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This is my first time in this group. My PTSD started while I

Tommy197's picture

This is my first time in this group. My PTSD started while I was on active duty then doing 20 plus years as a corrections officer didn't help at all. I keep seeing things in my head, horrific accidents and a murder that I could not prevent yet I feel at fault.

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Round3's picture
Jul 28

@Tommy197 I can't return to work on car. I've done a LOT of work to accept this loss. For me, remembering that I am still a paramedic regardless of where I work is important. I identify as "retired paramedic". I've also looked into helping communities in Mexico set up ambulance stations. I have all that knowledge in my head, it's just the crisis part of it I can't manage.

EMDR is a treatment that helps process trauma. It seems really hokey but it worked for me. It stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. Basically, you think of a triggering event (could be big like an event itself, or small visualizing the uniform or helicopter). Then, you follow a light bar or therapists fingers right-left-right-left. Do this while the "feelings" inside subside. Then, the therapist will ask how you feel now. If there is still activation in the body, repeat. Like I said, it feels really hokey and it doesn't work for everyone, but it worked for me. "Most people" don't have access to it so if you do, I'd jump on it. YOu have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

If you do nothing to process this, it's not going to go away. It will only build up until you blow up. It's hard work and takes time (years) but if you do the work, you can start to manage the symptoms and live a pretty awesome life. I am. :)

My index trauma was 2010. Then I acquired an addiction to oxy (self medicating to numb). Then I got clean (march 2017), then moved to a new city and new beginning (March 2018). My last flashback was July 2018. I've had some ups and downs but for the most part, I'm doing well. I'm actually enjoying my life again.

I share this with you because I want you to know that there is a light, there is a way of out this. What you are feeling today will pass. Do the work and the bad days become less bad and not as many.

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Tommy197's picture
Jul 30

Thank you, I will look into it.

Jul 31

@Tommy197 I can testify to the benefits of EMDR as well. It changed my life so drastically. And it works very fast; it's a physiological process. You can sometimes process certain events out in just one session. pretty amazing.


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