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#189379 - 10/31/07 11:20 AM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: dgoods]
cbfull Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/26/07
Posts: 386
Loc: Ohio
Originally Posted By: dgoods
BTW, i couldn't help but notice the post wasn't primarily focused on the co-worker this time...
\:\)

Wow dgoods, you're right! For once I guess I was more concerned about something else.

As for my boss, Am I the only the only person around work with a degree AND social skills? Actually, his social skills are not that bad, he just needs to find a way to deal with the intimidation thing. How ironic is that if what you suggest is actually true? If he knows that's why I started sitting down when we talk, and that makes him even worse, I want to just scream. It just proves the fact that his intimidation is not, nor should it be in any way, my responsibility. I was hoping he would see it as a gesture of kindness.

I think Dan has hit the nail on the head for me. I have to stop reading into people's behavior, especially his. When my hubby and I first started dating, I remember getting really stressed out trying to understand him. He told me to quit reading into everything he says and just take it at face value. I was so completely caught up in my overanalyzing, I couln't believe what he was asking me to do! I said, "I don't know how to stop." Well, very soon I managed to stop doing it, and lo' and behold, the stress disappeared in the next day or two.

I have tried to remind myself to stop reading into people's behavior, but it's not easy. It's such a habit now that I forget in no time and I'm back to getting freaked out again. There is a good chance that this 'reading in' is the source of most, if not all, of my stress and anxiety. I did it all through high school with my first boy crush, and that year with the creepy roomate. That's when it was at it's absolute worst. That's all I did all day, everyday was sit around and read into every single second of our interactions, and I literally mean that every single second was analyzed over and over and over. In a very sick way, I think a part of me was enjoying it.

I need to come up with a mantra that will help me remember to check myself frequently throughout the day to help me stop.

BTW, here is a little survivor humor if anyone is interested(could be a trigger so I apologize if it is)

The Abusers Mantra: "Why do you make me do this to you!"

The Victims Mantra: "Why does this keep happening to me!"

My good friend and I came up with these after watching Faye Dunaway as Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest say, "You love it don't you! You love to make me hit you!!!"

Feeling a bit better today, and please, if anyone notices me posting and griping about my last encounter with my co-worker and how things aren't good, feel free to ask me if it was something he said. It probably won't be, and if it is it's probably because I am making up alternate meanings of his actual words.

Thanks guys,

Craig

_________________________
Craig

Guilt and shame have never done any of us any good at all.

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#189425 - 10/31/07 05:07 PM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: cbfull]
cbfull Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/26/07
Posts: 386
Loc: Ohio
My confidence is taking a dip. I am at the point where I think I may have created this whole "dance" in my head. I am so completely overwhelmed, I don't know what to think.

On one hand, it doesn't matter if there is a physical attraction because I can only "see" it if I read into his behavior. If I stop reading into his behavior, I see nothing.

Very, very confused right now.

Oh jeez, he said he has never had any gay friends before, what if what I was picking up was him being nervous because I'm gay, and not because he was attracted to me? I feel like I have to consider these things. If it wasn't attraction what the hell was I feeling coming from him?

I'm taking my Klonipin right after I work out. My good friend is coming over tonight and he always helps me to make sense of things and get back on track, plus he knows this coworker since we work for the same company (and he has a bit of a crush on him too).

_________________________
Craig

Guilt and shame have never done any of us any good at all.

