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#440573 - 07/10/13 02:26 PM You don't sound disturbed.
ThisMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
I was busted, sort of, again by the T yesterday. I started talking about the cousin and the cancer and had said I was a bit disturbed by the whole thing. He just looked and said, "You don't sound disturbed." And I didn't. And that lead to a conclusion he shared later in the session.

One topic led to another and ultimately I said I had made great progress. That he was the first to hear about most- not all- but most of the abuses of life. I felt good that I had brought the issues up from the recesses of yesterday, that it released secrets I had carried for decades. And that I wasn't certain what to do now. Stop therapy or continue. Everything seems to be plateaued out, and relatively stable. That's VERY GOOD from where I began!!! But truth be known, I am afraid of delving deeper in the emotions. Really. Anyone else felt this way?

His reaction. It is all my choice. And it is. He stated that I- as in ME- still doesn't know the real me because of the abuses. That I have never had that chance. That the survival skills which went naturally into effect, protected me to the point that I simply don't know me.

And I would like to know the real me. On occasion, I think I glimpse him, but then he is as gone as that "Little Me' who came back in the spring.

Another point he made was that regardless of what situation I am describing to him, I seem scripted. As if practiced. Void of emotion and just relaying a story with information when I share. I just said it was my 30 years of teaching and taking care of kids in situations... you know, a degree of professionalism with the emotions not involved, but that's not it. It could be dissociation. It could be a completely different b, although he hasn't mentioned that. It could also be fear... fear of being seen as the damaged man emotionally that I am. When the memories return, its like a slide show, with very few images left out. Clear, concise, audio, picture clear and perfect. And horrific. No one wants to remember seeing an abusers'.... (you know). And its clear as day when I permit it. Just too much.

On that point, it would be interesting for me to know if any of you have been asked, "Where's the emotions, son?" I would like to know how to tap into them if there is a way not to lose my sanity.

I explained to him as best I could the day we were discovered. I indeed left out others in that scenario intentionally. Poor guy. He really is young. He asked what my mother did and what interventions were put in place. I said, "T, it was 1963. There were no interventions to protect victims of child abuse, not in the rural area where I came from." I told him momma sent the cuz home and later asked me what he did to me/us. I don't remember what the answer was, but this is the image that came.

I was sitting on my mother's lap, she was wiping off my face with a damp cloth and my arms. On the tv were the images of President Kennedy's procession. Nov 1963.

My b'day is Nov. so this means that I had just turned 6. I was able to date the event. But I can't compensate and fill in the two years between 4 and 6. I have almost NO memory of those years. Just the path and the raw lumber building and then being discovered. No first day of school, or Christmas, or halloween or .....I can't recall or bring forth one single image other than the path and then being discovered with him at 6. I now am beginning to understand memory lose. I am void. I have images - memories- of dirt lanes and wild flowers and butterflies and being by myself. That is all I can remember from the first 6 years of life other than the path and the discovery. Two events, apparently two years apart. Leaves me wondering just how deeply the effects of what happened have damaged me... even wonder now to what degree the abuse escalated.

I didn't mean to ramble, but I did again.


Edited by ThisMan (07/10/13 02:32 PM)
_________________________
For now we see through a glass, darkly.



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#440577 - 07/10/13 03:04 PM Re: You don't sound disturbed. [Re: ThisMan]
Candu Offline


Registered: 06/30/12
Posts: 312
Loc: Canada
Quote:
I was able to date the event. But I can't compensate and fill in the two years between 4 and 6.


I didn't think we were suposed to remember early memories. I sure as hell don't. And my CSA was maybe around age of 12. Not that I remember a lot from my youth anyway.

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#440591 - 07/10/13 06:30 PM Re: You don't sound disturbed. [Re: ThisMan]
ThisMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
I just don't know about memories at that age, Candu. I haven't researched it. I know my oldest son at the age of 21 shared with us - his mother and myself- his earliest memories of water fights, and birthday parties and the tree house I built for him. And just different, cool things that make childhood safe and fun. Then we moved at to a new town when he was six. He said he remembered Christmases and presents and all sorts of things from the old house. He even said he remembered it as being great before we moved. Of course, that was good news, but you may be right. I really don't know about the early years and what is normal to remember.
_________________________
For now we see through a glass, darkly.



