What a Nightmare **May Trigger**

I had to go for a mandatory test yesterday with a doctor that I did not know. The test was administered in an area where I grew up. Everything came flooding back to me as I sat in the damp waiting room with a tiny air conditioner which had seen better days.

I remembered my mother leaving me in the car as she would go shopping in businesses that were gone long ago or going to the dentist in the same buildings. Just down the street was the church where I had made all of my sacraments and was glad to get away from as soon as I could.

This was an area that I choose not to go into because it was a dark hole in my past. This was an area of living nightmares and haunting experiences. I intentionally avoid the area when at all possible. Yesterday, I did not have a choice. I was mandated to go into a little building with a dark staircase and a mildewy smell.

This caused all of my symptoms to become active. I was having flashbacks, I was hyper vigilant, I began to shake, and I had impulses to self harm to feel better. The examiner asked if I was like this all the time and I replied that I was uncomfortable and the shaking was not unusual.

The examiner actually followed me out to my car after the test to make sure I was ok. The first thing that I did was to email my therapist and then call my psychiatrist. The next thing that I remember was that I called my husband to tell him that I was not safe to drive home. My hands and feet were going numb and I was in and out of the present.

I felt violated. Someone who did not know me or my condition was asking me questions that I had a hard time answering. I did not want to discuss my abuse in detail and only gave who and the years that it occurred. She wanted to know details about my illness that I have not shared with those who have been treating me for years.

She seemed to believe I was ok because I white knuckled it to stay out of the hospital to see my children. Even though I told her I was needing to call my treatment team more than once a week to check in with my safety.

Yesterday night was hard. I have flashes of my husband asking me about my PRN’s and what I needed. I do not know what I would do without him. Today, I just want to isolate. I do not want to see or speak to anyone. I am questioning if this brought up to much and if I should go into the hospital and am trying weigh the pros and cons of inpatient vs outpatient treatment. Inpatient would at least make me feel safe and allow me to have staff there, yet I need to work on things in outpatient treatment in order to function outside of the hospital’s protective walls.

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