11 PTSD quotes (That help)

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This blog lists various PTSD quotes.

This list provides quotes that describe what PTSD is like for civilians and for veterans as well, quotes about trauma, and what the recovery journey from PTSD is like. 

The blog also briefly explores what PTSD is. 

PTSD quotes

Quotes that describe what PTSD is like

Here is a list of quotes by various individuals that describe what PTSD is like, what the condition is to them, and how it is like living with it. 

This list of quotes have been compiled by everydaypower

“PTSD is a whole-body tragedy, an integral human event of enormous proportions with massive repercussions.” 

― Susan Pease Banitt

“There are edges around the black and every now and then a flash of colour streaks out of the grey. But I can never really grasp any of the slivers of memories that emerge.” 

― Katie McGarry

“The part I wanted them to understand is that these equations can implode, constricting your whole life, until one day you’re sitting in a locked steel box breathing through an airhole with a straw and wondering, ‘Now? Now am I safe?” 

― Roxane Gay

PTSD quotes for veterans

Here are some quotes by war veterans who describe their experience with PTSD after their experience with war and conflict. 

These quotes reflect how their experience affects their mental health and their lives.

This list of quotes have been compiled by everydaypower

“You’ve been so used to fighting Wars with a gun in your hand that you forget to put it down. Not every fight requires a weapon of some kind, and not everything is a fight.” 

― Lori Llewellyn

“In war, the damage you inflict on the enemy might be immediately apparent. The damage you inflict on yourself in doing so will only become apparent later.” 

― Stewart Stafford

“There are people who come home from war and want to talk about the pain, but no one wants to listen; there are others who want to keep silent and repress the memories, and all their family and friends want is to talk about it. I call this the war veteran reintegration paradox.” 

― M.B. Dallocchio

“The shrinks call it Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. I call it hell. The demons are waiting in each corner, ready to drag me back to the battlefield. 

― James Coyne

“The brave men and women, who serve their country and as a result, live constantly with the war inside them, exist in a world of chaos. But the turmoil they experience isn’t who they are; the PTSD invades their minds and bodies.” 

― Robert Koger

Quotes about trauma

Here is a list of quotes that describe what trauma is like, how it affects one’s lives- thoughts, feelings, and behaviours. 

These quotes also describe very personal experience with trauma and living with the effects of trauma. 

This list of quotes have been compiled by Neveralone

“Some people’s lives seem to flow in a narrative; mine had many stops and starts. That’s what trauma does. It interrupts the plot. You can’t process it because it doesn’t fit with what came before or what comes afterwards.”

― Jessica Stern

“There is no timestamp on trauma. There isn’t a formula that you can insert yourself into to get from horror to healed. Be patient. Take up space. Let your journey be the balm.” 

– Dawn Serra

“Most of us have unhealthy thoughts and emotions that have either developed as a result of trauma or hardships in their childhood, or the way they were raised.”

 – Steven Seagal

“I did not ask for the things I’ve been through. And I certainly didn’t ask my mind to paint and repaint the pictures back in flashback form.” 

– Michelle Groth

“Trauma is perhaps the most avoided, ignored, belittled, denied, misunderstood, and untreated cause of human suffering.” 

– Peter Levine

“After a traumatic experience, the human system of self-preservation seems to go onto permanent alert, as if the danger might return at any moment.” 

― Judith Lewis Herman

“Trauma is any stressor that occurs in a sudden and forceful way and is experienced as overwhelming.” 

― Stephanie S. Covington

“In talking with people that have experienced it, I learned that PTSD is something that a person in a position of authority sometimes thinks they’re not supposed to have. They don’t always have an avenue to personally address it or even discuss it.” 

― Stana Katic

“One of the things that pains me is we have so tragically underestimated the trauma, the hardship we create in this country when we treat people unfairly, when we incarcerate them unfairly, when we condemn them unfairly.”

 – Brian Stevenson

“I wish my head could forget what my eyes have seen.”

– Dave Parnell

The body remembers. Stuffed until an event, a sound, a sight, a touch, a word, or a person awakens them” – Unknown

“It isn’t in my past. It’s in my everyday.” 

– Helen Wilson

“I am left with basically nothing. Too trapped in a war to be at peace, too damaged to be at war.” 

– Daniel Somers

Quotes about recovery from PTSD

Here is a list of quotes about recovery from PTSD. 

These quotes are inspirational quotes about the process of recovery, coping with PTSD, and the experience of the mental health journey as a whole

This list of quotes have been compiled by Neveralone

“You never know how strong you are, until being strong is the only choice you have.” 

– Bob Marley

“The best way out is always through.” 

– Robert Frost

“Recovery is a process. It takes time. It takes patience. It takes everything you’ve got.”

 – Unknown

“Recovering from PTSD is being fragile and strong at the same time. It’s a beautiful medley of constantly being broken down and pieced together. I am painting almost to completion, beautiful but not quite complete.”

 – Kate J. Tate

“One of the hardest things was learning I was worth recovery.” 

– Demi Lovato

“Instead of being ashamed of what you’ve been through, be proud of what you have overcome.” 

– Dr. Phil

“Trauma is hell on earth. Trauma resolved is a gift from the gods.” 

― Peter A. Levine

“When you’re going through these difficult times of chaos and trauma, the most important thing is to keep those who are closest to you together.” 

