I was never officially diagnosed with PTSD as during treatment for depression I never opened up enough to talk about those symptoms. However, I always felt badly about possibly having PTSD, what I experienced isn't nearly as intense as having been in war. PTSD for those not in medical professions, is often only associated with veterans. Has anyone else felt the stigma either by yourself or from others about having PTSD and not being a veteran? Or for veterans, how do you feel about the stigma surrounding PTSD?
I hear you, arianadawn. I'm not a veteran, but I'm in the same boat you are. A psychologist told me I have it, but I simply don't generally tell people due to the stigma.
Arianadawn, you are not alone and neither are you somehow wrong for feeling you may have PTSD because you haven't gone "down-range" as we call it. I'm not a veteran; I'm a veteran's wife. And we are more frequently being diagnosed with PTSD as well.
But the fact is, anyone can suffer PTSD because all of us experience traumatic events. And feeling that your experience isn't as intense or as awful as a soldier's isn't being fair to yourself. PTSD isn't about trying to determine whose wounds are deepest or who suffered the most. It's only about how a traumatic event affects you personally.
Anyone who judges you based on a PTSD diagnosis obviously has no understanding of the affliction and/or has never seen it for themselves. A stigma is a reflection of the person judging, not their target.
Sure, not only military veterans are suffering from that. Basically, everyone who put themselves in danger could be at risk. Police and other law enforcement, for example. Firefighters. Security guards. Their job is tough by nature and they are expected to react if something terrible takes places. And it usually happens without giving a notice.