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#67797 - 09/29/03 03:21 PM Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
Justice's Angel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/05/03
Posts: 20
Loc: Va, USA
Do you guys find it harder to have sex with someone that you love than someone that you don't care about? It seems like my boyfriend and I had a pretty good sex life until it got to the point where he told me he loved me. That's when he started to shut down sexually and started opening up more about everything. I feel like it's hard for him to look at me as a sex object at the same time as seeing me as a person that he really cares about. Do you guys feel this way or something similar?


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#67798 - 09/29/03 03:23 PM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
Justice's Angel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/05/03
Posts: 20
Loc: Va, USA
By the way, this is also when he started to tell me that I was too good for him and that he didn't deserve me. He thinks that he's a bad person and a bad boyfriend. He's not but he can't seem to see himself in a positive point of view.


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#67799 - 09/30/03 09:35 AM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
Valenfor Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/25/03
Posts: 38
Loc: Phoenix
JA - Welcome - and I hope this is of help to you.

This is only my experience, but currently I am having this exact problem at times with my wife. We are trying to working through it now.

In my analysis of myself, and the reasoning here it is because when I was abused, I learned from nature and my abusers the definition of love. Which is not at all near the TRUTH.

For me it is this obscured word with so many definitions now. And as I have opened up more with my wife I think it has gotten harder. However also early on when we were first engaged and living together we also started by having sex alot.

After a while it went down hill. The first thing for me I noticed was I was doing the same patterns again - only trying to please and not concidering my own needs. Not that I could even have started to concider or define what those needs were. Or what triggers, patterns, and boundries where. I am still unsure on boundries and what the hell those are.

So yes it is difficult. As a side note because I have been discussing with friends - its important that if he needs help he gets and continues it. I started and have had breaks. These are from burnout a bit in some instances and just going back to my patters of hiding in work etc.

Now I am really trying to balance my life. A difficult task when I have not had that or a sense of that ever. For me I was abused as young as I can remember. I wonder what it would have been like to be at least a bit more 'normal'.

When I have those breaks, patterns re-evolve that cause me to make poor decisions. I have just re-entered into therapy etc because I had hit bottom. And this was with everyone around me, no one understood.

My wife hangs out and reads here now - at least she is starting to understand more (my parents is another thing). She has always tried very hard to listen well, however even I do not fully understand yet, and am waiting for suprises. Most of this usually is I think.

I am glad you are here, and I hope my post has helped. This is the best support group I have ever found. I know I will succeed when I am here and around them.

---------------

And if you catch this my love - thank you for sticking by me and really trying to work with me to be always and forever.

Val

_________________________
Why must I feel this way?
Just make this go away
Just one more peaceful day!
Stained - 'It's Been Awhile'

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#67800 - 09/30/03 11:16 AM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
Justice's Angel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/05/03
Posts: 20
Loc: Va, USA
Is there any good way to approach my boyfriend about sex? If I try to be physical (not forceful, just kissing or whatever to start off with) he immediatly thinks of something else he needs to do in his head or says he is tired or something. If I try to talk to him about it he gets really upset, to the point that he almost broke up with me the other day. I wasn't trying to blame him or make him feel bad, I just wanted to try to talk to him about it. I'm afraid that sex is going to dissappear completely from our relationship. I love him very much but it's hard. It's been 12 days now. I miss having him kiss me, to touch me. Hell, I miss him all together now cause I haven't heard from him in a couple days. *sigh* Should I try at all to be sexual or just let him have control over everything? I try to give him a little push but I don't want to shove.


