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#60506 - 07/05/04 12:45 PM If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
jaywho Offline
Member

Registered: 06/29/04
Posts: 39
Loc: WV
\:D \:D \:D \:D I finally spoke about the wonderful people here so much my husband was interested and took a look yesterday. He said it was nice to see he wasn't alone. He was almost late for work because he couldn't stop reading.

From your lives and therapy you have received how would you answer these questions should my husband ask?

1). If you had to give advice to save a friend from suicide because of the SA what would it be?
He isn't considering but I just wanna know the most important thing you think we should remember if life gets us to down to cope.

2). He can't find words to express his actions, this is his most frustrating. What have you found makes this better.

3). I think he is "acting in" more than out. I am his life. Good for me I always thought but now I know why. He is shy, not outspoken and takes a while to gain anyones trust. What have you learned to overcome the fear of "trust"?

4). \:\( He has a problem with emotions. Even with me during our discussions. He shuts down. Said it was like when he was younge. He fought at first then gave in later because it was easier. To fight would make it last longer. To cry; to who? Who cared? He then and now deals with it inside. Will his wall not fall soon; how strong can he be?

5). To talk, to open up; should he be scared. He is frightened of the thoughts and how they will affect him. Do most of you agree it is better to talk then to bottle it up. Does life seem better or worse? The more he talks the more he remembers, is that good? What do you do with the info?

Do we leave it alone, what is better?


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#60508 - 07/05/04 02:04 PM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
PAS Offline
Member

Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 577
Loc: Canada
>>>>1). If you had to give advice to save a friend from suicide because of the SA what would it be? He isn't considering but I just wanna know the most important thing you think we should remember if life gets us to down to cope.

Direct quote from my fiance who is a SA survivor:

"Things wont always be as bad as they are now, they wont' always be the way they are now. Have faith that with effort, work, education, growth, things will improve for the better. Recovery is a one way street.. there's no going back to the way things were there's only forward."


>>>2). He can't find words to express his actions, this is his most frustrating. What have you found makes this better.

Tell him that expressing feelings is a difficult task for many men SA or no SA - its not something that many guys have been taught to do or that it is even important.. most guys have been socialized to go throw a ball around or to beat something up but not to sit and "talk feelings" - that is something that is definitely the perogative of women (I think we learned it well through our "group therapy" sessions in high school washrooms.. guys have always wondered why we had to go pee in groups). BUT unfortunately many men dont have this skill... and here male SA survivors are in desperate NEED to learn this skill in order to recover from SA (defining and talking about feelings is critical for SA recovery). Tell your partner talking about feelings CAN be learned through education/therapy and he is not alone. MANY male survivors feel this way.

>>>3).I think he is "acting in" more than out. I am his life. Good for me I always thought but now I know why. He is shy, not outspoken and takes a while to gain anyones trust. What have you learned to overcome the fear of "trust"?

This is a tough one. My partner's therapist tells him to "go out on a limb" from time to time - take a few risks, not really scary ones but little ones and see that the world does not end when he does so. My fiance actually feels a bit better about himself when he takes a risk and realizes that he has gained something.


>>>4). \:\( He has a problem with emotions. Even with me during our discussions. He shuts down. Said it was like when he was younge. He fought at first then gave in later because it was easier. To fight would make it last longer. To cry; to who? Who cared? He then and now deals with it inside. Will his wall not fall soon; how strong can he be?


This sounds like it could be the concept of "learned helplessness" that I discussed in my other post. In my rleationship I have urged my partner to "go out on a limb" and state something that his bothering him somewhere in his life - in our relationship, at work, with a friend, and see that he CAN enact change in his relationships and in his life NOW. And one success builds on another.

Also my fiance has educated me through his SA therapy experiences that shutting down CAN be also be a typically male way of dealing with anger.. and that anger is really a shield to shut down the difficult feelings that he just cannot handle. With education and talkign about things, learning to talk feelings, learning about SA and that he is not alone, even posting on here he may get to the point where his load will be lifted somewhat where he wont be so scared and so stuck and may be able to NOT shut down - that it might not be so scary and so heavy for him.


>>>5). To talk, to open up; should he be scared. He is frightened of the thoughts and how they will affect him. Do most of you agree it is better to talk then to bottle it up. Does life seem better or worse? The more he talks the more he remembers, is that good? What do you do with the info?

It is definitely better to talk about things than to bottle them up. BUT it is not always effective to resort to a VENTING style of talking - there has to be some "motion" in the talking (some kidn of behaviour change, some kidn of cognitive shift).

