I like to think of it as this way, my father had a heart attack and after all was said and done was sent home by the doctors with two canes, told he only had a couple more years left to live, and he would never walk without canes again. My dad internally decided those doctors were wrong. Within months he sent the canes back to the doctors as his way of saying “FUCK YOU” and he way outlived is couple years left diagnosis. No different with PTSD, don’t let the doctors, counselors, or books (or Googleverse for that matter) tell you how you are with PTSD and how life will be forever. Decide internally that you want to have a GREAT life with your family, your wife, your kids, your friends and take that and make it so. Life can get better, but this one’s up to you! Everyone else can give you tools to use but YOU control the end of the story. Not them, not PTSD, but you.
PTSD, it’s a double edged sword. You can hurt those around you, you can hurt yourself, or you can use it to completely destroy your demons and what keeps you from being the man you could be. Fuck those demons, fuck the counselors, fuck the psychs!