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#247525 - 08/30/08 10:30 PM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: michael banks]
2kidsmom Offline


Registered: 08/24/08
Posts: 5
Hi,
I am new here. JUst started dating someone a few wks ago who told me after an intense week he is a survivor. I think she is definitely interested in you - the fact she remembered a lot is key. Someone once told me that peopole come in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime - you just have to figure out which. I can't really help from your perspective as I am the person who was told about my new interest being a survivor. I was so sad and upset when he told me but for what had happened. It didn't change how I felt, or still feel about him. That is how I landed here as I needed to hear from others how best to handle the revelation. He says he is good, he has worked through it but doesn't need to talk more about it - I am still struggling with it because it makes me mad and sad but need to work that out without getting hm back involved as he seems to feel he is at a good stage. HOwever, I am not going anywhere. NOt all women will run when told of a partner's survivor status althought I guess some apparently do. Give yourself and her a chance. If she is truly interested and has feelings for you, she may surprise you with her support and strength. I find it hard to lean on others as well so I get t hat. Go have a nice dinner and remember that one dinner doesn't equal jumping physically forward. Good luck....

_________________________
2kidsmom

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#247554 - 08/31/08 01:45 AM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: 2kidsmom]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 2024
Loc: durham, north england
Lee, if anyone has in fact ever thrown themselves at me, I haven't even noticed. as I said, it's the bane of my life that if your male, the majority of girls expect you to just intuit by some bizarre sort of chemical alchemy that they're interested in you, and make the first move, which they either except or deny. . This causes me so many problems that if by any chance I was interested in boys, i'd quite seriously considder genda reassignment surgery, ----- in fact the only bennifit I ever get out of being male is my tenor singing voice.

all the "chemistry" business people talk about is absolutely meaningless to me, sinse I find it impossible to recognize emotionally. When I read it, or here someone talk about it, I just can't imagine what it's like to pick such feelings up from someone else, which is why I always imagined it just hadn't happened, in fact, it's Only sinse I started recovery have I begun to suspect that I might be wrong and people have been interested in me in the passed, with me just unable to pick it up, that's why I'm trying logic and asking here.

Your absolutely right Mike. i think if I just knew where I stood and got things into the open, then I could actually work on the physical stuff with someone else. i don't even want anything physical at all, in fact the thought of anything really! physical is amazingly terrifying to me and certainly will require it's own amount of work, but being uncertain as to someone else's feelings, while being forced to endure casual touch, while having my self isteme telling me how useless i am is an incredibly painful situation I'm just sick of being in. i also want to avoid investing too much emotion in this too early, my recovery started (appologies for saying this again), with a desasterous experience where I was forced to show my feelings to someone I'd fallen utterly in love with by holding her hand, and it not working at all, that's why i'd rather know where things are going now, before I run the risk of falling too much in love again.

right now, if she just says no, while I'll certainly be disappointed, i won't be destroyed, as I was in november, if she says yes, I'll be scared, but at least I'll know what I'm dealing with.


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#247603 - 08/31/08 07:58 PM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: michael banks]
Junefriday Offline


Registered: 06/05/08
Posts: 113
Loc: Canada
Dark empathy, you are very sweet. When are you going out with her? If you feel more comfortable getting it out in the open, do it. Maybe just start with, "I am really glad that you approached me. It has been really nice getting to know you..."

Eventually though, if it is in fact a dtae, you are going to have to do something at some point. But, I don't necessarily mean "putting the moves on her". The bottom line is that women (maybe men, but since I am not one of them, I can't speak for them), like to be flattered. If it is a date, she likely spent a lot of time getting ready. That means you should compliment her on her appearance. If she smells good, lean in and smell her hair. All very nice things in addition to opening doors, etc.

After that, if not on this night perhaps on another, set some small goals for yourself. Touching her shoulder with yours if you are sitting in a movie, sitting beside her on the couch rather than across from her, putting your hand on the small of her back as you guide her through the door. They are all very small things and hopefully can help you build up your confidence.

As for "what is wrong with you" ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. You have some history that not every guy has. As a result, you have a few other obstacles to overcome. But, that DOES NOT mean something is wrong with you. And, you are taking positive steps in talking to people on this site about your history. But keep in mind, she doesn't know anything about this. She can only react to what she sees, hears and feels. If you like her, you will at some point need to do something even small, to make that known.

For now though, enjoy going out and take it one step at a time.

_________________________
"Love comes to those who still hope even though they've been disappointed, to those who still believe even though they've been betrayed, to those who still love even though they've been hurt before.

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#247614 - 08/31/08 09:43 PM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: Junefriday]
M3 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/04/07
Posts: 1392
Loc: Central Ohio
Michael (Banks) is quite right, all the signs are there that she likes you.

And don't feel alone. You have the same problem I had (and at times still deal with). I'm very empathic when it comes to other people. I can walk into a room and understand what is going on between individuals just from the energy in the room and body language. But the voices in my head (as you put it, your self esteem) short circuit this understanding when one of the individuals is me. The voices tell me that they can't possible be interested in me and that I cannot trust my gut instincts that tell me otherwise.

THESE VOICES LIE TO YOU. Make a list of all the reasons someone should like you and be interested in you. Have your friends and family help you make the list and post it everywhere for you to see it, to remind you that you know better.

In my early dating experiences, I was very confused as to the other person's intentions (is this a date, are they interested in something more than friendship, etc.). Also, in my early dating experiences, I found that physical expression within the relationship seemed like revictimization and many times I reacted accordingly physically and emotionally.

