Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My Story

When I first started this website it was for therapeutic reasons.I, too, suffer from PTSD for over 30 years. It began as a way to document my nightmares and there were many. Some were horrific while others were confusing. All of them are available to read. You just have to go back a ways.
I had never heard of PTSD until my primary care doctor at the VA medical Center, in Birmingham, AL. suggested that I may be suffering from the disease. I was referred to the psychiatric department for outpatient counseling. I did not tell the complete truth about my past for fear of criminal prosecution and I really did not believe in their diagnosis. How could something that happened in 1978 affect me today? I just did not buy it. Not possible.
In 2002, I was committed to the psychiatric ward at the VA hospital in Tuscaloosa, AL. I spent 3 weeks on a lock down ward and was diagnosed with the disease, given therapy, medication, and released to continue my prescribed regime. I still had not told the doctors what really happened so long ago. Close, but not the unvarnished truth.
I began having nightmares that affected my waking life. I had recently gotten married and my wife suggested I try to be admitted in an inpatient program for PTSD, exclusively, in Tuscaloosa. My symptoms were becoming so bad that I told my therapist the whole truth. He immediately stopped me and told me that he was bound by regulations to tell his superiors. He asked me if I was ready to tell him and be prepared for the consequences, if any, that may come. I had been harboring this secret for over 30 years and I could not bear it alone any longer. It had ruled my life and almost killed me. I was ready!
After I told my story the relief I felt was indescribable. The weight I had been carrying was lifted. It was absolutely amazing. My therapist told me not to repeat my story to anyone until he talked with the Chief of Psychiatry and the criminal division of the military. I did not care what the outcome would be. I was free!
A week after I told my story I was called in to the PTSD Program Director's office, who just so happened to be my counselor, and was given the news. After speaking with the Chief of Psychiatry, the hospital administrator, and the criminal division of the Air Force, I was given authority to tell my story in group or individual sessions without fear of criminal prosecution. And Tell I Did! The more I told it the better I felt. I was very discreet about when and who to tell but it sure felt good! My blog became valid once I told the whole truth and nothing but the truth.I have tried to help others as I help myself. I began seeing a psycho-therapist who specialized in hypnosis. The better I felt the less I felt about writing of my experiences. I began to find stories and put them in my blog, never taking credit for another's work. I continue to do just that. If there comes a time to talk about myself, I will not hesitate. I can only keep what I have by giving it away and I hope you will continue to read my blog. You are the reason I write and I want to hear from you but most of all, I want to say, Thank You. theblogmeister

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