Newest Members
journey4two, VASurvivor, jayceemac, rwolf, FindingNemo
12328 Registered Users
Today's Birthdays
Alicia (55), bubblytam (56), crazydragon (39), JGag78 (36), kris82 (32), Shin (28)
Who's Online
3 registered (journey4two, Obi, 1 invisible), 16 Guests and 5 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
12328 Members
74 Forums
63397 Topics
443262 Posts

Max Online: 418 @ 07/02/12 07:29 AM
Twitter
Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5 >
Topic Options
#68088 - 12/24/06 02:06 AM Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Dewey2k Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/22/05
Posts: 3069
I'm not sure if this was posted somewhere before, but I read it and thought it should be posted(From Triumph over Darkness by Wendy Ann Wood, M.A.
copyright Wendy Ann Wood 1993):

Adult Survivors of Sexual Abuse:
What We Would Like You to Know About Us.

1. We grew up feeling very isolated and vulnerable, a feeling that continues into our adult lives.

2. Our early development has been interrupted by abuse, which either holds us back or pushes us ahead developmentally.

3. Sexual abuse has influenced all parts of our lives. Not dealing with it is like ignoring an open wound. Our communication style, our self-confidence, and our trust levels are affected.

4. Putting thoughts and feelings related to our abuse "on the back burner" does not make them go away. The only way out is to go through these emotions and process them.

5. Our interest in sexual activity will usually decline while we are dealing with this early trauma. This is because:
we are working on separating the past from the present.
pleasure and pain can sometimes be experienced simultaneously.
it is important for us to be in control, since control is what we lacked as children.
Sometimes we need a lot of space. Pressuring us to have sex will only increase our tension.

6. We often experience physical discomforts, pains, and disorders that are related to our emotions.

7. We often appear to be extremely strong while we are falling apart inside.

8. There is nothing wrong with us as survivors -- something wrong was DONE to us.

9. Sometimes others get impatient with us for not "getting past it" sooner. Remember, we are feeling overwhelmed, and what we need is your patience and support. Right now, it is very important for us to concentrate on the past. We are trying to reorganize our whole outlook on the world; this won't happen overnight.

10. Your support is extremely important to us. Remember; we have been trained to hold things in. We have been trained NOT to tell about the abuse. We did not tell sooner for a variety of reasons: we were fearful about how you would react, what might happen, etc. We have been threatened verbally and/or nonverbally to keep us quiet, and we live with that fear.

11. Feeling sorry for us does not really help because we add your pain to our own.

12. There are many different kinds of people who are offenders. It does not matter that they are charming or attractive or wealthy. Anybody -- from any social class or ethnic background, with any level of education-- may be an offender. Sexual abuse is repetitive, so be aware of offenders with whom you have contact. Do not let them continue the cycle of abuse with the next generation of children.

13. We might not want or be able to talk with you about our therapy.

14. We are afraid we might push you away with all our emotional reactions. You can help by: listening, reassuring us that you are not leaving, not pressuring us, touching (WITH PERMISSION) in a nonsexual way.

15. Our therapy does not break up relationships - it sometimes causes them to change as we change. Therapy often brings issues to the surface that were already present.

16. Grieving is a part of our healing process as we say goodbye to parts of ourselves.


Top
#68089 - 12/24/06 03:52 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
  • Quote:
    1. We grew up feeling very isolated and vulnerable, a feeling that continues into our adult lives.
    Yes, everyone has strong feelings from their childhood. But childhood trauma is qualitatively different. CSA, as a trauma purposefully inflicted, has far-reaching effects that are different in kind, not just in degree, from the "baggage" that people carry out of a "normal" childhood.
  • Quote:
    2. Our early development has been interrupted by abuse, which either holds us back or pushes us ahead developmentally.
    Or both. Yes, it can be confusing. No, we don't understand it any better than you do.


I'll stop before I get too preachy. I'd love to see something from the F&F about what they'd like us to know. It can't be easy to be the other half of a relationship with someone like this. (OK, maybe it's easy with the rest of the guys, but it can't be easy to be with me, and that's the case nearest and dearest to my own heart! \:\) )

Thanks, Dwayne, for posting this.

