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#383348 - 01/24/12 12:04 PM Unmet need for a man's attention
EdfromNYC Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 233
Loc: New York City
How does one go about getting the needs met for affirmation, affection and attention from a man or other men after one has been abused? I thought my abuser was meeting those needs in my through sexual stimulation when I was 13 and that boy that I was then latched onto that pattern for many years.

I am very, very close to breaking the pattern. I can now at least see clearly that I was abused and even though my abuse "felt good", that "feeling good" was actually the abuse. Guilt and shame are both lifting, which is good, and I have some days that I feel more free than ever as an adult. I am crying much more about the past, I'm in a group, I work two times per week with a therapist, I'm moving forward. But those unmet needs that fucking got fucking mixed into sex - I don't know how to meet those needs that I now accept were normal and not the cause of the problem either at home or with the stranger who molested me. My needs were never the problem and my needs didn't cause the problems.

But I want them met. Is it just grieving that I have to do? Do I go to some men's empowerment group like I've seen on here? Do other people relate?

My sexual acting out is de minimis and is solo at this point and for minutes, if that, once or twice a week. But I am seeing why I am doing it - to imagine getting attention and stimulation at the same time JUST LIKE WHEN I WAS ABUSED. I am keeping it alive because I don't know how to meet the needs of the kid I was. Is this reparenting because this doesn't feel like something I want to do in isolation. It feels like I need to let others in.

The minimal sexual acting out drives me bonkers. It throws me off because its not really what I want to do, its not my natural sex drive, its my corrupted sexuality, the one the boy in me said "Ah, this feels good, it must be that this guy likes you and thinks your special and wants you to feel good" when in reality it was an adult predator hunting for children to hurt and maim and abuse, an adult predator hunting for victims in the form of hurt, needy, lonely children who needed love and attention.

I was hoping that I could clean up this abuse "stuff" in private and go out into my life and not have to bring it with me but the more I do this work, the more I know I can't do that. I've been ashamed of being a victim and having a messy life because of it. I want to clean up my mess and leave it behind but I never will. I will always be someone who was victimized by a stranger, I will never not be that person. I kept hoping that I wouldn't have to do this work like other men have to do. I wanted to be different.

This was rambling, I know, but I sick of trying to handle it all by myself.

_________________________
And more, much more, the heart may feel,
Than the pen may write or the lip reveal.
Winthrop Mackworth Praed

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#383351 - 01/24/12 12:36 PM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: EdfromNYC]
Castle Offline


Registered: 10/03/09
Posts: 734
Loc: NJ
First and foremost, I hear you.

Your in a group but still not getting that conncetion your looking for? is it allowed or encouraged for outside contact beyond just the group?

I have to say that some of my IRL contact with people I met here and at the events I attend have made a huge difference in me and my recovery...but its a two way street and why its not so easy to just keep thinning myself out. There is a lot of effort in keepiing those friendships and connections...so have to be ready for the "work" that goes along with caring and being a part of another persons life.

I can also say that cleanig up this stuff in private may not work or be feasable...and additionally I think that as we recover and become who we really are...people around us know that there is a diffrence...we just are different...whom we attracted before might not be whom we attract now for friendships as our roles have changed....some old friendshps had a different structure but as we change, some of our needs people also need t change.

All of this is IMO.

but again...can you not take it a step further with some in your group?

_________________________

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

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#383358 - 01/24/12 02:15 PM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: Castle]
EdfromNYC Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 233
Loc: New York City
The group allows for outside communication. A couple of weeks ago I brought up exchanging emails and offering to do take everyone's and create an exchange but the counselor running the group said that is something that the counselor takes care of at the very end of the group (16 session group). Its not the greatest group as far as I'm concerned. Its a beginning. Most of the guys are in the stage of trying to recall while I'm in the stage of feeling the pain and loss.

Your response is making me think about being more assertive with reaching out and making a real effort to connect. I meet on Thursday night and I will be thinking about how to do this and maybe even bring it up.

I'm starting to think differently about myself and that I can't do this alone. I've spent almost my entire life (46 yrs old) doing this as alone as possible

_________________________
And more, much more, the heart may feel,
Than the pen may write or the lip reveal.
Winthrop Mackworth Praed

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#383371 - 01/24/12 04:36 PM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: EdfromNYC]
Castle Offline


Registered: 10/03/09
Posts: 734
Loc: NJ
Dont give up Ed...keep tryig to make those connections..if nothign from the group try a WOR, or mike lews Aug event...soto the MS conference in NYC....keep trying...Offer to create a private group on FB for your group members and see if that helps...you can make a provate group that nobody but the participants can see.

Isolation is the enemy, I dont know anybody personally who has been able to work through these issues in Isolation...just the opposite.

It is very hard to have a real peer relationship with a male...takes a lot of trust and vulnerability...I think in my groups the vulnerability that we share is a key to us opening up and really being able to redefine what a male peer relationship is.

