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Question
Posted by: | 2020/09/10

Ptsd and trust issues

My husband of many years committed suicide some time back and I came across the body. I went and saw a psychiatrist and was diagnosed with complex ptsd, but I stopped seeing him because the physical symptoms I experienced in leaving the house to go anywhere at the time was too much for me. So I started seeing someone last year from another country and I visited in December and he was going to visit in May, but because of lockdown that obviously could not happen. I have been obsessing with the borders opening since they closed. I checked everyday and we talked about should they open this year for Africa travel we would go and meet up in a neighboring country if he could'nt come to South Africa. So I told him a few days ago borders may be opening soon and he started hinting at maybe not being able to make it this year, because he wishes to spend time with his kids over the holidays and that work related obligations may come up. I confronted him about him giving me false expectations and he went as far as calling me selfish for not understanding, but apologized for not telling me beforehand and asked me to give him another chance. I told him I don't want to see him anytime soon. I don't know if my reaction to this is rational or irrational, because I have completely lost trust in a man who has been my best friend for 12 years. I'm down to where I was when my husband took his life. I don't want to go outside or take a bath or even eat. I feel betrayed, depressed and extremely anxious to the point where I feel like I'm having a heart attack. I am considering ending the relationship, because I don't feel like I can ever trust him again. I don't want to see him or talk to him, but I miss him and love him at the same time. My husband did way worse things than this and I feel I am being irrational but I can't get out of that whole this put me in. Is it possible to get over this for me? How do I begin to recover from this again?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink
- 2020/09/11

As you understand, a good diagnosis is best made after a careful and thorough in person assessment. From your description, it sounds as though, while PTSD, regular type or complex, might well be part of your problems ( and very understandable after the clearly traumatic experience you had in regard to your husband's death ) there may be more than that.  You seem to be also describing depression ( which would also be likely ) and perhaps also a degree of agoraphobia, as you mention more than once the strong reluctance to leave your home. ( though it's significantyly less likel if you were able to visit your friend in another country, fairly recently ).
You don't mention in what way the psychiatrist began treating you. While psychotherapy especially of the effective CBT ( Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy ) variety could be very useful, most psychiatrists would be likely to want you to try medication, too. Fortunately, because there is a degree of overlap between their chemistry, antidepressant medicines, and there are many to choose from ) can be really useful for PTSD, Depression, anxiety and agoraphobia.
It is usually wise, when one is feeling as miserable and unsure as you describe, not to make major life changes or decisions with major impacts, if this is temporarily avoidable. It's better to work with a suitable expert to relieve your mix of symptoms, and make more major decisions when you are stronger and more able to be surer about what would be best for you.  Maybe think of getting a second opinion, and a fresh assessment from another psychiatrist, and ask also if he can refer you to someone skilled at providing CBT counselling.
Maybe it's as well if your friend isn't available right now, for whatever reason, to give you time to sort things out within yourself.  Remember, too, to consider what treatment facilities are or are not available in this other country, in case you might need further treatment in the future.  It would not be good to place yourself somewhere where comprehensive psychiatric / psychological treatment isn't readily available, if you might need it.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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