Longest Day, Longer Nights!

Isolationism at Its Core

As the name implies, Isolationism is the loneliest of features in anyone’s life, that one can come to try to accept and then live with. It is the actions of a person whom resides with the feelings, emotions, and habits in which a person finds himself not being able to be amidst other people, for a variety of reasons. The reasoning behind my own journey in this world is multi-faceted, just as the other features of the PTSD, of which I have had to bear with, for over 30 years of my life.

Being isolated from other people who live around me, and whom come in and out of my life, is sometimes lonely. However, the levels of distrust and the levels of exposures to possible triggers, is at times more unbearable than becoming comfortable in my company; and regulating the contact I have with others.

At times when I am made to have interactions with others, I have to limit the time frames spent “out in the open,” that is out and mingling with them. Only select few people are allowed in the group that I feel comfortable enough to spend any amounts of time.

Typically, I will spend anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes, then have put space between myself and those people, to settle myself down enough to go back and re-enter the interactions with these people. Often times, I stay until someone says something that is irritating, or that may lead to a “triggering” of another more pronounced feature of my P.T.S.D. or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder symptoms. Establishing this “cushion,” as I call it, I can typically engage these people for periods which may vary before calling my meetings with them as being over, allowing me to respectfully leave completely.

(You can read more about my daily struggles in a hub page post called: “Daily Struggles of PTSD.”)

For other people who are in a little bit different group, which is much, much smaller, I can stay and engage these people for longer periods of time, without worrying about being triggered, becoming irritated or becoming uncomfortable. Typically, this group is made up of about five people, and some very select members of my family. For these people, although I cannot sleep with them around, unless I pass out due to exhaustion, I can be relaxed enough to joke and play around; with very little anxiety or threats being perceived.

Going through a Day; With Nothing to Do

Sitting in the living area of my home, a small studio apartment, all the lights are on to remove all of the shadows on the walls; which would otherwise allow for places that things can set unobservable to the eye in the darkness created by the blinds being pulled. The television on to take away the discerning quietness that would otherwise rule the room’s ambience, and the distractions of being in silence.

I open the doors and window to allow a free flow of fresh air, to fill the room; then retreat behind my desk and get ready for my daily task of writing, hubs and blog posts, as well as to complete contracted tasks as a freelance writer. A note posted upon my door, discourages visitors and solicitors, from walking up and knocking upon my door. Unfortunately, there are those whom seemingly don’t know how to read, or have a selective ability at best.

My service dog, sits on the bed, staring at me and occasionally takes naps to fill his day. Aside from walks spaced throughout the day, and an occasional liberty to run outside with neighborhood dogs and play to get the “cob-webs” out of his bones.

Thinking of having or asking for someone over, is not really an option. IN my mind, if I ask for someone to come over, I have not any recourse which would allow me to respectfully ask them to leave or to give me space, should I have to take a break from their presence; or if their presence seems to be “rubbing” me the wrong way. Generally, even those whom I can tolerate on short stents of time, come over, I can generally walk outside with them in tow and then take a momentary break without upsetting the balances of respect and privacy, to gather myself enough to return to their company.

Do you know someone who once was outgoing and socially involved, whom moved into isolation?

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Soundings of Rudeness

I know that what I have writing in here, has the soundings of rudeness. However, nothing could be more untrue, in my estimation. You see, it’s more along the lines of being honest and also of survival and mental stability, if that is afforded.

The features of PTSD, especially the complex nature of the PTSD which comes as a result of multiple Traumatic events, of which sparked off this way of living; which I did not chose.

The problems that live with the serious nature of Isolationism is the cycles of depression that goes with it. Although I have been forced into living the way I do, and I know that some would say it was choice, it has been nothing of the sort. The life I have been living is nothing short of a sentence in a prison, of which I found myself; due to those events which brought my life into jeopardy, and for all practical purposes should have claimed my life. It’s a life I hate and despise, I will admit, but it’s a life I have found myself in.

