This week I intend to talk about PTSD and the impact this can have on family and loved ones.
It is important to note that I am not a counsellor or health professional. I am a certified life coach and a family member of a person who has been diagnosed with PTSD.
Todays topic is about Panic.
My partner lives with feelings of panic every day and as we found out on Anzac Day, just when he thinks he has it under control something happens to bring on an episode.
Panic can result in many different emotional outcomes such as anger, fear, depression, etc. There does not seem to be a consistent response for the person experiencing the panic as it can depend on the environment, people involved and how they are feeling on the day.
Tip: Assistance Dogs
A lot of work has been done regarding the benefits of assistance dogs for people who are diagnosed with PTSD and we have found that having an assistance dog has not only helped David, but also has had a positive impact on our relationship.
I am now not the only support for David and I don’t have to worry about him having a panic attack and not have any support if I am not there.
Tip: Listen Don’t Judge
Although it is not my role to be David’s protector, it is my role to be his best friend.
I take that role seriously (well most of the times as I too have bad days). I have learnt how to talk him down from feelings of panic by not judging and just being there for him to work through the thoughts in his head. It can be difficult at times, but the value this has to a person who is having a panic attack is amazing to see.
Stop, listen, don’t judge, don’t offer advice and be there in the moment.
This is not an easy thing to do, especially if you are feeling angry, scared or even frustrated. Professional support can help give you the tools and techniques to make this easier, so I would encourage you to seek that support.
Enough for today and I leave you with my definition of PTSD – Please Try Something Different.