I have had similar experiences, I can empathize. Sorry it has happened to you.
T comments would be total deal breaker for me.
Comments like the other, whether chat room or in person are dangerous for me. They are difficult because these are the kinds of words that perps and people who target the weak use to keep us down. For me, it's really that simple.
This issue is something that I have struggled with over the years, so I will apologize for long post.
When confronted (I know it sounds extreme to some, feels this way) with situations I tend to either fold up, submit, knuckle under-or I lash out.
Brings up crazy feelings from childhood-abuse, etc. and then the feelings from adult abuse-awful in terms of automatic anger and rage-to feel some power, to protect myself-to prove I cannot be taken advantage of.
At this time in my life comments like these can cause me to either shut off and withdraw (for fear of lashing out, or because it triggers me) -or- lashing out, then withdrawing (it triggers me). These things can majorly knock me off course. Either through shutting off or through pissing others off. The intense shame, guilt, etc. that has always been there, as long as I can remember- that is always overwhelming after acting out and with so many negative consequences over the years.
There are powerful feelings at play-self worth, frustration, rage, the desire to do better, pressure to 'amount to something', etc. These strong, injured feelings are instantly brought up from comments/treatment like you describe-they have physical sensations, etc associated with them. It's strange, never totally noticed that before. Another new skill.
Dealing with abuse has shown sources of those feelings. I don't have to give in to anger. I have been able to start to unravel some of these complex, powerful feelings. My anger that results from situations doesn't have to be a factor, at all and I don't have to feel crushed, like I lost, again.
I am re-figuring out the shame here is not mine, it belongs to others. I need to live that, I don't have to be self conscious. I don't have to 'own' what 'they' say about me-no matter what the source, just deal with my own stuff. I have come to these conclusions after a lot of careful thought and reflection.
In many ways, it's like learning a new habit, I have tried various times with varying success over the years to do this. There was a time when I was well respected, calm, competent person. I could get there again.
There was a sense of protection/preservation developed in me. I was taught to be protective, to defend what people 'said about us'. So in these situations for me, there is a feeling of strong self preservation, duty that has been ingrained. I take responsibility for my actions; but there have been other powerful forces at work here that I did not understand for most of life. I am now recognizing the reality (yep, I said it) of what has been my life. Not what I want it to be, not what I can tolerate. This picture of my life and the people in it, is being assembled, in bits, slowly. It's painful.
Combining all this an upbringing that generally favored violence/intimidation-'always watch your back' attitude to solve issues/problems with ptsd symptoms that have ramped up over the course of my life, and that strongly ingrained duty to be protective and it's been interesting. I can't change other people, situations, I have to learn to deal. Understand what bothers me and work at it, be whole, healthy. Something I never had a chance at, never understood, knew about. This part of what gave me different results in my life always baffled me.
Let's face it; we can work on ourselves and become better people to a greater/degree according to our nature, but we can't change others. People will always be mean (it's human nature), more so if they think it will give them POWER-that is what I have learned- I have been guilty of it. Whether; family, school admin, mental health, clergy, etc. For us as survivors, it cuts extra deep when someone we look to for help does this I think, for obvious reasons.
As far as changing it for me; I do my best not to speculate or hold on to those things, not fall into dead end, negative emotions. Some days are better than others-I have to:
-be patient of myself and others something I struggle with a lot.
-ask for help with this from power(s) greater than myself, mental health folks, etc.
-accept things as they are, not imagine them as I would like them to be.
-Willing;in spite of pain, fear, anxiety. To face it-all of it the 'idea' of it, but also the specific stuff. All of it painful.
Just because I'm not willing (or able on occasion)to 'charge ahead' is ok. I can take my time. Challenge but not overwhelm. Work on simple stuff like breathing exercises, etc (powerful stuff for me). Hold On.
I receive care in an environment where we male survivors are not looked upon with favor. I have had many negative experiences like the one you describe with supposed 'professionals' in the medical and mental health fields.
I learned long ago that I need to adjust myself to conditions, not have the expectation conditions adjust themselves to me. This has been very difficult as a survivor. Accepting this can be difficult; abuse, feelings, ego, etc get in the way. All of these things, including my feelings make my conclusions about this part of my life no less valid.
Again, sorry for long post, I'm pretty sure I'm losing at least part of my mind, lol.
Edited by Zug (03/02/13 02:43 PM)
"what matters most is how well you walk through the fire"