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I have seen a few counsellors over the years and more than one of them has advised me that I have all the symptoms of PTSD from being betrayed. One even gave me a book about PTSD from infidelity.

But more recently I was at my family doctor and, in a conversation about reducing stress, I mentioned that I'd like a one-time referral because I had a few more questions about how to address specific PTSD issues that I am not making any progress with. The doctor seemed both surprised and skeptical that I could possibly have PTSD from infidelity.

It was kind of embarrassing, and yet I myself have questioned the concept too. But I've read some of you here speak of the mental anguish of being betrayed as comparable to PTSD, so I want to ask: is there a way to get help for these symptoms without looking like a loser. Someone who can't handle real life. And someone who dares to compare their individual life drama with that of someone whose symptoms came from a much bigger picture? I feel that mentioning PTSD makes people think I'm imagining things. But the symptoms fit, hypervigilance, anxiety, nightmares, trust issues, nervousness. So do you admit it and get mocked for being weak, or just shut up and get nowhere till you die? What did YOU do?

How do you get help if nobody believes you have anything wrong?
 

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I have seen a few counsellors over the years and more than one of them has advised me that I have all the symptoms of PTSD from being betrayed. One even gave me a book about PTSD from infidelity.

But more recently I was at my family doctor and, in a conversation about reducing stress, I mentioned that I'd like a one-time referral because I had a few more questions about how to address specific PTSD issues that I am not making any progress with. The doctor seemed both surprised and skeptical that I could possibly have PTSD from infidelity.

It was kind of embarrassing, and yet I myself have questioned the concept too. But I've read some of you here speak of the mental anguish of being betrayed as comparable to PTSD, so I want to ask: is there a way to get help for these symptoms without looking like a loser. Someone who can't handle real life. And someone who dares to compare their individual life drama with that of someone whose symptoms came from a much bigger picture? I feel that mentioning PTSD makes people think I'm imagining things. But the symptoms fit, hypervigilance, anxiety, nightmares, trust issues, nervousness. So do you admit it and get mocked for being weak, or just shut up and get nowhere till you die? What did YOU do?

How do you get help if nobody believes you have anything wrong?

Hi Daisy,

Much of what you describe I would call normal. I dont know that I would call it PTSD but I know I have a few triggers that can big time affect me. Can you give us a few more specific examples of what you are dealing with.

In my opinion unless you totally saw an afffair coming then its very normal to be hypervigilent, nerous to trust, skeptical and so on. I am 4 year out of D day and still feel may of these
 

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I have seen a few counsellors over the years and more than one of them has advised me that I have all the symptoms of PTSD from being betrayed. One even gave me a book about PTSD from infidelity.

But more recently I was at my family doctor and, in a conversation about reducing stress, I mentioned that I'd like a one-time referral because I had a few more questions about how to address specific PTSD issues that I am not making any progress with. The doctor seemed both surprised and skeptical that I could possibly have PTSD from infidelity.

It was kind of embarrassing, and yet I myself have questioned the concept too. But I've read some of you here speak of the mental anguish of being betrayed as comparable to PTSD, so I want to ask: is there a way to get help for these symptoms without looking like a loser. Someone who can't handle real life. And someone who dares to compare their individual life drama with that of someone whose symptoms came from a much bigger picture? I feel that mentioning PTSD makes people think I'm imagining things. But the symptoms fit, hypervigilance, anxiety, nightmares, trust issues, nervousness. So do you admit it and get mocked for being weak, or just shut up and get nowhere till you die? What did YOU do?

How do you get help if nobody believes you have anything wrong?
Keep looking. Most "Professionals" do not see infidelity as a warranted source of PTSD since it is devoid of the standard or typical aspects normally related to this. But you know you better than anyone so search far and wide until you get the results you are looking for. If you give it a chance TAM can aide in be a medium to talk among while keeping a degree of anonymity and is free in cost.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hi Daisy,
Can you give us a few more specific examples of what you are dealing with.
Can't sleep. Nightmares. Imagining everyday situations are something they are not, and accordingly reacting inappropriately. Always on the lookout for danger. I mean always, like every time I step out the door I expect to see AP. Extremely short tempered. Emotional responses not justified by the environment. I don't care if the MD wants to call it PTSD or not, but I'd like to be acknowledged for the symptoms and tone them down. This is killing me. And it's not recent.
 

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Keep looking. Most "Professionals" do not see infidelity as a warranted source of PTSD since it is devoid of the standard or typical aspects normally related to this. But you know you better than anyone so search far and wide until you get the results you are looking for. If you give it a chance TAM can aide in be a medium to talk among while keeping a degree of anonymity and is free in cost.
The tide is changing.

Transcending Post-infidelity Stress Disorder (PISD): The Six Stages of Healing: Dennis C. Ortman: 9781587613340: Amazon.com: Books

Infidelity and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder | AFFAIRCARE
 

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I had issues after a very traumatic experience in childbirth that seemed to closely fit a diagnosis of PTSD. Some reading validated that such a diagnosis is not unheard of after traumatic childbirth, just as it's not unheard of after other traumatic events. But, like you, I quickly found that people tend to think you're a nutjob, projecting, looking for pills, etc. if you actually say PTSD without being a combat vet.