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbrokenÖ"óThe Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

Top
#68090 - 12/24/06 07:26 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Grunty1967b Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/28/05
Posts: 823
Loc: Australia
17. We may not be able to explain to you whatís going on inside of us. Thatís because we donít know whatís going on inside of us either, but we are working through whatever Ďití is and it will get better.

18. We will be scared and fearful in situations that we never used to be before. That will be our younger selves coming to the surface. That too will get better in time. How long? Who knows.


Top
#68091 - 12/24/06 01:13 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
Thankyou for posting this topic,


It was very useful for me to read these things after my bf disclosed. It really did help me to make sense of certain behaviours, both in the present, but also for all the years I'd been so perplexed/confused/frustrated with my bf. It is helpful to read them again now, to be reminded of some of them. I don't have time to go into things us partners might need, but that's a good question and after christmas, when I have some time, I'll try my best to answer that.


peace
Beccy


Top
#68092 - 12/24/06 02:56 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
weepywife Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 57
What we want survivors to know about us

1) We love our survivors sooo much. The abuse does not make us love you less.

2) The fact that physical intimacy is usually a problem is very hard on us. We associate inimacy with love. We feel unwanted/undesirable/ unloved because of the lack of intimacy.

3) We need expressions of love from you. We need reassurance that we are loved and attractive. This doesn't have to be phyiscal. A card. Flowers. A love note will make us melt.

4) We need to be kept in the loop. You don't have to tell us about your therapy or the abuse. But you have to let us know what is going on in your mind occasionally. We worry about you and if we have no idea about what you are feeling we imagine what could be going on in your head. The worry makes us crazy.


Top
#68093 - 12/24/06 11:45 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Dewey2k Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/22/05
Posts: 3069
Thank you all for sharing. Maybe we should add to the lists above and then post the two lists together in a separate thread. We might be able to get it all put on the site as a document.


Top
#68094 - 12/28/06 02:48 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
WalkingSouth Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16264
Dwayne and WW,

Thanks so much for sharing. I've been thinking about this subject for several days now. I appreciate so much what you've shared.

Lots of love,

John

_________________________
ďLifeís journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ĎHoly ____Ö! What a ride!íĒ ~Hunter S. Thompson

Top
#68095 - 12/28/06 04:11 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
I need you to understand that I get angry. You might not, but I do. My anger is appropriate because of what was done to you and what is being done to me because of what was done to you. I need to express that anger sometimes. It isn't directed at you, but you are the one I love; you are the one who is there in my life, so you are the one who will hear it. Please understand that it's not you I am angry at. It is the whole situation.

And donít tell me I shouldnít be angry; I should. Just because youíre not, or refuse to acknowledge that you are, doesnít mean that Iím wrong On the emotional and feelings side of things, I going to go out on a limb and say that mine are more appropriate than yours.

At holidays, when we're with my family who I love and who love each other, fake it while weíre there and then talk to me when weíre alone. Donít sulk and disappear. I love my family; I love the holidays; I want to have fun. Do you have any clue how conflicted I am seeing the desperation on your face and wanting to go to you, yet at the same time wanting to just make you go away so I can enjoy myself? Thatís when I feel like I suck!

I'll be your cheerleader 99% of the time, but sometimes I can't because Iím just tired. That's when you need to step up. It wonít take long, most times just a good nightís sleep and Iím recharged, but when Iím down, I need to be able to count on you.

Thereís a lot more, but not now..............

Trish

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

Top
#68096 - 12/31/06 05:04 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
i need you to not try and make the decision for me to stay or go after i know about your past. it's my decision to make, don't assume you know one way or the other. if i go, maybe you are better off for it, and if i stay, it's my decision and it's a conscious, thinking one, don't discredit me for making it.

i need for you not to run away from me after i've learned what happened to you - i can't imagine how hard that is for you to look at me knowing that i know and the fear you must feel thinking it will change things in a bad way - no, i can't imagine that - but change is part of life, and relationships and learning to trust are also. if you can't trust me right now, please can you just say so, or tell me you need some time, just talk to me, just talk to me...

