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#66114 - 10/13/06 07:38 PM trust (again)
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
First of all I need to say thankyou for just how much good advice I've had from so many of you. It has really helped me to understand certain things more clearly. Also, I have found some of it has made me less 'careful' and a bit more empowered really.

Which leads me onto the issue of who exactly my bf is.....I really feel I just don't know, although I've had this feeling since months ago(before some of the SA came out).

I have come to the realisation that he has given absolutely nothing of himself emotionally in the 12 years we've been together. I think his emotional abuse has been very insidious(a word I learned recently). Leading to me feeling constantly indepted, needy, confused, depressed and not trusting in any of my perceptions. It in fact didn't takt that long at all for me to get that way. I believe I was so weak and disfunctional, I even ended up getting trapped into an affair which I didn't even want to be in. I now know that at that time, his mind/lust was elsewhere anyway. He knew that, but didn't tell me. I tried for years to 'make up for it', never knowing he was 'somewhere else' that whole time. I was so manipulated I even ended up more or less asking to be treated badly. I have been feeling it's all been my fault and worrying that when he makes sense of it all, he'd feel terrible about it. BUT, after my last T appointment I finally came to the realisation that perhaps it's not all my fault. Perhaps I've not really been the terrible, abusive person he made me feel I was. I wonder if he already knew anyway? Which I suppose means I enabled him to be like that, which has been very bad for him. There, now I feel guilty again.

I just feel I've been such a gullible person. I realise now, that I'm some kind of survivor myself. Both my parents were abusive in different ways. My mother was emotionally unavailable when I was a teenager and I felt very abandoned by her after my parents split. My first boyfriend took advantage of me sexually. I had that memory recently of my uncle.....

What these things lead me onto is why I ended up in this relationship. Now I'm beginning to feel more fully how hurt I have been by bf and I'm having all kinds of problems learning to trust him on virtually any level. I feel insecure when he goes distant, but if i try to busy myself, he makes me feel like i've been mean. If I don't make all efforts to instigate conversation, it doesn't happen, so I feel constantly exhausted by trying to keep our relationship afloat. Anything I ever need is impossible for him to give, through no fault of his own(he's working so hard on his T) and he ignores me(he says he's triggered). There is no intimacy(emotionally) whatsoever between us. I can't try anymore as I feel too rejected. If I get inescure about something, he doesn't reassure me, he's cold and mean. I feel unsure of what to believe of what he says as he lies to me about his feelings.

All of this is making me feel further and further away from him. I flinch on physical contact and can't seem to help it. I don't want to feel this way towards him, as I know it's got to be awful for him at the moment. I really want to be there for him and totally supportive, but there seems to be all these difficult feelings in the way.

Things have improved a little this week, thankyou for the advice Larry. I have basically told him my feelings about him distancing himself and he has 'leaned' on me more, so perhaps things are improving.......

I'm just worried all the time about how I can be happier than this. How much his recovery will change the possibilities between us and how can ever be myself again.....

peace,
Beccy


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#66115 - 10/13/06 07:50 PM Re: trust (again)
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
What I forgot to add, is that I really feel like I don't know what he wants from me. Like maybe he only ever wanted to use me, not actually connect. Like because I am so ridiculously easy to manipulate, it's been flattering for him.(just keeping on top of what's the truth/what's not, when he's being potentially manipulative etc is a far stretch from what I feel I can cope with) I still need to be stronger than I am. But then I now understand why he has difficulties connecting, but the insecurity is still there. What if he fully recovers and realises he doesn't want to connect with me after all? That I'm not the right kind of person for him? I am so insecure........

I feel I've got to leave him or something drastic....but is that me being a bit of a survivor?


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#66116 - 10/13/06 09:00 PM Re: trust (again)
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Beccy,

This post is you putting Beccy first at last. He needs to see and understand this is what happens when you do that. After all, you are reacting to the signals that HE is sending you. If things are going to change, he needs to change the signals he's sending.