So, I suggest just describing your symptoms without using the PTSD terminology. Tell your doctor that you're having a lot of anxiety, sleep disturbances, nightmares, rapid pulse, whatever. Tell him it's an ongoing problem that doesn't seem to be getting better. Don't say PTSD, just ask for the referral you want. When you get referred, again, just describe symptoms without offering your own thoughts about a possible diagnosis.
 
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So, I suggest just describing your symptoms without using the PTSD terminology. Don't say PTSD, just describe symptoms without offering your own thoughts about a possible diagnosis.
That's what I've always done so far. And some of the counsellors I've seen very quickly told ME that this was a form of PTSD and should be treated like that. But now I've moved, I got this new MD and he kind of looks at me like, "you can't be having all those symptoms unless you have PTSD, and you can't have PTSD from infidelity". So I must be lying, or imagining it, or something? Loser (me).

I find it is near impossible to dare ask for help and admit to feeling this way. I've tried toughing it out but like I said it's killing me and I could use your advices on what's the next step.
 

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That's what I've always done so far. And some of the counsellors I've seen very quickly told ME that this was a form of PTSD and should be treated like that. But now I've moved, I got this new MD and he kind of looks at me like, "you can't be having all those symptoms unless you have PTSD, and you can't have PTSD from infidelity". So I must be lying, or imagining it, or something? Loser (me).

I find it is near impossible to dare ask for help and admit to feeling this way. I've tried toughing it out but like I said it's killing me and I could use your advices on what's the next step.
The next step is likely to find another MD. If your current one doesn't believe you, and won't give you the referral you need, then try another doctor. This is a situation in which you will have to strongly advocate for yourself.
 
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I am having all the same symptoms. I didn't know anything about PTSD I read the link GusPolinksi put on here & it describes me completely. I thought I was crazy, But now I wander could this be what's wrong with me too.
 

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I had issues after a very traumatic experience in childbirth that seemed to closely fit a diagnosis of PTSD. Some reading validated that such a diagnosis is not unheard of after traumatic childbirth, just as it's not unheard of after other traumatic events. But, like you, I quickly found that people tend to think you're a nutjob, projecting, looking for pills, etc. if you actually say PTSD without being a combat vet.

So, I suggest just describing your symptoms without using the PTSD terminology. Tell your doctor that you're having a lot of anxiety, sleep disturbances, nightmares, rapid pulse, whatever. Tell him it's an ongoing problem that doesn't seem to be getting better. Don't say PTSD, just ask for the referral you want. When you get referred, again, just describe symptoms without offering your own thoughts about a possible diagnosis.
It's worth pointing out that more than a few battle-hardened vets have stated that their own experiences w/ infidelity have wounded and scarred them far worse than their experiences in war did or ever could.
 

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PTSD is an outcome, a description of actual symptoms. How it comes to be isn't entirely relevant. So if you have it, you have it. Children can have it, adults, old people, anyone anytime. For pretty much as many reasons as there are individual personalities.
 

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The problem lies within how you describe it to your doctor. They are trained classically so they are still in old think about PTSD.
I.E. Only classic western trauma can be valid. They also frequently look down their noses at patients who attempt to self-diagnose.
The solution is one of two things:
1. Get a new doctor. Seriously. You asked for a referral and he won’t give it? That’s just wrong.
2. Give him the symptoms list and let him come to his own conclusions.

If your doctor made you feel this way then he leaves a lot to be desired and I would get a new one.

But the big question is…did you get the referral?
 

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Can't sleep. Nightmares. Imagining everyday situations are something they are not, and accordingly reacting inappropriately. Always on the lookout for danger. I mean always, like every time I step out the door I expect to see AP. Extremely short tempered. Emotional responses not justified by the environment. I don't care if the MD wants to call it PTSD or not, but I'd like to be acknowledged for the symptoms and tone them down. This is killing me. And it's not recent.
Well this is all very real to you and who is to say otherwise. I know I had a bevy of issues in dealing with my x wives affair and I neeeded counseling and I work in a profession that anything of the sort is heavily frowned upon. Sometimes our problems are bigger than ourselves and for those times we need help. If this dr isn't part of the solution please find one that is and keep pushing till you get the help you need.
 

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It's worth pointing out that more than a few battle-hardened vets have stated that their own experiences w/ infidelity have wounded and scarred them far worse than their experiences in war did or ever could.
I believe this completely. I've never been in the military, but during my police career went thru many stressful things: was shot at, attacked, injuries, fights, and had co-workers killed. It made me slightly reclusive, nervous in crowds at times, but no serious effects.
I actually took a skeptical view of PTSD at times. For me, getting out of the situation safe and sound "fixed" everything.

I'm over a year out on the infidelity thing, and in some ways worse off. Way worse than work stress. It never abates. I must admit the PTSD thing is real. I think it takes many forms. For me, anger; for others: fear, despair....