PTSD sufferers whom are isolated, are often too involved with fighting their demons and need help
PTSD sufferers whom are isolated, are often too involved with fighting their demons and need help

Facts of Isolationism

Here are a few facts about people whom live in Isolation:

  • Isolation is usually caused by depression and other PTSD features
  • sufferers of trauma, often find their lives in isolation
  • Sufferers of Isolation, often have an increase of heart and other health issues
  • Depression and fear is among some reasons people move their lives into isolation

Cycles of Depression, Anger and Flashbacks

One thing that is a constant, is the cycles of Depression, Anger and Flashbacks and also I cannot forget the various levels of anxiety, of living life like this. You see, I am not the only one who suffers life this way. It is the life of many PTSD, and “Complex” PTSD sufferers.

This life is nothing short of being in prison, but not just any prison. In most cases, it is worse than any “man-made” prison ever planned, engineered or built. It does not have guards, its guards are the perceived danger that lies outside and with other people who are perceived to be waiting to bring harm, or spark off an attack from the sufferer.

The levels of anxiety, sometimes brings sufferers to a point that “flash-backs” are inevitable and that is where the actual danger resides with the PTSD sufferer.

WE never know what the outcome of our flashbacks will be, whether it be harm to ourselves, or to those around us, we have no clue until the flashback is concluded and we slip into a phase of depression and come back to the present time, to realize we are actually not in danger.

PTSD flashbacks, leave us immobile or at worse of its effects, cause us to lash out uncontrollably and irrationally, at whatever is closest to us; either verbally or physically. In the best cases, we retreat in fear and slip back into isolation, to deal with the fear and other emotions that may wash over us. In many cases, the features of my attacks will allow me to just become idle and dazed, not reacting until I get a sense of where I am. (I was able to hone this skill over many years of dealing with my PTSD. What tools I used to accomplish this, I have no clue.)

Looking back at the day, and the perceived waste of it, Anger sets in. I am finding myself angry at myself for letting the day slip away, not accomplishing anything note-worthy or tangible. My mind easily slips into the anoles of my traumas, without urging, and the silhouettes of my attackers sometimes will find their way to my mind, if there are shadows in the room. The anger increases to rage, and then I may find myself into a full blown panic/anxiety attack; then the flashbacks start up again. This cycle may continue for some time, but when the commotion is done, I often find myself back into a state of clinical depression with my mind running in circles, of self-doubt, self-loathing, and mental beatings. If I cannot get a handle on these emotions, its back to the anger and it all starts over again.

Once all of my energy has been expended, and I am sitting tired on the chair or laying on the bed with a head-ache, the loneliness sets back in. I know that I cannot have anyone in my life, for a few reasons, so I am stuck in the fact that I have to endure my imprisonment on my own.

Getting Help

There are so many people who have suffered in silence, who live this way on their own, and have for many years. I lived with my pain, by myself and in silence for over 30 years. It was not until recently that I was able to find someone who could assist me, in dealing with these issues; to allow me to begin to break the cycles, I have been living in for so long.

My getting the assistance in dealing with these issues, that allows me to open up and begin to document the journey I have been on, and the one I am undertaking now. It’s not easy, and it’s filled with a lot of self-doubts, and constantly facing the demons, that pushed me into the life I am living today.

I guess it’s the reason I am starting to share this journey, on both my blog, as well as on these hub page posts. It’s not easy to share this, but another reason for my sharing is not to be self-serving nor to gain pity or actually to gain anything more than the ability to break free, for myself and face these matters “head on.”

Another reason I am posting these stories, is to show others who may be suffering, that they are not alone; and that there is help out in the world to help them. Another reason, is to educate those whom may have sufferers of PTSD, in their lives, so that they may be a bit more understanding of what is going on with their loved ones, and possibly to encourage them to reach out.

With that being said, I will close this post. For anyone suffering in silence, there is no need to feel alone and there are people who understand what pain is. Those people may not understand to the fullest extent of your pain, but they can understand that you do not deserve to live life in fear and pain. For those of you who are getting help, Good luck and you are not alone. For those whom love someone who is suffering, I wish you strength and thank you for hanging in there. I hope you can find the strength to point your loved one in a direction of healing.

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