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Telling your story vs. learning to cope How does healing happen--what do you say?
Posted 31 July 2002 - 05:34 PM
#17 Guest_dream of water_*
Posted 24 March 2003 - 11:31 AM
Great question. This is where my gf is. Wondering. In fact her therapist (a cognitive behavioural therapist) has asked her if at times she wishes she had never said anything. She broke her silence almost a year ago. I have experienced serious abuse of another kind, and talking about it has really helped me. It's given me a whole new sense of calm and strength. But that's me. Talking didn't necessarily help my gf, especially in the months following her disclosure. It has shattered so many of the things she told herself for years just to keep going in her life. Confronting the issues around other people's cruelty has not been easy at all for her. She's gone through a long "quiet" phase, also brought on by some key people's denial of her story. Now she's starting to read the boards here, she's posted twice and I'm putting my faith in her instincts and the care of her therapist (who I've met ... she's wonderful).
(Edited by dream of water at 3:32 pm on Mar. 24, 2003)
Posted 24 March 2003 - 11:53 PM
Adjustment to Trauma-Related Stress Helped by Repressive Coping Style
Those who repress their anxiety seem to be better shielded against heart attacks and PTSD than those who experience anxiety or try to repress it but fail.
Ever since the 1970s, certain people have been known to be anxiety repressors. That is, their heart rate, blood pressure, muscle tone, and other physiological measures reveal that they experience anxiety, yet they manage to repress conscious thoughts about their anxiety.
What’s more, persons who have had heart attacks are known to be in danger of both acute stress disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Thus, some Israeli researchers decided to conduct a study to find out how good an anxiety-repression coping style is at shielding patients from acute stress disorder and from PTSD. As they reported in the September/October Psychosomatic Medicine, the coping style seems to be effective.
Karni Ginzburg, Ph.D., a lecturer at Tel Aviv University School of Social Work; Zahava Solomon, Ph.D., a professor there; and Avi Bleich, M.D., chair of psychiatry, selected as their subjects more than 100 patients who had been hospitalized for a heart attack. While the subjects were hospitalized, they filled out a 58-item psychological questionnaire to reveal whether they were anxiety types (persons who feel anxious when threatened with dangerous situations), defensive types (individuals who try to repress their anxiety but fail), successful anxiety-repression types (individuals who tend to repress their anxiety and succeed at it), or low-anxiety types (persons who experience little anxiety when faced with threatening situations).
While in the hospital, the subjects were also assessed with the Stanford Acute Stress Reaction Questionnaire, which is based on DSM-IV criteria, to determine whether they were suffering from acute stress disorder. Seven months later, they were evaluated at home with the PTSD Inventory, a self-report questionnaire based on DSM-IV criteria, to determine whether they had PTSD.
As Ginzburg explained to Psychiatric News, clinical interviews are definitely preferred when a diagnosis of PTSD is made for clinical purposes. However, for their study purposes, they believed that their standardized self-report questionnaire was superior, not just because it was easier to administer, but because it had both high validity and high specificity.
After Ginzberg and her coworkers analyzed their data to categorize their subjects in one of the four stress-reaction groups, they determined how many subjects in each succumbed to either acute stress disorders or PTSD. This way they could see how the repressive-coping types compared with the other three types.
They found that 31 percent of their subjects were anxiety types, 26 percent were defensive types, 25 percent were successful anxiety-repression types, and 17 percent were low-anxiety types.
They found that 36 percent of the anxiety types, 21 percent of the defensive types, 4 percent of the successful anxiety-repression types, and none of the low-anxiety types experienced acute stress disorder.
They found that 19 percent of the anxiety types, 17 percent of the failed anxiety-repression types, 7 percent of the successful anxiety-repression types, and 20 percent of the low-anxiety types experienced PTSD.
When Psychiatric News asked Ginzburg whether there might be a contradiction between their finding that no low-anxiety subjects experienced acute stress disorder and their finding that 20 percent of them experienced PTSD, she replied that there was not. The reason, she explained, is that other researchers have found that levels of anxiety experienced immediately after a stressful event are only marginally predictive of whether a person will ultimately experience PTSD.
So, putting all these findings together, they suggest that "the repressive coping style may promote adjustment to traumatic stress, both in the short and longer term," Ginzburg and her coworkers concluded. In other words, this coping style appeared to be superior to both anxiety and defensiveness in preventing acute stress disorder, and superior to anxiety, defensiveness, and low anxiety in preventing PTSD.
The findings are useful to psychiatrists, Bleich told Psychiatric News, in that they "promote knowledge of the possible psychiatric consequences of myocardial infarction and suggest a direction for early intervention and therapy when needed."
