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OSI-CAN Blogs

Updated: Jan 31, 2023


Christmas and OSI's like Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Complex PTSD do not go together well. Combine that with it being winter and Seasonal Affective Disorder comes along to exacerbate the symptoms, and you have a serious potential for negative consequences on decision-making influenced by sadness, grief, and anger. OSI tends to cause people to cover their true feelings of anxiety and depression by showing a happy face. For those dealing with PTSD, Christmas becomes a painful period with the stress of working to cover up their pain and look 'normal'. The result when covering up feelings that isn't successful can be tears, rage, shame, fear, guilt, and panic.

To deal with the Christmas season, you need to have the tools to plan out your strategy:

Choose What You’ll Do

Give yourself a sense of balance and control by making a plan, choose what you want to do or need to do then choose how long you have to or intend to be in that place.


Create an Exit Strategy

Not everything goes according to plan, and so you need a plan for before panic sets in. To stay calm and keep your mind at ease, having an exit strategy for when you have a panic attack or need a moment to breathe and calm down can help keep your calm.

It’s not your job to keep everyone else happy

To manage your PTSD with some effectiveness, remember that you need to develop a limit on your interactions and activities. You cannot keep everyone happy and so saying no and avoiding places and events that will set back your healing is not a bad thing.


Be Realistic

One person cannot attend every Christmas event over the holidays and should not be expected to. If you are getting overwhelmed, put yourself first and pull back on some commitments. You need self-compassion and need to take care of yourself.


Get Some Alone Time

Spending time alone isn't always just about avoiding stress, sometimes it is that time alone that can give you the energy to exist each day. Schedule time to be by yourself if your Christmas schedule is busy.


Don’t Think Ahead

Thinking about an event can add to the anxiety in one's mind, stick to thinking about one thing at a time as much as possible and one can have that much more of a chance at a peaceful mind this Christmas.


We at OSI-CAN do not see PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as a Disorder, we see it as an Injury you can recover from. If you are suffering from the symptoms of an Occupational or Operational Stress Injury, then a PTSD or PTSI diagnosis is not required to get our help!


OSI-CAN is a named project of the Canadian Mental Health Association SK Division. OSI-CAN is a free confidential, community based peer support initiative for currently serving and former military members, first responders, public safety personnel and their families. For more information, visit osicansk.ca You can also contact us at 306-552-3801 or toll free 888-495-6068

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Updated: Jan 31, 2023



Seek professional therapy and medical support If you’re not already receiving professional therapy and medical support for your PTSD, then it’s time to reach out now. Long-term recovery depends on a supportive network of trauma professionals. Effective therapy and treatment are also vital to maintaining healthy PTSD relationships. Learn about your PTSD What are your biggest triggers? What are your best ways to manage anxiety attacks, triggers and dissociative episodes? Learn what speciality PTSD treatments are available in your area and that might help your PTSD. And are there any new ideas about how to self-manage PTSD symptoms that you could investigate further? Address any substance abuse issues PTSD sufferers tend to have much higher rates of alcohol abuse and other substance abuse. While it might seem to help with your PTSD symptoms in the short-term, substance abuse will only have negative affects on your health and relationships long-term. Don’t let embarrassment stop you reaching out for help. Create daily habits to manage PTSD symptoms PTSD symptoms can be predicted at times, but more often than not there’ll be unexpected triggers or anxiety attacks. Regular healthy habits, such as mindfulness practice and exercise, can help manage PTSD symptoms. Therapists or psychologists can help you formulate a plan to work in with your lifestyle. Make the most of your good days PTSD is not a steady state. You already know you’ll have some good days, some great days, and some days when just getting out of bed is too much. Take advantage of those good days and teach yourself to truly live in the moment. Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow isn’t here yet. Bad days will pass. And good days are here to be enjoyed. Connect with others who have PTSD Connecting with other PTSD sufferers can help you understand your condition and yourself better. It can be very supportive to talk with others who know first-hand what you’re dealing with. You may already be in a support group for people with PTSD. If not, try to find one in your area or search for an online community.



We at OSI-CAN do not see PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as a Disorder, we see it as an Injury you can recover from. If you are suffering from the symptoms of an Occupational or Operational Stress Injury, then a PTSD or PTSI diagnosis is not required to get our help!


OSI-CAN is a named project of the Canadian Mental Health Association SK Division. OSI-CAN is a free confidential, community based peer support initiative for currently serving and former military members, first responders, public safety personnel and their families. For more information, visit osicansk.ca You can also contact us at 306-552-3801 or toll free 888-495-6068

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Updated: Jan 27, 2023





Build your knowledge of PTSD Have you heard that knowledge is power? It is, but only if you know how to apply it. Understanding more about post traumatic stress disorder will help you support your partner. You will have more empathy when their PTSD symptoms are triggered. And you will be better positioned to live in the moment together. Reach out for your own support Psychological trauma therapy is vital to successful ongoing management of PTSD. We know it helps the outcomes for both PTSD and PTSD relationships. However caregiver burden is common in PTSD relationships. And the supporter almost always benefits from having their own professional support too. Learn how to be supportive without enabling Everyone only wants the best for their loved one with PTSD. We hope that love will conquer all. But unfortunately love isn’t all it takes. And sometimes our love can lead us blindly into the vicious cycle of enabling. It’s so important to know the difference between supporting and enabling for the best balance in PTSD relationships. Set some healthy boundaries Creating boundaries might seem like a selfish thing to do. But without them, you’ll soon find yourself feeling angry, resentful or exhausted. Healthy boundaries are all about choosing to live according to your own core values. They are not about restricting or punishing your loved one. Make regular self-care a priority Caregivers are so accustomed to directing all their energy and attention towards their loved one, they often forget to look out for themselves. Self-care is about reserving some of that love and compassion for yourself. Allowing regular time for self-care not only restores your peace of mind, but keeps you healthy too. Connect with others in PTSD relationships Talking with other people on a similar journey can be very comforting. When you find and connect with others who truly get it, the relief and encouragement you gain is very valuable. You could find local support groups for PTSD partners, or search for communities online.


We at OSI-CAN do not see PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as a Disorder, we see it as an Injury you can recover from. If you are suffering from the symptoms of an Occupational or Operational Stress Injury, then a PTSD or PTSI diagnosis is not required to get our help!


OSI-CAN is a named project of the Canadian Mental Health Association SK Division. OSI-CAN is a free confidential, community based peer support initiative for military members, first responders, public safety personnel and their families.

For more information, visit osicansk.ca

You can also contact us at 306-552-3801 or toll free 888-495-6068

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OSI-CAN Target Demographic

The target demographic of OSI-CAN are but are not limited to: former and serving members of the Canadian Armed Forces, Allied Armed Forces, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Frontline Protectors --- Municipal Police Services, CN Police Services, Emergency Medical Services, Fire Protection Services, Wildland Firefighters, Hospital Trauma personnel, Nurses, Healthcare Workers, Crown Prosecutors, Social Workers, Animal Control Officers, Coroners, Indigenous Emergency Management, Victim Services Personnel, Emergency Communications Specialist, Crisis Management Workers (such as Mobile Crisis, etc), Corrections Officers, “Volunteer” First Responders, Conservation Officers, Tow Truck drivers, and private sector First Responders.  Persons who in the performance of their jobs are exposed to criminal acts of Trauma. We also provide supports to the spouses and significant others of those exposed to such trauma.  This demographic was chosen due to the commonality of experiences they share through the service they provide to the country and community. We have a special interest and support volunteer first responders as they may not have proper access to support.

OSI-CAN is a program of:

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In Partnership with:

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With the Support of:

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