I’ve spent many years working on getting well and recovering from traumatic events. Yet, triggers still happen for me. Like just yesterday, my ex-husband was up to his old tricks and managed to upset my daughter which in turn sends me into a tail spin. His manipulating and ability to reach the souls of those he feels he owns is profound. He is a true narcissist with no care for the welfare of those around him. I found myself right back in the middle of our breakup. We split fifteen years ago, but the abuse and trauma that ensued left a lasting legacy on myself and my two children. We are all still in therapy all these years later.
Yesterday every single old emotion and fear I had then reared their heads. I felt weak, vulnerable and afraid that nobody would support me around his latest attempt at destroying us. Fifteen years ago we were truly alone. He managed to convince both families and anyone he could get to, that I was the problem. Shame on them if you ask me, but I try not to dwell on that. I had to talk to a trusted friend around my reaction to his actions to make sure it warranted this level of upset. Sometimes PTSD causes a huge over reaction in me. Fear consumes my body and I can’t think straight. Yesterday it was a mixture of fear and anger so I needed to centre myself with some help and support before I could respond to my daughters distress appropriately.
Thankfully, I can recognise the people who truly care about me now. Most of those are not family, I might add. I’ve had to learn to trust the right people and that has been one hell of a process. I’ve also learned to trust my own thinking as a recovered person and can make good decisions now. But – triggers still happen when old trauma presents itself and needs dealing with.
And I dealt with this without involving him or having any conversation at all with him. Recovery is about empowering yourself and your children. It’s about looking at the truth and the facts and using what we have learned through years of work to deal with challenging events. We wont feed the fear and the trauma – even though there are times instinct will want me to fight to the death. I know now how to shut it down, distance ourselves and nurture the precious people in my life.