_________________________

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

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#383373 - 01/24/12 05:03 PM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: Castle]
EdfromNYC Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 233
Loc: New York City
I really appreciate what you're writing. I've been thinking about it all day and its what has been coming up in therapy too. I am finally able to picture reaching out to other men and especially to other men that I want to be around,even those that might even intimidate me.

After your response, I made a call to a therapist who runs a mens group and got some more direction. He recommended doing the New Warrior weekend which I looked into. I have spent so much of my life alone, both highly defensive and highly afraid, that both attributes have simply become default positions at this point and they are hard habits to break but I'm getting there.

I did so much rejection of other men (and myself) that it became a terrible habit and its tough to look around and see how much of my life I spent alone and didn't have to.

_________________________
And more, much more, the heart may feel,
Than the pen may write or the lip reveal.
Winthrop Mackworth Praed

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#383378 - 01/24/12 05:51 PM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: EdfromNYC]
JustScott Offline
Greeter Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 2590
I have the same struggle Ed. Need it badly but really don't know where and how. I live in the country and have little around, so meeting anyone face to face is hard, and then add trust to that....

Then for me, add the fact that I have so absolutely little in common interest wise with the men I do meet... well it's hard for sure.


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#383383 - 01/24/12 06:35 PM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: JustScott]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3520
Loc: somewhere in Africa
ED - I strongly agree with everything you said in the first post. My experience and feelings almost exactly. Except no group where I am. Good work figuring this out - now good luck with changing the patterns.
Strength and perseverance to you!
Lee

_________________________
As my life goes on I believe somehow something's changed
Something deep inside...
I've been searchin so long to find an answer
Now I know my life has meaning
Now I see myself as I am, feeling very free...
When my tears have come to an end I will understand
What I left behind: a part of me. Chicago


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#383388 - 01/24/12 07:19 PM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: EdfromNYC]
1lifenow Offline


Registered: 03/07/11
Posts: 412
Loc: west coast
Ed

My mother in law used to say when she was alive. "Stop looking up a dead horse's ass!". I think she was just really good at mixed metaphors but when you look back and say 'didnt have to' well there is just no real benefit to that.

Todays new perspective is all we have, so incorporating all that past shit is all we can do. Ya, we all did so much bs stuff that we wish we could tell our younger selves we didnt have to go through, there was another way. We just didnt know it, now you do, how great is that?

I have a couple of buddies, just friends. I pushed them away over the years but now that I am in this state of mind, they have embraced the prodigal crazy son returning without reservation or judgement. You will be yourself and that's all it takes. Nothing more is necessary. smile

_________________________
The need for love lies at the very foundation of human existence. Dalai Lama

WoR Barrie 2011

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#383428 - 01/25/12 11:20 AM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: JustScott]
EdfromNYC Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 233
Loc: New York City
Quote:
I live in the country and have little around, so meeting anyone face to face is hard, and then add trust to that....

Then for me, add the fact that I have so absolutely little in common interest wise with the men I do meet


I went to school in the Harrisburg area so I am familiar with it. I can see how it would be tough to meet varied people. I live in NYC, sort of an opposite end of the spectrum, and its still difficult to meet people and establish relationships since everyone is on the move and trying to make NYC work for them.

To your second point, I've felt that way, too, about not sharing common interests. I am starting to change my focus on that and instead I am starting to focus on what I have in common with others rather than what I don't share. I'm not suggesting that you are doing that; it has been that way for most of my life.

I am accepting that I need male companionship, attention, fun, depth, mutual care, mutual interest, basically fraternity. I have never felt like just another guy who is acceptable just as he is and equal among all sorts of other men. I guess that will happen some through common interests but, for me, I think some of that bonding/intimacy will happen through structured groups and writing like this.


You're lucky - there is some beauty out your way. You're reaching out to me is appreciated.

_________________________
And more, much more, the heart may feel,
Than the pen may write or the lip reveal.
Winthrop Mackworth Praed

Top
#383430 - 01/25/12 11:26 AM Re: Unmet need for a man's attention [Re: 1lifenow]
EdfromNYC Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 233
Loc: New York City
Quote:
Todays new perspective is all we have, so incorporating all that past shit is all we can do.


That's what I am moving toward; to get there is to go through the shit that my little defenseless boy holds onto out of self-protective habit. I gotta build today, like you say, but to do that I gotta let go of some heavy stuff. Its a process, not easy, its work.

Quote:
I have a couple of buddies, just friends. I pushed them away over the years but now that I am in this state of mind, they have embraced the prodigal crazy son returning without reservation or judgement. You will be yourself and that's all it takes. Nothing more is necessary.


I did the same thing and want to get back in touch with some. What you wrote is hopeful. Thanks.

_________________________
And more, much more, the heart may feel,
Than the pen may write or the lip reveal.
Winthrop Mackworth Praed

Top
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