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#464858 - 05/01/14 01:59 PM Re: It's no big deal- that's why I can't talk about it [Re: sadclown]

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 3743
Like others here, I have been in therapy. There were days as I began to verbalize the abuse and hear the words I spoke, I felt horrible and discouraged. I let this happen to me. It was guilt and I believed I was responsible. I would feel worse after talking about what happened, sometimes more description of events than other times. The abuse I had compartmentalized in part of my being, the child who never grew or did not know love other than that of the abuser. I would think, should I just quit therapy and pretend nothing happened? I thought long and hard,but for some reason I kept going back. We were meeting twice a week at the beginning and then every week. I could not get away from the abuse. Slowly, very slowly I began to realize how bad the abuse was and the damage that was done. I had times when I thought I was handling it well and the abuse was no longer an issue. boy was I wrong, I would have a set back and have to regain some of the lost ground. With out emotional stresses in life, the passing of my mother and returning to the church to bury her was healing--I thought--but I was emotionally weak, because when in the church I saw the place of the abuse and relived the abuse over again. But I thought I had handled it well--wrong again. I had episodes of severe dissociative fugues and was hospitalized three times.

I knew the abuse was bad and denying it only kept the fragmented me alive. Somewhere, and I do not know when I began to think differently about myself and the abuse. I also faced the Diocese and received validation of the abuse that I needed--they admitted abuse was horrific and destroyed many lives. I know the abuse was bad, and my denial which protected others, was destroying me.

You cannot talk about it because like me, we buried it, we pretended it did not happen, we knew it happened but our minds played games that allowed us to think it was not that bad, get over it. But part of us could not get over it and this part creeps into our being, hearts and mind and destroys us. We feel guilt for what was done to us, but we need to learn we should not have guilt, it is the abuser's guilt and not ours. Easier sad than done. But over time we get there and life begins to look up. We are no long ashamed and can talk about it. You have taken strides with therapy and writing here--you are talking about it. Remember protecting others will only hurt you--they are your memories coupled with the emotional and psychological damage that come with abuse. Yes it was bad but it was not you who was responsible for the badness. Listen to the T about PTSD--one outcome of CSA is PTSD throughout or later in life.

Thank you for sharing--it takes time and I hope you continue on the road to healing. It will be an emotional roller coaster but in the end you will be free of the abuse and abuser and have the life that you want to live.


#464874 - 05/02/14 01:21 AM Re: It's no big deal- that's why I can't talk about it [Re: shockwaver]
On The Fringe Offline

Registered: 09/21/13
Posts: 326
Loc: Southeast USA
Originally Posted By: shockwaver
I can relate to the "was it really that bad?" feelings. I keep minimizing what happened and downplaying the effects it's had on my life and rationalizing it with "Oh it wasn't nearly as bad as what some people deal with".

It wasn't until I talked it all (well, most of the way) out in a walk in therapy that I realized just how big the problem was. Seeing the therapist look as surprised as they were. That yes, bad stuff did happen and it is horrible and I have every right to be screwed up mentally because of it. And knowing that means I can address it.

I relate to so much in this entire thread, but your comments in particular Shockwaver. I told the first person ever, a woman in my AA group, and she cried and then was mad, asking me if I had resentment issues with it. I ran from being beat at home to sucking some guys dick. Oh yeah, it wasn't that bad. Typical childhood. Literally went from blood in my mouth to sperm in my mouth within an hour. Not that bad. Really.

But I agree completely with the minimizing. It took decades to just say it, the ugly truth. When I was 7 I spent a lot of time with a penis in me.

It was not my fault.


It took decades to get that. And then I accepted it was terrible....

What a crazy ride to see the obvious. I feel retarded sometimes. smile.

Thanks for the great topic.
I feel more like I do now than I did when I got here.

#464885 - 05/02/14 04:27 AM Re: It's no big deal- that's why I can't talk about it [Re: sadclown]
sadclown Offline

Registered: 02/27/14
Posts: 59
Well, I went back today and he read it over privately. To my surprise it went totally unlike how I expected. He said it was a pretty intense read for him and he had to break it into pieces, but was really effective at not making me feel badly about it. In his defense it is I who is pushing, not him. Ultimately I think it was a good move on my part, but he did say that the recovery is going to be from connection and sharing; that it won't be a matter of just saying it aloud. He says that the damage was caused by disconnection and isolation- the cure will only be found in the opposite. So far, he seems to be a good and skilled therapist; which is impressive given my past experiences. It's self-driven and he constantly re-iterates that, I may be pushing too hard on myself though; I don't know. I still can't really talk about it, but at least now we can talk more about the surrounding emotions. There is "less to lose" so to speak if he already knows the story. But damn if it's still too much. My minimizing only seems to work to the limits of my avoidance.

