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#153475 - 04/30/07 11:52 AM When do the nightmares stop???
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
I have been in the recovery process for two years, I even did a stint "hospitalized" but I have one question for you all going through the recovery process.

When do the damned nightmares stop?????

As much progress as I have made I still am haunted on a nightly basis, seemingly doomed to relive one incident or another in my sleep.

Has anyone had this problem, has it ever stopped?

_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

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#153479 - 04/30/07 12:16 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
Hauser Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 2962
Loc: United States
I wish I had some advice to impart to you on this matter, but since I never had to deal with them, I can't.

But others here HAVE dealt with nightmares (and flashbacks). They will surely respond to your post with some practical feedback/advice.


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#153481 - 04/30/07 12:24 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Hauser]
Still Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6376
Loc: 2.5 NATO Nations
Sorry you are in this state Brian. I'm there too.

They were really bad in my teens, then really bad off-and-on in my twenties....and occasionally bad in my thirties...but now that I'm "dealing with it"...well...Mr. Nighmare-Generator is fully open for business and has been each and every night.

The flashbacks like to devour my days too in most unpleasant ways.

I know this does not answer your question...but I'm standing here next to you waiting to hear it from someone.

_________________________
Jesus Loves The Hell Outta Me!

Still's Globs

New Video

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#153484 - 04/30/07 12:34 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Still]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
It just is so hard when I have worked so hard to get over all of this. It makes me just want to erase everything from 16 and earlier. The bad thing is i have turned to using sleeping pills to put me out hard enough so I don't dream or don't remember them. However last night I found a drawback of doing that, sometimes they don't knock you out far enough to get rid of the dreams. The pills just keep me far enough under so I CAN'T wake up. I woke up this morning and my pillow was soaked with tears.

Also smells trigger me to flashbacks. Its like I am in hell either when I am awake or asleep.



Edited by pain4ever (04/30/07 12:35 PM)
_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

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#153532 - 04/30/07 04:14 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
I have posted about this before, but who knows where. There are various strategies you can use to deal with both flashbacks and nightmares, but of course we're all different and what works for one guy will be useless to another.

For flashbacks I found I was often triggered by being in a quiet room alone, so I took care of that by playing music when I was alone in a room or in the house. Having a 100-pound underloved german shepherd around helps too. \:D

My T and some guys here also helped me find strategies to cope with a flashback when one came. The trick is to try to keep present and focus on things that are real. Put your feet flat on the floor and feel that - THAT's real. Or put your hands on the chair and feel that - again, THAT's real. I also found out that if I snapped myself lightly with the CSA wristband I have, that would help me keep present. For me, collapsing into dread as a flashback washed over me made things so much worse; if I could cope with the dread that helped a lot.

Maybe this is just me, but the only way I could cope with nightmares was face them head-on. If I got a nightmare I would just get up, go downstairs and have a cup of herb tea, try to relax, and if I got comfortable, sleep wherever I happened to be. I also kept a photo album of cool things I liked, mainly expensive old guitars \:\) and wild natural scenes.

I also heard one guy talking about something that I tried, but maybe I was already getting over the nightmares anyway by then. The idea is that if a repeating nightmare hits you, then when you wake up finish it with a good ending. Keep doing that as the nightmare recurs; the idea is that as your ending takes hold the nightmare will fade.

Lastly, it helped me a lot to remind myself that these things didn't mean I was going nuts or failing in my recovery. This is just our minds trying to cope with incredibly extreme trauma.

Brian, do be careful with the sleeping pills. Talk to your T or doctor and see what they have to say about this. As you've already found out, they doesn't necessarily help.

And I almost forgot!!!!!!!!!!!! Do you guys have stuffed animals? You would be surprised how many of the guys on the site have furry pals. Mine is a stuffed dog - very fluffy and hugable! Little Larry still loves him to bits.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#153542 - 04/30/07 04:43 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
Logan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/05/03
Posts: 1205
Loc: NY
Brian,

I too suffer from unbelivably terrorfic nightmares.


