Monday Moments for Partners of Survivors with Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

What Are Monday Moments for Partners?

Monday Moments is a weekly email in which I share:

  • Insights about my journey as a partner to a survivor with complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • The resources I use to support myself and my family
  • Encouragement for other partners in similar situations

These short emails include personal details I would not normally share on the blog. I hope the content will benefit partners and survivors as all of us navigate the journey of trauma recovery.

Excerpt from the first Monday Moment

I write:

“It’s wonderful that my survivor-husband has finally connected with an amazing trauma-informed and skilled therapist. But what no one tells you is how a survivor’s therapy journey impacts the family and especially the partner.

Here are a few things I’ve learned about trauma recovery’s impact on the partner:

  • Finding a therapist is only the beginning.
  • The excitement of finding a therapist is short-lived.
  • The reality of recovery is sobering.
  • Sometimes, I want to quit. Sometimes, I want my partner to quit. Sometimes, we both want to quit!
  • Practical strategies for living with a survivor while he (or she) goes through recovery are non-existent. In other words, you have to find your own.
  • The partner’s load often increases during the survivor’s therapy.

Here are a few strategies I’m using:

  • Mindful Moments: I discovered this term in the book Trauma Stewardship by Laura van Dernoot Lipsky. It means intentionally noticing what is going on around you. Noticing beauty in nature and stopping to take a photo are two of my go-to practices.
  • Working with a trauma-informed coach. I chose to pursue a coach vs a therapist as I wanted someone who could provide me with practical tools for day-to-day living especially in regards to self-regulation. (In short, self-regulation means calming one’s body, mind, and emotions.) This coach is also trained in somatic therapy, which is an important piece of recovery from trauma or secondary traumatic stress. Unfortunately, I have developed some shoulder & neck pain in the last few months.
  • Regular contact with my support networks, which include the Partners to Survivors with Complex Trauma, coaching colleagues, and new and old friends.

I’ll continue to expand on these topics as I go. In the meantime, if you are a partner or a survivor in a relationship, let me know your thoughts. Does this email resonate with you? What is your experience as your survivor-partner goes through therapy? What strategies do you use?

See you next Monday!



Photo by Ester Marie Doysabas on Unsplash

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