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What not to say to someone with PTSD?

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The world no longer seems like a place worth exploring for someone who has post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but rather like a minefield where every step comes with a danger. It drains you to spend most of the day being hyper vigilant and “on edge,” as you can surely guess. Without the right support, people with PTSD gradually become shut off because they believe no one can genuinely comprehend what they are going through. But the fact that society frequently fails to provide people who have experienced horrific situations with what they actually need is one of the reasons they turn to social isolation.

PTSD symptoms include trouble managing emotions, feelings of rage or mistrust toward the outside world, a sense of hopelessness, and even suicidal thoughts. Physical symptoms such as headaches, stomachaches, dizziness, heavy breathing, and chest discomfort might also appear. Some people who have PTSD also have convulsions or shivers. Seek assistance from a mental health expert or Talk to a Counsellor Online  in India and talk to them about your or your loved one’s PTSD symptoms.

What you shouldn’t say to a person who has PTSD?

Loud sounds, massive gatherings, and emergency lights can cause life-altering effects in certain people. Others may have PTSD in response to more subtly upsetting stimuli, such as odors or environments. An individual with PTSD may also be triggered by inappropriate language.

Words that you can keep in mind.

  1. “It isn’t all that bad”

Sometimes individuals believe that minimizing a problem’s severity may somehow lessen the load placed on the victim, quickening healing. Even while the aim is noble, downplaying the gravity of the issue might have disastrous consequences. More particularly, you run the danger of joining the growing number of people who are ignorant about the suffering and challenges brought on by PTSD. If you wish to help someone who has had a terrible occurrence, don’t judge the situation according to your standards. Try to hear, comprehend, and feel the suffering via his or her eyes.

  1. “Get above this”

To tell someone who is hurting in any way to “get over it” is not just dismissive but also flippant, insulting, and impolite. Additionally, it minimizes how serious a person’s condition is and leads them to assume that their failure to feel better is the result of a character flaw. They are to blame or flawed in some way.

  1. “I was yelled at by my boss. I believe I too have PTSD”

A stressful situation could result from such engagement. Furthermore, screaming can cause PTSD symptoms. But if you don’t have PTSD, saying anything like that can be offensive to someone who do. You have to experience a horrific incident to get PTSD. For instance, a typical terrible day at work is unlikely to result in PTSD. Traumatic experiences include, but are not restricted to, sexual violence, war, automobile accidents, and domestic abuse. If you’ve observed someone else go through a horrific event, you may potentially acquire PTSD. It is disrespectful to folks who have legitimate medical conditions and require assistance to use the word nearly in a joke.

  1. “People have experienced worse”

Relating one victim to the other might occasionally be beneficial since it adds a fresh perspective to the issue. There is a ray of optimism that points to a better future because life could have been far worse. However, this viewpoint is only effective when the victim has already conquered helplessness and is actively moving toward rehabilitation. Otherwise, it serves as another additional source of guilt and humiliation.

  1. “Everything is in your brain”

Again, the symptoms of PTSD are simple to ignore because it cannot be externally observed like any physical injury. However, you wouldn’t suggest to someone who has sustained a terrible and critical leg wound that “maybe it’s only in your head.” When you’re feeling emotionally unavailable for whatever reason, or perhaps you’ve gotten weary of hearing the same concerns over and over again, this is the type of stuff that tends to fall out of your lips. It can be a better idea to take a moment to pull back if you don’t feel emotionally accessible rather than expressing your annoyance to someone who is already struggling.

  1. “You’re acting unnecessarily”

Saying anything like “you’re being dramatic and/or overacting” is another technique that is unconsciously used to minimize a survivor’s experience. Comments like this are made out of annoyance, not sympathy. They exhibit utter contempt for the ideas or sentiments of another person. Additionally, they are (unintentionally) domineering since they add guilt, shame, and condemnation to the mix by dictating how one should (and should not) feel.

Therapy that could be beneficial for someone with PTSD

The following methods of evidence-based therapy for PTSD:

  • CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy)
  • CPT (Cognitive Processing Therapy)
  • TF-CBT (Trauma Focused-Cognitive Behavioral Therapy)
  • EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing)
  • PE (Prolonged Exposure)

If you or someone you know is experiencing PTSD symptoms, feel free to discuss the effects of trauma on your life with your Online Counselor or the best therapist in India at TalktoAngel an Online Counselling platform. You should also learn to lay down the law (asking for what you need instead of presuming), have a positive connection with your emotions, and learn to question your assumptions and beliefs.