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#409982 - 09/12/12 10:22 PM Victim - how long?
Farmer Boy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 442
Loc: Australia
I have been a bit quiet on here for the last week, just trying to take a few steps back and take in what everyone has to say. But this has made me feel very isolated. (thanks for the few MP's but I couldn't bring myself to reply yet) The up side is that MS has proved to be a good substitute for porn. (that is what I do on the computer now - not that it arouses me).

I feel like I am obsessed about my CSA (now that i actually 'get' that I was abused). It seems to fill my thoughts all day. Everything else is being neglected. Even now I am sitting on the computer instead of out being out on the tractor where I should be. I kind of prefer denial to be honest.

So far I have come to understand a few things about what is going on for me. (thanks to the guys on here)

1. My exhibitionism around other men is not because I want them to want to have sex with me. It is because I want them to admire me - to think I am manly, have it all together, am 'perfect' and that there is nothing 'wrong' with me.

2. I have worth as a human being - just because God made me. I have put so much emphasis on how I look (good and bad). I was a cute little blonde haired, blue eyed boy and everyone told me so. It felt like that was why I deserved attention. It feels like that is why I was abused. Teen years were different - my hair went brown, pimples and at 13 I was 6' but only weighed 50kg (110lb). I felt ugly and a freak. Then I grew up and filled out. It is a rollercoaster because I still look at myself and think I'm ugly, too fat, too skinny, not muscly enough (the reality is that I am probably an average looking 35 year old man). But people would tell me I am handsome, give me free stuff at shops etc. One of my coworkers suggested that I only got promoted in my job because I'm one of the beautiful people. Still felt like an ugly person pretending to be good looking to get attention. Anyway rambling here. I am starting to understand that it is what is on the inside that REALLY matters and that isn't pretty....yet. Hope someone here 'gets' this.

3. The compulsion I have to act out with other men is not about me seducing them with my hot body, good looks and massive cock (all wishful thinking) - it is about me recreating the abuse that happened to me as a boy. It is about me feeling like a dirty piece of shit that should to be used and abused and that is all I deserve. I am trying to destroy whatever there is left in me that is good and pure.

4. I can overcome the temptation to act out with God's help. Yesterday I could feel the pressure building but I was able to stop myself from going to a park. It took all of my strength and I was physically drained for the rest of the day. But the lack of regret and shame is so much more powerful.

5. Even though I have tried to keep how truly messed up I feel from my wife. It is still affecting her and she is not feeling the love and affection from me that she should. I bought her a great dane puppy and that is filling the gap for now.

6. I probably can't keep it all together forever. Physically, mentally and emotionally. Working on the dairy farm 7 days a week (I have had 8 days off in 3 years), doing my own graphic design business at night, being a good husband, getting my kids ready for school, making lunches etc, managing poor health (CFS), volunteering for the school, leading my church's music and kids ministries and spending time recovering from CSA. I guess I need some room in my life for me - for self caring so I don't feel the need to self sooth. Can't see how that could happen yet....

As a kid I was always told I was lazy etc. So I guess a part of me has always wanted to prove them wrong. I have never let myself 'deal' with the past up until the last few weeks. It feels so wrong to be spending sooo much time thinking about myself and giving the CSA so much power over me even now. I am assuming that it is a good thing for my recovery to finally 'feel' the impact of my CSA - to feel like a victim. But now it feels like 'OK you have had your little sook about it. Now, man up, move on and get over it and get back to work.'

I guess I want to ask you guys how long you were stuck in the feeling like a victim stage before you moved on to the next step of recovery.? I know everyone will be different and it will probably take more than a few weeks. Just thought it might be helpful to get an idea of how it worked for other guys. And maybe I could cut myself some slack .... or maybe I just need to get on with life. You tell me!! Sorry about the long post.
_________________________
More than meets the eye!

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#409985 - 09/12/12 11:47 PM Re: Starting to understand just how messed up I am [Re: Farmer Boy]
Jude Offline


Registered: 08/09/12
Posts: 1600
Loc: New England
Dear Lee,

I know exactly what you mean by the "victim stage" and it took me a couple of months to get past it. All the feelings of betrayal, abandonment, anger, fear, and confusion came to the surface and I was drowning in these emotions that had been held in for so long. I no longer had drugs or alcohol to cushion the blows.