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#440596 - 07/10/13 07:02 PM Re: You don't sound disturbed. [Re: ThisMan]
Poorsoft Offline


Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 163
Poor memory is really common with anyone whose suffered a trauma of any kind.

Besides Thisman, that was a very reflective account of your therapy session. Good job man! Keep writing please.


Quote:
One topic led to another and ultimately I said I had made great progress. That he was the first to hear about most- not all- but most of the abuses of life. I felt good that I had brought the issues up from the recesses of yesterday, that it released secrets I had carried for decades. And that I wasn't certain what to do now. Stop therapy or continue. Everything seems to be plateaued out, and relatively stable. That's VERY GOOD from where I began!!! But truth be known, I am afraid of delving deeper in the emotions. Really. Anyone else felt this way?
Of course, it aint soil you're digging up, it's the flesh of memories and your psyche. Just like your body, when you prod and poke it; it reacts in a way that instigates pain (not physical, psychological which can become physiological and then physical) and tells you its unatural to do whatever it is your doing. So like stabbing your arm with a knife, dwelving into your self is going to hurt; because its not used to it and wasn't built for it.

We constructed our minds to program the way we are; as we make choices based on survival to adapt to the current enviroment. If thats burying feelings, thoughts or memories deep; then so be it.

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#440602 - 07/10/13 08:32 PM Re: You don't sound disturbed. [Re: ThisMan]
toddop Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/14/11
Posts: 226
Loc: California
Hey This Man,

Congrats on the strides you have made in your progress forward. That is definitely inspiring to hear.

Originally Posted By: ThisMan
Another point he made was that regardless of what situation I am describing to him, I seem scripted. As if practiced. Void of emotion and just relaying a story with information when I share.

Originally Posted By: ThisMan
On that point, it would be interesting for me to know if any of you have been asked, "Where's the emotions, son?" I would like to know how to tap into them if there is a way not to lose my sanity.


I am with you on the whole emotionless aspect of your post. I was just talking to someone here the other day about how I always present as calm, no matter what. I was mad because I was afraid the severity of how I actually feel and how I am actually doing was not coming across to my T because I fall into the old standard calmness and flatness that I always have relied on. I'm so good at it, I am the one people say they want around in a crisis, which is fucking scary to me if they really knew what was going on inside.

But, I also feel like I am kind of on autopilot with the emotions. The last few months have been really intense and a lot of that has been me just coasting the numbness you know. Just totally flat. I do the same with the flashes of memory I have. They are sometimes devoid of emotion. I can really feel the emotions are down under there, it is like a heaviness in my chest, but I cannot get myself to cry or explode. It is like I am in a holding pattern over the airport waiting for clearance to land.

I have had extremes of emotions. Crying spells that would not stop, flashbacks laden with fear, guilt and shame, waking up in the middle of the night feeling like I am right there. But, just the fact that they come out in these random eruptions, in a non-sequential or non-controlled manner, makes me fear them all the more.

I guess the emotionless thing stems from the CSA. I felt I could not tell, so then I also could not show outwardly what was going on. Not a single sign could slip out from the mask.

Originally Posted By: ThisMan
My b'day is Nov. so this means that I had just turned 6. I was able to date the event. But I can't compensate and fill in the two years between 4 and 6. I have almost NO memory of those years. Just the path and the raw lumber building and then being discovered. No first day of school, or Christmas, or halloween or .....I can't recall or bring forth one single image other than the path and then being discovered with him at 6.


I also relate to your memory gaps. I have a lot of memory gaps around the ages of my abuse too, which was 7-10. Obvious glaring omissions that can only be explained by consciously blocking it out. I have really been working on writing out all of the things I do remember, even if they are not directly related to the abuse. I play those over and over in my mind. After doing this, I have recently had a few new memories resurface doing that. That might be something you can try if you haven't already.

In the end, they are all survival skills that we used to get by. I get really impatient about it, and want things to change instantly, like accessing my feelings and my memories. But, they never do. It requires working on it for the long haul, day after day. Which it clearly looks like you are doing. I hope these issues resolve for you through your hard work.

