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#16335 - 08/31/04 11:04 AM EMOTIONALLY DEAD
lee75 Offline

Registered: 01/26/04
Posts: 37
Loc: utah
Does anyone else struggle with feeling emotionally dead. its been quit a long time since i have felt anything other than being scared and anxious. most of the time i feel empty. i dont know if im doing this so i dont have to deal with anything.
i just keep a perfectly even keel. (an easily upset even keel) ;\)
i cant get upset. i cant get mad.
i had a neighbor who was into meth and he stole all the stereo's out of my cars ( i collect cars, 30+) anyway he ruined a bunch of them and insted of getting mad or doing anything about it im just going to junk and part out the most affected ones. i think this is a way of not dealing with the anger but i cant seem to face it. id rather chuck the car than think about it. any advice. im in therapy and i go to group ( for drugs and alcohol(as i have a drink))
anyone able to shed some light on this shiz???

Lord, i hope this day is good. im feeling empty and misunderstood. i should be thankful, lord, i know i should, but lord, i hope this day is good. DON WILLIAMS

#16336 - 08/31/04 01:17 PM Re: EMOTIONALLY DEAD
Ivo Offline

Registered: 05/08/04
Posts: 267
Loc: Germany
Hello Lee75,
during years I found that is much smarter to avoid conflicts than to go to fight with other people. On this way I am able to enjoy more in my internal peace (which doesn't last for long period of time and which is achieved by very hard work). It is also possible that I could not face anger (I am already fed up to be anxious and upset on everyday basis). I am afraid that I can not say anything wise about emotional emptiness except that there are a lot of people here (including me) that have struggles with it.

#16337 - 09/01/04 04:08 AM Re: EMOTIONALLY DEAD
fusionoflove Offline

Registered: 05/03/04
Posts: 112
Loc: Los Angeles, CA

For me and I think a lot of other people here and elsewhere in the world who have gone through the experience of sexual abuse the recovery of feelings is one of the main components to therapy. I think that for myself and my self worth I became dead to my feelings for a long time. I did it as a survival technique. It allowed me to get through life on a daily basis. Also, in your situation with the cars, it might because you don't want to add anymore drama to your life. You in therapy and some kind of recovery program for alcohol.

It's taken me a long time to get back in touch with my feelings, especially after I got off drugs and alcohol. The best way I could describe what happened to me was a giant wave came crashing over me. Now, that I think the worst part is over. I too, feel dead at times. Kind of like what do I do now, where do I go, who am I or want do I want to become.

Anger was really the last emotion that I felt over my situation. I don't know why, maybe because I blamed myself for it, but who knows? Also, maybe because the people who did this to us are so spiritually, emotionally, and psychologically screwed up we feel that if we express anger we become them. Kind of like taking on their negative energy. I think all of us here want the world to be right and we don't want to add to the negativity of the world so we become dead to situations that should tick us off.

I'm sorry about what happened to your cars brother. It sounds like your neighbor has issues. Maybe instead of confronting him directly you should get the cops involved first. I don't know though. Don't feel pressured to do anything about it, but remember we've got the power now. Let's try and not let people walk all over us the rest of our lives.

Alright, I'm starting to ramble, so I'll end it. I hope some of things I said make sense and our pertinent to your sitution.

Take it easy,


#16338 - 09/02/04 06:39 AM Re: EMOTIONALLY DEAD
honest_lion Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/19/04
Posts: 16
Loc: Dallas, Tx
Hang in there brother. I totally understand. There are plenty of emotions in me. Problem is that, they are the emotions of a Seven years old. It has not grown for last Forty years. Obviously I get into embarrassing situation when it acts out when I am interacting with people. Everyone can't help but patronize me, and relationships never take off. It is tough on people my age to take seriously a boy emotionally Seven years old. They try and then give up. It is painful. As a result I shut the whole emotion thing down when around people, and try to act like a grown up. Yes, that makes me emotionally dead and a fake.
Working with Alcohol recovery, I did get a glipse of an answer to the problem. I started to share with others. No one disagreed, but no one bought it either. Good for them, that they are not as ***k'ed up as I am. However on my second session with Incest Therapist, she gave me the same answer as a solution to the emotion problem. I was surprised !! For the first time I am seeing the light at the end of tunnel.
We both agreed that I am used to work with emotions in only two ways. Either I would suppress it or I would act it out. Then she added they are two extreme ways to handdle it, they are also the only wrong ways to handle it. Any other way is good !!! That means somehow I should not suppress any emotions by denying it or tagging it as a bad emotion, and at the same time I can't act it out.
Now I find myself in a very unfamiliar territory. It is a brand new way to live life. In the beginning it is very hard, thats exactly where I am.
Have a good day tomorrow.

