Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in Romance Novels Part 2

Welcome back to part 2 of PTSD and romance novels. We covered war/combat related PTSD in Part 1 and today we will cover some different experiences.

PTSD can be linked to more experiences than Military battles that change you from the person you knew or believed you were. But what if your experience was different. Maybe your trauma happened early in life, and there wasn’t a long period of you being a different person. 

All you can remember is you after the trauma and you carry your fears around like a tattered blanket that you want to give up, but are afraid that you can’t. And do you even know who you are if you did give it up (work though it). It has been with you for so long you don’t know anything else. How does that impact your relationships moving forward?

Or maybe your trauma was more recent. You remember the time and how you were before, but no matter how hard you try, you can’t forget or go back.

In both cases, you experience all the same flashbacks, anxieties and fears. And there are so many varied ways to cope. Drugs, promiscuity, alcohol, withdrawal, weight gain or loss, gambling, acting as though nothing has happened, attempts at taking their life or homicidal tendencies. Yet, these experiences are not widely represented nor are the varied number of strategies people adopt to manage their trauma.

I am all about inclusion, and the importance of seeing yourself in books. And I think when you invalidate someone’s experience by ignoring it completely, it sends a harmful message to the person that they are ‘wrong’ that they aren’t doing it (reacting) ‘right’ and this is a dangerous lesson to teach.

We all fall in love and bring our past with us. Wouldn’t it be nice to see someone react the way we have, and to see how they are able to process it and heal?

What are your thoughts?

Looking forward to connecting with you,


This Post Has One Comment

  1. Lisa Norman

    One of my authors, June Converse, writes a romance where the heroine has intense PTSD. I love those books so much, but it isn’t fair to put them out in the world without trigger warnings… and I’m finding that a lot of people don’t read past those warnings. The books handle the subject accurately and very well. Now. How to get people to buy them and read them in order to see how beautiful the story is???

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