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What is considered a traumatic event to be considered PTSD

B

Buna2020

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 14, 2020
Messages
51
Location
Sacramento
Hello Everyone,
This might be a stupid question, but I feel like I have no right to call what I have a post traumatic stress disorder. Many people lose their loved ones and the grieving process is different for everyone, so why do I feel like this is more than just grieving?

Let me explain. I lost someone close to me not too long ago. He was my best friend and growing up we did everything together. During and even after college, we would go off together on weekend trips. We didn't live in the same town, so we didn't see each other as often as adults, but every time I was in town, we would hang out. To my family, it seemed like we were inseparable. He got me in ways others didn't and there was no topic off limits between us.We didn't always agree on things but it was never confrontational, just sharing of opinions. I never judged him and he never judged me.

During one of my visits, I had noticed he had lost considerable amount of weight and looked a bit gaunt and sallow. He said he had been sick, vomiting and unable to hold food down the last few weeks. Then during my visit, he went in to the emergency room because he had fainted at work. That was the start of a very difficult month before he passed. I won't get in to the specifics of his illness, but he became quite sick very quickly. He was diagnosed during that ER stay and we decided I would be his power of attorney to not complicate things. He was single without kids and only had his mom and siblings. We feared that his mom and sister would be unable to make the difficult decision and honor his wishes.

The month was filled with emergency visits followed by a few nights of ICU stays. I postponed the start of my new job in order to be there for him. I became his advocate, talking to the doctors, understanding his medications, advising him through the process. We talked about his illness, the prognosis, what to do if he and when he got more sick, who to share the information with. Every time he went in to the ER, I flew to see him and spent nights in the hospital with him until he was discharged. Then I stayed for a few more days until it seemed as though he was stable, then flew home. I would only stay home for a few days before having to fly back because he was back in the ER. This went on for a month before he went into a full coma and the prognosis wasn't good - his brain was swelling and would continue to do so until. He would most likely never regain consciousness and on the slim chance he did, he would not be the same.

Based on our conversation prior to this, I knew what he wanted and made the decision to remove him from the ventilator. I sat with him until he passed away less than 12 hours later.

I have found it extremely difficult to concentrate and be motivated at work. I find myself wanting to stay in bed most mornings and feel angry and sad most days.

Is this just normal grieving or PTSD? Is there a difference in how to cope if it is PTSD?
 
Hello513

Hello513

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 24, 2018
Messages
3,467
Location
My billion dollar high tech malibu mansion
Hello Everyone,
This might be a stupid question, but I feel like I have no right to call what I have a post traumatic stress disorder. Many people lose their loved ones and the grieving process is different for everyone, so why do I feel like this is more than just grieving?

Let me explain. I lost someone close to me not too long ago. He was my best friend and growing up we did everything together. During and even after college, we would go off together on weekend trips. We didn't live in the same town, so we didn't see each other as often as adults, but every time I was in town, we would hang out. To my family, it seemed like we were inseparable. He got me in ways others didn't and there was no topic off limits between us.We didn't always agree on things but it was never confrontational, just sharing of opinions. I never judged him and he never judged me.

During one of my visits, I had noticed he had lost considerable amount of weight and looked a bit gaunt and sallow. He said he had been sick, vomiting and unable to hold food down the last few weeks. Then during my visit, he went in to the emergency room because he had fainted at work. That was the start of a very difficult month before he passed. I won't get in to the specifics of his illness, but he became quite sick very quickly. He was diagnosed during that ER stay and we decided I would be his power of attorney to not complicate things. He was single without kids and only had his mom and siblings. We feared that his mom and sister would be unable to make the difficult decision and honor his wishes.

The month was filled with emergency visits followed by a few nights of ICU stays. I postponed the start of my new job in order to be there for him. I became his advocate, talking to the doctors, understanding his medications, advising him through the process. We talked about his illness, the prognosis, what to do if he and when he got more sick, who to share the information with. Every time he went in to the ER, I flew to see him and spent nights in the hospital with him until he was discharged. Then I stayed for a few more days until it seemed as though he was stable, then flew home. I would only stay home for a few days before having to fly back because he was back in the ER. This went on for a month before he went into a full coma and the prognosis wasn't good - his brain was swelling and would continue to do so until. He would most likely never regain consciousness and on the slim chance he did, he would not be the same.

Based on our conversation prior to this, I knew what he wanted and made the decision to remove him from the ventilator. I sat with him until he passed away less than 12 hours later.

I have found it extremely difficult to concentrate and be motivated at work. I find myself wanting to stay in bed most mornings and feel angry and sad most days.

Is this just normal grieving or PTSD? Is there a difference in how to cope if it is PTSD?
I cannot say if you have PTSD or not from this even either way I am sorry for your loss.

As for PTSD it can be triggered for different reasons in different people. Everyone is different some people can get PTSD from an event that might not neccesarily trigger it in another person. This is nothing to be ashamed of as everyone copes differently

Lastly if you have this concern my advice is to seek the advice of a proffesional as only they are really qualified to diagnose PTSD.
 
D

Deleted member 91323

Guest
I am so sorry to hear you lost your friend. To watch them unwell and then to have to decide to remove him from the ventilator must have been incredibly painful. I think it is totally understandable you are sad and do not want to leave your bed. You are grieving and your feelings are understandable. It may help to talk to a grief counsellor as they will be able to support you. If you suspect you have PTSD you can always ask your doctor.
 
K

Keesha

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 19, 2019
Messages
3,904
Location
N/A
I’m so sorry for your loss. None of us can diagnose but if you are concerned, you might wish to see a doctor about it. Mourning or grieving can be exceptionally difficult. There are many stages and many symptoms all within ‘normal’ range. There’s also no shame in reaching out and asking for help. These days there are so many free hotlines if things get too difficult for you to handle.
Wishing you peace and contentment 🙏❤
 
B

Buna2020

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 14, 2020
Messages
51
Location
Sacramento
Thank you all. I am seeing a therapist. We haven't discussed that specific issue since there seems to be so many other issues going on in my life.

It was easier to bring up the anger and overwhelmingly feelings than this event. But I think it's time I do.
 
D

Deleted member 91323

Guest
I think you are doing the right thing. I can understand it will be painful to talk about your friend but I think it can really help.
 
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