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#189436 - 10/31/07 09:34 PM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: cbfull]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
craig,
i could be wrong, but it's a double-whammy for a gay survivor in my eyes- I've never tried to flirt w/ a self-declared lesbian, b/c i never wondered if her friendliness toward me might've indicated a "closeted str8" trying to pick me up, if you know what i mean... add that issue to being overanalytical, and all the other survivor baggage, of COURSE you're confused! I honestly think your "what if" is on the money, based on what he said; most non-survivor str8 men w/o any history of gay friendships ARE nervous, they don't know how to act when it comes up, he may be wondering a little about himself, if his upbringing planted the old ideas of homosexuality being "contagious" somehow. He sounds like he likes being your friend, and is just trying to find a way to keep the friendship, and feel comfortable around you; he may be looking for cues from you as to what "the rules" should be, and doesn't want to let any unconscious prejudices to slip out and piss you off, so he is nervous and compensates, or sees your flirting as a litmus test, like"are you comfy enough around me to be playful?"
Remember, str8 women often can joke around and act flirty w/ each other, w/o being self-conscious at all; he may be taking that as an example to try to follow, lacking any role models other than stereotypes in the media.(See, you're not the only analytical one around, heh)
I know as a survivor, i flirt w/o thinking about it, b/c i want to be liked, and i feel safer also if i'm the initiator. I get hit on by men i think b/c i send unconscious signals, not that i'm attracted to men, but that i've got something hidden, and that probably translates into "closeted" for men who find me attractive, and who aren't survivors- they have nothing else to make sense of the blip on the gaydar, so to speak. I hope you're able to resolve this situation w/o a crash; remember, your co-worker is a real person, w/ feelings, flaws, and issues of his own, he in all likelihood is not sure what to make of things either.
Let's say this has all been something you've let your mind run away with; that doesn't mean it's the end of the world, or that you've failed at recovery 101- it just means it's hard for you to catch yourself filtering at its beginning. For me, just being attracted to a woman sets off all kinds of anxiety and confusion, and i've had to be rigorous in reminding myself, that no good relationship has ever resulted from my allowing obsessive thinking free rein, just pain and isolation.
as always, just my 2 cents...

_________________________
Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

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#189466 - 11/01/07 07:46 AM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: dgoods]
cbfull Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/26/07
Posts: 386
Loc: Ohio
What you say makes a lot of sense. With the realization that I could be imagining the whole thing, the result is another mix of emotions. On one hand it brings about feelings of foolishness, embarassment, (and the worst ones) abandonment and isolation. Yet on the other hand there is a sense of relief that I haven't quite pinned down yet. I guess the relief is coming from the sort of "resolution" meaning that I can finally stop analyzing, fantasizing, and sexualizing everything.

In the way you say it's a "double-whammy" for a gay survivor, it seems like that also applies to a hetero man who has been abused by a female. I could be wrong about that but I just thought I'd throw it out there.

_________________________
Craig

Guilt and shame have never done any of us any good at all.

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#189494 - 11/01/07 12:05 PM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: cbfull]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
well, since you mentioned it...
i fall under that category. i meant in the sense that even today there many gay men who stay closeted, for fear of being ostracized, beaten or worse- or they may live in a gay-friendly town, but were brought up religiously, or in a homophobic environment, and have a deep sense of shame about their identity.
But yes, there's a "double-whammy" of a sort for me too- i'm currently avoiding any romantic anything until i'm in a better place emotionally.

I'm happy to hear you can feel that sense of relief; once i was secure in my sexual identity, i felt a similar sense of relief: "i don't HAVE to do these things, it's MY choice". thanks for all your honesty, it helps me too.

_________________________
Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

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#189510 - 11/01/07 03:48 PM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: dgoods]
cbfull Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/26/07
Posts: 386
Loc: Ohio
I really, really hate how society has made same-sex intimacy into something so ridiculously and unbelievabley perverse.

I often wonder if the stigma attached to same-sex relations was no different than opposite-sex relations, would a great deal of male sexual abuse cease? I don't know, sounds a little crazy I guess.

Why is there SO much freaking shame associated with it? I remember that shame, and as a matter of fact, I was slapped with it yesterday when I took my lab partner out to lunch for his 40th birthday. For some reason he felt compelled to share with me something that my "co-worker" friend said to him. I wish I had told him I don't want to know. It was a crude remark involving an "observation" during sex with a woman. I really hate to say it but I felt my heart completely break. It might even be a flashback to high school when my crush/best-friend decided to call me because he needed to confide in me about something terrible he had done. He called to tell me that the senior lock-in (the seniors spend the night at the school) wasn't actually cancelled like he said before. He and one of the girls we were hanging around with drove into a cul-de-sac and parked. You can guess the rest I'm sure.