Here's a few things that help me and some suggested by other survivors here that I practice,
1. I take a medication that is for an "off labeled use" (bacially not what the med was intended for originally, but works really well for) like ASA, or aspirin-oringinally for headaches- but can be used to delay a cardiac emergency.--get my drift.

So the first med is Prazoson (Ken Singer wrote a huge article abouth this in the Health and Wellbeing Forum). It is a BP (blood Pressure) med, But many sudies have bin done by giving it to War Vets, that suffer from PTSD, and suffer from nightmares, with fairly good results-AKA it helped alot of them!

Another mediication that is also used to control high BP, is Inderol or Propanolol (generic vs. brand name, but both the same med. It has been known for many years to aid with situational anxiety--but it also reduce the nightmares for me, not to mention my OR rotations at the hospital for intubation training surrounded by 2 surgeos and an anathesiologist beathing down my neck Durring Paramedic Training.
But that a different matter.

You must get this med prescibed to you by an MD doctor, it can be dangerous because They are BP meds, they can drop your BP to the point where you get very light headed or even faint. Basically, make sure thyat yu descuss all the posible side effects, contraindications, etc.


2. Understanding what a nightmare is, is important. I could write a paper on this subject alone, but to keep it simple, it is basically your unconcious mind trying to make sence of and piece together what it can not make sence of. the dream may include subject matter from: what you saw and experienced that day, week. It may include the same emotion and sensation that your have once experienced.

Just remember to always remined yourself that is only a dream and can not hurt you physicaly.

Trust me I know how painful they can be and frightful and disturbing.


One thing that You and Larry recently suggest I do is express these very unplessant, disturbing, ragefull, PAINFULL emotions. I have been doing that a lot lately, just releasing the emotions as they come up instead of trying to cover them up and forget about them, almost in a way to purge myself from theses horrible memories and the emotions that I carry with them and this has helped the MOST for me. If I feel sad, I allow myself to feel sad instead of bottling it up inside and then having to deal with it durring the night time!!!!!

feel free to PM me.

Logan

_________________________
"Terrible thing to live in Fear"-Shawshank Redemption
WOR Alumnus Hope Springs 2009
"Quite a thing to live in fear, this is what is means to be a slave"
-Blade Runner

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#153547 - 04/30/07 04:51 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Logan]
Nate Offline
Guest

Registered: 04/30/07
Posts: 94
Loc: Philadelphia, PA
Hey man,

Yeah I've definitely had that problem. Those are quite intense and suck - sorry to hear you are having them. THEY DO STOP!! I promise. I haven't had one in a while. I had them for about a year straight - not every night, but were pretty consistent. I think mine were linked to repression, but once I started facing it and accepting the fact I was abused they started diminishing... allow yourself to go through the emotions.. that's the only advice I have. Hang in there - you'll make it!

_________________________
"Love the moment. Flowers grow out of dark moments. Therefore, each moment is vital. It affects the whole. Life is a succession of such moments and to live each, is to succeed."

- Corita Kent

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#153620 - 04/30/07 10:41 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
thecoopstah Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/19/04
Posts: 589
Loc: massachusetts
I read your post and i could not reply fast enough.I,too have had nightmares( many many of them ) for well over 2 years and i hated life.If my memory serves me correctly you mentioned something about recovery.I'm in recovery from alcoholism (over 4 1/2 years a day at a time ) and since i got sober in 2002 i was ultimately put on meds and therapy since 2004 i have attended.We all have a process we must go through however YOU will get through the emotional pain and fear of the nightmares unfortuantely though only when the time is right.I can tell you it's not easy and very scarey having to deal with them although the more you(we) have the better off you'll be because they're a sign of your sub-concious ridding itself of the horrible past you(I were subjected to as a child.I'm not sure whether or not you are in therapy but if you're not i strongly suggest you persue this so you wcan be guided gently in the direction of healing the wounds and essentially moving on with your life.The nightmares have stopped for the time being and it's so amzing i have been able to sleep through most nights.I hope i helped you and answered some questions therefore let you know YOU"RE NOT ALONE.

