Saturday, 14 November 2015

The shameful taboo of a traumatic disorder

Earlier this week I had an introduction meeting at the corporation which owns the apartment I most recently looked at to rent. We went through all the usual questions and wishes, and I mentioned of course that I really prefer a quiet place. The man I was talking with mentioned of course that what is an acceptable amount of noise differs per person.

I wanted to explain that I have severe post-traumatic stress syndrome, that many noises from neighbours, heating systems and such startle me and make me want to flee or even commit suicide if they continue for an extended period of time. But I didn't. I just said that I like quiet apartments, with no neighbours above me and such.

A few days ago I was on my way to do groceries on my bicycle, when first this guy and then a girl ended up waiting next to me at a traffic light. They started kissing. The sensation of sickness, rage, terror and panic was just too much to describe in mere words. I wanted to scream, yell, run, get away from there. For hours and until the next day this feeling lasted. Yet I kept it all inside until I was back home and could cry and openly express the ripping pain I felt inside.

I am well aware of how far my PTSD and related traumatic disorders affect my life and how irrational the beliefs are which originate from these traumas, such as that everyone wishes to harm me, that all men are rapists, that all physicians and psychologists are evil, conniving psychopaths, that the only reasonable thing I can do is to take my own life. That there is nothing left to salvage in my life or in humanity as a whole.

Maybe it's because all of it sounds so completely crazy and out of touch with reality that I cannot and will not talk about with just anyone. I also realise that heterosexual couples have likely no idea how much emotional pain and suffering they cause with their openly affectionate and intimate behaviour. The hatred I feel towards the latter is born from the pain they caused, not because they knowingly and willingly caused my suffering.

Yet all of it comes down to that thanks to these traumatic disorders I have a lot what normal society would call 'crazy' inside of me. Safely locked away until something triggers it. And very few people - basically only those with traumatic disorders themselves - can comprehend what it feels like to survive through each and every day like that.

My name is Maya, and I have multiple traumatic disorders, yet I do not talk about it out of fear that society will shun me even more.

Welcome to today's enlightened society, I guess...


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