I had never imagined I could feel such a breaking in my heart as when I heard that, and damn if I didn't have to sit there and listen to the awful and heart-gouging details of the whole thing. It took me quite a long time to get over that. I was so horribly devastated, I'll never forget that evening. What made it worse is that I had to bottle it all up, sharing my feelings with no one.

That's exactly how I felt yesterday when I heard the joke. I don't want my lab partner to know any of this because it's just not important for him to know. In the future however, I don't know what I'll say if he tries to tell me something else crude that our machinist (my crush) said to him.

I don't know why I'm surprised. I feel really stupid that I should feel so brokenhearted. Brokenhearted over what? I guess after all that daydreaming and fantasizing it was bound to end up that way.

My wonderful husband said something to me yesterday that I couldn't quite make sense of. Something like, "You probably don't really want to be physical with him just a good friend." I don't know if he was saying that for his own feelings or for mine. I say that because that could be interpreted to mean that I don't really think he's a cool person that might want to experiment with gay sex no strings, I am only feeling this way about him because my past abuse and trauma has made me seek out the wrong things. Does that make any sense? He also told me to just give it all a rest and don't initiate any encounters with him for a week or two. "If he's really a good guy and a good friend, he'll come around again and none of this will matter." I guess that makes sense, plus I feel so emotional lately that I don't need to see him run off to get away from me because I'm behaving strangly. That would probably send me into another crash.

My husband (I call him my little tiger) is so wonderful, even when I think he's not.

*sigh*

_________________________
Craig

Guilt and shame have never done any of us any good at all.

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#189550 - 11/01/07 07:04 PM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: cbfull]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
craig-
i'm really sorry you had to hear that "gossip", i know it sucks. I was often a girl's or woman's "best friend", i'd torment myself listening to her go on and on about their callous jerk of a b/f, "but i love him! what should i do?", and i'd listen as best i could, clinging to the impossible fantasy that they would realize i was who they needed, etc.
If you look back at earlier replies, i think a few of us had already said, or gently implied, what your hubby was telling you. You may have had some trouble "hearing" it at the time, but i understand- i've had totally unrealistic crushes before, and i always turned a deaf ear to anything that didn't reinforce the fantasy- until reality smacked me one way or the other. Only one secret crush actually liked me too, but my nervous intensity botched that up so i lost a potential friend as well as a lover.
It sounds like you have a very understanding hubby, my partners always tended on the jealous, posessive side. You sound like you have a handle on how to avoid a further mess; that's great, no need for self-flagellation. Hope things get better; scratch your little tiger behind the ears, he deserves it, and so do you!

_________________________
Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

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#189641 - 11/02/07 09:49 AM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: dgoods]
cbfull Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/26/07
Posts: 386
Loc: Ohio
Originally Posted By: dgoods
...clinging to the impossible fantasy that they would realize i was who they needed, etc.

Uhhh... I have no idea what you are talking about. Of course I am joking, I still think that from time to time about unavailable men!



Originally Posted By: dgoods
If you look back at earlier replies, i think a few of us had already said, or gently implied, what your hubby was telling you. You may have had some trouble "hearing" it at the time, but i understand-

Would you mind being more specific for me? I'm serious, this sounds like a "trouble zone" for me personally so I think I need to have it spelled out for me, if you can. And please, you don't have to sugar coat it (well, unless you want to \:\( ). I'd rather hear harsh realities from you guys than have to learn them the hard way again. Perhaps it's time now for me to read through this whole pathetic thread from the beginning (I know, I'm being a bit hard on myself, but that's just how I feel right now).