Being aware of the need to take care of yourself, Beccy, is VERY much a sign you are a survivor!

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#66117 - 10/13/06 09:35 PM Re: trust (again)
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
Beccy,

I understand what you're saying about the zero reciprocity and zero emotional intimacy. And about the coldness/meanness when you need reassurance. I too have lived with these things for several years. Sometimes I ask myself why I put up w/ it. Even before I knew about the csa, I put up w/ it. So few people would ever put up w/ those things. The only thing I can think that makes me stay now is hope for the future. I have an idea (a lot from these posts) of how things *can* be if he gets help and it's such a beautiful destiny that I don't want to give up on it. You have been dealing w/ the csa issues (and your own issues) longer than me. Maybe my own breaking point is down the road a ways. Man, but I hope not. Today I feel strong. Today I had clarity of thought, again. Remember, when you're depressed (for whatever reason) is not the time to analyze your life! Thanks, Larry!, for that wisdom because I think of it often.

Then again, only you know what your own breaking point is. Only you can say how much you can put up w/. I wish our survivors would change from being totally aloof and cold to being kinder and even clingy(!) once they see we're in the long haul w/ them and that we love them anyway. It's so hard because they're probably NOT aware of how much they're hurting others. Sigh. It gets tiresome to always have to remember that and then to think of a way to tell them so they "get" it.

My post is not very helpful; I only know how you feel, if that helps any. I myself wonder if the zero reciprocity will EVER change, because it's been this way pretty much the whole time I've known him, although worse during times of his stress, I now can see.

Maybe we can carry them only so far. The rest is their work. Maybe you could sit down w/ him and tell him, you're in this w/ him for the long haul, BUT he needs to know he's hurting you the ways he is and then ask him if he will at least TRY to treat you better. ??? Sounds good on paper, huh.

Take care whatever you do. I notice you're from England. If I could I would make you several good pots of tea (I adore tea) and we could cry together about our very similar emotional states.

_________________________
Brokenhearted

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Luke 17:2

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#66118 - 10/13/06 09:54 PM Re: trust (again)
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
Once again thankyou Larry and Brokenhearted for your very kind a reassuring words. I felt so unsure after I wrote that topic. Like I had no right.

But shortly after I came to the realisation there WAS something positive I could actually do!!!!!! I have told my bf that for the moment, if he wants to hug/kiss ect, I will be needing something in the way of emotional communication first. In order to begin to feel more safe. And so I'm not flinching which is a very negative thing. I feel so empowered \:\) \:\) \:\) I think I might have to cry with happiness about it!

So good to have a positive feeling at last.

Brokenhearted, it would be lovely to have a cup of tea and cry together. Ever thought of joining some kind of support group for that reason? I'm considering it...

peace
Beccy


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#66119 - 10/13/06 11:59 PM Re: trust (again)
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
Beccy,

Good for you. You have every right to your feelings, everyone does, they're our feelings, they're not right or wrong, they just are. The key is dealing with them and make the one person in the world who is most important to you respect them. Both parts of the couple need to do that or everything will just go to hell in an hand basket.

While it's true that sometimes, one person needs to lean more on the other, if it doesn't come back around sometimes then nothing will work out. So, keep doing what you're doing, be the supportive one, but let him know that he needs to step up and support and reassure you too.

ROCK ON.......Trish

_________________________
If you fall down 10 times, Stand up 11.

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#66120 - 10/14/06 12:47 AM Re: trust (again)
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
Beccy,

You know, it's funny. MARRIAGE COUNSELING and marriage retreats *teach* the very things we need from our husbands, like how to give a woman the nurturance and love she needs, since men and women are so different, after all. The only catch is that I think before being able to be a good marriage partner (or potential one), it is best if both people work out their own issues first. I know that my husbands needs to work on his csa issues before any possibility of marriage counseling, because he is not yet a whole person, if you know what I mean, able to give to another yet. My goal is that after my husband gets his issues under control, however long that takes and w/ therapy, then after that I would love for us to take a marriage retreat together. There is one I hear about a lot called "Marriage Encounter" and people and friends have told me it's phenomenal what it can do for your marriage (assuming you and b/f ever do get there...). Because really, men and women are so different and each must pretty much be taught how to love one another.

