Freedom49, Lazarus et al
Your response brought on my tears as well. You have touched somewhere that hurts.
I think this discussion has revealed something very painful for lovers to accept. The giving and receiving of love is hard and for some people it is nearly impossible. But the crucial point is that the love does exist, it just fails to be expressed appropriately. The relationship between triggers and all things “intimate” seems to be a large part of this failure of expression. In significant relationships these failures of expression are deeply, personally felt and the result is a sense of fear and frustration. I guess we sometimes fear the things we most desire.
Thanks, Lazarus, all of the insights about triggers have been helpful. Real light has been shed on a topic that has been a weight in my heart for a long, long time. I have read on this site that many survivors feel a great sense of relief when they first arrive here because they finally know they are not alone. This is also true for me. Many comments that have been made (especially the catch 22 analogy) are exactly those I suspect my husband would say if only it were not for a failure of expression.
I am grateful to you all.