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I think I have PTSD and it's making me have trust issues

Posted: Wed May 12, 2021 4:25 am
by Hel
I have been having nightmares that feature my ex-boyfriend, lack of sleep, and triggers from my past relationship for months. I keep having trust issues and a fear of abandonment, and I keep thinking that my current boyfriend will break up with me - even though I know he won't because he loves me, and has given no reason for me to believe he'll treat me the way my ex did.

I took self-diagnosis PTSD quizzes, specifically for relationship trauma, and I answered as honestly as possible and every time I got PTSD as the answer. I am really stressing out because I feel like I can't trust the people I love, and that they will hurt me. And everything seems to trigger memories I don't want about my ex - songs we listened to, pictures, even just when people speak with the same mannerisms. I'm really upset and I want to be able to trust my current boyfriend but everything is making me have these trust issues and I don't know if it's all in my head.

I'm talking to a counselor but it's not enough please help.

Re: I think I have PTSD and it's making me have trust issues

Posted: Wed May 12, 2021 8:07 am
by Siân
Hi Hel,

I'm sorry that you're struggling with this. Self-diagnosis quizzes can help you learn more about something you feel might be affecting you but at the end of the day they need to be backed up with support from a professional. You say you already have a counsellor, are they someone who has expertise in PTSD and dealing with relationship trauma?

PTSD can be complex and beyond regular talking therapy, there are specialist psychological therapies like forms of CBT and EMDR specifically for PTSD. Can you get an official diagnosis - or find out if a trained professional thinks that there's something else going on - so that you can access the right care?

Unfortunately, trust isn't built all at once and we don't get over previous trauma just because we want to. This will take time. A trauma-informed therapist will help you figure out strategies to make things less awful in the meantime, whether that's supporting you deal with your fears in your relationship with your new boyfriend, or simply getting your sleep back on track so you have more emotional bandwidth to deal with the hard stuff.

Re: I think I have PTSD and it's making me have trust issues

Posted: Wed May 12, 2021 2:00 pm
by Hel
Yeah I will try to ask my counselor if she can diagnose me. In the meantime though I am just really upset.

Today didn’t help. My boyfriend was really moody because he’s going through personal shit with his parents, and he was taking out his annoyances on me and our mutual friends. He made fun of me and blamed me for something (he’s never, ever done that before and it made me feel really bad). We told him to knock it off and if he’s upset about his parents to talk openly about it, but instead he went on being really bitter and making rude comments.

I’m not going to text him or anything right now - clearly he needs time to cool off. Inherently I know he loves me and obviously his own personal stuff got in the way of his ability to recognize what he said was hurtful. Still, I am really upset about it now because he and I never bicker or argue and he was being completely unreasonable. I know it wasn’t my fault but I just feel like I’m in the blame - my ex used to blame me for everything and today this was a trigger.

I’m really just annoyed mostly because my current boyfriend really just needs to realize he doesn’t have to take out his issues on me or my friends. Should I confront him about it tomorrow? I don’t know how long he needs to cool off.

Re: I think I have PTSD and it's making me have trust issues

Posted: Thu May 13, 2021 8:56 am
by Carly
Hi Hel!

I agree, your boyfriend needs to understand that he hurt your feelings and that it's out of line to treat you and his friends the way he did. While I do think you should confront him as soon as possible, it does sound like he's having a hard time right now, especially because he is struggling with expressing his feelings. Though its an important and necessary conversation, sometimes it can be hard to hear and discuss how we've hurt others while we're having a hard time. If you confront him today or if you choose to wait a few days, I think it's important to ask him if he's in a place emotionally and mentally to talk about what happened the other day before actually starting the conversation. If he says no, I think you should let him know that it's okay if he needs more time, but also that it's important to you and you want to talk about it soon.

Re: I think I have PTSD and it's making me have trust issues

Posted: Thu May 13, 2021 1:38 pm
by Hel
Thanks for the tips. I did talk to him (my current boyfriend) today, and we were able to resolve our issues, and we both said we love each other and want to move forward.

That being said, my trust issues are still there, because of my ex and the way he treated me. I think my next step is talking to my counselor about it - I talked to my current boyfriend about it a little bit which helped.

Overall, I’m happy with the way the conversation went today and everything is good in the relationship again - we’re just both going through a lot.

Re: I think I have PTSD and it's making me have trust issues

Posted: Fri May 14, 2021 4:21 pm
by Mo
I'm glad to hear your conversation with your boyfriend went well. :) I hope that talking to your counselor about what you've been experiencing is equally successful!