I cannot believe how ridiculously deep these painful feelings of humiliation (combined with longing) run. I feel like such a huge dork, I'm still confused by a lot of the things that happened when we were first getting to know each other. I'll jot down a few examples just to be fair to myself.

When he was getting ready for his natural bodybuilding competition, he came up to my lab to tell me that he just bought a "banana hammock". I found that to be quite an odd thing for a hetero guy to say to start a conversation.

The first time I went to his house, when he showed me the master bedroom, he stood at the foot of the bed and just sort of looked at me awkwardly for a moment. I have no idea what he was thinking at that moment.

Another time he was closing up his shop and I was walking out with him, when he switched off the lights he kinda mumbled, "Oooh, dark". Now when I shared that one with my hubby he got jealous and a little irritated.

Not to mention, the "enlarging" I thought I saw that day that triggered my serious flashback. All I know is that one minute there was no visible "bulge", and the next minute his shirt was pulled up a bit and suddenly I could see plenty of something going on in there.

Sorry for the graphic de>
_________________________
Craig

Guilt and shame have never done any of us any good at all.

Top
#189697 - 11/02/07 02:46 PM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: cbfull]
cbfull Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/26/07
Posts: 386
Loc: Ohio
Oh jeez, does it never end? I just put together another important similarity of what's happening here at work with my friend.

This guy (the machinist co-worker) is a popular figure. He is noticed and talked about by both guys and girls, because he is so masculine, muscular and not to mention cute as hell. I was reading one of Larry's posts the other day about whether or not a risk of disappointing the perp was involved. I can't remember exactly what or where it was, but I realized that I felt the need to be by his side, so we can be seen together, and I wanted to be the only one to get in close with him. I was treating him as some kind of prize or trophy. Now I see how sick and unhealthy that is.

My abuser was regarded much the same way when I was younger. He was a noisy and wild kid, who did all these "big kid" things. He never paid much attention to me until he started babysitting us. My mother should have known he couldn't be trusted, he disobeyed his parents all the time. I think that's one of the things that made him so attractive to me.

_________________________
Craig

Guilt and shame have never done any of us any good at all.

Top
#189702 - 11/02/07 04:15 PM Re: Feeling triggered and I don't like it - CAUTION [Re: cbfull]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
Lazarus said in a previous reply he sounded like a tease and a jerk, you hadn't mentioned about the bodybuilding bit before, OR being over to his house; i've never been into the whole bodybuilding scene, but i would imagine "banana hammock" may have made the rounds there. Who knows? He's either very insecure and overcompensates like crazy, or he's completely vain and loves attention, or in denial big-time, but nothing adds up to "healthy interaction" so far. Would you be as attracted to him, if he were unpopular, or generally disliked at work?
As far as my previous reference to what your hubby said, here's quotes from previous replies of mine:

*I'm str8, but common to any of us is the potential for "testing" behavior, ie feeling the beginnings of attraction, affection, or attachment, which sets off the perimeter alarm(DANGER, WILL ROBINSON! DANGER!) so we flirt, and if they respond sexually, they fail the test. If they don't respond, however, we become confused and frustrated, and often feel rejected.*

*"failed test"- i'm just speaking from my own experience, but it's almost like a tug-of-war at the start of the process. Let's say I meet someone that i'm attracted to as a person: male, female, str8, gay, whatever. It's like the boy inside me is still convinced that sexual availability is the only way to gain closeness, you know- "I'll do whatever you want if you like me" thinking. So I get all wound up, short of breath, etc. Immediately after, "inner parent" says, "OK, I'll let you peep your face out there for a second, but if they lick their lips when they see you, you're going back in the basement."*

i'm still new at this, i'll figure out how to properly quote other posts someday, but you get what i mean...
All the emotional turbulence may suck, but at least you're using it constructively \:\)




Edited by dgoods (11/02/07 04:23 PM)
_________________________
Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

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