God bless you.

Rich "Coopstah" C

_________________________
" You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have "

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#153636 - 05/01/07 01:11 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: thecoopstah]
Malidin41 Offline
Member

Registered: 07/01/04
Posts: 140
Loc: Utah
Finishing the dream with an ending is one of the best things for me to do. I think that is the best advice. Also having stuffed animals near by is awsome as well. I do hope some of these suggestions are helpful. Good luck my friend.

_________________________
Mother of the kingdom of silence I have obeyed you long enough!!!

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#153669 - 05/01/07 07:28 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Logan]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Originally Posted By: Logan
One thing that You and Larry recently suggest I do is express these very unplessant, disturbing, ragefull, PAINFULL emotions. I have been doing that a lot lately, just releasing the emotions as they come up instead of trying to cover them up and forget about them, almost in a way to purge myself from theses horrible memories and the emotions that I carry with them and this has helped the MOST for me. If I feel sad, I allow myself to feel sad instead of bottling it up inside and then having to deal with it durring the night time!!!!!


I think one of the hardest things for a survivor to accept is that his old strategy of stuffing back the feelings just doesn't work. Sure, we can repress how we feel, and sometimes for years, but what happens is that these old bad feelings just fester, lead us into unhappiness and difficulty, sometimes without us even seeing what the cause is, and then finally explode out in ways that can really cause us harm.

As the example of nightmares shows, it's much better to just face how we feel as soon as we possibly can. Not with regret at all the years we have lost, but with hope for all the years we can save.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

Top
#153679 - 05/01/07 08:59 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: roadrunner]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
Thank you all for some strategies on how to curb this. I will talk to my doctor and see if there is something he can prescribe. For some reason my old trick of letting things out emotionally is failing me, I don't know what happened but I am blocked. Its like the anger and pain is no longer conscious but subconscious. The dreams seem so real to me and it is almost like I am reliving it. So many times I have been abused and they keep coming back. Fortunately it seems live they don't repeat that often. Maybe my mind is ridding me of this stuff.

Last night was bad again and I simply stayed up most the night instead of going back to sleep. However this is difficult because I drive 270 miles to work (round trip) everyday. I live in the house I was abused in, we are working on moving.



Edited by pain4ever (05/01/07 09:05 AM)
_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

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#153713 - 05/01/07 01:19 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: roadrunner]
OKIE MIKE Offline
Member

Registered: 02/13/04
Posts: 979
Loc: HULBERT OK
I was raped while serving in the US Army in the fall of 1977
I have ben hospitalised on 3 diffrent occations over the years
and have tryed every thing that I know of . but I still have reocuring nightmares
I wish there wsa an easy aunser

_________________________
MICHAEL

"I HAD NO SHOES THEN I SAW A MAN THAT HAD NO FEET"

"All I can do is be me, whoever that is"

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#153729 - 05/01/07 02:19 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
Morning Star Offline
Member

Registered: 12/21/04
Posts: 1124
Loc: Home
Nightmares especially similar repetitive ones represent repressed childhood fears.

It is the trapped energy that is expressing itself through your dreams.

Your job now would be to revisit them each time as you wake up from them and 'change them' in your favour.

Do it repeatedly till there is no more fear left within.

A short prayer before sleeping requesting your guides and angel to be with you and guide you through sleep would be an excellent idea, so that you are safe in your dreams as well.

_________________________
~ It's over!...Let go of Thy Past, Remember Thy Self ~

Why Don't People Heal, by Caroline Myss; 30 days to clean up your vibrations - Abraham-Hicks

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#153737 - 05/01/07 02:31 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Morning Star]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
Morning Star,
I will try the dream....remapping...hopefully that will work.

I hate to bring up a sensitive point but...but my faith in a higher power has been gone for a long time. No higher power would let what happened to me happen.

_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

Top
#153892 - 05/02/07 04:58 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
Morning Star Offline
Member

Registered: 12/21/04
Posts: 1124
Loc: Home
That higher power is actually your inner self, just different names that's all.

