Two years after leaving my ex-husband I started the process of understanding the true meaning of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Getting my daily anxiety under control was a difficult endeavor. There were many medications as well as therapy sessions to try to understand this anxiety and fear. There was a constant fear of making a mistake in my life, making a mistake at work, consequences to those mistakes were dreaded. However it was a therapist that helped me to understand that this fear of making any type of mistake was brought on by a traumatic event while raising my children and the ultimate consequence of the children possibly being taken away. The logic made sense.
It all stemmed back to the incident (or many angry outbursts) by my ex-husband in which the security of the children’s safety was threatened, and my whole life existence (my family) could be torn apart and dissolved. The particular incident that cultivated this fear and anxiety involved the horrendous bruise on my son’s eye as a young child, due to his dad’s lack of patience and the consequences of the Department of Social Services. The ultimate fear was tremendous. Stripping my children down to check for further bruising was surreal. The children were one, three, and five at that time. After this man from Human Services left the house, the complete breakdown on my part happened when calling a friend, and the absolute fear of the experience with my exhausting screams of loss of control were displayed. This complete fear lasted a lifetime of raising the children and beyond. This experience took control of many aspects of my life, including work and social skills which became impaired. The terror happened in an instant, and was magnified on a daily basis. And any tiny bit of a carefree, happy lifestyle was demolished. Hyper-vigilance was required at all times.