TraumaAll patients with complex PTSD have suffered a prolonged trauma. This trauma could have been the result of war, as in the case of veterans or victims of war time violence. Other patients suffer trauma in the form of physical or sexual abuse, captivity or another prolonged trauma.
EmotionalA sufferer of complex PTSD has issues with emotional regulation, including persistent sadness, explosive or inhibited anger and/or suicidal thoughts.
System of MeaningsComplex PTSD creates a change in your system of meanings, such as a loss of faith or an overall sense of despair.
ConsciousnessA sufferer of complex PTSD will have alterations in consciousness due to the traumatic events. She either will forget, or block, the traumatic events, keep reliving the trauma or have episodes when she feels as though she is detached from her own body or mental process.
RelationshipsComplex PTSD has an effect on the patient's relationships as well. Many sufferers isolate themselves, distrust others or keep searching for a rescuer to prevent future trauma.
Additionally, the patient will have an extreme relationship with the person or people who inflicted the trauma. He might attribute total power to the perpetrator or become preoccupied with his relationship with the perpetrator, and sometimes be preoccupied with revenge.