Cut yourself some slack. Find a way to get some time to take care of yourself. And don't fall for the "manup" voice in your head. You've been doing that too long already. You can be a real man who faces the feelings and is strong enough to withstand them. I'm just starting to see some daylight and I thought I never would. You will too.
_________________________
Seems I've got to have a change of scene
Every night I have the strangest dreams
Imprisoned by the way it could have been
Left here on my own or so it seems
I've got to leave before I start to scream
Joe Cocker

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#410003 - 09/13/12 02:27 AM Re: Starting to understand just how messed up I am [Re: Farmer Boy]
Farmer Boy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 442
Loc: Australia
Thanks Gary for your feedback and insight!
_________________________
More than meets the eye!

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#410007 - 09/13/12 04:05 AM Re: Starting to understand just how messed up I am [Re: Farmer Boy]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3520
Loc: somewhere in Africa
Farmer Lee -

How long was it that I was totally immersed in CSA issues to the exclusion of all else? Trying to think back – I couldn’t remember. So I went through the list of my old posts from the very beginning of my involvement here. I know it says I registered in 2006 but at that time I read a bunch of threads and got so overwhelmed that I ran like crazy and didn’t come back here for 5 ½ years - till my wife pressured me into therapy and a couple weeks later I slunk back here ready to learn and change. That was just last November. I started reviewing what I’ve posted since then and it was very encouraging to see what has happened in sequence. So thanks for being the one who gave me that nudge.

I discovered that – like you – at first I was obsessed with my own situation – the wretched past, the miserable present, the fearsome future – and couldn’t think of anything else. I lived, slept, ate and breathed CSA. There was rarely a moment – awake or asleep – when it did not consume my conscious or unconscious mind and emotions. It was hell!

(Right – like you said – it is different for everyone. I don’t know if my timeline will be encouraging or discouraging to you. So don’t assume that yours will necessarily be the same.)

But there were vacations from hell – bright spots when I had a breakthrough or realization or discovery that was so encouraging or enlightening or strengthening – that it gave me the determination to press on. The first really big one came about 2 months after I started therapy. Others followed at irregular intervals. It was a real roller-coaster – but the general trend was upward. It also involved a lot of hard painful work: remembering, analyzing, discussing, reading, writing… I think it was probly 4 months into getting serious about dealing with these issues and entering therapy – once a week at first – and later, adding another weekly session along with my wife – that I realized that life was looking better and more positive and brighter for me. I was wandering off the farm for hours on end without snapping back to my CSA. Someone even remarked that I had a new spring in my step. Just to say – the feeling of being stuck doesn’t last forever.

OK – now about that list of yours – that is a huge amount of good understanding that you have accomplished. Good work – see, you are not stuck. You just feel that way. Wish I could respond in more depth – but for now – congrats on not acting out! That is a battle won. PTL! And I identify with the relationship with the wife and trying to minimize the level of damage and the neglect of her. Now I’m working more at including her and trying to make her feel more loved and valued. She has helped immensely in my healing so far.

The point I want to strongly emphasize is number 6. You are way too over-committed. You need to cut back and not demand so much of yourself. You are headed for a fall if you try to maintain this level of demands on your time and efforts and striving to satisfy everyone’s expectations. You DO need to cut yourself some slack – and not in the area of CSA recovery. You will make great progress if you can apply the degree of drive to your healing that you do to the rest of your responsibilities. But don’t push yourself too hard there, either. Slow down and don’t overdo it. Hope this doesn’t come across as bossy – but PLEASE take it seriously!

When did I start feeling like a survivor instead of a victim? I think it was that first major breakthrough. I could tell the difference in my thinking, feelings and outlook on life.

Believing for good healing for you,
Traveler 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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#410008 - 09/13/12 05:12 AM Re: Starting to understand just how messed up I am [Re: Farmer Boy]
peroperic2009 Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/09/11
Posts: 3621
Loc: South-East Europe
Hey brothers Lee, Lee and Gary smile
Lee (Farmboy) I think that you are doing greatly for your recovery, you are some heavy fighter, I can tell that already, you have my hat off for your courage and honesty smile
I can just share parts of my experience even we all are not the same.
Must say that my obsession with CSA and its effect last almost 10 months now. I'm not sure when I've changed my inner attitude but I guess the moment when I become aware why some things are happening to me and what they represent (recalling traumatic events and living by seeing only my negative self image) somehow that started pushing things in me more toward healing.
I must say that finding some balance between my healing (reading about survivors, finding articles, posts, books, starting therapy...) and doing my job and maintaining my regular social relationships was extremely hard. I caught myself to deal with my issues in the phase of my life when I have had almost every day some hobby, sport or similar activity. It was like I've preoccupied all my free time with some outgoing activities and suddenly I didn't have any spare time for myself.
I still occasionally have to remember myself what are my priorities and I admit that I can easily lost my self.
I've learned that my boundaries are very fluid comparing to some "normal" people, I can easily forget on my needs just to make people happy around me. So I'm still learning to say no. Anyway this last 2-3 months I removed my self from many hobbies and activities that I was regularly doing last year and concentrated myself more to my "inner" needs. No matter how much time I'll need I know that I have to work hard to learn how to protect my self from wasting energy and to stay focused.
Please forget on words like:
"or maybe I just need to get on with life."
It is extremely important to deal with yourself with carrying sensitivity and love. Something similar like you would in case you have to deal whit some helpless child.
Please in every occasion try to give love to yourself try to be very patient and supportive to self. I've learned that is healing and that is something that I needed desperately.
Just keep up, I'm sure that you'll find own balance and pace.
Keep sharing with us!

