My denial and doubt still take on larger-than-life proportions, not that the abuse occured (I've had my memories all along), but of the [bold]consequences[/bold] of the abuse. At times, when I'm not deep in the pain and grief, I can take comfort now with a deepening understanding of those consequences and impact of the abuse and family dyfunctions. How is it comforting? Because the M*&*@@!#&*(-ing shoe fits and it explains soooo much about who I am now. It explains the black hole of pain inside. At least this thing called recovery has a focus for me now and there are reasons for my cognitive distortions, rock bottom self esteem, etc. etc. etc.
I've been in the recovery, getting counsiling, "therapy" game off and on for over 22 years now. Mostly off. My denial finally took me down the road of alcoholism to the brink of death (c/s 16 months now). For me, that's what it took for me to finally wake up (just a bit) to the reality of needing to deal with my past.
michael, I truly hope that you don't have to play the brinkmanship game. It just adds to the pain and prolongs the time it takes to feel better.
You say you've lived in limbo for so long now. How long is long enough? I don't know. I do believe that you can endure it because as RJD points out, our denial/doubt does serve a purpose. Not only that but I think our brains can only handle so much pain at a given time, then unconscience protective measures kick in.
I clicked on the 91 ( Posts: 91 | From:...) at the bottom of your post, listing what you've written. I didn't read everything but skimmed through them. You've shared a lot of your pain and frustration here. You've also shown compassion and understand for others with good insights. Give yourself some credit. This all takes time, a lot of time to recover from.
A good road map for the affects of abuse can be found at *caution, possible trigger* http://www.malesurvivor.org/articles/ODea.htm
*caution*. Like hey babe, my denial can't find too many arguments with what is written there, or say 'nope, doesn't apply to me'.
I'm working with a good T now and have to (want to) believe, and do, that he has a road map to get me to where I want to be and to resolve a lot of my traumatic issues. Now if I could only pay him to do it for me...
There are answers out there.