With SA there is so much shame and guilt too that many survivors just clam up - but my fiance has learned that many of the things he is dealing with are a) common to others b) legitimate and c) not his fault.. and his load has been lightened significantly. It took him a LONG time to open up in his SA group.. but now he is finding that it is getting easier.

However WE as partners have to be careful with this one. Always remember you are his PARTNER not his therapist. I dont try to take on too much of my fiance's issues with SA except the ones that affect me directly (anger issues, control (him trying to control ME issues that is) issues, substance abuse issues, household responsibility issues). We have to remember that our partners really are the ones who have to fight this battle themselves. We cannot do it for them.

Personally I dont want my relationship's main purpose to be a crutch to get him through the hard times. I tried that with an ex and when he felt better, he moved on, and I felt very used.

I want to have a mature, loving, healthy relationship where we can get married, have kids, etc. I dont want to be in a relationship where I am the sole source or the sole repository of his feelings and his sole resource and sole supplier of energy and self worth. I dont have enough time and energy to take on that job. I want him to direct that to his journal or to his therapist/therapy group, to process what elements that affect our relationship, keep me in the loop from time to time but no more than that.


>>> Do we leave it alone, what is better?

You yourself may benefit from talking to a therapist who understands male-female issues and abuse issues in relaitonships. There are some key roles/boundaries that we as partners should NOT cross. How our partners deal with his SA is NONE of our business (i.e. if they get into a group, what therapist they see, if they post on this site, etc). However, any LACK of dealing with issues and how they affect US and our relationship ARE our business.

I have found that there is a fine art of defining "my stuff" and "his stuff" and where to leave him alone to wade through his pain alone and where to help. There is a major tendency for female partners to "save" our men, but we have to allow them to feel their pain, to learn some lessons the hard way (the "I saw that coming a mile away" moments) , to allow them to still experience those difficult things that are motivation for them to keep on healing and growing. It is a natural tendency for many women to "do for" their families/partners but in some ways that is NOT productive to the healing that must be done by our survivor-partners. We cannot allow ourselves to become codependents to the point where our partners cannot heal.


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#60509 - 07/05/04 03:22 PM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
MikeNY Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/07/04
Posts: 927
Loc: NY
1). If you had to give advice to save a friend from suicide because of the SA what would it be?
He isn't considering but I just wanna know the most important thing you think we should remember if life gets us to down to cope.

Remember that it is worth the fight. Rmemeber that you are not alone. Remember that there are people who truly do care about you. Remember that every time that you let things get to you too much, the abuser is winning. Remeber that life does have purpose and meaning. Remember that it takes a stronger person to face their fears, challenges, and obstacles than it does to run from them.


2). He can't find words to express his actions, this is his most frustrating. What have you found makes this better.

Wait for him to be able to find the words. They will come in time. Plus, communication. IF he is willing to try to talk about things, listen, and ask questions when you are not sure what he is saying.


3). I think he is "acting in" more than out. I am his life. Good for me I always thought but now I know why. He is shy, not outspoken and takes a while to gain anyones trust. What have you learned to overcome the fear of "trust"?

It can take a long time. Most everybody has that fear to some extent. In my opinion, love and trust are gifts. Since they are gifts, they are meant to be given freely, without expecting anything in return. If you are honest, communicate, and do this without expectations, you can't be hurt by it. Good, healthy relationships are based on MUTUAL respect, honesty, love, trust, a lot of communication, etc..


4). He has a problem with emotions. Even with me during our discussions. He shuts down. Said it was like when he was younge. He fought at first then gave in later because it was easier. To fight would make it last longer. To cry; to who? Who cared? He then and now deals with it inside. Will his wall not fall soon; how strong can he be?

He can be extremely strong for many many years. He won't do it until he wants to do it. Given ultimatems, he will most likely respond with a fight or flight reaction.


5). To talk, to open up; should he be scared. He is frightened of the thoughts and how they will affect him. Do most of you agree it is better to talk then to bottle it up. Does life seem better or worse? The more he talks the more he remembers, is that good? What do you do with the info?

No. He should not be scared. Him remembering more means that he is ready and capable of working with it. It means that he is strong enough to cope with it. I think that it is much better to talk than to bottle up, but, sometimes we require long periods of thinking about things before we are ready to talk about them. How can we talk to you and try to get you to understand things that make absolutely no sense to us?


Do we leave it alone, what is better?

