When all else fails, turn to drugs. Well, one very specific drug: ketamine administered as infusion treatments for post traumatic stress (PTS aka PTSD). Before I go on, here’s a disclaimer.
(Keep scrolling for the video version of this post.)
Disclaimer: In the beginning of this series, I said that the tools I’d be sharing could be used at home and incorporated into your daily life. This tool is an exception. Please don’t attempt it at home, on your own, and without a licensed medical professional. Ketamine should only be administered in a clinic by a trained clinician under the guidance of an appropriately licensed medical professional.
Only then is it safe. And legal (in all states in the US).
When I was 35 years old, the . . .
. . . flashbacks and night terrors from repeated sexual abuse — perpetrated by two of my nonpracticing Amish uncles (Harvey Bell of Montana/Alaska and Enos Bontrager of Wisconsin) — kept looping through my brain. None of the tools for managing PTSD that I’d learned in therapy helped. No alternative therapeutic modalities helped. I simply couldn’t turn off the horrific scenes running through my brain.
It was like I was watching a movie on autoplay that kept replaying, with no button to turn it off. Like I was a prisoner with my legs and arms shackled to a seat in a movie theater, my eyes forced to stay open, no chance of avoiding and finding a way to escape from seeing and vicariously living retraumatizing events.
At the end of my rope, I posted on Facebook that I was rationally contemplating suicide. I’d tried everything and nothing worked. A friend saw my post and asked if I’d tried ketamine. I thought it was a stupid suggestion and that he wasn’t hearing me.
“I’m not clinically depressed. My depression is a result of post-traumatic stress from extreme childhood abuse, and ketamine is for depression,” I told him.
At that time, pretty much the only info floating around on the internet about ketamine as a legal alternative treatment said it was to treat depression.
But he insisted that I try it. What did I have to lose? I did say I’d try everything before I ended my life, he pointed out.
So, on a cold, overcast January morning, I got off the train and walked into a ketamine clinic in Lower Manhattan. My expectations were low. So low, in fact, that I was getting the treatment just to cross it off my list as another thing that didn’t work.
It turned out that this little known treatment for post-traumatic stress from childhood abuse worked! The looping flashbacks stopped and for the first time in 2 years, I saw a sliver of light in the darkness.
Less than a year later, I sat down with my ketamine doctor, Dr. Glen Brooks, to record a Ketamine Q&A for people who aren’t familiar with the treatment. I also talk about how to discern if a clinic is reputable or just ripping you off. Unfortunately, too many shady clinics are only interested in taking your money and selling you hope.
Dr. Glen Brooks is the only doctor I can recommend (and whoever he refers you to). You can read the full interview in my memoir, Amish Girl in Manhattan.
Here’s a snippet:
Ketamine infusion treatments can help people who have experienced childhood trauma and are currently experiencing post-traumatic stress (also known as PTSD) as a result in their adulthood. Childhood trauma can lead to the mood center in the brain not developing properly and ketamine is able to help treat this structural issue and thus help patients recover.
I’ll share more every so often about ketamine and its role in my ability to live with trauma. This is a treatment that makes a huge difference in my life and one that’s misrepresented, misunderstood, and not well known in the general population.
Return to Tool #1!
Do you suffer from PTS (aka PTSD)?
What have you tried?
Would you like to get legal ketamine infusions?
I’d love to hear from you!
If you’re on my mailing list, just hit “reply” and it’ll come to my inbox.
Watch the Video (coming soon)
Keep scrolling for the video version of this post.
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