The study was financed by the Israeli Ministry of Health and the Sarah Peleg Research Foundation.
The study, "Repressive Coping Style, Acute Stress Disorder, and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder After Myocardial Infarction," is posted on the Web at http://www.psychosom.../cgi....somatic Medicine 2002 64 748[
Posted 30 July 2003 - 04:48 PM
But i fully believe (when i can) that inorder to heal the wound, you need to wash out all of the infection and then get to the grit (ie the details) which need to be gently extracted, inorder for the wound to heal completly. And there will always be a scar, but a scar is easier to hide, and for those who don't want to hide it, a scar is easier to show/tell, rather than a disgusting open wound.
I have always had this feeling or intution that i need to tell (probably just the once) the actual r*pe. And i need to say and the words out loud ( i still can't).
Anyway thats my thoughts
Posted 04 August 2009 - 10:24 AM
Posted 07 January 2010 - 01:25 PM
Posted 09 February 2010 - 06:49 PM
Focusing on how the abuse affects your life today and learning to cope in relation to that, identifying how abuse influences your thinking and actions and then effecting change in those areas will increase the quality of your life... It is work that must be done and I think it should be a focus in treatment and in the healing process.
I can't afford a therapist right now and have had less than helpful ones in the past. I want to try to do this work (cognitive-behavioral) on myself. I am finding that dwelling in the telling is stressing me out and definitely not moving me ahead. I have told my husband first, then friends, and I wrote a long, angry letter to my abuser which I may or may not mail. Now, I need to get to work on what is ahead for me. I feel alive, in pain, scared, sober (I used to be "high" on all my defenses, mild self-medication, religious and mystical manias.) but somehow hopeful.
For myself, because I can't go back to working in another field, it seems, I may have to invent some work that helps survivors and helps prevent abuse. That may be the only thing that will finally heal me, or is that another manifestation of the perfectionist, the achiever who is going to PROVE, if it kills her, that she is not nothing, not wrong?
Posted 18 February 2011 - 08:21 PM
Posted 21 February 2011 - 02:14 PM
Posted 08 April 2011 - 07:41 PM
Posted 11 April 2011 - 07:44 AM
I felt conflicted when things happened to me, and it took a while for me to look at it from "a big picture" perspective. My initial attempts at therapy avoided this, and any dialogue on how violence had affected me.
Memories of the physical and sexual abuse were triggered by movies I would watch. More of the sexual abuse memories started resurfacing when I was 20, around certain people, who ended up being abusive.
I had trouble in relationships and that slowly resolved itself. I literally would try to block out things, and then I would stop sleeping at night.
The thing is, society, and what the professionals think are happening in my mind, could not be easily fixed by a pill. It's easy to say, "you're broken, now take this- you were never sexually abused."
This has been one of the more difficult conflicts to overcome. Silence can kill you. Therapy imposed silence is worse.
I would love for my memory to just go away but the problem is, it's worse to try to make yourself a blank slate.
Healing for me has been a process of coming out and just saying it, whether it be through activism (which is very important to me), or to another person in conversation.
My healing has come through expressing what I know, and sharing with others.
I can never give that up.
This post has been edited by Lyla: 11 April 2011 - 12:13 PM
Posted 13 November 2011 - 06:13 PM
Posted 10 September 2012 - 10:31 PM
Right now I am trying to help an important person in my life. She was ganged up on by 3 dudes, and it has been almost 2 months since the incident. From collective experience, I know that that reporting it can help to begin the healing process, but she refuses to talk to anyone else. Our organization has a ridiculous amount of support systems, and it would not be hard at all for her to get help. She is in a deep state of depression and I'm pretty sure she thinks of suicide daily. There are enough people keeping tabs on her to where that possibility is minimized down to an extremely small percentage of occurring. She is also experiencing deep insomnia, panic/anxiety attacks, and horrifically vivid nightmares, in which she has told me that she See's herself or loved ones dying, maybe reliving the attack. She freaks the second she wakes up, I am there most of the time to hold and comfort her and tell her its all right. It is quite apparent that she has PTSD, which she refuses to acknowledge. She has told me directly that I am the only thing in her life that keeps her from going past the point of no return. I love this woman very dearly, and just want to help her get better as much as she can so she can have some semblance of a normal life. I will not always be able to be there for her, due to my duties and responsibilities, and I desperately need advice on how to get her to start talking to the right people and hopefully begin the healing process, PLEASE, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, HELP ME!!!!!
Posted 13 October 2012 - 08:40 PM