there is so much more, yes, we all have our needs, but not to leave this one out: i need you to seek professional help in dealing with your trauma, to realize help is out there, to understand you've been injured and need assistance in learning to heal; to deny you own pain only creates more pain which spreads to others.

i need you to understand i am not your abuser, and i don't wish to see you as a victim, i see you as a survivor.

i will take your hand and walk beside you through the healing process, pull a little when you lag behind and push a little when you a balk at what's up ahead but i won't, ever, under any circumstances, accept that you cannot be healed, that there is no hope, because there is, it's here, because i love you.

indygal

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

Top
#68097 - 01/03/07 04:56 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
wantstohelp Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/17/05
Posts: 26
Wow, indygal.. I really liked what your post had to say. I'd have to say my list of needs would be similar.. but the biggest ones are:

1 - Do not push me away after you disclose, or, at the very least, if you have to.. let me know that you love me and you're not going anywhere for good. Do not decide for me that you are too much for me to handle. That's unfair, and it takes my decisions for my life away from me, which leaves me hurt and confused and with no control, and I know that you know how hurtful that can be for a person.

2 - Do NOT lie to me about your feelings for me, or downplay them to push me away, for whatever reason.. even if you feel it's what's best for me. If you need space, just tell me you need space. There is NOTHING in the world that hurts more than having someone you care for minimize their feelings for you as a defense mechanism. Nothing.

3 - Remind me of the things you love about me when you feel you can, so that I can make it through the times when you are harder to manage. I need to hold onto those good times, and have them clearly drawn out in my brain, to get me through the times when you're distant and I miss you.

4 - Don't give up on me, even if I say the wrong thing sometimes. I'm trying, and if you let me know what you want me to do, I will do anything to do whatever it is for you. But mostly, and I think they tie into eachother, don't give up on yourself.. because if you stop trying.. and I see you hurting and stuck in taht hurt.. that will hurt me more than anything else you could ever do.

So I guess that's mostly it! All my best to you all.
Hugs,
Jess xo


Top
#68098 - 01/04/07 05:31 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
Thank you, thank you, thank you Dewey, and Wendy Wood. What an awesome list.

It is a huge pet peeve of mine that partners of survivors (male and female) tend to be presented with "Do/Don't" lists that are mostly "Don't" and very lacking in any kind of real info. Most partners just want something a little more constructive than "Don't tell the survivor any of the following 100 things."
Quote:

15. Our therapy does not break up relationships - it sometimes causes them to change as we change. Therapy often brings issues to the surface that were already present.
This is the one I would have liked to hear most about, right after my partner first disclosed.


Top
#68099 - 01/04/07 06:08 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
I think it is interesting that the original list was mostly What survivors want partners to know about survivors and that so many of the partners' responses have been about what they need from the survivors in their lives.

Why is that? Is there a message underneath: What you should know about your partner is, Your partner continues to have needs even while supporting you?
Does this reflect an actual communication breakdown in survivor relationships, where the partner believes that the survivor really doesn't know what (s)he needs?
Is there a dynamic in these relationships where the survivor doesn't respond to a partner's requests? Do partners learn a certain kind of language of "need" in this circumstance?

What I wanted my partner to know when he first disclosed to me:

1. I am not ashamed of you.

2. I don't want you to blame yourself for how your CSA has affected our past, but it is important to me that you acknowledge it and take responsibility for fixing the problems today.

3. I understand why you didn't tell me earlier, but I feel guilty that I didn't know earlier.

4. I am afraid that our relationship has been built on a bad foundation; that you chose to be with me in a sick frame of mind. I am afraid that aspects of our relationship have been abusive or that I have further traumatized you without knowing it.

(see above, "Therapy does not break up relationships...")

What I want him to know now:

1. I would rather hear that you're having a bad day, than have you pretend to have a good day. It means a lot to me that you trust me enough to say "I'm having a bad day" rather than pretending everything is fine.

2. I vent about the people who have hurt you, but I will respect the choices you make about how to deal with them.

3. I really don't want to take on your problems or make them mine-- if I'm talking about issues I have that relate to your CSA, they are MY issues that apply to me and the years of my life that I have shared with you. Our shared past has had lasting effects on me even though your abuse didn't happen to me.

