You don’t get to decide

Who diagnosed you with PTSD? If you only use the CVS doc for dire emergencies, how are you getting the help you need to become a functional member of socirty?
As a veteran with PTSD, your self-diagnosis and unwillingness to find help is galling, amd quite frankly, insulting to those of us suffering with chronic PTSD that we are doing everything in our power to combat.
So until you get an actual diagnosis and help, please quit talking about your mental health, as it is quite triggering for us who ARE trying and DO have actual trauma.
Best of luck.

This is a comment that was left on a recent entry. And I’m sorry, “Heidi” (that’s what they called themselves, which frankly makes me either think of Heidi Klum or Heidi from that insane children’s story we all read at some point growing up), but YOU don’t get to decide what I’m going through.

I have a somewhat moderate driving anxiety that stems from what I’ve called over the years PTSD resulting from a horrific experience in driver’s ed in high school. The driving instructor yelled at me whenever I was behind the wheel to the point of me breaking down in tears when the lesson was over. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.  Once I graduated from Driver’s Ed, I didn’t get behind the wheel of a car for almost a decade because it was just too damn scary and my anxiety would kick in and I’d be a mess. I’ve been in several accidents and I’m at the point now that driving is causing me to be so anxious I don’t know how much longer I’ll be able to do it without having to go back on medication and back in to therapy to deal with it.

I don’t know what trauma you’ve been through in your life, “Heidi”, but don’t assume because I don’t talk a lot about what I’ve gone through in my life that I haven’t experienced trauma of my own. Some things are just too painful to talk about, frankly. I’m just not ready or willing to open up about every single thing that I’ve ever been through that’s ever hurt me and that’s my right. It’s called privacy. I’ve talked about some of it but a lot of it is just too painful to even think about half the time and talking about it is not even on the table. Unless, of course, you’re a therapist, which you are not. Unless you actually are because on the internet you can be any goddamned thing you want. If you want to be a fluffy unicorn with a rainbow horn, you can be that on the internet. That is both the wonderful joy and saddest thing about the internet: You can be anything you want because nobody knows if you’re that thing or not.

I consider myself to be a somewhat semi-functional member of society. Because of my anxiety and my depression (among other things) I have a hard time holding down a job. And that sucks. There are days when I don’t even leave the house because it’s just too freaking scary out there. Or I don’t have the energy to get out of bed because it’s gonna take way more energy to function than what I have available to me at that very moment. Sometimes I can force energy out of caffeine and sheer willpower, but not always.

“Heidi”, while I am sorry that you are suffering from chronic PTSD, that does not in any way invalidate my own personal struggle with anxiety, depression and all the other not fun crap I go through on a daily basis. And I am NOT going to stop talking about mental health (mine or mental health in general) just because you claim it’s going to trigger you. I’m sorry if it does trigger you. But shutting up about it doesn’t do me or anyone else any good. Some good may come of me sharing my experiences and my stories and reaching out to others like myself who are suffering in similar ways.

When people like you come off as classist/elitist, “Heidi”, it kinda pisses me right off. Because somehow you think that because you have X and I have Y, then your struggle is somehow more than what I go through and you are some how more damaged than I am because you have X while I only suffer from Y. And that’s simply not true. NO mental illness..whether that is depression, anxiety, PTSD, better than another one. Nobody’s struggle is greater or less than another’s. Your struggle may not be MY struggle, but that doesn’t mean you’re more broken and dysfunctional than I am. Maybe you are. I don’t know. But to say that I am clearly not as broken as I think I am and that claiming and naming my enemy (PTSD) is wrong simply because I haven’t been formally diagnosed..unh uh. No bueno, amiga. We are all fighting to get by every single day, no matter what the diagnosis.

We are all in this together, “Heidi”, whether you realize it or not.


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