I started this post as a reply but decided to make it a post and use a link to it as the reply because it relates to so much more than just the post I was replying to.

What to feel...


It would make sense to have nothing but bad feelings about our abuse and our abusers and it would also make sense, once the abuse is over and we are away from the abuse and abusers to just forget about it, put it behind us and enjoy the rest of our lives.

But it doesn't work that way. If only it did it would be so much easier but our feelings and thoughts that we have in reaction to our abuse can seem as irrational as the abuse it's self and that becomes another part of the huge burden of shame we bear.

In my own case what most stands out in my mind is my having told myself so many times that I had to make up my mind whether I liked my CSA or hated it. If I hated it, I should stop having sexual fantasies that in some way resemble the abuse and if I liked it I should shut the hell up and quit whining and seeking help because you shouldn't need help recovering from something you enjoyed.

But the truth is that it isn't that simple. Being traumatized does not automatically rule out getting an erection or even having a neuron or two in the pleasure center of your brain light up during the abuse..which does not equal "liking it". Nor does particular aspects of the abuse being pleasurable mean that other aspects aren't traumatic as hell!

But I'm still haunted by that old feeling that my abuser instilled that if I had an erection I had no right to cry.
I had EVERY right to cry..whether I had an erection, an orgasm or a multiple orgasm! Abuse is abuse and pain is pain. But the simultaneous presence of sexual arousal made it so that even my right to feel mistreated was taken away from me and replaced with shame. I can almost hear my abuser saying right now "You can't have it both ways." and to that I would now say 'The hell I can't! Any microgram of pleasure I may have got you've made me earn a hundred times over, asshole!'

So I've decided that there is no wrong way to react to abuse. That's not saying that you can abuse others or do whatever you want and blame it on your perp as your reaction to abuse, but it is saying that the feelings you have about your abuse or your abuser should not be invalidated because they seem inconsistent or do not make perfect sense.

If you were abused by a parent or sibling or even someone you were sexually hot for, don't feel you have to "make up your mind" between your love for or attraction to the person and your hatred of the person for what that person did to you. It's ok to be a "fence sitter". It's ok to be confused even if it doesn't feel ok because life is confusing and, often enough, the most intelligent and human response to a situation is to be confused.

It isn't hypocracy or condoning what the person did or even being self-contradictory. It's just having mixed feelings and acknowledging that you do. That's my opinion anyway. And if you aren't completely convinced, that's ok too because I'm still working on that part myself. \:\)



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