_________________________
~ It's over!...Let go of Thy Past, Remember Thy Self ~

Why Don't People Heal, by Caroline Myss; 30 days to clean up your vibrations - Abraham-Hicks

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#153911 - 05/02/07 08:20 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: roadrunner]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
Larry,

You said "The trick is to try to keep present and focus on things that are real." for flashbacks, those are finally subsiding unless a sound or smell triggers me. I can't play "Sonic the Hedgehog" The music launches a fit of uncontrollable shaking. My father brought a Sega home one day, the smae day he started to abuse me, while that music was playing.

Anyway back on track.

The dreams are so real it is amazing and if I don't wake up, which is what happens most times, it feels like I was just abused again. My god how can they feel so real! How do I separate that??? How can I stop that??

I used to opiate pain killers because I had horrific migraines. Which by the way stopped when I started coming out with all of this and started the healing process. That facinated me, my body actually physically manifested serious problems as a result of holding this all in.

Sorry derailed again.

The opiates became an easy way of coping with things. oxycotin, Vicodin, Stadol, I used them all. But this is getting worse, the issues, and I did a stupid thing last night, I bought some pills off the street just to sleep and be good for a few hours. I now thats a terrible thing but I havent been in therapy for 4 months due to losing my insurance and now I have to find a therapist because of the move. I went through 4 before I found a good one in the past. Its just all too much at once!!!

_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

Top
#153912 - 05/02/07 08:28 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
!!Triggers!!

Logan,

You said "One thing that You and Larry recently suggest I do is express these very unplessant, disturbing, ragefull, PAINFULL emotions."

You know its great that I can dish out the advice but you know what, I am blocked. I can't seem to get them out again. I was conditioned to be "Suck it up" when I was being abused and if I screamed it got worse, if I cried it got worse. Now in the event I want to share with my partner, he says just let it out, and I CAN'T. I went into the woods and tried my old trick of screming and yelling and it didn't work.

I know my emotions are back there because I will literally start crying at songs at the radio by myself in the car on the way home from work. I notice times when I will be with people and I will smell or hear something and without actually feeling sad or mad, a tear will come running down my check!!! Its so weird, has anyone else had that happen??

damned conditioning.

_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

Top
#153965 - 05/02/07 02:33 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Brian,

Originally Posted By: pain4ever
Larry,

You said "The trick is to try to keep present and focus on things that are real." for flashbacks, those are finally subsiding unless a sound or smell triggers me. I can't play "Sonic the Hedgehog" The music launches a fit of uncontrollable shaking. My father brought a Sega home one day, the smae day he started to abuse me, while that music was playing.


Do you see what you are doing here, bro? You are taking control and fighting back. In the past you probably just collapsed as a flashback hit you - that would be the normal response to something so traumatic. But now you are daring to look at the flashbacks to see what you can do to stop them. You see, for example, that there are certain pieces of music that you should not play.

Good! Now you know what to avoid. But even the idea of taking this step is something new, and it shows a lot of confidence that you probably did not have in the past. This is in itself something to celebrate!

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

Top
#153986 - 05/02/07 04:09 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
Jowes Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/30/07
Posts: 1
I am beginning to experience longer and longer periods of time without nightmares. I believe what is helping me is to talk about them with my therapist...talk,talk,talk. I have been in intensive analysis for over two years - three times a week - and some of the things we talk most about are my nightmares which I have had all my life. The more talking we do the less power they have, and I even have begun to have what I think normal people have - normal dreams! So from my experience there is hope - don't give up. Talking about them brings them out in the open and they lose their secret, scary power, and I learn so much about myself and my history from my dreams that I can never remember awake. That's my experience.

Hopeful,
John


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#154120 - 05/03/07 08:16 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Jowes]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
Guys, I just wanted to say I had my first nightmare free night in 6 weeks!!! Thank you for your help, even one night of peace to me is so precious.

