Trigger Warning: Description of PTSD flashback.
Being triggered is the worst thing. Imagine you are in the grocery store. You are having a pretty good day, but suddenly, something triggers you. You start to shake. You feel nauseous. You sweat. Your breathing becomes painful and you feel like you are going to black out. You try to look like nothing is wrong because you are ashamed that you feel this way. You begin having a flashback to the worst moments of your life. You feel everything that was done, experience the pain and hurt and fear all over again. You might make it to the restroom where you can quietly lose your goddamned mind but most likely you are huddled beside the bread and strangers are asking you what is wrong and you can’t answer them because you don’t even realize they are there. Someone is trying to help you but to you all touches are the touches of the one who hurt you so badly that most of the time you wake up screaming. You panic further and flail or try to run, but you just end up being betrayed by your body because your legs won’t work and you eventually pass out.
You wake up surrounded by paramedics. You cry silently this time because you are ashamed of yourself and the way you have acted. Now imagine that every single day, every time you want to watch a new show, read a new book or play a new game you have to either have your friends review it for you for your triggers or you have to hope to god you don’t find one.
I’m in recovery. It’s been about three years since I left the abusive relationship. I have made good progress, but it still affects my every day life heavily. I am in a relationship now with a kind, understanding man, but it’s still a bit touch and go, because sometimes I will panic for no reason (I can’t even figure out what triggered me sometimes) when we’re together. I still have a long way to go.
*This week’s comic was drawn by a guest artist, Devin Parker. You can check out more of his stuff here*