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#67801 - 09/30/03 12:55 PM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
Wifey1 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/03/02
Posts: 380
Justice's Angel,
as a survivor of SA but not a male ~ yes I find it harder to have sex with someone who Loves me more than one who doesnt. Why? because someone who doesnt "Love Me" is simply a part of my own re enacting of my abuse. Not a long term commitment no matter how many or what kind of warts I have in my personality & life. By warts I mean real and perceived imperfections about myself.
And yes it's hard to intergrate into myself seeing someone else as sexually attractive if they know & love me despite my warts.
Approaching for sexual contact... whew it feels like snake bites to me sometimes.. what he perceives as a gentle push or nudge (sometimes its just a look in his eye) feels like a shove.
I can hear in your posting that you do miss him a great deal, however 12 days is a short or long amount of time in real time of healing, depending on which side of the coin one is on. Perhaps for right now the best approach is to let him lead -- nothing wrong in saying that you still find him sexually attractive -- just that right now he might be feeling very vulnerable after disclosing his "secret". I know I usually push back the hardest when someone finds out about my sex abuse, some bent reason I have to "test them" to make sure they are strong enuff to handle the awful truth about me first. IF they pass that test - no its not even defined for me & I dont even recognize I still do it even all these yrs later unless I dissect the relationship/s. IF they pass then I relax more & share more of myself -- pretty much I like to think like all humans do as a trust measure, but I'm not sure of that either.
Try to be patient if you can -- dont give up on yourself & trust your own instincts in this too as to when a good time is to talk to him about when & If you can be sexual again or even together. I know from my own experience I needed control over who and how I had sex before I could be spontaneous & enjoy sex when I was having it.
Please take this just as a female point, and just MY experience -- others & the Guys will have other views that are probably more on target... Be good to yourself, when my hubby2 disclosed to me it was very difficult NOT to confuse my sexual desires for wanting to rescue him from pain. AND it was very hard not to internalize that he didn't "want me" sexually because as a woman & thru my own abuse I was taught that men are easily swayed sexually -- the weaker sex in regards to performing the sex act.
One of the things I did when hubby2 shut down sexually was take the opportunity to explore my OWN beliefs about sex & my body --- I'm still on the fence with much of my views surrounding that.
Hope this helps some...
Peace, Sammy


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#67802 - 09/30/03 01:52 PM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
Justice's Angel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/05/03
Posts: 20
Loc: Va, USA
When I said it's been 12 days, I meant since we last had sex. It's been a couple months since he admitted this and this all started. I know he's trying to work on things. It's hard because I feel no matter what I do he's going to keep pushing away. I don't want to ignore him because I don't want him to think I don't care but I know he needs his space too. Right now I'm just waiting to hear from him again. I try not to get frustrated with this but I'm human too and sometimes I have bad days.


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#67803 - 09/30/03 02:10 PM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
wrangler Offline
Member

Registered: 09/06/03
Posts: 84
Loc: Northern Virginia
I want to spout off advice, but I don’t think advice is very helpful, so I will restrain myself. Your question intrigues me because I am trying to understand my own feelings about sex, and they are turning out to be far more complicated than I ever would have imagined. It seems, though, that the first step is to understand and accept how I feel right now. Later I think I get to do something about those feelings. So how do I feel now?

The first four years of my sexual experience where abusive. As unfair as it is, that scarred me with an association… sex and abuse go together. Sex is abuse. Sadly, one of the most arousing things is imaging me back with my abusers. Even when my wife and I were having sex I would occasionally have to let those fantasies into my mind to have an orgasm. None of this is very much fun, so I would avoid sex to avoid abuse. But there is a lot of pressure from a lot of sources so it is not possible to avoid sex completely.

I love my wife. I would never want to abuse her. Sex is abuse, so if sex is going on, someone is getting abused. If I don’t feel abused, I must be abusing her. It is irrational and doesn’t make any sense, but it is what actually goes on in my mind. Four years is a long time, especially for a kid. It really doesn’t surprise me very much that the association is this strong. It makes me pretty angry though. I want sex to be love. But for now, it is not.

If sex is not love, for now anyway, then I need to learn what is love, and so does (did) my wife. That is not so easy, but expressing love is important and if sex doesn’t do it, then we need something else.

So maybe your boyfriend has a hard time with sex because he doesn’t feel like it is an expression of love. I obviously don’t know anything about him, but that pretty accurately describes some of my trouble with sex. If that is the case I don’t think either of you will get very far trying to force sex to be love.

