Newest Members
TopHat, Restore, Tracy, Winston, Jimmy'sDoneLots
13166 Registered Users
Today's Birthdays
cricket453 (62)
Who's Online
9 registered (David1, 7 invisible), 29 Guests and 6 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
13,166 Registered Members
75 Forums
68,261 Topics
475,113 Posts

Most users ever online: 418 @ 07/02/12 07:29 AM
Twitter
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
#417604 - 11/29/12 02:45 AM Why are we scared??
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1739
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
I wonder why men are nervous to come to group. I know that when I started MatrixMen the men would not come rushing through the doors, but I did not anticipate the levels of reluctance.

What is your guys experience re groups for CSA, and did you find that it helped or hindered, and I mean groups specifically for CSA not AA or NA or SLAA.

Would you like to do a group or:-
Is there no way you would do group

Look forward to your reponses

Heal well
Martin
_________________________
Matrix Men South Africa
Survivors Supporting Each other
Matrix Men Blog

Top
#417605 - 11/29/12 03:41 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3956
Loc: settling in the USA again
Martin, i have never been to a group. i have never, since i began working at recovery, had the opportunity to attend a group. i would LOVE to participate in a group if only one were available where i live.

BUT - a year ago you could not have dragged me to a group unless i was unconscious. six months ago, i would have been reluctant, fearful and very nervous about the idea. in the past three months, maybe, i reached the stage where i would be willing and increasingly eager to have that experience.

Part of it is my personal introversion and shyness. part of it was the level of embarrassment, guilt and shame that i felt at having anyone know of my past. it is the stigma of having been sexually used - and therefore less of a man, the idea of weakness attached to being a victim, the fear of being emotionally vulnerable, the admission of the amount of damage and brokenness and abnormality that i felt. and the taboo against asking for help.

i think i had to do a lot of working through stuff on my own and with a T - and get a lot of really positive and encouraging communications and help through these forums - before i could see a support group or therapy group being a positive thing.

Lee
_________________________
"My experience has shown me that I all too often tend to deny that which lies behind, but as I still believe, that which is denied cannot be healed." Brennan Manning, "All is Grace - A Ragamuffin Memoir"

Top
#417606 - 11/29/12 03:49 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
crazy gecko Offline


Registered: 10/04/12
Posts: 309
I can only speak for myself... but I hate group settings. It makes me anxious to have to talk about CSA in a group setting. I've been in group therapy before (not CSA specific, but still more focussed than AA). I hated it. I felt like I didn't have time to think about what I wanted to say and I found the experience of sharing with strangers terrifying. I can write about what happened, but talking face to face is just too immediate and too raw. I can't do it.
_________________________
I guess what I'm trying to say
Is whose life is it anyway because livin'
Living is the best revenge
You can play
-- Def Leppard

My Story, Part 2

My blog

Top
#417609 - 11/29/12 05:40 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
Farmer Boy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 442
Loc: Australia
I would have to fit in the reluctant group.

What if there was someone I knew there??? It comes down to what Traveler said about the embarrassment, guilt and shame, the feeling like less of a man...weakness.

I prefer the anonymity of MS.

Like gecko I can write about what happened but saying out loud - face to face.....too scary.
_________________________
More than meets the eye!

Top
#417618 - 11/29/12 08:40 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
Candu Offline


Registered: 06/30/12
Posts: 312
Loc: Canada
I have never been to any group. And expressing myself on difficult areas does not go well. One example is a 31 line post that I did to the family & friends group. If you were to read that post you wouldn't believe that it took me over three hours to write.

Replying to you question has caused my heart rate to go up.

The expectation to participate bothers me.

When I drive past a car accident I don't look. I don't want to see someone in pain.

This post took twenty minutes and I don't think I expressed what I wanted. I would be scared to go but I would consider it.


Edited by Candu (11/29/12 08:43 AM)
Edit Reason: Adding the last sentence added another five minutes.

Top
#417723 - 11/30/12 05:14 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1739
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
Thanks Guys

Gives me a bit more insight.
It seems that those that are a bit further down the healing path are a little more open to the experience.

For more advise.
Is there anything that we could do to get you guys into a group? Would the benefits of group therapy not out weigh the fears?

Look forward to your responses.

Martin
_________________________
Matrix Men South Africa
Survivors Supporting Each other
Matrix Men Blog

Top
#417746 - 11/30/12 09:47 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
Mountainous Buck Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/15/09
Posts: 1627
Loc: Minnesota
I went to my local men's support group last night for the first time in many months.

I have support through my other groups (AA and SAA, Mankind Project), but this group of Male Survivors offers a unique, irreplaceable kind of connection.

It also connects me to men who don't have other support to repair their lives, and that connection is helpful. I meet men who are more isolated and without the help I've found, and I find there can be a reticence to participate and open up to others, even others who have suffered in many of the same ways.

But the courage there is palpable, and that inspires me.
_________________________
We have to take responsibility for what we're not responsible for.

�It doesn't matter where you've come from,
It matters where you go" Frank Turner

Top
#417768 - 11/30/12 02:51 PM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
Candu Offline


Registered: 06/30/12
Posts: 312
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: whome
For more advise.
Is there anything that we could do to get you guys into a group? Would the benefits of group therapy not out weigh the fears?

I know nothing about group therapy so I can't see the benefits. Sure I believe they are there but I don't know what I would be experiencing, what I would be getting out of it, or what I have to put in.

