We remain responsible for PTSD-Identity induced sinful behaviors. They harm our souls and harm others who care about us or merely interact with us. These behaviors are part of what makes PTSD contagious. Not on the physical viral level but on the supernatural level of our souls and eternal relationships. While I am busy coping with the damage of PTSD trauma to my soul, I am also busy alienating those who care about me…passing on the misery and alienation.
Hitting People with my PTSD Shrapnel
My PTSD behavior is like an artillery shell. There is the initial impact, explosion, shock wave and shrapnel. Artillery is the biggest killer on the modern conventional battlefield. It kills whoever it hits, blows other people down, and maims and kills with its torqueing shrapnel. This is why a lot of “collateral damage” and “friendly fire” casualties result from the poor application of artillery. In the same way my PTSD behaviors have a direct impact, they have a shockwave, and I damage people who are in proximity to me with my shrapnel.
Thus, when someone says, “I can do what I want” and “it does not hurt anyone else,” we know (and so do they inside) that they have damaged others – usually people who love them and whom they love – with PTSD shrapnel. PTSD splatters shrapnel on others as it causes collateral damage and friendly fire…it likes it that way.
PTSD Shrapnel Makes PTSD Contagious
We can easily become alienated from those we love or respect when they inflict PTSD behaviors on us. This alienation can damage their own souls and lead other people into PTSD behaviors. A prime example of this is when someone finds out their spouse is having an affair. Frequently the reaction, in amongst the rage and the hurt and the anger, is to say, “Okay, Fine! I’ll show them! I’ll have an affair, too!” It’s like saying, so you cut off my right arm, well I’ll show you, I’ll just cut off my left arm…how do you like them apples?!
If they do have a “Revenge Affair,” then they hurt themselves even more. They also hurt whoever they are having the affair with and the people who care about that person. The PTSD-Identity then spirals like shrapnel into others who did not receive the initial trauma. Their souls are damaged in turn by the alienation inflicted by the original PTSD behaviors.
If I am hit by PTSD shrapnel I need healing the same as the one who had PTSD first. I need to put aside the childish – but normal – desire for revenge. The sooner I can realize that it is not all about me, the sooner I can heal and help my loved one heal.
As hard as it is, I need to pray, even if I am angry…especially if I am angry. Write about it, cry with it, offer the horrible sorrow of betrayal and the pain of watching a love one crumble to God. God can help you carry this burden. Know that God loves you both. Pray for the gift of forgiveness.
Semper Pax, Dr. Z