On January 4th of this year, I posted the following article in response to a person who found his or her way to my blog via a search engine.  This morning, October 26th, 2013, I received a comment on this post.  The person who commented was offended by my belief that if one wants to heal C-PTSD and gets the skilled help to do that, then healing is possible–at least healing is possible to some extent.  I am not deluded into thinking that I will heal my C-PTSD completely, but I am working to heal as much as I can so that I can enjoy the final years of my life without the miserable symptoms of PTSD and without some of the relational problems I’ve had in the past.  Research supports my belief that C-PTSD can be at least partially healed if the person involved wants to do that  and gets skilled help.  The posts I’ve read by other C-PTSD bloggers support this, also.  C-PTSD is a disorder that, unlike some severe mental health issues, is healable if a person chooses to go that route.  The route is long, hard, and painful, but it’s possible, thanks to brain research and modern methods of therapeutic intervention, to undo at least some of the damage that has been done by neglect in childhood, abuse of all sorts, and sexual battery and molestation. 

Here is the comment I found on my Google blog: “Jean, it may be true for you but not for everyone. I find the statement that one must want to recover, choose  to heal, pretty offensive. Glad it worked for you but do never think you can speak for every person with C-PTSD.”  If you feel you can help me understand why this reader has been offended, please let me know so that I can be more careful in what I say in future blog posts.  My goal is to let people know that C-PTSD is healable.  I don’t want to offend anyone!  Below is my original post:

In Response to “How long does complex PTSD last?” 

Today somebody found my blog by typing “How long does complex ptsd last?” into the Google search engine.  I’d like to address that question briefly–
From what I have learned through my own experience and by asking mental health professionals, I believe that C-PTSD lasts until the person who has the condition decides to commit to healing and then does the necessary work to bring healing about.   For those of us who have the condition, C-PTSD, the good news is that the condition can be dealt with and healing can take place.  Through our own efforts, WE can heal ourselves–with the help of a gentle, trained, and understanding therapist.  C-PTSD is NOT an incurable disease, and it is NOT a condition that is cured passively through medication.  If one wants to recover from C-PTSD, one needs to commit to putting forth the effort to do the necessary work with a specially trained therapist.   So the answer to the question of how long C-PTSD lasts is this: “The amount of time C-PTSD lasts is controlled/determined by the client and the therapy/healing process of the client.”   A person with the condition can choose to do nothing about his or her C-PTSD, and the condition will remain unchanged or worsen.  On the other hand, if a person is determined and committed to his or her healing, then with diligence and competent help, that person will heal.   The reality I have accepted is that at age 73, I will probably never be completely free from all aspects of my C-PTSD, but I’m doing my best–and succeeding!–to heal as much as I can in the years I have left.  
 
Any amount of healing I do improves the quality of my inner life.  So at least I can tell myself that if I hang in there, my inner life will continue to improve.  For me, continuous improvement is good enough.  If I were a lot younger, I might not settle for “good enough,” but in my case, “good enough” is good enough.   If I were, say, in my thirties or forties, I might consider entering into a permanent relationship, a mutually satisfying relationship, mature and balanced–healthy, in other words.  If that were the case, and if that were what I wanted in life, I would perhaps become more determined to “finish” healing–if anyone really finishes healing. But at my present age, I just want to be more peaceful inside myself and enjoy my last years of life.  At my age now, I’m not sure that I have the energy to put into making a full-time relationship with a partner work.  I have too many projects that I want to finish before I “fall off my perch”–a euphemism I learned from a distant relative in Scotland.  Energy that I would put into a relationship would be energy I would not have to finish up the projects I want to finish.  So, as I said, in my case, “good enough” is good enough. The above, then, is my attempt to answer the question appearing in the title of this post.  I hope this helps!  Jean
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