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#464014 - 04/12/14 04:07 PM What is Health?
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 122
We know that sexual abuse is: unwanted or inappropriate physical, visual, verbal, or psychological interaction, that is perpetrated by either gender, of any age. (from BCSMSSA website. See:http://bc-malesurvivors.com/)

So what is sexual health anyways?

I’ve been struggling with this one because it would seem that 99% of the culture around me is unhealthy to me. There is little depth to it and an abundance of fear particularly when it comes to touch and communicating and setting healthy boundaries. It seems that all that is wanted by the people around me is some kind of prison based on the high that reproductive drives can produce. So my version of health for me is severely isolating. I’m struggling with it because my vision of health includes interacting with people in a more than purely superficial way. I'm very sad about my failure to create this around me. I've tried hard for many years.

Attitudinal Healing would suggest that health is inner peace and healing is letting go of fear. “Letting go of fear” is Love in my understanding. Fear of aloneness and abandonment is a very strong one in my world and yet it seems to be what I have to face given my sensitivity to and intolerance of sexual politics. I’ve been told so many times about approaches to healing that would likely be healing for me, and yet are basically unavailable to me at this point in time. I can’t tell you how frustrating and painful that can be!

When I delve into the chakra system, I see elements of inner peace there. The first chakra would be about getting attached neither to life nor death but remaining the witnessing consciousness that apparently transcends both. Second chakra is about experiencing both pain and pleasure again without attachment to either. I see this as taking an interest in sensation regardless of its quality. Third chakra is about aligning my personal will with the will of the whole. That is neither fighting what seems to be inevitable nor suppressing my own desires. Its about seeing myself as an equal part of equal value to other parts of the whole of existence. That’s as far as I’ve got.

Both of these approaches to health I can explore on my own and include physical sensations and emotion. Both can be applied to sexual health.

What do you guys think? What's your version of health? Have you found a healthy sense of community beyond this forum? If so how did you create it?

Sincerely,

"GAATT"


Edited by gaatt (04/13/14 02:47 PM)
Edit Reason: Correct a mistake & add link
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#464047 - 04/13/14 10:40 PM Re: What is Health? [Re: gaatt]
focusedbody Offline


Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 340
Loc: NY
Originally Posted By: gaatt
Both of these approaches to health I can explore on my own and include physical sensations and emotion. Both can be applied to sexual health.


Hey, Gaatt.

It's great that you have found ways to apply some work on yourself to sexuality. I think that is healthy.

Originally Posted By: gaatt
What do you guys think? What's your version of health? Have you found a healthy sense of community beyond this forum? If so how did you create it?


Just talking about doing things in a healthy way seems like a sign that one is on the right road.

FB
_________________________
Lose the drama; life is a poem.

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#464074 - 04/14/14 02:51 PM Re: What is Health? [Re: gaatt]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 122
Thanks FB!

:-)

GAATT
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#464161 - 04/16/14 02:00 PM Re: What is Health? [Re: gaatt]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 1989
Loc: durham, north england
I really admire your thoughts on Indian phylosophy, but to be honest for myself s/xual health is a contradiction in terms, sinse there is nothing to me positive about my own s/xuality at all.

I have seen a positive form of communication in ccertain couples, something which combines emotional, physical and other forms of communication and perhaps intercourse and touch are part of that but I have spent my adult life longing for that sort of communication with no idea how to get it while all those around me seem to manage it without trying, so there is littel point me speculating sinse all that leads to is jealousy of everyone who's s/xuality isn't as broken as mine and who find this so easily.

Then again i know I cannot deny this either, sinse I have gone down that road before and it doesn't work.

In the end I'm stuck being genophobic, I'm stuck with a libido, and I'm stuck believing that there might be something profound and positive about physical communication which I am utterly unable to experience or even come close to experiencing due to society and the alien rules of that game and that's pretty much that. I'm not happy about it, but never mind.
to quote Gandalf in lord of the rings, "alas there are some wounds that cannot be wholely cured"

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#464277 - 04/19/14 02:44 PM Re: What is Health? [Re: dark empathy]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 122
Hi Dark Empathy,

Thanks for writing. I hear you on your challenges and experience many of the same challenges.

Originally Posted By: dark empathy
I have seen a positive form of communication in certain couples, something which combines emotional, physical and other forms of communication and perhaps intercourse and touch are part of that but I have spent my adult life longing for that sort of communication with no idea how to get it while all those around me seem to manage it without trying, so there is little point me speculating since all that leads to is jealousy of everyone who's s/xuality isn't as broken as mine and who find this so easily.


