– A complete guide to understanding the person who dates with someone with PTSD
In this guide, we are going to discuss how someone who dates a person with PTSD feels and the role it is taking in the relationship.
Dating someone with PTSD
Relationships have their good moments and not so good, but all this is a fundamental part of relationships.
Happy moments are the most loved by people.
To be in a relationship is to feel that support from that person, to have someone from a different kind of love than family and friends can give and have that partner who can are ready to listen.
Relationships also have their difficult parts.
When problems attack the couple, such as health, illness or issues related to infidelity, one or both of the parties feels very affected because in many cases it was not what they expected, but these situations in many cases help define the true interests that each one has in the relationship.
When in the relationship, one of the parties is affected by an illness, it unleashes suffering for the other person.
No one wants to see the person they love going through something that causes them pain and often this part does not know what to do, does not know how to help even wanting to do it.
Not only physical diseases affect couples, but also mental ones.
With the large increase in diagnoses and according to WHO data highlighting by 2020, diseases such as depression will be the first cause of depression, with more than 300 million people having the disease, it is easy to imagine that it is not only disease attacks people.
Mental disorders such as anxiety and PTSD can affect one of the partners and it can be difficult for the other party to identify it since many people are unaware of these mental illnesses.
When one of the two parties has a PTSD in the relationship, the other person in many cases does not know about this disease and can’t understand that the behaviour of their partner is due to something else.
The person believes that its partner intends to harm and does not want to be in the relationship, making the other person feel very bad about it.
But, when the person discovers that it is dating someone with PTSD, it realizes that the situation is more serious than it seems.
It is no longer a problem that goes where the person wants to attack or make the other feel bad, but the disease it has leads them to act in a certain way.
When a person discovers that is dating someone with PTSD many questions come to its mind.
One of the first is about the little knowledge of the disease and not knowing a large number of people affected, why this had to happen to the person it is dating.
There are many questions and much to study to learn more about the disorder.
A person who is dating someone with PTSD understands that every day is different.
Although it is true that for a person without the disease every day brings something new, the person who is dating someone with PTSD realizes that there will be bad and worse days.
The person will see that their partner will not want to do anything, will react in a scared or violent way to people or events that remind of the traumatic event, at night will wake up thinking that is living the traumatic event, that is, several symptoms of the disorder can be manifested day after day.
Something important that the person who is dating someone with PTSD has to keep in mind is that the symptoms are not their fault, nothing that is happening to their partner is their fault and they do not have to take anything personally.
Sometimes it is difficult to get the idea that the couple has a disease, they may think that they are lying, but not really.
Some people can react in certain ways by having a mental illness such as PTSD.
Someone who is dating someone PTSD wants to help.
The person does not want to see its partner sunk in the symptoms of the disease and what most aspires to is to have a normal and healthy relationship with the person it loves.
For a person who is dating someone with PTSD to help, they should be well informed about the disease.
The person should know their symptoms, how long the person affected with the disease can last and what would be the best treatment.
What is PTSD?
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD is a mental illness characterized by the presence of recurring and intrusive memories concerning a traumatic event.
Situations such as fighting in a war, experiencing or witnessing sexual or physical aggression, experiencing a disaster either natural or due to human action.
Different types of symptoms appear in Post-traumatic Stress Disorder:
– Symptoms of instruction: the traumatic event repeatedly and uncontrollably invades the thinking of the affected person.
– Avoidance of everything that can remind of the traumatic event
– Negative effects on thinking and mood
– Changes in reactions and alertness
To make a diagnosis of the disease, the mental health professional does so taking into account criteria from sources such as the DSM V that details each symptom.
A healthcare professional diagnoses a PTSD when:
– The person has been exposed to a traumatic event
– Symptoms have been present for a month or more
– The symptoms cause significant discomfort that can affect the functioning of the person. Disrupt your daily activities
– The affected person comes to present some of the symptoms that someone with PTSD may present as instructional symptoms, avoidance, negative effects on thinking and mood, and changes in alertness and reactions.
The treatment used to treat a person with PTSD is the combination of psychotherapy and drugs.
Also, the use of alternative therapies such as meditation can be useful to help the person to be in a state of tranquillity.
What can a person who is dating someone with PTSD do?
The person who is dating someone with PTSD should understand the cause for which their partner has the symptoms of the disease.
Sometimes the person understands that the event that its partner went through is not that horrible to develop the disease when in truth for that person it was somewhat traumatic.
Each person has different ways of dealing with problems.
The person who is dating someone with PTSD should understand that their resilience capabilities are not the same as their partner may have, so compression is important.
Having empathy is vital. Understanding the suffering that the couple is going through is a step to help.
A person who is sick, even if it does not express it, what it is looking for within itself is support, someone who can understand what is going on.
Another thing that someone who goes out with someone with PTSD can do is that their partner’s behaviours should not be taken in person.
Although it is difficult, the person must understand that in many cases it is the disease acting.