It's hard to expect a person who is stuggling so much w/ such heavy issues that csa causes to be able to GIVE to another person at all. I think they're going to fall pretty short of our wishes until they are "whole" men with something to give.

But that aside, I do think there are small things we can ask them for, such as using a nicer tone in their voice or giving us a hug now and then, or as in your case since he wants to be affectionate, I think it would be fine for you to explain to him that you need emotional/conversational closeness before physical takes place. It might be hard for him to give those particular things right now, though, since those are greatly affected by his issues. So anyway. I just think things will be easier in a year or two.....

BTW I do have an older woman Christian mentor that I meet w/ about once every 2 wks, and she holds my hand while I cry. She is like a mother to me since mine is suffering from Alzheimer's and I wouldn't want to worry her w/ my heavy problems anyway. And I have a couple of close girl friends I can cry w/, and I'm invovled in a Moms' Bible Study at my church one morning a week, and I LOVE that because we do have a lot in common , small children, etc., some of the same struggles (although I don't talk about mine, only that I want my husband to be prayed for). They are helpful because they pray for me and email the prayer requests to each of us...and I *could* cry w/ them if I wanted to....and some of them are tea drinkers \:\) as well.

_________________________
Brokenhearted

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Luke 17:2

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#66121 - 10/14/06 09:07 PM Re: trust (again)
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
Trish,

I am just learning (or to a degree re-learning) to communicate my feelings in a productive way. I am now remembering I did actually start off more that way at the beginning of our relationship all those years ago, but I now realise he never really respected that. He would act hurt/make me feel guilty or just plain shut me out completely and I guess I just wasn't confident/strong enough to stand my ground. And so I have ended up compromising myself on so many levels. I'm having a hard time not feeling bitter about it all now. I feel so disrespected and misstreated, it's going to take quite a lot for me to trust him again. Strangely enough, I don't feel I really need any support from him at the moment. Also I think maybe I don't trust that support anyway? What I do need is reassurance. Mostly of the freely given expression of love/commitment etc. Maybe now I've laid this new ground rule, he might realise more the neccessity for that in order to get more of what he wants, but I'm not holding my breath. I think it could be a while in coming and my paranoid side says maybe never. I think that he's only ever given me anything like that when I'm sad/vulnerable and in a bit of a state. I would rather be my strong, happy self and be loved for that.

Brokenhearted,

that's very interesting what you say about marriage counselling. I am constantly impressed by your patience!(something I've never had much of) Also, the stuff about them not being able to 'give' much. And on the subject of physical affection, it does seem interesting that my bf doesn't seem to have a problem with that unlike so many other survivors I hear about on this site? Having said that, I think that for years now, I've never demanded any of that from him, or been assertive in that way, so perhaps I'm no threat? I'm remembering years ago at the start of our relationship, I used to encourage him to hug me sometimes, saying that was a good thing for partners have between them.....I don't recall him having a problem with it then either. The way I see it, I've been a very submissive person really. I think I forgot who I was in order to please. Someone said to me a while back that women do like to please. I was certainly like that as a child and it does seem that the desire to do that literally took over my common sense....

It sounds like you have a good support network Brokenhearted. I have a good friend who was also csa, who I have been so thankfull as a source of support. Also my T, who doesn't hold my hand, but I sure do cry when I go there! And not forgetting this site, which is no end of support. I know I need to make some more friends, but at the moment it seems quite hard....I wonder if I'm having trouble trusting people and also the effort of perhaps not being able to talk about where I'm 'at'/pretending to be happy/normal. Hence my idea of joining some kind of support group.

I will post again as things progress,

peace
Beccy


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