– Michael Imperioli

“PTSD is the constant battle of reminding my body and mind that the past, present, and future are not one in the same, and despite what I’m feeling I am safe and in control of my body.” 

– Shantae Griffin

“The reason why you need emotional support is because it’s important for survivors to be heard. To be understood. To be able to express yourself without fearing criticism or harsh judgement. To be validated for your pain, suffering, and loss. For others to be there for you to encourage you, especially if you’re having a bad day or feeling triggered.” 

― Dana Arcuri

“If your brain changes in response to experience, then you have the opportunity to deliberately help your brain change again based on new experiences you create.” 

― Michele Rosenthal

What is PTSD?

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a psychiatric disorder that may occur in people who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event. It could be a direct or indirect experience and can even happen due to repeated exposure to details of a traumatic event.

People with PTSD often struggle with their cognitions and emotions because they relive the event through flashbacks and nightmares, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event. 

People with PTSD may avoid situations or people that remind them of the traumatic event, and they may have strong reactions to ordinary events and often feel detached and isolated. 

PTSD is a debilitating disorder that can impact a person’s relationships, work, responsibilities like parenting and occupational/ academic tasks and can severely impact their sense of self. 

What are the diagnostic criteria of PTSD?

The following diagnostic criteria has been taken from the DSM-5 published by the American psychological association in 2013.

The criteria listed below apply to people above the age of 6 where for children below the age of six, the criteria is slightly different.

For PTSD to be diaognosed, the individual should have had Exposure to actual or threatened death, serious injury, or sexual violence in one (or more) of the following ways:

  • Directly experiencing the traumatic event(s).
  • Witnessing the event(s) as it occurred to others in person.
  • Learning that the traumatic event(s) occurred to a close family member or close friend. 
  • Experiencing repeated or extreme exposure to details of the traumatic event(s) 

There is also the experience of intrusive thoughts beginning after the traumatic event(s) occurred such as:

  • Recurrent distressing memories of the traumatic event(s). 
  • Recurrent distressing dreams in which the content is related to the traumatic event(s). 

They also experience dissociative reactions such as flashbacks, where the individual feels or acts as if the traumatic event(s) were recurring. 

They also experience psychological distress that is intense when exposed to internal or external cues that resemble an aspect of the traumatic event along with physiological reactions such as sweating, higher heart rate, shivering etc.

There is persistent avoidance of stimuli associated with the traumatic event(s) such as:

  • Avoiding distressing memories, thoughts, and feelings, of the traumatic events. 
  • Avoidance of external reminders (people, places, conversations, activities, objects, situations) of the traumatic event(s).

The struggle with altering cognitive processes and moods after the traumatic event has occurred such as:

  • Inability to remember an important aspect of the traumatic event(s).
  • They develop extremely negative beliefs or expectations about oneself, others, or the world
  • They have distorted ideas about the consequences of the traumatic event(s) that lead the individual to blame himself/herself or others.
  • They are in a perpetual negative state of mood such as anger, sadness, etc. 
  • Feelings of detachment or estrangement from others- loneliness.
  • Inability to experience positive emotions such as love, happiness. 

They may also exhibit the following affective symptoms such as:

  • Irritable behaviour and angry outbursts (with little or no provocation), typically expressed as aggression. 
  • Reckless or self-destructive behaviour.
  • Hypervigilance.
  • Exaggerated startle response.
  • Problems with concentration.
  • Sleep disturbance 

These symptoms must persist for more than one month and cause significant distress and impairment in their social, and occupational functioning and are not attributed to other disorders, medical conditions, and substance use.


This blog listed various PTSD  quotes.

This list provided quotes that describe what PTSD is like for civilians and for veterans as well, quotes about trauma, and what the recovery journey from PTSD is like. 

The blog also briefly explored what PTSD is. 

FAQ related to PTSD quotes

Is PTSD a mental illness or disorder?

PTSD is a mental disorder. 

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a disorder that develops in some people who have experienced something shocking, traumatic, and at times dangerous. 

What are the 5 stages of PTSD?

The five stages of PTSD include:

  • Impact or Emergency Stage
  • Denial/ Numbing Stage.
  • Rescue Stage where treatment and intervention begins.
  • Short-term Recovery or Intermediate Stage.
  • Long-term reconstruction or recovery stage.

What can PTSD be mistaken for?

PTSD can be confused with generalised anxiety disorder because of the intense anxiety and intrusive thoughts that come with both disorders. 

What happens if PTSD is left untreated?

Untreated PTSD can lead to chronic pain, depression, anxiety, drug and alcohol abuse and sleep problems and death.


POWERFUL PTSD QUOTES: 135 TO HELP GET THROUGH 2022. Never alone. Retrieved on 25th January 2022. https://weareneveralone.co/blog/ptsd-quotes/

PTSD Quotes for When You Can’t Remember How Strong You Are. Everyday Power. Retrieved on 25th january 2022. https://everydaypower.com/ptsd-quotes/

American psychiatric Association (2020). What Is Posttraumatic Stress Disorder? Retrieved on 31st December 2021. https://www.psychiatry.org/patients-families/ptsd/what-is-ptsd

Centre for Substance Abuse Treatment (US). Trauma-Informed Care in Behavioural Health Services. Rockville (MD): Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (US); 2014. (Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series, No. 57.) Exhibit 1.3-4, DSM-5 Diagnostic Criteria for PTSD. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK207191/box/part1_ch3.box16

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