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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a disorder that many people are familiar with. PTSD occurs after a traumatic event. When triggered, individuals with PTSD suddenly find themselves in “fight or flight” mode. “Fight or flight” is a response that occurs when an individual believes there is a threat. Their brain and body immediately go to “fight or flight,” meaning they either defend themselves (fight) or flee the situation (flight). For individuals with PTSD, they may not be in a situation that others may deem as threatening, but they still may feel stressed or scared, causing them to find themselves in “fight or flight” mode. C-PTSD is a bit different, however. 

C-PTSD is…

Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD) is a result of multiple traumatic experiences. C-PTSD is usually seen in victims of abuse and neglect, rather than a one-time event. This trauma is usually repeated and long-lasting. For those individuals who have C-PTSD, they have adapted and assimilated to a kind of learned helplessness. With learned helplessness, the individual feels powerless, thus they essentially give in to the abuse or neglect because of their lack of control. 

Clusters of C-PTSD

“C-PTSD refers to more complex disturbances in self-organization which are not necessarily linked to trauma-related triggers, and it occurs across different settings and more complex traumatic events,” says the National Institute of Health. The impacts of the trauma with C-PTSD are felt even after the individual is out of the traumatic situation. The National Institute of Health splits up C-PTSD behaviors into three groups:

  1. Intrusion
  2. Avoidance
  3. Hyperarousal

This fear-based disorder causes victims to feel as though they are being trespassed. This then leads to the avoidance of things that remind the victim of their trauma. When they are not avoiding, they are hypervigilant in everything that they do. The three behaviors can then be split up into three more groups:

  1. Difficulties in affect regulation
  2. Problems with self-concept
  3. Disturbances in interpersonal functioning

Those individuals who suffer from C-PTSD have extreme problems regulating their emotions. They also question who they are and struggle with not defining themselves by the trauma they have experienced. Because of their trauma, they also have trouble making and maintaining relationships. 

Villa Tranquil Recovery wants to help you. If you are struggling with what you believe is C-PTSD, we are here to help. Our trained and experienced staff have the tools to help you. Call today at 214-799-3080. We can’t wait to hear from you!