The therapy experience is not what it looks like on TV, that is for damn sure.
My Story

"There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed"- Ernest Hemingway

#467514 - 07/12/14 01:05 PM Re: It's no big deal- that's why I can't talk about it [Re: sadclown]
Mark954 Offline

Registered: 01/21/14
Posts: 51
<<I was/am very leery of therapists and doubt their efficacy. And that coupled with my tendencies of minimization and avoidance helped me to avoid even recognizing that I was not handling the trauma well at all>>

I guess i'm exactly like that ,the few experience that i had with therapist wasn't good ones, maybe i wasnt ready yet , maybe i'm still not ready yet, i heard somewhere on the forum that for survivors to get the most benefit from therapy ,they have to be acutely aware of there pain ,right now it's difficult because of the dissociation , numbness and self blame, and as a result of these apparently called defense mecanisme from horror,i feel like i'm not handling the trauma at all and it makes me feel guilty , and helpless. so i'm isolating my self not seeking any help
The life you have led doesn't need to be the only life you have.-Anna Quindlen-

#467550 - 07/13/14 10:28 AM Re: It's no big deal- that's why I can't talk about it [Re: sadclown]
learning2remember Offline

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 401
Loc: Europe
I'm in a pretty good place overall, much better than when I Started dealing with all this, but a lot in this thread resonates with me.

Even with a therapist I trusted and respected this was hard to talk about. I've sort of gotten into a habit of daring myself to say the hard things in therapy. To say the scary things snd see what happens. It sometimes seems anticlimactic. The things I think will be heavy end up just being statements, and stuff I thought was just an aside gets very tough.

But it's precisely because I don't know in advance that I just have to get it all out.

I, too, have found myself saying, "It wasn't as bad as it sounds." I think generally when I say that my T has just left it alone, letting me correct that in my own time.

The thought of going to a public place and watching kids that age breaks my heart.

This is not easy stuff. Go easy on yourself, trust yourself, and be honest with whatever you are feeling at a given moment, in therapy and outside it. If feelings, thoughts or even memories change, let that happen, too.
"This is not my shame, this is their shame." Mona Eltahawy

#467554 - 07/13/14 12:32 PM Re: It's no big deal- that's why I can't talk about it [Re: sadclown]
dark empathy Offline

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 2667
Loc: durham, north england
Sad clone, I actually thank you for posting about this. As I said in my other thread I'm considdering going and having directed therapy, as compared to the random counsellers I saw previously. Reading about the sensative way your t handled your narative and disclosure actually made me realize just how ultimately cruddy the people I actually saw were.

One of them for example, when i was describing the abuse actually accused me of sounding cold and mechanical and as though I was describing a science experiment. That is exactly how I feel whenever I go into those memories and the way I can talk about it, by becoming very detached and clinnical (I also had a fare go at the "not that bad" game too). One T actually started objecting to this and saying it was wrong and I needed to connect with the feelings. When i spoke to a friend who had a masters in counselling, she actually recommended I stopped seeing that person, sinse one thing she said wass, one of the cardinal rules of counselling is don't mess with people's defense mechanisms, sinse they're dam well there for a reason.

I don't think it ever hit me just how inexperienced and crappy the people I saw were before reading your post, so this does make me feel a bit better about seeing someone more specifically directed at dealing with sa.

About the "it's not that bad" game. it almost seems a given. My very first post on this site was basically "I don't know why the hell I'm here because what happened to me wasn't that bad" I'd not go as far as saying everyone does it, but it does seem a very frequent defense.

I suppose it's sort of a way of coping, like saying "Well I've had one hand cut off but it's not that bad I've still got the other one" (if anyone knows the black knight in monty python's holy graille this is just the sort of thing I'm thinking). The problem is it is actually false.

It also has an even nastier side effect, or at least it did with me, sinse telling myself " it wasn't that bad I'm making a mountain out of a mole hill here" was a way in which I could reinforce the idea of my own generally pathetic and weak status. I now realize that my own judgement about myself is so intrinsically flawed I can't make these sorts of statements at all, that where I am concerned I'm a heavily prejudiced and biased crytic and thus am not worth listening to, but it took quite a while to come to that realization.

In a way this is one of the bennificial things about coming to a site like ms because people can say "yes, it was! actually that bad. and Yes, it's okay to be affected by it"

Glad that things with the T worked out, and I hope it continues to help.

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