anxiety

Handling PTSD Anxiety Effectively After Being Triggered

Diane
There are times with PTSD that I still get triggered and get stuck with this nervous energy, a miserable level of anxiety that I simply cannot shake. Now I’m not talking about some of the other anxieties that are out there – social anxiety, generalized anxiety. Those are beasts all unto their own. I’m talking about PTSD anxiety. This is the kind of anxiety that you feel when your fight or flight response is triggered by some form of stimuli. Since there is no actual danger, you’re stuck with nothing to do with all this nervous energy. Years of living

Top Nine Things I’ve Learned During PTSD Recovery

Diane
You are not alone I’ve learned that as much as I wanted to isolate myself, connecting with others heals. I’m not going to quote the depressing statistics here, but child abuse is rampant across the globe, as is domestic abuse and rape. The link from trauma to survivor is very personal, but just remember whatever your situation – you are not alone. #metooI isolated myself for a very long time. It didn’t help me – it hurt. Isolating yourself slows down, if not stops, the healing process. There are numerous online PTSD forums which I’ll link to at the bottom

Will this never end?

Diane
After a couple weeks of those panic-like auras, I had another grand mal seizure at around 4:30 this morning. Only the second one in my life. Chewed up my tongue pretty good, wet the bed, and have a headache. I feel just exhausted. My husband took good care of me and rolled me over…unfortunately I bit his finger a little. 🙁 I just don’t know what to do. I didn’t expect to be put into this situation. Onward.

Open Letter To NYU

Diane
Dear NYU, I am angry. I trusted the ethics and reputation of your institution implicitly, and in return I was misled, I was used, and my safety was disregarded by your researchers. And the more I think about some of the things that happened during and leading up to those studies, the angrier I get. I was told that my participation could possibly result in a delay of treatment for up to 60 days. However due to NYU’s delays and false-starts, that length of time was far exceeded, to the tune of several months. Do you know what it’s like to

To be honest…no, I’m not ok.

Diane
I have been debating on whether or not to share my current meltdown status here on my Facebook blog because I try to keep it as positive as possible, and don’t want to disappoint anyone by coming across as weak. So on the advice of a very dear, strong friend – I will be honest. I’m a fucking wreck. Since the New York Times story about the canned PTSD studies went to print I’ve been fighting off feelings of guilt, shame and fear. As more articles are published I keep seeing my name and the words “childhood sexual abuse” and

Overcoming the Burden of Guilt

Diane
When something terrible happens to you that causes you to be constantly fearful or ashamed, a deep level of guilt can begin to take root. Guilt can keep you from seeking out and experiencing the joy you so desperately need to fully heal by making you feel as if you don’t deserve it. Everyone feels guilt once in a while, but if you’re a trauma survivor, it becomes a part of you. Suddenly all the mistakes you’ve ever made (or think you’ve made) start to overwhelm you. You can feel guilty for what you did. You can feel guilty for

The Nightmare(s) Before New York…

Diane
Three more days until I depart for New York, and I’m not sure if what I am feeling is nervousness, excitement or anxiety. Probably a mix of everything. I want time to stop and speed up at the same time! As much as I dislike taking my routine medication, whenever I go off of it I am reminded as to why I am on it in the first place. Amazingly enough I’ve been able to fall asleep without too much of an issue lately, however the nightmares have been kicking my ass for the past few days. My parents keep

NYU – Pfizer Drug Trial: We are a go for launch

Diane
So the dates are set, tickets are booked and I’m a ‘go’ for launch. And I’m more than a little nervous. As some of you are aware, I took part in a clinical research study several months ago. In a collaborative effort between NYU and Yale, I underwent a series of extensive physical and psychological evaluations as well as MRI and PET scans of my brain. The resulting data reaffirmed my previous diagnosis of chronic, treatment-resistant PTSD. The brain images revealed the presence of specific biological changes in the brain itself which are the direct result of experiencing extremely stressful

Off My Meds – Round Four

Diane
2014 has been a challenging year – and that’s putting it mildly. Due to my continued participation in PTSD Research, I am now once again officially “Off my meds” for the fourth time. It isn’t easy. Having been treated for years with these drugs to help with depression and anxiety, it’s like being a yo-yo. I can’t do this much more. While I understand why this research requires a pharmaceutical-free brain, as I sit here in a constant state of anxiety with nightmares starting to return, at times it is a struggle to keep the faith. I do this because

Easing Anxiety Through Mindful Breathing

Diane
I suffer from anxiety. And when I say suffer, I mean suffer. It sucks. I have constant baseline low-level anxiety. When I get spooked or ‘triggered’, I can go into full-on meltdown mode, which quickly progresses to ‘freeze mode’ or getting ‘locked up’. I have a few different methods of trying to steer the ship in another direction when it feels like the situation is escalating. The easiest and most reliable of these methods is something I refer to as mindful breathing; or simply, “my breathing” or “my exercises”. Here’s how it’s done: Close your eyes. Take a breath, and

Invitation to Participate in PTSD Drug Trials!

Diane
I’ve been going ’round and ’round in circles in my head over the past few days…and getting nowhere. The results from the brain scans are still sinking in, and have me wondering if it means that I’m going to feel like this forever… I’ve been invited to participate in two drug studies this fall, which should have me excited – and it does in a way – but other ways it has me scared. Again, no meds at all prior to the trial, so I’ll be going through the insomnia/nightmare dance all over again with no option for relief. And