Saturday, April 11, 2015, AM | Leave Comment
Psychiatrists say one way to develop depression and anxiety is due to Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Technically, it can develop after certain exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal in which extreme physical harm occurred or was threatened.
Traumatic events that can trigger PTSD include violent personal assaults, natural or human-caused disasters, accidents, or military combat. Depression and anxiety can be extremely disabling and a time comes that the individual stops functioning in everyday life.
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
However, your non-doable personal finances can cause PTSD as well. In layman’s words, that’s simply depression and anxiety. However, the difference is that in many cases your PTSD due to finances can be controlled with very little effort.
Many people with financial PTSD can repeatedly experience the ordeal in the form of recurring debts even though they may have left debt-ridden life a couple of years ago.
But it still may come back. You still may not be too careful, go out on a spending spree and return home with huge debt on your credit card on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
PTSD can come back as flashback episodes, memories, nightmares, or frightening thoughts about debt and sleepless nights. People with PTSD also experience emotional numbness – no hear, no see, no speak – and sleep disturbances followed by nightmares, depression, anxiety, and irritability or outbursts of anger.
Americans are blessed with abundance
Personal finance PTSD can be due to external forces or may be internal forces. External forces include the recession, losing jobs, high inflation etc. Internal forces are your inside wishes that force you to buy things on impulse and unnecessarily.
About two weeks ago, I saw a couple in the supermarket with a shopping cart that was so full that things kept falling on the floor. I said “Big family?” The woman said “No, it’s just the two of us.” Why buy so many things that are going to rot in the fridge.
Come next week, it’s the same thing all over. I guess they strongly believe in that coffee commercial fill it to the brim.
When people like those two in the supermarket lose jobs and can’t get one for a year or more, they are going to complain the loudest. They would tend to develop financial PTSD, namely depression and anxiety.
Compared to the third world, Americans have been blessed with abundance of everything. For some folks, that has created financial problems who just spend, spend, spend.
That does not mean folks should buy food in excess of their needs, let it rot and throw it away because they can simply afford it. I remember President Clinton once said “If Americans stop wasting food just for one day, it will feed 49 million folks for the day.”
If you have more than you can chew, why not share it with others. There must be a soup kitchen or something of that nature in your town.
In a Nutshell
The likelihood of treatment success is increased when conditions for spending spree and accumulating enormous debt are appropriately identified and treated as well. Go and see a therapist about your financial PTSD.