Sunday, September 11, 2005

"Doesn't it go away as time passes?"


"AS: No. The images of seeing dead people and the physical and visual memories of the terrifying experience are a deeply imbedded neuro-chemical pattern that won't go away. It doesn't work to try to suppress the memories, or to numb one's self with alcohol or drugs, or to relieve symptoms with medications. Some Vietnam veterans still had PTSD twenty years after the war as strong as it was their first year back."


"Is there no hope then?"

"AS: Just the opposite. There is more than hope. The proven way to recover from PTSD is to talk and write about the experience over and over. The goal is not to make the memories go away, but to gain control over them and integrate them into your larger life story."


"An extreme, traumatic experience divides your life into two parts. Life before and life after. Many people never overcome the experience and remain psychological casualties for the rest of their lives. Such folks allow the experience to become their primary identity and they often need help from others to get through daily life."


"The resilient survivors take on the heroic inner journey to get a good life back again. They talk and write about what they went through until they can choose when they will bring up the memories. By choosing to bring the memories back, you gain the ability to not allow them to become active."


"What has fascinated me for many years is that a few people not only fully recover from PTSD, but they discover that the recovery struggle transforms them. They become better than they were before and may start telling others about positive aspects of their experience. For them, life after is better than their life before."(Survivor Guidlines.org|The Psychological and Emotional Effects of Hurricane Katrina On Survivors: From PTSD to Resilient Immunity)


:: note :: . . . lots more in the interview . . . lots of work . . . lots of listening . . . lots of questions . . .