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#457284 - 12/23/13 05:12 PM Recurring Frustrations
AndyS87 Offline

Registered: 12/12/08
Posts: 302
Loc: sorry, but I don't say on the ...
So not surprisingly, my sex life has been confusing and difficult to understand for me. I don't think that'd surprise many MS members here. I'm starting to get really tired though of just not feeling excited about sex at all and not having any noticeable sexual attraction.

Before I went into therapy, I was all over the place. I liked girls, but was really shy and reserved around them. The couple of times I was able to be sexual with women, I enjoyed it, but was also never really all that crazy about finding sex. It was fun and enjoyable, but not as awesome as some people made it out to be.

I never acted out with other males after my abuse from my cousin ended, but I thought about. I experimented with gay porn for a while too, but all that ever led me to was anxiety and this feeling that I was constantly re-victimizing myself whenever I tried to get into it. Two therapists of mine and all the CSA books I've read seem to back up that that's relatively common for male survivors of sexual abuse, and after most of my therapy was done, I never really had an interest in it again.

Therapy finished for me by the time I was 23 (although the older I get and the more I think about my life, I find things that I want to discuss), and a lot of the traumatic sexual parts of my life that I had compulsively revisited faded away, and I felt happy. I actually had sex for the first time in a few years after I finished with a girl that knew my friend, who came on to me strongly one night. I hadn't considered it before, but it was like as soon as she mentioned she was interested I was dead set on it. I was nervous about how well I'd perform, but otherwise I just remember feeling like "hell yeah, I'm back, it's a new me, and things are gonna change from now on!", but after that we went our separate ways. I kick myself for it, because she was a really sweet girl. She wrote me off as a one night stand though, and instead of pursuing it, I just thought "well people will judge me for it because they'll feel like she isn't attractive enough for me" etc, which is exactly what some of my friends who witnessed the event did. I felt like my family would have done the same thing to me.

It's been several years since then though, and I don't know if it's lack of resources, stage fright, or what, but I just don't feel the need to have sex. If it was available to me, I wouldn't mind having it at all, but at the same time I don't really care to go find a girlfriend.

I wondered, as I sometimes do, if this was somehow a sign that maybe I was gay, but didn't think that was right. It seemed much more likely when I was younger as I had SSA, but in therapy after learning about how some abused boys develop things like penis fixations or try to compulsively revisit their abuse through fantasies, that went away. The older I get and the more I think about and consider it, it doesn't seem likely anymore. I have TONS of male friends, and I'm not romantically or sexually attracted to any of them. I had a friend of a friend who I was pretty positive (could have been projecting my cousin onto him so I am not the best judge) was coming on to me, but I wasn't sure and I ignored it. I just didn't care for it.

On the flip side, I have a damned near impossible time trusting women, and I have such bad approach anxiety that I defeat myself before I even try to approach. If the girl is a mutual friend, that's different, but it's damned near impossible for me to meet single girls that way, and even if I did, then what? The last time I had a close relationship with a girl I kept her at distance as a friend because we worked together and lived in the same dorm building, but we used to flirt all the time and there was heavy sexual tension between us. She sat down next to me once and just put her hand on mine and that was enough to get me turned on, but I was so afraid that if I slept with her I'd screw up any relationship we had between us that I never took the leap, and I think that hurt her feelings even more, and over time we lost touch. I regret that situation as well, but recognize full well we were both emotionally damaged and that any relationship probably would never have gotten past a "friends with benefits" type thing with a lot of confusing and complicated feelings in the middle.

I had another female friend come on to me the same way back when I used to smoke weed (that was my freshman year), saying that if I let her smoke with me she'd make it worthwhile. She had a boyfriend though (didn't know him personally, but he was friends with some of the kids I was hanging out with at the time), and I thought it'd be sleazy of me to use her for sex in exchange for some pot. retrospect, I realize that we were both in college, young, and not permanently tied to any real relationships. Part of me thinks it would have been a lot of fun to have slept with her, but I think morally I made the right call. I still wonder about it though.

All of those events with those girls had the same thing in common though - I never thought sexually about that person until they voiced their interest. I still get a little excited thinking about what could have happened or did happen, but wonder why I can't just see attractive women and go "oh wow, I'm attracted to that girl, I'll go try to get to know her". Instead I do this "she looks cute, I don't want to bother her though so I'm not going to", and then I wonder if I was ever really attracted at all.

I'm on zoloft and wellbutrin right now as well, and although wellbutrin is supposed to make you crazy sexual and zoloft is supposed to make you not sexual at all, I have basically no sex drive. I'm wondering if all this means is that I'm asexual to some degree. If I had to go the rest of my life without sex, I'd be kind of bummed out, but I have no illusions that I could absolutely live like that day to day without any issues other than thinking "well this is a bummer".