4. I am very, very proud to share my life with the person you have become.


Top
#68100 - 01/04/07 03:42 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
What I wish survivors knew - well, at least what I wish what my husband knew. That his cheating on me is probably mostly if not all due to him being weak because he was controlled by the abuser as a little boy. He is still in that mode, unable to turn away someone who comes on to him (he has a beautiful accent and dresses well and many people are attracted to him). I want him to know that he is not immoral. Morals are what people choose for themselves when they believe they HAVE a choice. He is not bad for being"weak," it is just that he is still being controlled by the abuser(s). And I long to help him make that connection so he can at last take charge of his life, turn it around, and decide for himself what choices/morals to choose. I long for him, and all survivors, to be the man he was created by God to be, not the one created by the abuser.

_________________________
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

Top
#68101 - 01/04/07 09:16 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
kgm Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/16/06
Posts: 39
Loc: usa
its hard on our kids to, on all of us. we al l need you and want u in our lifes.
when u push us away & go into yourself, we miss u. we wil wait 4 u to get better bcause we love u.


Top
#68102 - 01/16/07 08:40 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
AshSurvived Offline
Member

Registered: 01/07/07
Posts: 167
Loc: Australia
To SAR. As someone who has only just the other week acknowledged their abuse and the effect on life and marriage it's a relief to hear a voice of reason. I find myself reading through earlier posts about to erupt with righteous indignation at the audacity of partners who actually sincerely believe they can issue a list of demands. But, thanks to your wise words I've calmed down.

But to the others, please understand: you are partnered to an invalid, you can get used to it or you can throw your weight around. My wife used to throw her weight around; she even took to hitting me in the early days of our marriage, but as you may well guess, I didn't suddenly become Mr Mills & Boon and I didn't tear off my disguise to reveal the dashing hero underneath. I got worse and acted out more and hated her more than I care to recall. She just played into my pattern of abuse so perfectly you'd think she'd been contracted to do so.

So, please beware of making demands, of doing things that put you in the role of the abuser, because your partner might relish it just like I did and become totally unreachable just like I was. The fact that you have such a sense of self and entitlement indicates just how truly, fundamentally different the two of you are.

_________________________
"It's your world Dave, I'm just livin' in it"

- Harvey Pekar to David Letterman
(American Splendour)

Top
#68103 - 01/16/07 04:46 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Quote:
The fact that you have such a sense of self and entitlement indicates just how truly, fundamentally different the two of you are.
this is a truly profound statement and clearly does emphasize a fundamental difference between survivors and non-survivors, if i've been understanding correctly the stories on this board.

taking it one step further, upon accepting this realization, i think one aspect of being a partner and wanting to see a survivor heal is to be able to reach out and encourage him to also learn who his self is, and gain his own sense of entitlement to being human, to be treated with respect and dignity, as we all deserve.

indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

Top
#68104 - 01/16/07 05:27 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
Hi Ash and welcome. I think you mis-read what was being stated by partners, myself included. If you read before and after our wish list of things we want our partners to know, you will see a lot of love and a lot of hurt. Sadly, csa has hit all of us, even if we werenít direct victims.

Iím sorry youíre wife treated you poorly, especially hitting you. Thatís so wrong under any circumstances and you didnít deserve it. No one deserves to be the target of such behavior but you were and I think it may have helped to color your view of what a partner can/should expect of a survivor.

This statements bothers me a great deal:

Quote:
But to the others, please understand: you are partnered to an invalid, you can get used to it or you can throw your weight around.
I think you are selling yourself and other survivors way short by telling us partnerís that we should just get used to it and expect nothing from our survivor partner. One of the points of healing is learning that itís OK to have expectations of other people and of yourself and to deal with the expectations that others will have of you, all in a good way, not simply expectations of horror and evil from others.

We do have expectations of our partners, hopefully, the lines of communication have been opened sufficiently so that those expectations don't exceed what the survivor is capable of at any given time. And there are certain expectations, boundaries if you will, that must be met in order for a relationship to survive. A survivor may have to choose between acting out or meeting the expectations of his partner and a partner has a right to demand that such a choice be made if he/she is going to make a commitment to the relationship.