I did what you mentioned: getting clarification up front. It is not just polite to open the door for someone, but you can also ask if you can hold their hand or give them a kiss. I have found this sets me at ease, knowing that I'm going to ask first because being told "no" when being asked is easier than being told "no" when you are going in for that kiss. I have also found that asking first tends to be charming to my date.

Taking it slow and becoming good friends before you move into a more physical stage in the relationship may help you from the stand point of falling in love too easily. That is something I've had to learn how to avoid after several heartbreaks.

I wonder if you worry too much about if they are interested in you and don't think enough about whether you are interested in them. Focus on your attraction to them, if they make you feel safe, if they seem caring, if no red flags are raised from your side, ask to hold her hand, ask if you may give them a good night kiss (and don't forget to say "May I please..." being polite will endear her to you). You say you like your friend because she is blunt and outspoken. If the girl you are with isn't that outspoken, just ask. Additionally, that saves you from "having to put the moves on" anyone. Asking is being quite the gentleman.

As for asking if this is a date, go for it. And if you are really interested in her by that point in the evening and you are really hoping that it is a date, don't be afraid to let her know that.

You could say something like:

"I know this might sound awkward, but I wasn't sure if you were just interested in catching up or if you considered this a date. I hope this is a date because I've really enjoyed being with you this evening."

And to repeat what others have told you before - there's nothing wrong with you and there are hundreds, if not thousands, here who have been exactly where you are at and we are here to support you and help you through this.

We are all wishing you the best!!

Michael


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#247753 - 09/01/08 05:16 PM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: M3]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 2024
Loc: durham, north england
June, to be honest many of those things sound incredibly scary, particularly the touch, and perfume business, and I can only ever see myself as unpleasant, and if I imagine myself touching someone else, i always imagine they'd feel disgust.

One recent thought that occurred to me is that during my abuse, as well as all the violence and swearing, one thing that several girls said (while in the process of abusing me), was "do you like me?" which probably explains why i have difficulty with this hole business.
I'm now slightly less worried, sinse I spoke to her earlier today, and while we made arrangements to go out next tuesday, the mutual friend who bought us together is also coming. While I'm very pleased to see him (sinse I haven't spoken to him for ages either), this does make me less inclined to think it's a date.

michael, your deffinately right about this, and I like the thought of some ofyour suggestions. I can't imagine myself asking to kiss someone, but asking if I could hold her hand feels slightly easier, as does the "I'm pleased we met" business.

Your also dead right on both the empathy and touch as triggers business. Even though I've got some very close friends, who I've actually told about my abuse, I stil often struggle with the idea that the don't actually get anything at all out of my company, and are simply tolerating me because they're incredibly nice people. they've denied this, and even given me de>

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#247757 - 09/01/08 05:37 PM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: dark empathy]
M3 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/04/07
Posts: 1392
Loc: Central Ohio
Originally Posted By: dark empathy
I stil often struggle with the idea that the don't actually get anything at all out of my company, and are simply tolerating me because they're incredibly nice people. they've denied this, and even given me de>

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#247758 - 09/01/08 05:40 PM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: dark empathy]
michael banks Offline


Registered: 06/12/08
Posts: 1755
Loc: Mojave Desert, Ca
Dark,

Take things as slowly as you need to feel safe!!
Enjoy her company and get to know her again.
Most important thing is to enjoy your time with her.
Try not to worry about the phsyical aspects, you are not there yet.
If you want to see her again ask!

Best wishes,
mike

_________________________
To own one's shadow is the highest moral act of a human.
-Robert Johnson-

"IT ought never be forgotten that the past is the parent of the future" John C. Calhoun

WOR Alumni Sequoia 2009

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#247806 - 09/02/08 12:13 AM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: michael banks]
Paulmusicman Offline
New Here

Registered: 10/20/07
Posts: 7
Loc: Fargo, ND
God do I know the scared feeling with women......being abused makes you so confused about having control over your body and what you will do in a relationship. In college, 25 years ago for me now, I avoided women like the plague for the same reason you are.. I was scared to death of them. Why would they even want to have a relationship with someone like me? So I just worked myself to death for years.....finally I did meet the right woman, who did not make me nervous about being together...and she is still my angel today 20 years later. If I have any advice, it is to get counselling now.....I waited way too long and spend many years beating myself up about this issue. The whole sexual identity was messed up for me....but it can all work out if you want it enough. My best to you as you work through relationships.....they are worth the bother for sure! What happened to you was NOT your fault. You deserve to find love for yourself. Keep reaching out and posting your thoughts too. Bill


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#248114 - 09/04/08 02:46 AM Re: There's no point denying, i'm scared! [Re: Paulmusicman]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 2024
Loc: durham, north england
Thanks people.

I suppose that part of the reason i'm so concerned is that i've been doing just what you say Michael banks for years. i've gone out socially just for fun with a lot of female friends. Admittedly, a lot of them I wasn't interested in, but even when I was, I was to scared, too hung up on my own worthlessness, and not to mention incredibly uncertain of what I could! do, to have anything happen.

This is what I mean about the genda sterriotype being such a pest. Maybe it's not so pervasive in the states as it is here, ----- certainly I've noticed that many of the americans I've met tend to be on average much more extravert and interested in making themselves known to other people than English people usually are, ---- though I suppose all generalizations are wrong, as usual ;D.

As I said, it's not even something physical I want, ---- not completely, just something that's deeper and more communicative than friendship. Being kissed is quite important to me, and the knolidge that the physically closest I've ever been to a girl (in fact to several girls), was during my abuse is incredibly! painful!

It's also not just related to this girl may or may not be interested in me. It's absolutely certain I'll meet a lot of girls very soon, (sinse my university's light opera group is starting again), and probably, I'll end up being interested in someone again, though hopefully not as utterly desasterously as last year.


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