If I understood the structure, and knew what to expect that would be a help. While not practical, if I had a transcript of what went on I would have a better understanding and would be able to prepare. You would think then a video of it would be OK but remember what I said about not looking at car accidents? I don't look for videos on CSA because it is just too much for me at this time.

I think that I'm in too fragile a state right now to handle something so open and undefined. I get into periods where I think I'm doing OK and I'm back to normal and then I get wacked back down again.

I had an interview at a local organization with a focus on men's issues. The have a specific focus on CSA. One of the things I was told was they want to get you first into a group situation before they do a one on one with a therapist. They said this group work helps define issue to be worked on in the one on one. Later the group therapy wasn't brought up again and they wanted to go straight to the one on one for me. So maybe I'm right for a group situation at this time.

Unfortunately I have not been able to get a session yet after six months of waiting. I guess I'm not a high priority as I am not hurting anyone else or likely to harm anyone. The squeaky wheel gets the grease.

Top
#418015 - 12/03/12 07:58 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
pietie Offline
Guest

Registered: 01/23/07
Posts: 326
Loc: South Africa
Hi Martin

First, I think its a great effort from your side!

From my personal experience, I went to a group in Pretoria a few years back who also focussed on male survivors. First time was difficult but my eagerness to get help was far more overpowering. Only problem was that the group turned out to do more damage to me than help. People weren't that dedicated to helping each other and I disovered there were some hidden agendas. So for me, that was my attempt and it made me very cautious.

I was committed to recovery but this experience changed my viewpoint as to a "safe place" to try to recover.

BUT, don't get discouraged, it might take some time for trust to develop.
_________________________
Not Perfect, just forgiven

Top
#418021 - 12/03/12 08:18 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: Candu]
unhappycamper Offline


Registered: 10/21/11
Posts: 725
Loc: VA
Participating in a group makes it clear that CSA is a social phenomenon that affects lots of people--not a disease that you need a doctor to treat in a private consulting room. For me, the main drawback was the open group, where people dropped in and out from session to session. There was a core of "regulars," but the changing roster kept the atmosphere very close to square one.

Originally Posted By: Candu
[quote=whome]The have a specific focus on CSA. One of the things I was told was they want to get you first into a group situation before they do a one on one with a therapist.
This sounds exactly backwards to me. I think an individual therapist can best determine whether you'd benefit from a group.

John

Top
#418034 - 12/03/12 10:26 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
Mountainous Buck Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/15/09
Posts: 1627
Loc: Minnesota
Thanks for your input/experience, John and others:

I wonder, if you could design a group for Male Survivors, what would it look like?
_________________________
We have to take responsibility for what we're not responsible for.

�It doesn't matter where you've come from,
It matters where you go" Frank Turner

Top
#418037 - 12/03/12 10:54 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: unhappycamper]
Candu Offline


Registered: 06/30/12
Posts: 312
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: unhappycamper
Originally Posted By: Candu
They have a specific focus on CSA. One of the things I was told was they want to get you first into a group situation before they do a one on one with a therapist.
This sounds exactly backwards to me. I think an individual therapist can best determine whether you'd benefit from a group.

I don't clearly remember the details since it was six months ago, and I don't think I clearly expressed it above. And I didn't go into some details as I don't want to sidetrack the thread.

Like I said one of their primary programs is dealing with CSA. It is a free program but limited to one year. So my understanding was that they would like to get you into a group first to explore what issues you have. So that in the individual sessions there is less time spent on determining the approach to take considering the time is limited. In my case in the initial consultation it was decided that that was not the best approach for me and that I should be in a one on one session with a therapist. Unfortunately that hasn't happened yet.

Top
#418044 - 12/03/12 11:57 AM Re: Why are we scared?? [Re: whome]
Magellan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/31/10
Posts: 1566
Loc: California
I think CSA / childhood trauma survivors are scared of everyone and everything. At least, that has been the case for me.

Much of it unconscious. Best way I know how to describe it is a sense of dread and anxiety every time I know someone's attention is directed at me. I know an interaction is imminent, and my anxiety level climbs. Even a simple "Hi" would case me to have that sensation. It's never a thought I have, but a physiological reaction.

In my life path, I have discovered Alanon to be a safe and affirming place to be within a group. There are many survivors there dedicated to their recovery. I guess I am blessed to be in SF where there are many gay men in these groups. So I have been going there for 3.5 years now. I still struggle to build relationships with individuals in the group, but in the Group, I feel a sense of safety and assurance.

Any other group, I felt that same discomfort, and even after trying for years to assimilate into other groups, I still couldn't.

I also discovered that I'm a great teacher. A 'maestro' as one other accomplished instructor called me. I didn't believe her.

This has always puzzled me. That I can be fearful and anxious most of the time around most people, but NOT the case when I'm teaching.

I think I finally made sense of it last week - those situations when I'm teaching - I'm in CONTROL. It's a control thing. When I feel like I'm in control, I can manage that anxiety/tension/fear response. That is true of any dynamic in any relationship I have with others. As long as I feel like I have control...

I'm also very curious how a Male Survivor type support group would be formulated. I know ASCA has the 21 steps, and there's always the 12 steps, but I don't think the 12 steps apply to male survivors. We are a different lot.

D

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

Moderator:  ModTeam, TJ jeff 

I agree that my access and use of the MaleSurvivor discussion forums and chat room is subject to the terms of this Agreement. AND the sole discretion of MaleSurvivor.
I agree that my use of MaleSurvivor resources are AT-WILL, and that my posting privileges may be terminated at any time, and for any reason by MaleSurvivor.