NO!!! You do not leave it alone. It will most likely only hurt him more in the long run. Many people here have suffered from complete life crisises and crashes because of leaving it alone and thinking "it wasn't that bad", etc. Also remember that it is extremely important for him to do things at a pace that he is comfortable with.


These are the short answers. lol

_________________________
"Every child asks the questions which hold the answers to the secrets of the universe, WHAT?, and WHY?". --Me

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#60510 - 07/05/04 07:02 PM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
Quote:
1). If you had to give advice to save a friend from suicide because of the SA what would it be? He isn't considering but I just wanna know the most important thing you think we should remember if life gets us to down to cope.
If at any point you are really afraid that someone might commit suicide, call a crisis center. Go to the emergency room. Get someone involved. That is the time you are allowed to make it your business. If a loved one of mine felt suicidal, I would not want to depend solely on the advice of friends to save him.

Finding the words, feeling emotions, opening up-- as PAS has said these aren't things that most of our guys are taught to feel comfortable with. I think it's really important to start small with communication. If your husband has a hard time coming home and just sharing the emotional ups and downs of a day at work, it's not fair to expect him to sit down for a long talk about his abuse. It's easy for us "talkers" to process our feelings as we talk through them. My boyfriend doesn't do this--he processes on his own and talks to me about it when he feels he's come to a conclusion. This has been very frustrating for me but I've learned that silence from him doesn't mean that he's brushing me off or not listening, and knowing that helps with the frustration. I've also learned that silence from ME gives him space to talk.

The better my boyfriend gets, the less I become his whole life--and that's important. Since he's started wanting to heal, even before he disclosed to me, he's started to build more of a life for himself, one that includes hobbies, friends of his own, better self-care, etc. At first this felt scary and I wondered what role I would have in his life now. As much as I loved seeing him busy and happy, it's hard to give up center stage. But honestly he is a better partner, father, provider, and garbage-taker-outer ;\) now than he was when those were the only things that meant something to him. I can feel like the part of him that he gives to me, he gives because he chooses to, because it is fulfilling, and not because it is all he knows or has. And when he does take risks and go out and do something for himself, he is usually pleasantly surprised.

In terms of advice that will help YOU-- I think PAS has said it all:
Quote:
I dont try to take on too much of my fiance's issues with SA except the ones that affect me directly (anger issues, control (him trying to control ME issues that is) issues, substance abuse issues, household responsibility issues). We have to remember that our partners really are the ones who have to fight this battle themselves. We cannot do it for them.
Not only will it impede your husband's progress for you to try and heal for him, but it is the quickest way for you to wear yourself out. It's not good for him to be *your* whole life, either. Put some space between yourself and his SA problems so that you don't just hang out being mad and holding your breath waiting for him to change.


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#60511 - 07/06/04 10:33 AM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
jaywho Offline
Member

Registered: 06/29/04
Posts: 39
Loc: WV
SAR: Apparently I gave the wrong impression. As I said he is *NOT* considering suicide. I used that as a reference to get answers in the worst case sinario. I just wanted my husband to read how other survivors of SA face their life daily. It is a battle; what advice do they have? As for depending on friends to save my husband; I feel that was a derogatory statement against my inelegance. I didn’t want to know how to treat a person with this thought; I wanted to know what kept a survivor afloat in a world consumed by such madness?

Talking to my husband has never been a problem. Every other issue in OUR life has been discussed and concluded together. We only have an issue with this because he is new to the opening up process that left him silent for over 28 years. He can’t see where I would understand, not judge him; believe him or trust him again if he opens up to this. As a child these thoughts was what he used to give reasons for not “telling”. .


Understand that my question and the statement, “ I am his life. Good for me I always thought but now I know why; He is shy, not outspoken and takes a while to gain anyone's trust. What have you learned to overcome the fear of trust?” It was a statement to show he has a hard time with others. He has friends, hobbies etc. maybe I misled that question as well. I was just saying the “real man I love” not everyone see's that side. He has to build trust before indulging in conversation; there is always a wall. I wanted to know how survivors overcame that issue and learned to be comfortable in “their selves”?

I wanted answers to questions because I was proud my husband has found an interest in finding out more about his SA. I didn’t desire my marriage and the way *WE* depend on one another to be insulted.

