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#393638 - 04/16/12 12:21 PM Is CSA not an excuse?
Esposa Offline
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MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 636
Loc: NJ
Yes, I want to understand. Yes, I need to understand.

The following is from this article: http://johnbriere.com/stm.htm

"In addition to attachment-style-related schema, it is clear that abuse and neglect early in life can produce more general relational disturbance. P&S suggest that trauma during the early years can result in chronic, negative expectations and perceptions around issues of safety, trust, esteem, intimacy and control....
An individual who has developed a preoccupied style of attachment may relate relatively well in a given intimate context until he or she encounters stimuli that suggest some level of rejection or abandonment. At this point, he or she may respond in the context of an activated gestalt of archaic emotional responses and cognitive structures that, although EXCESSIVE in the immediate context, are appropriate to the feelings and thoughts of an abused or neglected child."

This seems to be the definition of a trigger. Anyone's trigger. A reminder - to which we respond the way we USED to have to respond - even if that response is OVERKILL in the current situation. That said, untreated CSA could quite possibly be an excuse.

How do we manage triggers then? How do we learn to process stimuli that hit our buttons but stop that archaic response?

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#393640 - 04/16/12 12:35 PM Re: Is CSA not an excuse? [Re: Esposa]
JustScott Offline
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MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 2568
I think first is realizing the trigger exists. Until you know WHY you respond the way you do, you are powerless to change it, because in your mind, it's the "right" response even if it in reality is not.

For me, as I learn my triggers, I realize when I'm in an agitated state. Once there, I can: 1. Choose to respond differently, despite feelings to want to respond in another way. 2. Vocalize that state to my wife and let her know that I'm in that place and as such, if I do respond in a way that doesn't fit, it isn't her or her fault, but my own issues.

That realization and vocalization in turn help my wife then feel ok in letting me know that, Yes indeed that particular reaction or response was not appropriate or called for.

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#393642 - 04/16/12 01:07 PM Re: Is CSA not an excuse? [Re: Esposa]
SamV Offline
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MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/13/09
Posts: 5924
Loc: Talladega, Alabama, USA
Quote:
How do we learn to process stimuli that hit our buttons but stop that archaic response?


By maturing the thoughts that the trigger accesses in our schemata. The article is trying to explain that the schema, or perception of the survivor is an immature, distorted perspective of the world around him. Recovery, the process of repairing the damage of the abuse and maturing the survivor to be assertive and self-affirming, changes the way he perceives the world around him. When the survivor is triggered, the difference between recovery and surviving is manifest, for instance a sexual encounter. The recovered can think through a situation, and reply to sexual advances in an assertive and reasonable manner, whereas the survivor may succumb to real or perceived sexual advances in any scenario. The survivor may react with the same submission as when he was assaulted, the recovered would be able to think more clearly and act in a more mature, self assertive manner.
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#393643 - 04/16/12 01:14 PM Re: Is CSA not an excuse? [Re: Esposa]
SamV Offline
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MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/13/09
Posts: 5924
Loc: Talladega, Alabama, USA
Interestingly, the survivor cannot simply accept recovery thoughts and affirmations, he must program himself. The social, morally or ethically correct thoughts and behaviors could be written on a flashcard, and presented to him during the trigger, and he would not consistently take the advice found on it, in favor of his own perception. This would be true even if the survivor earlier came to the conclusion that the "flashcard" was the best course of action. The survivor needs to ruminate and acclimate the new thoughts into his psyche, then the reactions become more consistent, The triggers result in a more calm, subdued, thoughtful reaction, that minimizes the abuse chaos within him, and he reacts with an appreciable self control, a predictable pattern affirming his present lifestyle.
_________________________
My SENSITIVE Difference

"Lets talk about that."

