8 August 2022

Myke, Living with PTSD

“I don’t think I will ever be able to tell my whole story publicly. It’s not something I can do,” says Myke, a Maldivian man who suffers from PTSD.

Myke says that talking about his trauma comes with a lot of triggers, which is one of the main reasons why he cannot divulge that information.

He also says that his trauma story involves a lot of other people in his personal life, which is also why he would like to keep it private.

Myke is reluctant to reveal his triggers to people, which he believes could be used against him.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a condition of persistent mental and emotional stress occurring as a result of injury or severe psychological shock.

Before he was diagnosed with PTSD, he was also diagnosed with anxiety and depression and the age of 22.

Myke was diagnosed with PTSD around the age of 26 years old, abroad as he has certain reservations about disclosing personal information to those practicing in the Maldives.

He has had panic attacks before that, but didn’t know what was happening to him, neither did his close family.

“Especially my family thought I was going nuts.”

Myke says it was only after these episodes that, with the help of a friend, he got his diagnosis abroad.

Myke explains that he never got medication for his PTSD as he was not ready to take a lot of medication and did not want to be on anti-depressants.

He says that it is harder to talk to Maldivians about mental health, “I never got a positive vibe from people I went into therapy with.”

Confidentiality issues in a small community is also one of the reasons he is hesitant to talk about his trauma in the Maldives.

“Especially as a man, it is difficult to talk about these issues. People take us as weak, but honestly, we aren’t.”

Myke also highlighted that it is easier to talk to women about the mental health than with men.

“Multiple times, she has crossed the Hulhumale’ bridge for me at 2AM or 3AM,” says Myke, gesturing to his friend, while talking about his episodes.

Myke says his friends, mainly women, helped him a lot, saying that they were “more empathetic and more understanding. But when it comes to men, the toxic masculinity comes out.”

Myke urges people who suffer from PTSD to talk to people who they are comfortable with.

“Talk to people, it is something I was not able to do”

Myke also revealed that he uses TikToks and posting videos as a coping mechanism. He also says that he never truly enjoyed the attention.

“When people see me (on social media) they might think this person wants attention. But in reality, I hate the attention. My friends know that I hate the attention I get, but these are things that I do for myself.”

Myke has recently started confronting his fears and getting comfortable with his mental health. He still gets help for his PTSD here in Maldives.

#ownyourstories

– Photostories in partnership with MV Rise Up

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