Usually I find you very knowledgeable and I admire your “need” for information. I have found a lot of useful information in all of your posts to me however, I will admit this post I felt was a direct attack. It left me feeling very misunderstood, criticized and mostly like I had “no idea” (that I already knew; I just didn’t need reminded). You said:

>>>“I can feel like the part of him that he gives to me, he gives because he chooses to, because it is fulfilling, and not because it is all he knows or has.” >>>It's not good for him to be *your* whole life, either.

What is wrong in saying my husband and I enjoy the company of others but would chose to be together instead? I felt like you criticized my relationship; questioned my intelligence and mostly left me feeling like you jumped to conclusions that I don’t face and wasn’t asking about. Like I have to defend myself and my marriage cause it too is screwed up. I felt like it was more criticism than help. Just wanted to correct any assumptions; I always find peace here. I don’t mean anything against you I just wanted to bring to your attention we are *all* here for something.

You have a lot of answers; remember to be compassionate. As a newbie some things are pretty insulting/confusing/frustrating to learn much less be assumed.

I thought last night "why do I even bother"? I took it personal; you don't know me like that; so I will not let it get me down. Others; they may run. I know you didn't mean to make me feel anyway, your intentions were pure. \:\( We are sharing some of the same pain . .


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#60512 - 07/06/04 11:07 AM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
PAS Offline
Member

Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 577
Loc: Canada
Quote:
Originally posted by jaywho:
I wanted answers to questions because I was proud my husband has found an interest in finding out more about his SA. I didn’t desire my marriage and the way *WE* depend on one another to be insulted.
I dont think SAR was trying to insult anything.. there is a tendency for many couples where the man has issues related to SA for the woman to step in and be his whole life in an unhealthy way (man cannot learn and heal, woman quickly becomes overloaded, burdened and burned-out) - I too took the phrase "I am his life" to mean something difficult and possibly unhealthy.

But if your partner's SA issues are NOT too heavy and too difficult for you and you are not feeling too burdened then you obviously dont share the same problem as many partners. Unfortunately we (myself included) did not see your posts as hypothetical - it certainly seems at this time that you intended these to be hypothetical and they are not your reality? If that is the case then something led us astray as I too interpreted your post to mean that you had some major issues in your relationship that you needed serious help with??

We get hundreds of people on this site yearly who *are* desperate for some help and who are stuck in some pretty difficult relationship dynamics and are looking to make changes in their life so in that context you can understand why we interpreted your post the way we did? I think SAR was trying to respond to what I think many of us here interpreted as one of the many hundreds of posts from people who were desperate for some help.. in that context I hope you dont see what was posted as insulting - but instead as supportive....

Also dont forget this medium (web bulletin boards) are not the most efficient/effective way to get emotional support on anything - there are many ways where email/written stuff can get misinterpreted - we lack the ability to show body language, emphathetic sounding voices, etc. on here. Its easy to misinterpret things by web/email... in my grad. school program in communications I read a statistic that email is contributing to about a 70% increase in workplace friction through miscommunication. That same study indicated that email also adds an additional 5 hours a day to someone's workload.. but I digress.. \:\)

P


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#60513 - 07/06/04 03:23 PM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
jaywho,

I do apologize that my post left you feeling insulted, it certainly wasn't my intention. What I said to you, I meant to be the most honest and helpful answers to the questions you asked. I don't think there's a single partner on this site, myself included, who hasn't been told more than once: Don't push... don't try to rush his healing... be a partner, not a therapist... or some version of that message. It IS hard to hear, and it's hard to do it, too. When someone we love is hurting, of course we want to do what we can to make it better. It's just that when it comes to this, the thing that really makes it better is so counterintuitive-- and requires a huge leap of faith-- and personal sacrifice especially where our emotions are concerned.

When I was a "newbie" here it seemed sort of ridiculous that if I left my boyfriend to heal on his own time, that he'd ever get better. I basically thought, "I'm the "do-er" in the relationship, he wouldn't have told me if he didn't expect me to do something about it." It was a big help for me to hear stories from couples where the woman had removed herself from the situation a bit and things had still improved. I am still impressed and greatly helped by the stories and strength of the men here, all of whom have healed because of their own strength and character and courage, whether or not they had a partner on the journey with them. They've made me think differently, and I believe for the better, about what my role should be in my boyfriend's healing.

As PAS has said, most of the people who come here do have some unhealthy and difficult stuff happening in their relationships--it's hard not to when you've been carrying shame and anger and fear around with you for years. In my relationship, and I think the relationships of a lot of survivors, my boyfriend made me "his life" in an unhealthy way and there was resistance from both of us as that began to change. It's a pattern that's pretty common around here, and I'm sorry if that made me assume something about your relationship that isn't true. Nothing I said about my relationship was designed to attack you, it was just my desciption of my own experience.