Sex with someone I love is pretty scary. It gets worse when that person does not understand what is going on. My wife took the sex association personally. She was angry and maybe even a little insulted. The closer I got to actually confronting what the abuse meant for me now the more turbulent our sex life became and the more she withdrew. The more I understood what was arousing to me, the less she wanted to have sex with me. To be fair to her, the things that arouse me offend the average person. Heck, they even offend me when I am not aroused.

The point is that as I became more honest, my wife became more hostile. This was very bad for me and for us. Eventually she moved out and that is where we are now. And all this over sex.

Do you think you could handle real honesty from your boyfriend about sex? Would it crush you to learn that his most passionate fantasies don’t involve you at all? Would you still want to have sex with him knowing that what he thought about during sex was unpleasant or sad? These are hard questions, but your boyfriend is in a hard place. In my case, my wife had trouble with these questions. She wanted sex to be something special between us. I wanted that too, but I couldn’t seem to manage it.

Ultimately my wife decided that my troubles with sex would never go away. She decided that, unfair or not, that is simply who (or what) I was. She decided that she was incompatible with such a person. She left. It has been hard on me and I blame myself for a lot of it. But I am slowly coming to realize that she was just not made of tough enough stuff to love me while I came to terms with my sexual associations and eventually began the long task of changing “sex is abuse” into “sex is love”.

I imagine that this reply may not be what you want to hear. It certainly is not what I want to say. But in my life it is the truth. Maybe it doesn’t apply to you and your boyfriend. But if it does… take care of yourself and give your boyfriend piles and piles of compassion. We did not wish this on ourselves. We do not like it at all. It is so hard for us to set it right. In the end I really believe every one of us here will set it right. It is my hope and my sincere belief that in the end we will be capable of a sort of love and relationship that few people can even imagine. So if your situation is like mine, and you think you are made of tough enough stuff, hang it there. I believe the reward will be better than your wildest dreams.

George

_________________________
"Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself." -Mary Schmich

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#67804 - 09/30/03 04:54 PM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
Justice's Angel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/05/03
Posts: 20
Loc: Va, USA
Has anyone been able to have a semi normal sex life? I'm really discouraged. If I can't see the smallest ray light at the end of the tunnel I can't keep going on.


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#67805 - 09/30/03 05:17 PM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
PAS Offline
Member

Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 577
Loc: Canada
Man - this is my thread...

Justice's Angel - for the record my fiance and I have not had sex in 28 days... and counting... not since the night he proposed to me.. we have tried a few times only to have him shut down and turn away from me..

One thing that scares me is that I think my fiance's issues might take a long time to resolve - I have a hunch that he will not only have to work through his SA but all the other experiences where he acted out - he was in many relationships with women where he allowed himself to be disrespected, feel shameful, etc (almost 17 years of relationships in there!).

SO - 2 questions for those of you far along in recovery -

1. Did you have to examine all your feelings and actions that you encountered with your acting out as well as the SA in order to come to terms with being sexual?

2. Or was the work you did on the SA experience itself enough to significantly help your recovery?

Wow.. seems many of us are on the same wavelength this week, partners....


PAS


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#67806 - 09/30/03 06:45 PM Re: Question for SA survivors: Do you find it harder to have sex with someone you love?
Justice's Angel Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/05/03
Posts: 20
Loc: Va, USA
I know I haven't gone through it but I feel like there must be some way I can sympathize. It seems that some SA survivors are angry because they feel that their childhood was taken away from them. I know my boyfriend still holds on to his. He's very responsible but the times he is the happiest are when he's the most childlike.
I can say that the worst thing to happen in my life was the death of my mother. She killed herself when I was about 10 and it was really hard back then. To deal with it was really hard and painful but the only thing I could do was push myself through the pain and come out on the other side. Sure, I still have issues with it but I've taken it as a part of me. This is my life and no one else's and that's all that I get.
I know that it hurts for my boyfriend but I don't think that avoiding his problems is going to help. They don't go away and when you let your gaurd down they attack you and tear you apart. I think that it is better to deal with things on your terms. Lots of things are painful and make you angry but this is the one life you get.
I haven't heard from him since sunday but I hope that he's sorting things out in his head. I hope that he knows that I care and I hope that me being there for him is helpful in some way. I know he feels like there's no one in his life that cares but I do.


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