Pero (Igor)
_________________________
My story

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#410017 - 09/13/12 10:23 AM Re: Starting to understand just how messed up I am [Re: Farmer Boy]
Country Offline


Registered: 02/29/12
Posts: 642
Loc: Alabama
I would do all kinda good deeds for neighbors and friends. It is a good thing but it was just me wanting to e accepted more by them. I have seen that I didn't have to do all that stuff and I need time to relax.
Farmer I think u are doing way too much and should look at why u are doing all these things. wishing u the best
_________________________
Ephesians 6:13

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

Ephesians 5:25

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her

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#410052 - 09/13/12 04:51 PM Re: Starting to understand just how messed up I am [Re: Farmer Boy]
Farmer Boy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 442
Loc: Australia
Thanks Traveler

I saw you online yesterday and thought gee I hope he is looking at my post. I would like to know what he has to say. Thank you for taking the time to respond in such depth. I know how valuable time is and it means a lot to me that you would take the time.

Thanks for sharing about your journey so far. It gives me hope!

I hear you on point 6. and I am trying to take it seriously. I am going to spend some time deciding what my priorities should be. God (not necesssarily ministry), Wife, Kids, Me, Work, everyone else. Maybe me should be up the list for a little while???

Can't wait until I feel like a survior!!!!
_________________________
More than meets the eye!

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#410053 - 09/13/12 05:02 PM Re: Starting to understand just how messed up I am [Re: Farmer Boy]
Farmer Boy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 442
Loc: Australia
Thanks Pero for sharing

I guess we try to fill our lives with so much stuff so we don't HAVE to deal with the reality of our situation. I have never used sports or hobbies. (that isn't allowed in my family - only work).

Like I said to Traveler - I will be looking at my priorities.

I have never thought of giving love to myself or being patient and supportive of myself. WOW!!! Can I really do that? "I am a piece of shit - I deserve to be abused" is what I think. Thanks for openning my eyes here. I will work on that too. I guess this is something most of us face.
_________________________
More than meets the eye!

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#410054 - 09/13/12 05:14 PM Re: Starting to understand just how messed up I am [Re: Farmer Boy]
Farmer Boy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 442
Loc: Australia
Country

Thanks for replying!

I have been thinking about the why too.

I guess that my points 1. trying to make other men admire me, 2. thinking that I have worth because others think I'm attractive and 6. I have been trying to please everyone else ....are all related. I can see that they are all just me trying to feel loved and accepted. Something I never felt growing up. What my abuse taught me was that I had to 'Do' something for someone for them to accept me. No one will love me just for being me. I have to earn their love.

This has messed with my idea of God too and I am finally starting to understand grace.

Thanks for pushing me in this direction Country! I always value your input.
_________________________
More than meets the eye!

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#410055 - 09/13/12 05:33 PM Re: Victim - how long? [Re: Farmer Boy]
Country Offline


Registered: 02/29/12
Posts: 642
Loc: Alabama
I hear ya Farmer. I feel and share in you agony. And stopping these things won't be easy but you will find, as I have, people will still like and accept you. We as survivors have some extrodinary traits and characteristics. My abuse led me to overachieve in almost everything. Sports growing up, hunting, work and pleasing others. An the sad thing is when they didn't seem overwhelmed it made me mad. I was doing all these things because the boy in me was still wanting to put up the better than I really am persona. I am a broken shell of a man now because of all my overachieving. I am totally fine being mediocre now and see that I still have just as many friends. Keep getting better day by day. Know this, we are (none of us, worthy of Gods mercy and love. But thru Jesus that battle has been won for us bro. Thru Him we are victorious and a new person. I am not who I was and I was remade, I am new ( as the song states). Peace bro and you are gonna be alright in this. I got ya back as does everyone else here.
_________________________
Ephesians 6:13

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

Ephesians 5:25

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her

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