Does that make sense? Sometimes, I just canít find the words.

ROCK ON........Trish

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

Top
#68105 - 01/17/07 02:04 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Dewey2k Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/22/05
Posts: 3069
Not to take words out of Ash's mouth, but I think what he was trying to say is that once I as a survivor tell you about what happened, please do not be heavy-handed in your support i.e. belittling us for not seeking help on your timetable, determining what we need to do to recover, being outright afraid of telling anyone else and demanding we disclose to someone, and so on. The only thing that will do is drive us further away.

Is that close Ash?


Top
#68106 - 01/17/07 05:21 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Quote:
belittling us for not seeking help on your timetable, determining what we need to do to recover, being outright afraid of telling anyone else and demanding we disclose to someone, and so on.
point taken.

indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

Top
#68107 - 01/17/07 11:02 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Dewey2k Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/22/05
Posts: 3069
Indy, I did not mean what I wrote as a personal, pointed comment aimed at you. If you took it that way, please accept my heart-felt apology.

Dwayne


Top
#68108 - 01/18/07 05:32 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
WalkingSouth Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16264
I had a private conversation with one of the members here in F&F the other day and I think a portion of it may fit here. Please, no one, take this as pointed to any one of you. It's just food for thought for you who are needing, wanting, longing to be of assistance to your husband, partner, or boyfriend.
Quote:
Your desire and willingness to help your partner is laudable. If you can be a support and confidant for him that may be a good thing. I would really urge you to talk with the therapist concerning what your role should be. Once he begins to get seriously into the therapy, he may not want to share some of the, pardon my language, shit with you. It may be enough for him to just get support without having to share the details. He may want you to be his woman, and not share in his therapy other than be his source of comfort when he can't take it anymore.

I guess what I'm saying is that for you to be too closely involved with what's going on may very well bring about unwanted associations for him, ie you equal having to think and talk about the bad stuff and he doesn't want to do that. That's the way many of us men think. I know you're not necessarily wanting or planning to be heavily involved, but I just want to caution you that there may come a time once he's in therapy that he'll pretty much want to keep his life with you somewhat separate from his life in therapy. I don't know that will be a fact, but it's a possibility. Again, try to work closely with the therapist on what your role needs to be.
Just thought I'd throw that into the mix of this conversation since the original point of the thread seems to have drifted in this direction.

Lots of love,

John

_________________________
ďLifeís journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ĎHoly ____Ö! What a ride!íĒ ~Hunter S. Thompson

Top
#68109 - 01/18/07 05:57 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
sigh....

was simply trying not to be so long-winded as usual....

dwayne, i didn't think it WAS pointed at me; no need to apologize...

i thought (and still do) it was a very good point you made and wanted you to know i, for one, was listening (reading). that's all.

your words are welcome, your advice valuable, priceless even.

it's also helpful for me because much of the communication between my bf and me is written; many times he's totally misconstrued something i wrote - before i was on this board i couldn't ever understand how or why - but just as survivors sometimes misconstrue our verbal words or actions, it seems written ones can be also.

see there, now i've gotten all long-winded again :rolleyes:

indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

Top
#68110 - 01/18/07 06:29 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Dewey2k Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/22/05
Posts: 3069
Indy,

I, for one, would rather have a manifesto if it tells me exactly what you are feeling and thinking.

In situations like this, don't let your words be ambiguous: be direct, precise in your verbage, and say exactly what you mean. Leave as little room for interpretation as possible, because if you are not clear you can be guaranteed that he will take what ever you have to say in a negative way. That's just how we survivors are, at least to start with.

This puts an incredible burden on you, but it's the only way I can think of to aid your communications.

Take care,
Dwayne


Top
#68111 - 01/18/07 01:04 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
Wow, this has become an interesting thread!


I think the subject of what the survivor may need, and what the survivor's partner may need is a truly complex and fascinating subject....


I totally see what you're saying here,

"belittling us for not seeking help on your timetable, determining what we need to do to recover, being outright afraid of telling anyone else and demanding we disclose to someone, and so on. "


Although, I don't read what Trish wrote as undermining that issue in any way....


