I’ve been scrolling through posts on here for the past couple months and am finally going to post one of my own. I’m on vacation from my stressful work place. I should be having a great time. Instead it’s really made me aware of how my depression really has come back. I haven’t SIed in over 8 years but the past year and a half to two years have been rough. Recently with all the work stress and personal stress it has built up and I’ve had a couple anxiety attacks where that’s all I can think of doing. Right now I’m visiting my little brother who has been in the Army for four years. He loves it and I’m so happy to see him enjoying his job and I adore his wife. She takes amazing care of him and my nephew and I couldn’t even wish for a better sister in law.
The only drawback is that my brother has PTSD and it kills me to see him struggling. When I was 16 I struggled with PTSD after being sexually assaulted by my best friend and I would never wish it on anyone especially my baby brother. The anxiety attack, paranoia, flashbacks. I can’t even explain it to someone who hasn’t experienced it. I think that just makes it worse to see my brother going through the same thing except probably even worse. My brother is 22 and has a four year old and a wife. Both of whom he adores beyond belief. A few days ago we went to the airborne museum on base and he stood staring at the memorial wall for awhile. I literally cried when we got back to the house because it kills me knowing that he knows people on that wall. He’s been side by side with men getting killed. No matter what he will always be my little brother and the baby of the family and it hurts knowing that I can’t protect him from that. It hurts even more knowing that I can’t protect him from the demons in his own mind. Since I’ve been visiting he has gone into a couple trance-like states where you can see him fighting with his mind and there’s nothing you can do to help him. One of the times his son was playing with bubble wrap from a package and when he stepped on it the pop made my brother jump out of his seat. He stood there staring at his son and my sister in law had to quickly take the bubble wrap away from their son and stand there talking my brother back into his seat. Today we were out at his friend’s house and they were drinking. On the ride home my brother started talking about how awful the world is and how his wife is one of the few good ones. He said that she helps make up for him because he isn’t one of the good ones. When we got back to the house he sat on the couch dazed out with a angry look in his eyes. You couldn’t talk to him. He didn’t answer when we called him. Their neighbor stopped by and he didn’t even acknowledge that the guy was there. His wife finally got him to get up and go in the bedroom so they could talk. Like I said she is really an amazing woman who takes care of him and I am so grateful that he has her.
All of this still makes me really sad though. It makes me think back to how the past year has been for me. All the stress has started bringing back my PTSD anxiety. It’s like whenever I get really stressed it automatically sends my mind back to that really panicked state. I used to know how to get out but recently it’s been so much I just don’t know anymore. That’s why over the past year I’ve been thinking about SI more. I don’t believe it’s anything my brother would ever do because he saw what it did to me and our family. He definitely got to learn from my mistakes. Just the thought of him being in that place mentally where you just can’t get out upsets me. It’s awful to think that his flashbacks have to be worse then mine because he has more things to flashback to. It feels good to get all that out there. I know it’s not going to make any of it go away but I really don’t trust anyone to talk about it. At least I’m getting it out here.