I understood that your question about suicide was hypothetical, and my answer to that question remains the same. It's not directed only at you, it's what I would say no matter who asked the question. There's a difference between just feeling like the world is crazy and it's hard to make it through the day, and really considering suicide. Neither one is very nice, but when it stops being a question of "How do I face today" and starts being a statement, "I cannot face one more day," then I think the best thing to do is get that person some help immediately.


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#60514 - 07/10/04 12:08 AM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
jaywho Offline
Member

Registered: 06/29/04
Posts: 39
Loc: WV
SAR: Thank you. I wanted to explained myself more I was just saying that some things others see here as a "relationship rift" I don't. SA isn't my relationship; it is a issue in it. I just hate to think everything I ever thought true in him was a reaction to the SA. That is all I really mean. I am so sorry any of us have this problem. Understanding it is hard, as PAS said the message board is hard to get point across correct.

PAS, If I were not burdened, hurt, frustrated and affected by my husbands SA why would I be here? I however feel that this is the only issue our relationship is compromised with and it is only a small portion of the relationship.

My husband dislocates himself to the pain of the past. He is still coping with the reality that “I know”. He is numb to the emotion the SA causes; in himself and me. All other aspects of our life; my children, him being a good husband, his work I don’t have a problem with.

My post wasn’t *all* hypothetical just the 1st question. All the other questions were related directly to my husband and his coping techniques; if he should talk; bottle it up. What does this have to do with my relationship?

You said: it certainly seems at this time that you intended these to be hypothetical and they are not your reality? If that is the case then something led us astray as I too interpreted your post to mean that you had some major issues in your relationship that you needed serious help with??

I wish so much that it wasn’t reality. . .

When SAR said: I can feel like the part of him that he gives to me, he gives because he chooses to, because it is fulfilling, and not because it is all he knows or has. I took it wrong.

Hobbies & friends; what if they just don’t want to be bothered. What if they like T.V. and a Movie with their wife instead of playing pool or fishing with the guys? Is it a crime to not desire anything but the family?

Why are these things considered a problem; “holding back”?

Why would my husband not telling me about his day; him taking a day to himself to golf; him not feeling like playing with the kids. . Why is every issue a cause and affect? The post was innocent with actual questions my husband was talking about.

If I saw every “problem” as a “reaction” then he would go nuts. Is it a general rule that if SA has happened a normal life is not possible? That anything they do that we don’t like: sexual, emotional and physical is a direct result of the SA. That then would cause a real relationship issue.

Is that the “reality” I am missing?

I don’t see it like that. Normal lives are up to us; I can turn any problem I now face into a direct result of the SA but, can’t some of the problems be on them? The SA is *NOT* my relationship it is a problem in the relationship. That is all I am saying.

As I said, I know it wasn’t personal; I just wanted to get clarity on the issues and how the responses were written. You and SAR are a great information source, I admire that. I wasn't trying then or now to fluff feathers. I am a red neck from WV (ha,ha) that see’s no reason to hide or not express opinions or emotions. Sorry If you too took my post wrong and I misunderstood yours.


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#60515 - 07/10/04 10:38 PM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
jw,

"redneck" or not, I think you just wrote the quote of the week:
Quote:
If I saw every “problem” as a “reaction” then he would go nuts. Is it a general rule that if SA has happened a normal life is not possible? That anything they do that we don’t like: sexual, emotional and physical is a direct result of the SA. That then would cause a real relationship issue.
I am 100% with you on this one. It's part of why I wrote that post about anger last week. And sort of what I was trying to say in my reply that you took wrong. I really must have read your post wrong, because when you asked about how to get him to talk/open up, I thought (and I'm going to assume that this is what PAS thought as well) you meant exactly this issue--using this new info. of the SA as a way to deal with the problems in the relationship. I think a lot of partners do fall into that trap and you are right, it makes issues where there are none. More specifically I think it is a betrayal of the trust which our partners had in the first place, telling us about their abuse, and I think a lot of men see these "conversations" about relationship issues wrapped up in abuse issues as an ambush. But you already said it better than I just said it. \:D

In terms of reality, reaction: Yeah, my boyfriend is a pretty "shy" person, he doesn't have a lot of guy friends or do a whole lot of "guy" stuff and he probably never will. I think some of that is just the way he is, but I also think that some of it IS related to his past--not just the SA, but his family environment. I don't remember everything you said in the other post, but I think your husband and my boyfriend have some common threads in their family history too especially with the messed-up moms.

