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#345260 - 11/15/10 09:13 AM Re-enactment or taking power back?
Lavinia Offline


Registered: 12/02/09
Posts: 61
(triggers possible, be careful)

I usually write a huge post so I'll try to keep this one concise. I'm just wondering what you guys (supporters AND survivors) think about my partner Zack wanting to do certain things in the bedroom that are very similar to things that he told me his stepfather did to him. This hasn't happened in a while but it is a concern. He has occasionally asked me to do things to him that I know re-enact his abuse but he explains his reason for my doing them is to "take back" his power. He also says he wants to "take back" certain sexual acts and doesn't want them to always remind him of his abuse.

I don't mean to be graphic or trigger anyone but I understand where he's coming from. As a survivor of "mild" sexual abuse (mostly inappropriate touching), I had to learn to accept the fact that masturbation wasn't a re-enactment of what happened to me. However, Zack survived very violent abuse - including severe beatings - and I think it would be more harmful for him to want me to dominate or even "punish" him during sex. In my opinion, asking me to hurt him during sex is a LOT different from my re-learning pleasurable touch. I know he needs to process what happened to him but I don't think he needs me to hurt him in order to take back his power, and I would rather not make bondage and sadism part of my sexual repertoire. What do you guys think?


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#345269 - 11/15/10 10:27 AM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: Lavinia]
just me Offline


Registered: 05/27/09
Posts: 194
Maybe this is an oversimplification but here's how I see it: (Although I say 'we' this is my view only; I don't speak for all CSA survivors)

We (those who have experienced early sexualization through abuse) have learned to connect the pleasure of the physical response with the act taking place, even if the act is abusive, perverse, involving a power imbalance...or just plain wrong.

We then, often, reinforce the response by fantasizing to those images and experiences. Some will also act out in this regard....and while it is true that we do this to try and process the experience and to make sense of it all...The bottom line is we connect the act with the most pleasurable feeling we know.

And then we go on to hate or blame ourselves, not necessarily for the original experience (although we do that too) but for the fact that we continue it, over and over and over and over again by our own actions and thoughts. Because it is what we have learned to desire!

[The above is an effort to explain how WE get there...but YOU still have to be comfortable and should explain what is acceptable to you]

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#345287 - 11/15/10 12:32 PM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: just me]
Lavinia Offline


Registered: 12/02/09
Posts: 61
Thanks for your feedback, just me. It's true that I need to state what I am comfortable with in the bedroom, no matter what Zack needs to do to process things. We have a solid relationship and I shouldn't be afraid to voice my concerns. Thanks again.


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#361019 - 04/29/11 08:05 AM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: Lavinia]
risingagain Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/09/10
Posts: 595
Loc: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Wow, reading this is so wonderful, that a caring partner would ask such questions.


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#361164 - 05/01/11 12:16 PM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: risingagain]
Disappointed Offline


Registered: 08/11/09
Posts: 540
Loc: U.S.A.
Hi



Edited by Disappointed (06/22/11 04:22 AM)
Edit Reason: Life happens.
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#361207 - 05/01/11 09:57 PM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: Disappointed]
risingagain Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/09/10
Posts: 595
Loc: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Cool, D. I think it's really great of you that you listened to what he likes and that you found ways that were not hurtful to give him that.

Sexual fetishes are very individual and may or may not be healthy for the person. I'm still sorting out all of that for myself.... I try to look at how I feel afterward.... do I feel uplifted or reduced?


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#361282 - 05/02/11 04:11 PM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: Disappointed]
Castle Offline


Registered: 10/03/09
Posts: 728
Loc: NJ
Originally Posted By: Disappointed
But I agree with Just Me, "The bottom line is we connect the act with the most pleasurable feeling we know." I believe he wants it because he finds it pleasurable.


You left off the last part of what JM said though...."And then we go on to hate or blame ourselves, not necessarily for the original experience (although we do that too) but for the fact that we continue it, over and over and over and over again by our own actions and thoughts. Because it is what we have learned to desire!"




Originally Posted By: Disappointed
He's dating someone else, and although I'm a envious, I don't worry about it. He tells me what's really going on in his mind, he tells me things he hasn't even told his therapist and would never tell his girlfriend. He denies the title for her, but I'm sure she wouldn't!


Interesting....and sigh


Originally Posted By: Disappointed
I'm glad I didn't just take anyone's word for it, that playing his game was bad of me.

Me..Just anybody..that hurts..;)


Originally Posted By: Disappointed
...... Same thing, I asked why he wears a certain thing he likes to wear alot, and I had a theory, and when I asked if my theory was right, and in a hushed voice, he admitted it was.
What do you or him do with that realization once you found it?

Still sounds off to me..but as always just my opinion...I feel badly for the other person who thinks there might be a relationship..if she doesnt know about you..but you didnt mention whether she knows about your play or not.





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My posts can self destruct at any time..read them while you can.

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#361306 - 05/02/11 10:04 PM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: Castle]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
I totally agree with Castle. If this other woman thinks she has some attachment over your friend and she doesn't know about your play, then she should know. It kinda sounds like you enjoy having "control" over him because you offer him something she doesn't. Are you really "okay" with him dating this other woman or is it just that you know he will come back to you because you play? Is that healthy for him, you, or this other woman? Also, I don't think it's helpful to be playing therapist for him. It's not fair to you (or at least, not healthy for you). You can support him, sure, but it is NOT our job to play psychotherapist with survivors. Trust me, I had to learn that the hard way.


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#361340 - 05/03/11 11:13 AM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: hopeandtry]
risingagain Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/09/10
Posts: 595
Loc: Vancouver, BC, Canada
if i read D's post right, i think she is describing a situation she has found greater peace with.


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#361341 - 05/03/11 11:17 AM Re: Re-enactment or taking power back? [Re: risingagain]
risingagain Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/09/10
Posts: 595
Loc: Vancouver, BC, Canada
do you think, D though that the other girl your friend is seeing could be getting hurt by this?


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