For example, for my own personal situation, it became very necessary that my bf seek some proffessional guidance and I did have to point him (gently) in that direction. The reason for this, is because we have small children and a family unit to look after. With this in mind, there was no choice for me, other than to push in the way I did. If the roles were reversed, I would sincerely hope he would do the same.


Also, as a partner(especially in a family situation), when there has been infidelity/acting out/sexual identity issues, if your survivor partner ceases to communicate, it can become virtually impossible not to express your own concern/anxiety and needs for there to be more talking....I think we need to be careful not to generalise about these things and I agree with Trish about the fact there ARE expectations on both sides in a relationship. What each person does about those expectations dictates the survival/health of the relationship. If I only viewed my bf as an 'invalid', I would be continuing to accept/enable things, which might otherwise have potential to change and grow.


While there is great neccessity for the partner to read/learn in order to gain knowledge/empathy/understanding, we as partners have to be careful not to put ALL the focus on that. Because, a relationship can only ever become healthy, if it's a two way thing.

For example, when my bf does x,y,z, if I only look at it from his side, thinking, "he can't help it though" and feeling sympathy/sorry for him, and never letting him know how hard it is/how hurt i feel. If we all did that, we'd never learn about how the things we do/don't do affect the people we love. That might sound harsh, but it works both ways too.....

Understanding can facilitate more productive ways to communicate, but shouldn't mean that we choose to out our own feelings second. The other negative result of that would be, if the partner also has (unrealised)problems/dysfuntions/abuse in their past(which isn't that unlikely), but they only ever consider their survivor's feelings, then they won't be sorting out their own issues. Which again means that the relationship can't improve.

I suppose all of this means that there'll be mistakes on both sides. As partners, we can't possibly always get it right. Especially those of us who have our own dysfunctions.

I think the key thing to remember is that neither person can know/understand what the other is experiencing unless both people learn to express those feelings. And also, learning to recogninse when either person is enmeshing. Issues from the past of hatred/anger/being unfairly treated need to be seperated from the present. A personal example of this from my own perspective, is the many occassions(some only recently felt/realised) I have felt powerless/uinfairly treated in situations with my bf. I now realise that the WAY I EXPERIENCED them was a childlike emotion and brought with it childlike reactions/responses. Yes, he may have been being unreasonable, but did I effectively deal with that from a mature perspective? No, I did not. Do I have to take responsibilty for that? Yes I do. I am not beating myself up about this, or being hard on myself, just looking at the facts. He IS NOT my abuser any more than I have ever been his. Anything either of us have ever done which may have conjured up the same feelings for us, is NOT OUR FAULT. Because we are grown adults now. Indeed it's not fair that either of us haven't had the tools to effectively look after ourselves, but I wouldn't want my bf to feel guilty for a thing which was never his fault, or for him to be blaming me for a thing which was never my fault. Should I expect him to feel sorry for me cause there are occassions I have had trouble defending myself emotionally, or any other childlike related difficulty? No, I don't want him to feel sorry for me, or I for him. Empathy/understanding, yes, but if I never know the EFFECTS/IMPACT these things have on him(and vice-versa), there would never be enough incentive for me to look further than my own experience/feelings.

You know what? As a survivor of a kind, I am absolutly sick of people taking sympathy/feeling sorry/assuming I can't do things properly. I realise this has been the pattern of my life and something I have accepted, welcomed even. I see that I have stood by and allowed myself to be abused by people(nothing too terrible!). I realise it's not my fault and I don't put myself down for it either, but I do have to accept personal responsibilty for it.


So, BOTH people's expectations/feelings do count hugely I believe.

Sorry if that got a bit heavy, but it's something I feel strongly about at the moment. I hope I have not said anything that will offend or upset anyone.


peace
Beccy


Top
#68112 - 01/19/07 03:43 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
AshSurvived Offline
Member

Registered: 01/07/07
Posts: 167
Loc: Australia
Hopefully a pertinent example of what I mean:

This morning i went past the bin and thought 'that smells, I should remind Elisa not to put food in there, I bet it's meat again, how many times, must I be the parent as well as the survivor, honestly!'...