I think the key is healing the trauma in me (us?) that gets triggered by sexual cues of any kind. I get really angry when a woman tries to turn me into a "mate", "husband", or "boyfriend" because I know where that will lead and it isn't pretty. I know that I can only do "partner in healing" and stay somewhat stable emotionally. I get equally angry when I see how little interest men have in supporting each other with healing touch at all.

There is an approach to healing trauma that interests me (see: http://www.reuniting.info/node/1734). Finding a partner has been extraordinarily challenging(and unsuccessful to date after many years trying), but I'd like to keep trying. I've been told that a sleeping partner would help me too (I've had no luck in securing a partner for that either after 9 years trying). There are less intimate approaches to healing touch that surely help as well. The only ones that I've been able to secure with any reliability, I pay for with money. Cranio-Sacral therapy seems to help me.

I don't see most intimate relationships as being all that healthy. I see most couples trapped in a conflict that is fueled by the reproductive high yet limits them to this level. Most people hide it well, and our culture celebrates this approach to (non)-intimacy very strongly. I need something very different: far more conscious, far more sensitive, far less aggressive, far more loving, and far more rooted in the present moment.

I share your longing for a healthy loving intimate physical connection with at least someone. To get stuck in that longing is incredibly depressing for me....I've been strongly suicidal many times... so I keep doing what I can to break out of this destructive cycle, whether that be on my own or with a partner.

Recently, I've been exploring a connection with a person who shares my interest in healing. It isn't going well, but I'm gaining insights into how it might work better.

I'm putting more energy into paying attention to and befriending my body. It brings me back to a meditative approach to life rather than planning my life away and getting stuck in dreams of a better one than the one I currently have. This is very helpful and something I can do at any time. It generally brings me to inner peace right away.

I think sex energy can be used in constructive ways internally as well as with a partner. I've explored Peter Levine's "Sexual Healing" program a little (see:http://www.soundstrue.com/shop/Sexual-Healing/283.pd?gclid=COO5zLXv7b0CFcWTfgodmn8AAg). I've also dabbled in Osho's BodyMind Balancing (see:http://www.osho.com/shop/en/books/osho-talks-with-dvd/body-mind-balancing-with-cd.html). Stephanie Mines' approach to healing sexual trauma also intrigues me (see:https://www.tara-approach.org/about/).

Perhaps sometime through all this, I will get to a place of peace with the sex crazed world I seem to inhabit. (as a less serious aside, I saw a note on a store today saying "Animals not allowed" and thought: well... that eliminates pretty much everyone I know! :-) )

I hope this thread gives you some ideas of how to approach your own healing. Thanks again for writing.

Sincerely,

"GAATT"


Edited by gaatt (04/19/14 09:21 PM)
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#464285 - 04/19/14 09:51 PM Re: What is Health? [Re: dark empathy]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 122
Hi Dark Empathy,

I had a few last thoughts that I want to add to my last fairly long (I hope I'm not being too verbose!) text.

Originally Posted By: dark empathy
"alas there are some wounds that cannot be wholely cured"


You may be right with this one. I struggle intensely with the pain (physical, emotional and psychological). I'm definitely not at peace with it. I suppose I will continue to explore whatever avenue for healing that comes to my attention until I've found peace that way or given up and found peace with the wound still unhealed. For now, it's a struggle.

Thanks for writing. I appreciate your honesty a great deal.

Sincerely,

"GAATT"
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#464290 - 04/20/14 05:40 AM Re: What is Health? [Re: gaatt]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 1989
Loc: durham, north england
Hi Gaat.

while I would agree that society has a massive bias into pushing men particularly to simply glorify the act of reproduction for it's own sake, at the same time my major problem is I am certain there is more than this involved.

I have an ability to sense emotions (what I usually use to tell what another person is feeling sinse I cannot see facial expression). This has occasionally informed me of a type of communication that goes between couples. This is not constant, nor does it exist all the time, however it very much does exist. If I hadn't seen this positive form of communication I likely could simply give in to my genophobic disgust and become a celibate interlectual with no desires in that direction at all. The problem is my perception doesn't allow that. For all I've seen a good many unhealthy relationships, at the same time I have seen ones that work, even temporarily. This positive aspect to s/xual communication is something I've found it very difficult not to be jealous of. For all that I mostly tend to treat women the same way as men I have a few times fallen profoundly in love, always with a friend, and always with a desire to become closer to that friend than only emotional friendship will allow.

yet it infinitely seems progressively impossible. this is what frustrates me and makes me particularly angry, especially at women who's social role gives all the power in initiating relationships, simply sitting and waiting for a man to offer that form of closness then having all the desire to accept or reject.