Todd
_________________________
Todd

"Great spirits have often encountered violent opposition from weak minds."
-Albert Einstein

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#440603 - 07/10/13 09:03 PM Re: You don't sound disturbed. [Re: ThisMan]
genedebs Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/09/12
Posts: 288
Loc: MO
ThisMan

My therapist calls it the "story of Gene." I have lots of detailed memories of events. But, they are the events not my experience of the events. I had it all organized and able to recall it but that was because the organization was maintained by a series of psychotic delusions. Not that the events were delusions, but the organization, how I made sense of them were delusions.

I had figured out that the whole world existed in an oppressive and traumatized place. Like when a seven year old classmate was playing Mozart at an elementary school assembly, I wonder how badly he had been beaten so that he had been given the talent to play piano so well.

I have become able to experience the emotions I presented when I was young, and the emotions I really felt. This is a terrifying process. For example, when I was 6 or 7 years old I was in the hospital with blood poisoning from my right hand to my elbow. My mother came to visit and told me that this proved she loved me since she came to see me instead of doing some thing important.

I presented how kind and loving she was and how I loved her too. I knew that was the response she wanted from me. I did not know that my real feeling was being denigrated and made small and unlovable. I was so scared, the doctor had said if I didn't stop moving my hand around they would have to cut it off. I couldn't tell my mother, I wasn't important so she wouldn't protect me from loosing my hand.

The T process has been going on for 10 years. And I cry most days now that I am in touch with my feelings. My T says this is progress. I believe. I know that giving up the delusions make me less crazy.

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#440721 - 07/12/13 11:36 AM Re: You don't sound disturbed. [Re: ThisMan]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3516
Loc: somewhere in Africa
YES, bill - i get it:
Originally Posted By: ThisMan
I ... said I was a bit disturbed by the whole thing. He just looked and said, "You don't sound disturbed." And I didn't. ...
... But truth be known, I am afraid of delving deeper in the emotions. Really. Anyone else felt this way?
...
Another point he made was that regardless of what situation I am describing to him, I seem scripted. As if practiced. Void of emotion and just relaying a story with information when I share. I just said it was my 30 years of teaching and taking care of kids in situations... you know, a degree of professionalism with the emotions not involved, but that's not it. ... When the memories return, its like a slide show, with very few images left out. Clear, concise, audio, picture clear and perfect. And horrific. No one wants to remember seeing an abusers'.... (you know). And its clear as day when I permit it. Just too much.

On that point, it would be interesting for me to know if any of you have been asked, "Where's the emotions, son?" I would like to know how to tap into them if there is a way not to lose my sanity. ...


in about my second session with my first T, i just poured out all the nasty stuff i could remember in a fast monotone and waited for his reaction. he said to me - the things you just told me are horrible for a child to have endured - and yet you were speaking as flatly as if you were reading the telephone directory. how do you FEEL about hat happened to you?

and i didn't have an answer. i didn't KNOW how i felt. I had to admit that i didn't really feel ANYTHING. and that made me concerned - was that a feeling? i knew how i SHOULD have felt - but wasn't experiencing those emotions - just an awareness of what was appropriate under the circumstances. like reading a script - with the stage directions in italics or parentheses. i did pretty well at faking the emotions when it was expected.

and, yes, i was dreadfully afraid of actually feeling the emotions that i knew should be there - and also afraid of NOT feeling them - like what is wrong with me that i feel NOTHING?

and i recognize the slide show simile - or for me - video at times - as if reviewing the memories are like watching it from outside my own body or head or self - as if it was all happening to someone else - i could almost tell the story in 3rd person. i think it is a form of dissociation - a self-protective ploy. and when you merge your two points of view, it gets more scary but you also become more healthy.

since then, i have learned to let the feelings flow. there were triggers that pulled the plug - it will be different for you than for me. at first they erupted. and it was not pretty - but i didn't lose my sanity - i regained it. it is a form of insanity not to respond normally to a particular mental/emotional stimulus - and that was what i had been doing - repressing all the natural reflexes.

it took a while to sort through the chaos and make sense of it all. i am still working at it. it gets easier. there are actually some GOOD emotions that i feel now as well as the bad. my T says that emotions aren't good or bad - they are necessary signals. we need them all.

anyway - just wanted to assure you that you can do this. it can get better. you do have to work at it. you are well on your way - and i think you already know that you can't turn back. it is worth it. but you have to go through it to get past it.

lee


Edited by traveler (07/12/13 11:49 AM)
Edit Reason: adds
_________________________
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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