Go Get A Hug: HUG>porn

*When provoked* "Anyone holding back his sayings is possessed of knowledge.” (Proverbs 17:27)"

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#393669 - 04/16/12 06:58 PM Re: Is CSA not an excuse? [Re: Esposa]
Anniemy4sons Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/29/11
Posts: 98
Loc: NJ
This is interesting because we discussed this today in therapy. Basically our therapist says his goal is a change in character and thinking. This behavior is not to be compared with say alcohol or drug addiction wherein a chemical response is triggered but thinking, perception, morals & character. Building and changing of the fore mentioned. Not the thinking one drink away from being a drunk again BUT a "STOP DROP AND ROLL" thinking/action plan. He believes it will become almost automatic. But first over and over my husband has to "behave in a way" that is not natural to him but will become natural.
Without saying - This will only work if he WANTS it to work. Willingness and all.

(I said "fake it til you make it" and they both jumped on me....)
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#393672 - 04/16/12 07:07 PM Re: Is CSA not an excuse? [Re: SamV]
KMCINVA Offline
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MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 1427
Sasuva

My therapist has said the same. Triggers put us back into survival mode, some triggers are more severe and push one into believing the only way to survive is to submit as the child did years ago. Learning and understanding the triggers allows the survivor to focus on affirming who they are today and not years ago. Reacting to the triggers as one did as a child does not promote healing but keeps the survivor in a perpetual state of believing the abuse is what he deserves.

We have talked extensively about the triggers. My T was concerned because of the aggressive attacks I continued to experience were my triggers that I would regress but I have bad days and can honestly say I have not regressed, I can feel the triggers and I do affirmation to keep here and not let the child control. It is becoming more natural today than it was when we began the process. The mind is a complex organ, never realizing something so bad years ago could still be with more over 40 years later. But it is healing.

It is always great to affirmation of others statements and views on the healing process. Yes triggers can be horrific and I did not understand them until therapy.


Edited by KMCINVA (04/16/12 07:23 PM)

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#393694 - 04/16/12 11:03 PM Re: Is CSA not an excuse? [Re: Esposa]
Still Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6317
Loc: 2 NATO Nations
"Excuse" --- no not always, but sometimes.

"Explanation" --- Yes, always.

Sorry Boss. The missing leg from Iraq slowed me down more than I expected in the snow.

Explains results, outcomes, etc.
Doesn't excuse a thing.


Additionally, we keep trying to find logical explanations to totally illogical destruction of our lives.


Edited by Robbie Brown (04/16/12 11:06 PM)
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#393812 - 04/17/12 07:44 PM Re: Is CSA not an excuse? [Re: Esposa]
herowannabe Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/01/11
Posts: 386
Loc: USA
Quote:
Additionally, we keep trying to find logical explanations to totally illogical destruction of our lives.


...there's a lot of that going 'round. frown
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#393887 - 04/18/12 06:37 AM Re: Is CSA not an excuse? [Re: Esposa]
Mountainous Buck Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/15/09
Posts: 1626
Loc: Minnesota
Thanks for this excerpt. I'll read the article.

I would add that actions/behaviors of mine which trigger a trauma response are very destructive. That is the cycle of acting out/escaping that I was caught in for years and only reinforced the trauma, the self-doubt, etc.

I was my own worst enemy years after the abuse.

Here is a description of a great book, Lust, Anger, Love, by Maureen Canning I just finished last night that addresses the issues of sexual abuse and trauma and sexuality in a very positive way: (I think someone here recommended the book.)

Quote:
Canning shows how compulsions are the product of early childhood abuse and how patterns, from the most violent to the most commonplace, develop. She explains that the overriding emotion sexually addicted people feel towards the partners with whom they seek intimacy is anger turned into sexuality, or "sexualized anger." This yields a false sense of security and power, an "aggressive tendency," which destroys any chance of a healthy relationship. Lust, Anger, Love offers a comprehensive and enlightening look at the origins of these little discussed behaviors and maps out a plan for recovery.


It's a great book!

Here are the first several chapters:

Quote:
1 - My Own Story of Sexualized Anger p. 1
2 - Holding the Shame p. 25
3 - Trauma and Distortion p. 43
4 - Coping with Trauma p. 65
5 - Sexualized Anger p. 89
6 - Acting Out and Acting In: The Socially Forgivable Behaviors p. 121
7 - Acting Out: The Less Understood and Socially Unforgivable Behaviors p. 143




Edited by Mountainous Buck (04/18/12 06:38 AM)
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