I'm new here, but I can't deal with my problems on my own anymore. Long story short, early last year my best friend at the time (now he's my boyfriend) got sick. As in catching the flu, MRSA, and 2 types of pneumonia at once, needing a ventilator and placed in ICU for 8 weeks, and almost on life support at one point type sick. It didn't start out all like that all at once, if it did and he got out sooner I'm sure I wouldn't have the problems I do now. Anyways I started out just worried (best friend was in the hospital after all), but almost day after day all I heard was how he kept getting worse or how the meds weren't working right or how something even worse was added on on top of all he had to deal with, even by texting him every chance I got to help keep his spirits up I could tell he was faring pretty bad. There were several times neither he nor the doctors thought he would survive (his mom saying "God will save him" really scared me, since when do mothers become that desperate and scared?) so friends, trust me when I say 'worried sick' is a real thing. It stressed me out bad, on top of homework and finals and all kinds of other issues I had to deal with. He eventually got better thanks to prayers and support, and he's generally in good health now, so I thought my problems were over with. I mean, the only time I ever found a trigger was when I saw a photo of him in the hospital room on Facebook and how bad a shape he was really in (this was a few weeks after he was back home). After that I rarely had any memories bug me, but starting last month things started getting really bad. I keep thinking 'what if this happened' or 'this could've been real' or 'I could've lost him' out of nowhere. The last few weeks my mind has started making random associations that somehow connect to him being sick (they don't make sense, but if examples are needed I can give them later). The worst part, however, is how these thoughts make me feel: nauseous, worried, scared, and helpless again; it gets hard to breathe, my mind goes fuzzy, and I try not to throw up or cry (especially since most of the time these episodes happen in class or around others).
I'm not sure if this is PTSD or some other panic disorder, as I've never heard of someone's loved ones getting PTSD instead of the person who suffered the illness or harm, but many of the symptoms for both it I have in common, especially concerning triggers (which scares me, because I either won't know they're triggers until it's too late, or they won't affect me every time (50/50 chance)). I haven't been able to find a doctor or therapist yet to ask them, and a group therapy thing at my school doesn't start until January, assuming it will even help. I'm worried I'm losing control over my mind as these associations cause self-triggers more and more often, and I can't shut the negative thoughts or physical reactions (i.e. nausea and lack of energy) out anymore. It's hard to be happy for long, and as my mind tends to wander and I'm a natural introvert, I've been keeping busy lately instead of thinking randomly like normal because I'm scared I'll set my mind through another loop of despair on accident. Again, sorry for the long post, but it's hard to tell a story without telling all of it. I just wish I could find actually helpful support, I don't have too many ideas of what to do next anymore and things are getting worse.