This isn’t the first time I have tried to write this post. My previous draft of this post, written probably in January or February, goes like this:
Apparently I have PTSD.
It came as a total surprise to me when my therapist told me this. As time passed and I thought about it and paid attention to how I reacted to things, though, it kinda made sense. It could explain some things.
I get frustrated when I try to look stuff up about PTSD, though, because most of the stuff out there (that comes up on google, at least) seems more geared towards those who have PTSD stemming from experiences such as war, rape, assault, or long-term abuse. Mine stems from experiences with discrimination.
It’s hard to talk about those experiences. I thought I’d mostly come to terms with them, but apparently not. I mean, I feel like I have a sense of closure over what happened with my former friend/roommate who took issue with me being trans. But any time something happens that feels similar in some way… it’s really hard to deal with. It’s like I’ve got this wound that I thought had healed, but then whenever I get hit in that same spot, or anywhere near it, it hurts a lot more than it should.
Even just writing this is hard in ways that I didn’t anticipate. And it doesn’t help that I keep having these thoughts that my PTSD is less legitimate, somehow, than the PTSD of veterans or rape survivors. I feel like a fake just writing the phrase “my PTSD”.
I still feel like a faker talking about this. Which is silly, right? Why should I feel like a faker because my therapist told me my diagnosis? Even if I got a mistaken diagnosis, that wouldn’t mean I’m faking anything, and it certainly wouldn’t make my problems any less real or legitimate.
But I still get stuck on this. On feeling like I have to defend myself, like I have to keep trying to fit my experiences into a box somehow, so it fits with the current official definition of what counts as a trauma that can cause PTSD.