_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

Top
#154135 - 05/03/07 09:54 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
Still Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6376
Loc: 2.5 NATO Nations
That's FREAKING AWSOME!!!!!!!!!!!!

One for OUR SIDE!!!!

_________________________
Jesus Loves The Hell Outta Me!

Still's Globs

New Video

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#154136 - 05/03/07 10:22 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Still]
Hauser Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 2962
Loc: United States
Good!


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#154137 - 05/03/07 10:23 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Still]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
Originally Posted By: Robbie Brown
That's FREAKING AWSOME!!!!!!!!!!!!

One for OUR SIDE!!!!


Your tellin me...LOL

_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

Top
#154274 - 05/04/07 01:40 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
jerry Offline
New Here

Registered: 05/03/07
Posts: 2
Loc: Ca
I have the same problem after 3 yrs of T & 2 stints in mental hospital. I still have the night mares. my partner understands the problm but can't get any sleep. I just found this web & am thrilled to know I'm no longer alone. I could never find any groups for male abuse. I think this is the biggest step i've taken in my recovery.

_________________________
4946

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#154281 - 05/04/07 02:55 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: jerry]
Still Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6376
Loc: 2.5 NATO Nations
WELCOME JERRY!

_________________________
Jesus Loves The Hell Outta Me!

Still's Globs

New Video

Top
#154332 - 05/04/07 11:20 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Still]
Paul1959 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/17/06
Posts: 525
Loc: NYC
Jerry
Hey, glad you posted here. These boards are much safer, and i think healthier than chat. I'm so glad you came. Welcome. Isn't this place amazing? i love these guys
Paul


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#154345 - 05/04/07 12:30 PM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Paul1959]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
Two nights!!! No nightmares. I am so pumped its not funny!! Thank you guys so much!!

_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

Top
#154491 - 05/05/07 01:47 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Still]
jerry Offline
New Here

Registered: 05/03/07
Posts: 2
Loc: Ca
thanks, I'm so glad I found this site

_________________________
4946

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#154495 - 05/05/07 03:01 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: roadrunner]
OKIE MIKE Offline
Member

Registered: 02/13/04
Posts: 979
Loc: HULBERT OK
I wish that I could say that the nightmares will go away. They will gradualy over a long pierid of time become less intense
But I have neaver ben able to compleatly rid my self of them compleatly . Try and do something that will relax you before you go to bed , do something that you find enjoyable . get a hobbie
that occupies your mind . I have ben a License Plate Collector
for several years and this is what I have found that makes me happy . This may not work for you , But the important thing is to relax your mind

_________________________
MICHAEL

"I HAD NO SHOES THEN I SAW A MAN THAT HAD NO FEET"

"All I can do is be me, whoever that is"

Top
#154511 - 05/05/07 07:58 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: Jowes]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
John,

Originally Posted By: Jowes
I am beginning to experience longer and longer periods of time without nightmares. I believe what is helping me is to talk about them with my therapist...talk,talk,talk. I have been in intensive analysis for over two years - three times a week - and some of the things we talk most about are my nightmares which I have had all my life. The more talking we do the less power they have, and I even have begun to have what I think normal people have - normal dreams! So from my experience there is hope - don't give up. Talking about them brings them out in the open and they lose their secret, scary power, and I learn so much about myself and my history from my dreams that I can never remember awake. That's my experience.


I'm glad talking to your T has worked so well for you. I think you are so right - the more we can talk about things the less power they have over us.

But mainly, hey, welcome to Male Survivor. I hope the site can help you. There's a great bunch of guys here and you will find a lot of understanding and support here.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

Top
#154512 - 05/05/07 08:01 AM Re: When do the nightmares stop??? [Re: pain4ever]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Brian,

Originally Posted By: pain4ever
Guys, I just wanted to say I had my first nightmare free night in 6 weeks!!! Thank you for your help, even one night of peace to me is so precious.


Hey, that's great news. It makes all the difference in the world when you can get a good night's sleep, doesn't it? But Brian, claim this victory! It's yours. You are the one to asked for the help you needed and then followed through. Good for you.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

Top
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