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Boyfriend suffering with PTSD after Afghan tour

Discussions and general chat about PTSD. Feel free to introduce yourself or if you need help, please reach out and ask.
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Mary0810
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Boyfriend suffering with PTSD after Afghan tour

#1 Post by Mary0810 »

My boyfriend has just returned from Afghanistan only 2 weeks ago and things are not going well. Since he's been back he's got more and more distant with me and is not sleeping well. He wont see his family and can't show any remote affection towards me. He is just full of anger.

Everything I say or do seems to annoy him, and I just feel totally uncomfortable with him now. I just feel so helpless. What can I do to help him?

I would really appreciate any advice from servicemen who have been though similar. Many thanks for any replies.

M x
Last edited by Mary0810 on Tue 21 Oct, 2008 4:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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HarryAVFC
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#2 Post by HarryAVFC »

Hi Mary unfortunately I cannot help you with your situaton as I know nothing about PTSD and how individuals and families cope with the disorder. However seeing as you havnt got a response on these forums yet I suggest you may want to look at http://www.arrse.co.uk which is the British Army rumour service and is a much busier site than this one and you will probably get a faster response.

I wish you all the best with your current situation and hope it improves asap for you and your partner.

All the best.

Mary0810
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#3 Post by Mary0810 »

Thank you for your reply, I will check out that website now. I can't believe there isn't more help for people returning from tour for both soldiers and their families on how to cope with PTSD.
Last edited by Mary0810 on Tue 21 Oct, 2008 3:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

sterion66
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#4 Post by sterion66 »

Hi mary not sure if this will help. Although the situation isn't exactly the same as i used to suffer from PTSD for a different reason. I took it out on people around me it's not intentional but i just felt so down in myself and for some reason you just don't seem to want people round you. A sort of leave me in a room on my own lock me away from the world thought i guess. I saw a psychologist and all sorts but for me talking didn't help. Now recovering from such an issue is different from individual to individual. I had to get away from the area i was in too many bad memories and start a fresh life. A major factor to my healing process was regular exercise. Talking for me didn't help and although anti depressants seem to give you more strength to deal with things they really didn't make me happy either. I'm sure his feelings for you haven't change only he's struggling to feel them with these other issues. He might have an idea of how to go forward and what will help. I will only advise don't push him or try and get him to do things just offer an ear to listen to and yes i'm sure the hug did help. Keep your head up, there maybe some tough times but be strong. Pm me anytime if it helps you.

Mike

Mary0810
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#5 Post by Mary0810 »

Thanks so much Mike. I won't push him.
Last edited by Mary0810 on Tue 21 Oct, 2008 4:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.

sterion66
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#6 Post by sterion66 »

Please don't think its your fault it will take time and im sure its not the case he doesn't care what you've been through or anything. I guess the issues he has are clouding his thoughts. The trouble i had is i couldn't get out of my head what happened everyday seemed kind of pointless. It does get better, time is a healer as they say. Hold on

Mike

Doc

#7 Post by Doc »

Mary I hope you have either contacted a listener on here or one has contacted you, if not then please send me a PM.

Artist
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#8 Post by Artist »

Alas PTSD can reach out and catch anyone regardless. Mary, try the sites suggested dear lady. It don't cost a penny to ask.

Artist

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Tab
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#9 Post by Tab »

Contact your local Branch of the RBL and ask them for the telephone number of SSAFA as they are setting up counselling services for PTSD. Now you can have a chat to them and see what they can do for you both.

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flo
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#10 Post by flo »

hunni been there got the t- shirt, unfortunately it was too late for me and my ex as he never got the counselling he needed, hence why our marriage failed after 13 years wed. But i do believe in badgering the system to get results, make sure he gets what he is entitled too. But they wont offer him help - he has to ask for it!!

And problem with that is that they dont see a problem, its us the families who notice the small changes - and then the small changes become more consistent and the bigger problem evolves.

My advice as a wife of a suffering ptsd sufferer is to listen but only when they are ready to talk. NEVER force the issue. as it could be the fuse to something you dont want to light.

hope this helps and if you want to chat i will happily give you my msn
Friendship is like peeing in your pants,
everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth!!

La Langosta
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#11 Post by La Langosta »

Hi Mary,
I see you are online at the mo.
How are things going???

sterion66
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#12 Post by sterion66 »

Also interested to see how things are going, as previously stated if you need an ear to bend or any information i will do my best to help.

Mary0810
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#13 Post by Mary0810 »

Hi, thank you for asking how things are going. Well things have been gradually getting better. He is getting counselling and I have noticed a considerable improvement recently, but we have had some further hurdles to overcome along the way.

I since found out that my boyfriend had formed a strong bond with a girl while he was away. I did know about her, but it appears there were feelings there, when he told me there weren’t. He has assured me that nothing happened between them, they were just very close mates - she was a great support to him when he was really low and he was to her. He has told me he was not thinking straight and was confused when he started to have feelings for her. I just have to hope that’s all it was - being in a strange place and feeling so low and I couldn’t be there for him - it was so frustrating at the time knowing she could be more help to him. I just have to hope that there isn’t an underlying scenario between them that he’s afraid to tell me about that’s caused him to have so many problems with me when he returned.

It does explain a lot – why he stopped writing and was so distant on the phone towards the end of his tour. Perhaps it wasn’t just down to his depression and exhaustion, and more that he doubted us being together. I’m not sure how they left things but I have asked him not to contact her, for obvious reasons. It’s a shame he over-stepped the mark with her because considering they were a great help to each other, I imagine they would like to stay friends and I feel bad about stopping them, but how can I accept that now?! I’m probably coming across as a crazy neurotic girlfriend, but despite being really, really hurt by this, I didn’t show any anger or make him feel really guilty. I wanted to just quietly disappear and forget him after all I’ve been through for him.

That said, he seems to be getting better and things between us are improving. I just hope he proves me right to stay with him through all the heartache of the last 5 months. Time will tell.

Thank you so much for all your help and advice, it’s been a great help to me. Wishing you all well.

M x.

flighty
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#14 Post by flighty »

My gut reaction as a plain and simple civvy is, give him the space to maintain his friendship with this lass. They have been a support to each other in situations which you cannot possibly have an inkling about. To deny them that comradeship would be wrong.

I have a great male colleague of twenty odd years. That's all he is. He's been my greatest 'lift' workwise for all these years. We've shared some really bad times and some bloody brilliant ones. He is one of my best mates, ever.

If my other half tried to make me sever communications with him I know who would be told to walk first. But then, he wouldn't. Brendan is a valued mate. Steve is my partner. It isn't too tricky to get to get your heads round. :wink:

sterion66
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#15 Post by sterion66 »

Good to hear from you mary, as stated though best not to create an ultimatum style scenario otherwise in the future he may resent you for it. Sounds like apart from that things are going great. I wish you all the best for the future though and although it's hard at times im sure just stick with it.

Mike

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