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PTSD Word Art Project

Roxanne A


"This is a storytelling project that I have been working on to increase awareness for P.T.S.D. which is my first piece in an ongoing series.

I asked the following question: “What do you wish people knew about P.T.S.D. but were too afraid to ask?” Responses have been kept anonymous in order to respect the participants’ privacy.

I transposed these answers with a word cloud I created based on common media descriptions of P.T.S.D. From far away you can see the word cloud, but if you step closer, you can read the answers that I received from participants in this project.

My motivation behind this storytelling project is to raise awareness for those who suffer from P.T.S.D., often in silence, while also bridging the gap with media representation. I have a personal connection to this because my father suffered with combat-related P.T.S.D. due to his time in the army as an infantry soldier, which led to a life-long problem with alcoholism, and then ultimately he lost the battle to P.T.S.D. As his daughter I watched him suffer in silence, and I hope to raise awareness about issues like these through visual art and storytelling.

Each block represents one answer laid out in repetitive form. The answers are as follows, from left to right, top to bottom:

"It's hard to get close to people."

"Many people in my field suffer from P.T.S.D., which eventually leads to suicide."

"Someone in our family lost the battle to P.T.S.D. and we are still coming to terms with what happened."

"Everyone thought that a family member of mine was an alcoholic, but the truth was that he had P.T.S.D. and nobody knew about it."

"It took several years for my partner to understand my triggers."

"I wish that people knew that it is an ongoing struggle, and that every day is different. What works one day may not work the next."

"Sometimes I get distracted, but it comes off as being distant."

"I wish people knew how hard it is to ask for help."

"My P.T.S.D. has ruined many special occasions."

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