Thursday, October 2, 2014

How do you think your mental health effects our family now?

This is a series of post answering questions posed by Kevin's daughter.  I asked permission to answer each of these questions as if I was answering my adult children.  I will also include a link to Kevin's answer. (I don't read his blog until after I write mine.)

12. How do you think your mental health effects our family now?

This is a tough question.  I know how much my PTSD affected our family before I found out what it was.  Shadow boxing a mystery nearly destroyed our family.  Now, the improvement is huge, yet I still see how my mishandling my illness then and my struggles with PTSD now still impact family relationships.  However, something that KavinCoach pointed out to me was how often I blamed PTSD for everyday occurrences.  Families have struggles.  Different personalities thrown together by birth, six beautiful amazingly different siblings.  Two parents that hang together not because we are so much a like but rather we refuse to let our differences drive us a part.  Family dynamics increase exponentially with family size.  There is going to be conflict of some form between family members.  Old unresolved battles rattle around in every family skeleton closet.  But the effects of mental illness isn't just negative.  I watch each of our children reaching out to others.  I am impressed by the service each of you give.  I am thrilled to see your families growing and your willingness to tackle difficult problems.  PTSD is a big challenge, so was cancer and we weathered that too.  Disagreements are a something of a challenge for me.  I tend to drop into my role of peace-at-all-cost.  You kids remind me that sometimes it is important to stand up for myself.  My husband, children, and sister are my biggest cheerleaders.  I am looking forward to gathering this year.  I am getting a counselor to help me keep PTSD in place, under control by me.  I appreciate daughters and sons going out of their way to support me in our challenge of bring us together.  I am so thankful for the strength and acceptance I feel from our family.  I am thankful for the effort each person contributes to our family.  I am glad we all live in the same country now.  Learning how to live with my PTSD has positively impacted our family.

Our family finds love in difficult places.

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