#16339 - 09/02/04 05:39 PM Re: EMOTIONALLY DEAD
JeffLRich Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/03/04
Posts: 8
Loc: NJ
I don't like this phrase "emotionally dead". Nothing in us is dead. Not our "inner children", not our souls, not our emotions, not our pasts, presents or futures. Our abusers didn't kill anything in us, they don't have that power. They may have scared some things into hiding but that just means we have to find them again. They didn't "rip out our souls" or "steal our futures" or anything else that connotes that we are lesser than we ever were.

All those phrases and ideas are defeatest talk that doesn't apply to anyone who has come to this site seeking support and comfort and understanding and answers. If any of us were defeated by what our abusers did then I doubt very seriously that we would be here reading and/or writing these words right now. The mere fact that we come to this site proves that we are still alive and trying to get back to who we know we are. It just takes time but we will all find our paths again.

As for those emotions that we have squirrelled away somewhere they will come slowly and surely but first it takes an understanding of self and an acceptance of self. No amount of healing will ever bring us back to the time before we were abused, it has happened and there is nothing that will ever change that fact. We must accept that it will always be a part of ourselves but what can be changed is how we react to it's many affects. Do we continue to fight it? Do we continue to deny that it affects 99% of everything we do and say? Do we continue to regard it as the enemy? Or do we accept it as the fact that it is? Do we adjust to it's existence and learn who we are within it's perameters? Learn the signs of its affects and thwart the outcome before it's too late?

I say yes we do claim the abuse as a part of ourselves, there is no other way to exist now. We do say that it is something that has happened and no matter how much I fight and rage and cry and hide it will never be untrue. I have been sexually abused. There it is and there it will stay. I don't hide from it any more. I don't try to bury it within the pit of myself. I don't try to drown it in drink or bury it under a dust of cocaine. I live with it as it lives with me. I watch it and monitor it and make sure to catch myself if I feel it's affects pulling me down the back alleys again. I try to stay one step ahead of it but I no longer try to run away from it because wherever I go, it goes.

The only way to find those emotions and those hopes and dreams that were there before we were abused and have been locked away ever since is to just feel them again. Let them come. Every last one of them. All the anger. All the rage. All the fear and anxiety. All the tears of sadness. And eventually we might find that underneath all that is the happiness that once existed and the silliness that we forgot and the joy, all the good ones but first we need to slog through the tough ones. Get them out in the open and let them roam as free as they should. Don't be selective or controlling of them, just let them be and exist and embrace them. And the more we feel them the more we will realize that we are not "dead", everything about us is alive and that is a great thing because then we can realize that the abuser did nothing more that abuse us. He didn't kill anything (no matter how hard he may have tried) and he didn't steal anything or dilute anything, he just hid it for awhile. We will realize that all that we have ever been before and after the abuse is still within us and it's ours forever.

I feel that it boils down to choice. We all have the choice within us. The abusers chose to abuse and perpetuate the misery that lived within themselves and we have a choice to either perpetuate the misery within us, bending under it's weight and precieved power or we can choose to stand up for ourselves and our lives and say that I will not let it control me. I will not let anything the abusers did to me stop me from being strong and happy and me. I will not hide from any of this because that just gives it power over me. I will not wallow in self-pity or self-destructive activity. I will be strong because that is what I am.

And I know that all of this is easier said than done. I know from experience that it takes daily monitoring to not slip into hiding. I tell myself every day that I am making better choices for myself because I am worth it. I tell myself every day that I will not go out and have anonymous sex because in the short and long run it serves no positive purpose to my existence. I tell myself every day that I deserve better than what I have allowed myself in the past. I tell myself everyday that I am strong and powerful and the creator of my own existence now and always. I tell myself everyday that I am not a victim of anyone but myself and then I don't allow myself to victimize myself in anyway. And it is a struggle, somedays more than others, but it is a struggle that I can live with because it is a struggle that I choose.

I don't want anyone to think that I am preaching that this is the way to "get over the abuse", I would never presume to tell anyone how to deal with this or how to live their lives. This is merely how I have gotten through it (and I have gotten through it, I am on the other side of it finally after 19 years. Not every day is perfect but most of my days do contain a goodly amount of happiness and pride and excitement that I am alive). This is merely what I do on a daily basis that keeps me out of the water. It has taken me a long time to get to this point (no overnight revelations unfortunately) and I still have work to do but I am glad everyday that I do work on it and don't let it work on me.

Thanks for listening.

"It's when you cry just a little but you laugh in the middle that you know you've made it." Jason Mraz

#16340 - 09/03/04 08:58 AM Re: EMOTIONALLY DEAD
Leosha Offline

Registered: 06/18/03
Posts: 3614
Loc: Right here
I do not feel this so often. Occasionally I have feelings of 'I give up' and 'I don't care anymore'. But of course, I don't give up and I DO care. I am not sure what gets me past those times, those feelings. I think it is just something I feel for a day or so, and it goes away on it's own usually. I wish I can give you advice on how to deal with it, as I said, I think it just is self-limiting to me. I wish you luck and wish you well.


Avatar photo in memory of my younger brother Makar.

"Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted."~~~Martin Luther King Jr., 1963


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