It equally doesn't help that people (especially women), keep telling me how nice I am, how they are amazed I'm still single etc, as though that is supposed to make it better. And yet for all this anything to do with s/x I still find disgusting, from my own reactions to views of people kissing, heck if I don't protect myself by going gnum everytime I read a s/xual scene in a book, see one in a film or even when someone makes a joke I risk freezing, indeed a few weeks ago at my tabeltop rp group I lost control and ended up bolting out of the room when one of the female players was rping a suggestive scene (I think it was the way she described what her character was doing that hit me).

This is what frustrates me I seem in a completely untennable position, on the one hand profoundly genophobic sinse all my experience of s/xual contact or even s/xual humour has been so distinctly negative, on the other tormented by a desire for a positive experience that I have seen between others, but which seems utterly impossible for me to actually go about getting. For example I've been out! with female friends on more occasions than I can count, but have no idea what the hell a date is supposed to be or how your supposed to get from being friends with someone to something closer, indeed it still bothered me that nobody has ever wanted that sort of closeness with me.

This is why I quit ms, sinse I found myself pretty much stuck in this position and all coming onto the board did was reitterate my bitterness at this situation, indeed if you look through this forum you'll likely find the topics where I tried to explore this question and was utterly unable to find an answer.

Therapy unfortunately likely won't happen due to lack of funds and the fact I'd have to ask my parents for the money, which I'm not really prepared to do, (my abuse occurred at secondary school by strangers not at home, however I still don't particularly want to go into this with them).

I'm also to be brutally honest feeling dam sick of the hole thing! indeed had I not A, had something good to report or B, had another flashback nightmare recently I probably wwouldn't have bothered coming back to the board either sinse it just seems I'm going through the same circles on here, and I'm dam sick of those circles! I wish I could either have no libido at all or at least have no view that there is anything positive about it (as indeed I used to when i was 18 or so before I'd fallen in love for the first time), and could just dismiss it completely or regard it simply as a physical necessity and then pay a prostitute and have done. The problem is that simply doesn't work.

I remember on the radio recently hearing a report from a man who'd been injured in afganistan, who was requesting that the army store sperm samples for soldiers in case they suffered injury to the genitals as he had. My first thought was how lucky he was and what was he winjing about, I'd love to have none of those reactions or concerns myself, heck the stupid man had a girlfriend inspite of his injuries somehow so god knows.

The only answer I've actually found is to involve myself in other things. For me this is my singing and on stage performance, indeed I suspect the reason I've done this to such an extent is that it gives me a way to positively and profoundly communicate with other people. The problem is, once things stop, I'm still left with me and my stupid reactions and those memories I don't want anymore.

Oopse, this has turned into something of a diatribte, yet another one, sorry about that. I'm just so dam sick of all this!

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#464301 - 04/20/14 02:25 PM Re: What is Health? [Re: dark empathy]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 122
Hi Dark Empathy,

I've experienced the odd couple that works well too. The way I tell is (similar to your method) by how I feel in their presence. If I'm at peace with both partners, I know they've got something good going on. This is quite rare, however.

The only place where I get some reliable peace myself is when I get out of my head and pay attention to my bodily sensations. It's a meditation of sorts. I think that's primarily what I get out of close contact with a woman or anyone for that matter... a chance to enjoy the sensations in my body. In that place, it doesn't really matter whether I'm with someone or not. I'm experiencing the moment in a sensed way and pursuing my passion for meditation very deeply.

I hear you on the challenges and on the pain/frustration of isolation. I experience them a great deal myself too. I don't really have a solution as I haven't fully broken out of it myself. I sometimes think that the goal of coupledom is an illusory one (and unfortunately highly celebrated). It's an outer objective that is bound to pass eventually. Inner objectives tend to be more rewarding for me. They are always available any time, anywhere, alone or together.

I hope this helps and gives you a better idea of where I'm at.

Sincerely,

"GAATT"
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#464318 - 04/21/14 06:24 AM Re: What is Health? [Re: gaatt]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 1989
Loc: durham, north england
My problem gaat is I've been trying for years to come to peace with inner objectives and it doesn't work, or at least it doesn't for me sinse in the end I'm still alone with myself, indeed how well I cope is almost tangentially tied to how much I can go off and do other things like sing that gives me some measure of communication or connection with others.