A lot of what he's always wanted to do, he's never done, because of all the guilt and shame and messed-up sense of duty he carries with him. I think this especially applies to anything that is "guy stuff". Does this play out in our relationship and have something to do with some of our sexual and emotional problems? I have no doubt. I think the anger and fear about being "enough of a man" in terms of providing, being a husband and father, a good son, all that, did have something to do with why he acted out. So if I want to understand the acting out, there is more to it than the abuse itself. I'm not always sure where to draw the line between "result of bad past" and "just how he is" but I think there's a lot of crossover.

SAR


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#60516 - 07/12/04 03:54 PM Re: If you could give any advice or one thing you've learned that helped????
Leosha Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/18/03
Posts: 3614
Loc: Right here
Quote:
Originally posted by jaywho:


1). If you had to give advice to save a friend from suicide because of the SA what would it be?
He isn't considering but I just wanna know the most important thing you think we should remember if life gets us to down to cope.

2). He can't find words to express his actions, this is his most frustrating. What have you found makes this better.

3). I think he is "acting in" more than out. I am his life. Good for me I always thought but now I know why. He is shy, not outspoken and takes a while to gain anyones trust. What have you learned to overcome the fear of "trust"?

4). \:\( He has a problem with emotions. Even with me during our discussions. He shuts down. Said it was like when he was younge. He fought at first then gave in later because it was easier. To fight would make it last longer. To cry; to who? Who cared? He then and now deals with it inside. Will his wall not fall soon; how strong can he be?

5). To talk, to open up; should he be scared. He is frightened of the thoughts and how they will affect him. Do most of you agree it is better to talk then to bottle it up. Does life seem better or worse? The more he talks the more he remembers, is that good? What do you do with the info?

Do we leave it alone, what is better?
Pardon for me to be late welcoming you here. My time on this site is sometime limited, and I usually will go to the male survivor forum and member forums first when I am here.

As for the suicide question, well, it is hard. Because I have attempted it in the past year while dealing with it, several times, with one attempt more serious then the others. But generally, I think survivors are of a quality that we so much DON'T want to harm another person. I have made promises to some people that I care too much for, that I would not do that. I will still do some milder forms of self harm behavior at times, although I have not even done that for while. But I can not hurt the people I love so much by giving up.

I understand not finding words. Sometime there are no words. Words, language, it is man created, not nature created. That is why sometime, you have to just 'do' something, there is no definition or explanation for it. There is probably much confused emotions within him right now, and he don't know what he fully feels. For what words can explain, they do come in time. ('Time', unfortunately, is major part of most of healing. It is frustrating, for you and him. But many things do need it).

People who know me can tell you, I have not overcome fear of trust. It is like wild animal that you are trying to tame enough to eat out of your hand. They get closer and closer, then run away for few days. Then come back and start from further away again. Again, it is a time thing. And because of how the trust was broken before, something that maybe seems minor to you could feel as large betrayal to him. The good thing, I think, is that once you start to regain a little, I don't think you go all way back to having none. So even if it seem he is moving backwards sometime, I don't think we go all way back to 'zero' on the trust thing.

The emotions. Well. It is hard to tell how long it will take to bring down the wall. I have a friend who 'numbed' himself to the abuse when it was going on, to point of not even feeling pain, not feeling any emotions. After starting to work on this some for six months, he is feeling 'some'. A lot of times he know he have emotions, but do not even know what they are, or even if they are bad or good ones. Again, the 'time' thing. But also, everyone is different. It maybe has to do with the extent of abuse and the length of it happening, how long he has shut off, etc.

Yes, it is better to talk then close off. But not to be pushed to do so. Many of us, we have had boundaries broken so much, to be pushed even to do something good, it can have negative affect. The more we talk of it, the less power it does have of us. And yes, we will probably remember more. As to what to do with the information, I think that best for a professional therapist to help deal with. I was very against therapy when coming here, very resisting of it, and did not start it for several months after coming here. Now I know the positive affects of it. If nothing else, it is someone I can get advice from on how to organize my mind. Without the medications, therapy, and the people I can feel close to and trust, I would not still be here.

I wish you and him good luck.

leosha

_________________________
Avatar photo in memory of my younger brother Makar.

"Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted."~~~Martin Luther King Jr., 1963

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