I particularly like SamuraiJack's idea of giving the doctor a detail list of your symptoms and thought, and letting the idea dawn on them. We all embrace something better if we think of it first.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Good links, Gus Polinski. The book you mention is one that a previous counsellor recommended to me, actually.

No referral yet, Samurai Jack. (I imagine the specialist: "I got me an office, gold records on the wall/Just leave a message, maybe I'll call". Appropriately, the next line is "Lucky I'm sane after all I've been through" Ironic, huh?)

I'm not going to keep asking him, or go on a big hunt for a new MD. It was hard enough to bring this up once, I can't see myself giving it another go any time soon. Way too humiliating. Seems like there's nothing but to keep trying to tough it out I guess. It's exhausting. Thanks, see you around, guys.
 

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It's worth pointing out that more than a few battle-hardened vets have stated that their own experiences w/ infidelity have wounded and scarred them far worse than their experiences in war did or ever could.
I heard and read the same with women that had been raped. Their husbands cheating was more painful. Their rapists were strangers but their husbands were the people they loved and trusted above all others in the world.
 

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Good links, Gus Polinski. The book you mention is one that a previous counsellor recommended to me, actually.

No referral yet, Samurai Jack. (I imagine the specialist: "I got me an office, gold records on the wall/Just leave a message, maybe I'll call". Appropriately, the next line is "Lucky I'm sane after all I've been through" Ironic, huh?)

I'm not going to keep asking him, or go on a big hunt for a new MD. It was hard enough to bring this up once, I can't see myself giving it another go any time soon. Way too humiliating. Seems like there's nothing but to keep trying to tough it out I guess. It's exhausting. Thanks, see you around, guys.
First off, I know that this may not be an option for you, but... Have you tried calling your insurance company and asking if you could have a referral for mental health visits and ask them for a list of approved doctors?

That is how I found my last psychologist. I didn't need to go through my primary care physician and I was able to look around for the right person for me.

Second, when I read in your post (above) that you were walking away from this conversation, my initial, gut reaction was "No! Don't leave!" (I hope you will read this.)

I think what I'm getting at is that this site is a place for counseling. You can come here anytime and there a lots of folks on here ready to respond with support and the like.

So maybe you reached out here for exactly what you are looking for?

Third, I can relate to feeling humiliated when you try to trust someone (like your doctor) and you get a harsh judgment in response. I wouldn't be surprised if this experience triggered you (your PTSD that is). So please keep in mind that what you experienced in the doctor's office is likely "colored" by your PTSD. That's okay. There's nothing wrong with that at all. I hope it helps you be open to your doctor in future visits as you say that you are going to keep him.

Good luck with everything!
 

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One of the best publications for PTSD (IMO) is "The Body Keeps the Score" by Bessel Van Der Kolk. It is a book now as well, but it was originally published in a Harvard Medical Journal in the mid 90's. You can find it online as a free download...

There are different types of trauma one can experience that can cause PTSD - They are often referred to as "Big T" and "Little T" traumas... A big T would be something like a life threatening event, a little T takes more of an emotionally traumatic perspective.

Most people hear PTSD and think of military veterans... but the experience of trauma occurs in various ways, and people react differently to the event based on their inherent coping skills.

Me... I struggle most with hypervigilence, trust, and emotional regulation... and I've had both Big T & Little T traumas in my life.
 

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It's worth pointing out that more than a few battle-hardened vets have stated that their own experiences w/ infidelity have wounded and scarred them far worse than their experiences in war did or ever could.
So sad but so fvcking true!! God bless you vets!
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I have seen a few counsellors over the years and more than one of them has advised me that I have all the symptoms of PTSD from being betrayed. One even gave me a book about PTSD from infidelity.

But more recently I was at my family doctor and, in a conversation about reducing stress, I mentioned that I'd like a one-time referral because I had a few more questions about how to address specific PTSD issues that I am not making any progress with. The doctor seemed both surprised and skeptical that I could possibly have PTSD from infidelity.

It was kind of embarrassing, and yet I myself have questioned the concept too. But I've read some of you here speak of the mental anguish of being betrayed as comparable to PTSD, so I want to ask: is there a way to get help for these symptoms without looking like a loser. Someone who can't handle real life. And someone who dares to compare their individual life drama with that of someone whose symptoms came from a much bigger picture? I feel that mentioning PTSD makes people think I'm imagining things. But the symptoms fit, hypervigilance, anxiety, nightmares, trust issues, nervousness. So do you admit it and get mocked for being weak, or just shut up and get nowhere till you die? What did YOU do?

How do you get help if nobody believes you have anything wrong?
Well, first thing, you change doctors.

It's only partially your doctor's fault. They only do a small amount of training in psychiatry and probably even less in psychology.

We wouldn't expect family doctors to diagnose and treat extremely serious medical conditions, so who do we expect them to be able to treat potentially serious conditions like PTSD? :scratchhead:
 
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