Sometimes the person with PTSD will not want to talk to other people, will be afraid, will not want to leave, will wake up at night with a feeling of fear and anguish, will be in a state of alertness.
All this is part of someone with PTSD. Although the couple sees it strange in some cases, the best thing that can do is understand and at the same time help its partner to seek help.
Sometimes the person with PTSD refuses to receive help, they may fear, but if their partner helps them understand that with the help they will get ahead and lead a more normal lifestyle, it can lead to an easier way to the person with PTSD accepts.
Apart from what a person who is dating someone with PTSD can do to help their partner, there are also lessons learned during the process.
Learning about mental illness makes the person understand that they can also be a victim of it, even if it is not PTSD, but there are others because mental illnesses have no preference in terms of gender, colour or socioeconomic status.
The person who is dating someone with PTSD gets to learn about themselves and the expectations they put into the relationship.
Relationships are not perfect, and why something does not go as planned does not mean that should run away and leave everything.
The person who goes out with someone with PTSD learn to fight together with their partner and they both develop greater capacities to deal with problems.
When the person who has PTSD sees that it has strong support in the relationship, it is more difficult to collapse and be more open to seeking help.
A person who dates someone with PTSD learns to look beyond stereotypes. Society has beautiful patterns and certain characteristics with which a person must leave.
It does not indicate the support that someone who has a mental illness should receive if they are in a relationship and their partner’s role in the relationship.
When a person goes out with someone with PTSD, they learn to see beyond an image and certain benefits that they get in the relationship.
Learn to love diversity and everything that it brings with it and become a source of inspiration for others who are in the same situation.
Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.
FAQs about dating someone with PTSD
My partner has PTSD, but does not want to seek help, what can I do to make it understand that seeking help is the best solution for its illness?
The best thing a person can do when dating someone with PTSD is to be understanding and positively talk to them to seek help.
Sometimes the person may despair to see that their partner does not understand the reason for seeking help outside, but this person must understand that it is not easy for their partner to take the step of seeking help.
The person who goes out with someone who has PTSD must be calm, have a positive attitude and motivate their partner in a way that they do not feel overwhelmed.
Is it right to leave the relationship if my partner has PTSD or some other disorder?
The decision that a person makes about whether to leave a relationship or not is personal and only it is clear of the reasons why it wants to do it.
But the person who wants to leave someone who has PTSD or some other disorder should understand that the other party in the relationship does not want to end, that person wants help, even if sometimes they do not know how to express it.
Relationships are not fairy tales where everything will be fine.
Mutual support and being there for the other are aspects that help to see if the person loves the other.
If I go out with someone who has PTSD, can I have a mental illness?
Mental illnesses are not transmitted as physical illnesses are transmitted, but the person who dates someone with PTSD may feel overwhelmed and sad about what their partner is going through.
IT may feel in some cases that the help is not enough or that there is nothing that can be done, so the person who is dating someone with PTSD must investigate more about the disease to answer questions that may have.
My partner mistreats me, but had told me that did not do it because it wanted to but because had lived a traumatic experience that leads my partner to act like this, should I continue to endure the abuse or leave the relationship?
The mistreatment of another person is not justified by any action and if the person in the relationship is suffering some type of abuse should seek help.
In many cases there are people who due to certain diseases act in a certain way, being some abusive actions, but no one is obliged to endure abuse by anyone.
In these cases, it is better to move away and keep a distance for the well-being of your physical and mental health.
Does a person decide to have PTSD?
No, a person does not decide to have PTSD or any mental illness.
Diseases such as PTSD the person suffers after a traumatic event that negatively marked its life.
A person with PTSD does not want to feel that way, wants to carry out their daily activities in a normal way.
Both the person with PTSD and the person in the relationship suffer from the disease, although in different ways.
The person who has PTSD suffers the characteristics of the disease while its partner suffers to see how the disease affects the other and how it feels that in certain cases it can do nothing to help its partner.
The person who is dating someone with PTSD should know about the disease so they have an idea of what they have to deal with.
It will not be easy at many times to deal with the symptoms that the partner will present, but it is not a reason to lower guard or feel that nothing can be done.
The person who is dating someone with PTSD can motivate their partner to seek help and make them see that this is not bad at all.
Unconditional support and empathy at all times will be key tools so that the relationship can gradually reach a healthier state.
There is no set time for someone with PTSD not to have the symptoms of the disease, but considerable improvement can be made if both move in the direction of seeking adequate help.
What we recommend for PTSD
If you have PTSD, then ongoing professional counselling may be your ideal first point of call. Counselling will allow you to practice various habits that improve your overall quality of life.
- Loving someone with PTSD: A Practical Guide to Understanding and Connecting with Your Partner after Trauma
- When Someone You Love Suffers from Posttraumatic Stress: What to Expect and What You Can Do
- The Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Relationship: How to Support Your Partner and Keep Your Relationship Healthy