PTSD And The Trauma Battlefield by Stephanie March
When people hear the term PTSD one of the first thing that comes to mind is veterans of war and with good reason. However, there are different kinds of veterans of completely different kinds of wars that also suffer from the grips of this sometimes debilitating illness. I personally have never seen a commercial or awareness campaign aimed at trauma survivors that suffer from PTSD and there is something very wrong with that.
Simply finding research about the prevalence of PTSD in trauma survivors proves to be a challenge. Why is this not being funded when a woman is assaulted or beaten every 9 seconds?
Every 9 seconds is roughly the time it took for you to read the previous two paragraphs.
One article states that “The prevalence of PTSD in victims of IPV (Intimate Partner Violence) has been found to be as high as 63.8%”. This is higher than the average of people in general society with PTSD which is roughly, according to the same article, between 1 and 12%. When you consider that approximately 10 million people are victims of domestic violence in the United States in any given year… that’s a huge portion of society being ignored.
I have personally battled PTSD from a combination of childhood trauma and domestic violence I endured as an adult. I can assure you that my symptoms have rivaled, if not surpassed, those of veterans. Not that it is a competition, and there is certainly no prize, but the impact of this illness is felt every bit as much among survivors.
PTSD forms when someone is placed in a situation in which they are fearful for their life or well-being. There is no doubt that a woman, man, or child being abused faces this kind of intense fear. This results in flashbacks, nightmares, hypervigilance, and a host of other symptoms the survivor is left to somehow manage.
So regardless of how you developed PTSD, be it from child abuse or any form of bullying that occurs with violence, this article is for you. This is an acknowledgement of your suffering and existence. You survived a war and walked away with scars that deserve to be recognized.
The reduction of symptoms is completely possible and that is not something I say flippantly. I speak from experience. Just as you deserve acknowledgement, your mental health does as well. Please practice self-care and, if you are suffering from PTSD or any other illness, make the effort to put your mental health first. You deserve for recovery to be a priority.
I realize I am one voice in a very big pond but this is something I truly care about and I hope this article reaches you if you need to see it. You are not alone in believing that you deserve to have your struggle recognized. Consider it done.
Now go forward and validate another survivor that’s escaped the trauma battlefield.
Stephanie is a writer, survivor, and advocate. You can find her on Twitter or at her blog.