I do think the couples thing is a bit more profound than just being easy with each other or feeling peace. Occasionally I will be on the train, and I will get a flash of emotion from a couple I'm passing, occasionally with a very casual word, sometimes with nothing.

I can't explain exactly what this is without being synaesthesic and poetic, but it does very much exist, and certainly is something I've seen successful couples achieve on occasions, indeed the unsuccessful couples seem to be those who do not achieve anything of this state.

This is quite different from anything overtly physical or s/xual, it is just a sense of the commuciation, both physical, emotional and possibly spiritual that some people establish, but there is an element of that there sinse in my interactions with admitedly close friends I have not achieved it myself, which is exactly what frustrates me, that everyone else seems to get a crack at this state, and at least where the people involved are reasonable human beings achieve it at least some of the time, while I end up stuck.

neither is it something I can really achieve or attain on my own sinse it depends upon the communication with another person.

I frankly can't help feeling jealous of people who have that chance, especially women who just get it presented to them time after time and can sit and can sit and work out each option like a person bidding at an auction.





I don't

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#464345 - 04/21/14 04:32 PM Re: What is Health? [Re: dark empathy]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 122
Hi Dark Empathy,

Originally Posted By: dark empathy
I do think the couples thing is a bit more profound than just being easy with each other or feeling peace.

I agree that there is something that can happen in couples that is kind of mysterious, definitely beautiful and frustratingly elusive. I’ve seen it rarely and have briefly experienced something of that nature long ago when I was quite young. These days, my need for healing is so strong, that unless a connection with anyone is serving that purpose (ideally mutually healing) I have to find ways to get out of it and refocus on my own healing. At this point in time, other than the MaleSurvivor website, my mother, and my paid health supports, I’m on my own. I’m seeing that “Partners in Healing” (particularly partners that take an interest in tackling sexual health) is a rare objective in our culture. Most couples are, in my understanding, “un egoisme a deux” (see Erich Fromm) or “Partners in reproduction”. Even non-sexual male partners generally fail to address the touch aspects of healing in a shared way.

Originally Posted By: dark empathy
My problem gaat is I've been trying for years to come to peace with inner objectives and it doesn't work, or at least it doesn't for me sinse in the end I'm still alone with myself,


As for my inner objectives…I went through a major crash last September and was forced to face my fear of/ frustration with life. Suicidal feelings have haunted me regularly and my physical health has been severely impacted for a long time. Last September, a friend offered to help me check out (he had some drugs) and so I really had to sit with these feelings and see if I truly wanted to pursue them. I had never felt supported before. I had also never truly found a way to live my life for me (I have had a strong pattern of keeping myself alive to keep my mother happy. It didn’t work terribly well).

In the end, I decided not to pursue suicide but was left in a vacuum… I knew what I didn’t want but didn’t seem to be able to find a suitable direction to pursue for myself in a positive way. In the end, it came to me in a rather unexpected way. I was reading “The Book of Mirdad” by Mikhail Naimy and came across a question by one of the disciples in the story: “I would be weaned away forever from the Earth. How can I do it, Master?” This question got my attention because it is essentially about suicide. Mirdad’s (the sage) answer was revealing to me and has inspired me ever since: “By loving the Earth and all her children….” (Ch. 20, pg. 104). In my mind, that includes me and my body since I am a child of this earth too. It also is a form of suicide in my understanding. Love dissolves the ego and hence is a slow form of suicide for it.

Originally Posted By: dark empathy
I frankly can't help feeling jealous ... women who just get it presented to them time after time and can sit and can sit and work out each option like a person bidding at an auction.


I’m not so sure that your jealousy of women is well founded. Women traditionally have been forced to use indirect ways to attract a mate. The conditions imposed upon their body image (and time frame to reproduce) can be severely limiting. Few achieve the body image for long. They don’t always get the man they want and hence often resort to making do with what they have and turning him into a renovation project (to better suit her image of the ideal mate that she can’t pursue directly). They also run the risk of being abandoned with children if they choose to have them. I’ve pursued both active and passive (my default method) approaches to attracting women and neither have been lastingly satisfying. These days I look for a middle road and spend much time healing myself as a top priority and as part of my new life objective.

I hope you find my experiences of value to you. I do understand how intensely frustrating this whole field can be.

Sincerely,

“GAATT”


Edited by gaatt (04/21/14 04:34 PM)
Edit Reason: Spell Check
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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