The Boy Who Could Not Love: A Case Study

Dr T J Jordan
7 min readApr 4, 2021

(Image courtesy of Pixabay iStock photos)

Dr T J Jordan


Impacts of very early experiences, from before the ages of three to five years old, appear to be significant in the likelihood that someone might develop PTSD, the now commonly recognized form of what was once called “shell shock” during the mid-20th century. Compared with the general population, PTSD Is found to trouble a relatively high proportion of military veterans, police, fire-fighters, and a broad range of first responders who have lived through combat, take downs, and the sight of blood and guts.

We have been puzzled by two major questions:

  1. What is it that makes some individuals in the above categories develop PTSD, while others who share much the same experiences do not? and
  2. Now that we have begun to recognize the existence of Complex PTSD, which we diagnose in people who have not seen military or police action nor the grizzly aspects of medical emergencies, we ask what causes this problem?

For those of us whose work brings us in contact with people troubled by CPTSD, we find that, unlike heroic and respected actions that often are the critical points for initiating PTSD, CPTSD typically is the result of a more chronic, long-term history. While we are learning about CPTSD, we are beginning to think that this is the result of INJURIES inflicted over time (in contrast to actions we take according to our own decisions, or a single monolithic event such as being present when the twin towers went down, or being caught in a tsunami on the coast of Thailand.)

We are learning that histories of chronic abuse and/or neglect, along a broad spectrum of deliberately inflicted injuries, set the stage for the development of CPTSD in children. This spectrum can range from harsh physical punishment to the enforced restriction of emotions during childhood.

It is no wonder that people troubled by CPTSD have difficulty presenting their feelings even in the protective environment of psychotherapy. They often have been taught that emotional expression is unacceptable, particularly if they are males. Their emotional lives are often a mass of congealed feelings they fear and are unable to label or…

Dr T J Jordan

Passionate about sexualities, masculinities, relationships, intimacy, mental health, CPTSD , animals, growth, psychology, and exotic locations.