My personal experience with PTSD

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Guest Columnist

Since 1966, I have lived with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). And, after all these years, I now have learned firsthand the difficult decision many people with mental illness face when considering making their mental illness known to others.

Two years ago, I began a journal about my experience with PTSD and, using it as a centerpiece, I recently completed what I hoped would be an informative book to help others with PTSD. But right before publishing it, I decided against doing it.

First, a definition: The National Institute of Mental Health states PTSD is an anxiety disorder developing “after exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal in which grave physical harm occurred or was threatened,” such as with a violent personal assault, accident, disaster or military combat. “People with PTSD have persistent frightening thoughts and memories of their ordeal and feel emotionally numb.”

Several symptoms of many include sleep problems, feeling detached or numb, or being easily startled.

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