Just needed to vent the frustrations. I just wish I could function in this realm.

#457306 - 12/24/13 02:16 AM Re: Recurring Frustrations [Re: AndyS87]
SamV Offline

Registered: 12/13/09
Posts: 5941
Loc: Talladega, Alabama, USA
Our issues are never cut and dry fellow survivor. The anxiety and lack of confidence are like layers that can be carefully removed so that we can get reason and determination to continue our recovery. I respect and witness your venting, this is good work.

MaleSurvivor Moderator Emeritus 2012 - 2014

#457328 - 12/24/13 10:51 AM Re: Recurring Frustrations [Re: AndyS87]
AndyS87 Offline

Registered: 12/12/08
Posts: 302
Loc: sorry, but I don't say on the ...
Thanks Sam. I get bent outta shape sometimes that I have such a difficult time connecting to people.

#457515 - 12/27/13 11:09 PM Re: Recurring Frustrations [Re: AndyS87]
gettingstronger Offline

Registered: 09/24/13
Posts: 146
Loc: Virginia
Hi AndyS87,

I know some of the antidepressants have negative sexual side effects, so my doc put me on a new one called Viibryd (spelled correctly.) I was previously on Pristiq and Abilify. This helped.

Another possibility here is that you just don't have a super strong sex drive. There's ABSOLUTELY nothing wrong with that. Society paints us a picture where all single males do is bed-hop with whoever catches their eye, and personally I wonder about guys who feel the need to do that. Besides being unrealistic and unhealthy, it can also be for all the wrong reasons. Don't beat yourself up if you don't have sex x number of times per week.

I know how hard it is to connect with people, so that's a tough one, but at least it sounds like you're aware of what there is to deal with. Take care.


#457540 - 12/28/13 02:37 PM Re: Recurring Frustrations [Re: AndyS87]
OCN Offline

Registered: 02/05/13
Posts: 217
Loc: Western Europe
Yet another enlightening post Andy.. i totally connect to what you say, i have exactly the same. Never do i act out if i have even the slightest suspicion a girl might like me. Instead, i lock myself out of it and pretent it didnt happen while anxiety levels rising tells me otherwise.

So for now i guess i'll accept im single and i have a hard time connecting with woman. Well, its ok anyway! First healing, later relationships can come. But it would be a good step to face this fear head on. The crazy thoughts in my mind try to pursuade me that being with a woman would only be a bad thing. Ego in control huh?

So your post helps me see my situation more clearly too. Thanks for that!

Trust me, you are worth it to love yourself!

#457550 - 12/28/13 07:02 PM Re: Recurring Frustrations [Re: AndyS87]
AndyS87 Offline

Registered: 12/12/08
Posts: 302
Loc: sorry, but I don't say on the ...
Yeah, I think I do that for many reasons. Fear of rejection maybe, more likely though that I assume I will be rejected. I have gradually become more confident, but when I think about dating and what I would bring to the table, I often think "wow, I'm kind of a boring guy". I do a lot of stuff that I think is fun, but it's mostly solitary stuff. Martial arts practices, not many women interested in that. Guitar playing is fun, but again, really a "me" thing. I have a love/hate relationship with running, but that's like 30 minutes out of an entire day.

So, yeah. My confidence isn't very good, and I can't put my finger on it, but I just think to myself "nah, I wouldn't be any good with relationships". Maybe its just that at some point I decided it was better to keep people at arms length, and I haven't been able to break it since? Not sure.

Most of my close friends know about my situation, but I don't think they really get it. I have one friend who's been dating the same girl for ten years, and they're getting married. He said to me the other night "Look, I know you get uncomfortable talking about this cause I can tell, but are you thinking about dating anytime soon? There's a girl coming to the wedding who I think you'd get along with". He's right, I am a little uncomfortable. I get it in my head that other people have all these expectations, or will be analyzing everything that happens, and my reaction is to withdraw.

On the other hand, I notice little things. Sometimes I'll see a cute cashier and I'll end up cracking this weird little grin after I say "thanks, have a nice day" or something. It's weird because as you can tell from my past couple posts, I'm not much of a flirt, but I feel like even just that is a big step for me.

Bob, I do sometimes wonder about my sex drive. I'm a 26 y/o male, so it seems to me (compared with other guys my age) that that MUST be at least part of it. Either that or they exaggerate the number of people they sleep with, but I feel like you do as well. I feel like the fact that I'm not bringing home a different girl every weekend means that something must be wrong with me. Thing is, when I first hit puberty until I finally went to therapy at 20, my sex drive was absurdly high. I'm beginning to think that a lot of that though was just compulsive sexual behavior and not neccesarilly actual sexual drive. It was never about anything other than "how quickly can I get myself to orgasm and how can I make it feel better than last time?" That was it. Seems a little compulsive to me, anyway.


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