Ah, a new discovery courtesy of Michele from Heal My PTSD!
Apparently Michelle Reneee and her daughter experienced a home invasion, kidnapping, having explosives strapped to their bodies and Michelle was forced to rob her own bank to avoid being killed.
Naturally, they both suffered PTSD, but are for the most part, greatly recovered.
There’s even going to be a made-for-TV movie based on her book. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it’s screened in Australia!
Michelle also writes some thought provoking articles for Huffington Post, including this recent one: Grey’s Anatomy Sheds Light on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
(Full disclosure: Yeah, I watch the show and think Patrick Dempsey is kinda HOT. McDreamy over McSteamy any day!)
I also think Grey’s Anatomy is doing a pretty good job in depicting PTSD.
The one thing that irks me is the use of the most common story – a returned soldier as the sufferer. Of course, there are huge numbers of soldiers impacted by PTSD, but they aren’t the full picture.
In not demonstrating how any Joe Blow off the street can end up with PTSD, the stereotype is perpetuated. Which doesn’t help Joe Blow to understand what’s happening to him/her. It doesn’t help with diagnosis and it means that gaining the support of family and friends isn’t as easy as it should be.
I guess though, they can’t have a whole show full of PTSD-ers, although I was recently (and jokingly) discussing the idea of a reality show called: So, You Think YOU’RE Crazy? 😉
I do, however, like the way Grey’s demonstrates the unpredictability of PTSD, and how hard it can be to talk about what’s going on.
PTSD is silent, it’s deadly and without the right support, it has the potential to kill the sufferer – via alcohol, drugs, suicide etc. Many PTSD sufferers don’t know how to explain how they feel. They can’t and don’t want to tell you because they’re trying desperately to contain it.
The tragedy is that unless the person in question is ready to face up to their trauma demons, I don’t think there’s anything another person can do to help. Except try to be there and offer love.
This is of course what we all need, regardless of our state of mind. A person with PTSD however, won’t make that easy for you. They might really need someone to just give them a hug.
But you’ll be the last to know. And in the meantime, their inner world causes them more terror every single day, than most people could ever imagine.