But, I decided to do the right thing and I put the rubbish bag out in the wheelie bin, came back inside and decided to be extra thoughtful and bent down to spray some stuff in for the smell.

*Crunch*

And there goes my back.

Right now it's been several hours and I'm still sore, I hope it's just a muscle and not another disc.

Now, I can run of scores of injuies, but also I can run off scores of sexual advances I had to endure, and discrimination when I was doing the right thing by working.

All I know for sure is that a lot of things happen to me because of my abuse. I have tremendous body tension, and nothing works (my wife does massage, I have been to chiro's, oteo's, blah blah bloody blah), I behave like a victim. You know why of course, I behave like what I am. I'm a textbook case. Of course for years I pretended i could pull my socks up and be considerate to others, be an adult. Well I have the broken bones and stalkers to prove I tried. I have the no friends and the no job and the no resume to prove I gave it a bloody good shot. And there is so much more to add i would be here all day.

The only time I start to improve is when I stop trying to be like you lot, when I accept myself as a victim. And when I begin to feel right bloody sorry for myself, after a time it passes and I feel better.

I am still learning but I feel that's the whole point. I am learning from scratch. I am undoing, unlearning the attitudes, partly your attitudes, and those of my parents specifically that only served to escalate the damage done to me.

When I was trying so hard to be good and be like my wife, normal, I was completely false. Everything I did was a fraud. Beig a victim, feeling sorry for myself, that's the only real thing I have right now, and I'm starting to feel it's something I'm entitled to. And like I said, i get better when I just let go. I become real because i think I am tesing out behviours and coming out o my shell. otherwise I just retreat into thought as I did as a kid when people talked to me as you partners are, as my wife used to.

And when I retreat I shut down all emotion and I'm part of her game. I play into all her weaknesses and shortcomings and give her all the excuses in the world to not grow up herself. And I think that's what I am pointing out above. It's not the partner that needs to grow and change it's you. You have the capacity, you are fundamentally different. Unless you are a hindu or similar you had total freedom of choice in choosng a partner. Don't try to blame them for your poor choice. To me making demands and being 'reasonable' is just acting out your own resentment.

Believe me, I know a hell of a lot about that, I see it from a skewed angle, granted, because that's my upbrigning in a nutshell, but that doens't necessarily discount my insight.

My parents probably honestly believed they could discipline me out of being a victim. And here I am years later. I t doesn't work, save yourself the effort. Look at what the abuse is hghlighting in you, at what your behaviours are like beccy mentioned above. Force, prompt, prod all you like, but don't please don't encourage me to use analogies of obvious physical disability, because to me it just seems like stating the obvious.

Self help is a philosphy like wealth creation or 'be yourelf' trumpeted to a naive majority because it sells books. People who can apply such lame ideals don't need them: that's why they work. I never set out to disprove them, they managed to do that for themselves over my life so far. We survivors are scientists, we have to falsify and test everything before we trust it because we can't rely on our emotions to survive, we dare not. a lot of what you lot say I'm sure is basically out of love, but that's not a relevent factor that is considered by my survivor brain. I don't understand love.

But because, in my opinion, normal people can trust their emotions, they simply don't have to falsify their beleifs and subject them to scientific scruntiny, because they trust themselves. i can't for example allow myself the indulgence of religion, others can, but it doesn't stand up to my scrutiny. Nor does politics, nor do many things.

At about 11 I decided human realtionships and romance and all that was drivel and I wouldn't have a bar of it. I reasoned my way out of fundamentalist religion and out of right and then left wing politics. What for other people are allowable indulgences are for me obscene. Because i stip it of all feeling. politics and religion are so much feeling, without that what is there? It seems rational but none of it is, but that doesn't matter if it satifies the need for those feelings of belonging and righteousness and love, so on. Take feelings away and.... anyway, I best shut up. This wasn't supposed to be a treatise, just my thoughts. I look forward to your replies.

I'm trying to contrast ideology with practical experience. The ideology of self help with the reality of impairment. Temporary, but still impairment. and an impairment that has it's own rules and will not bend to an ideology, no matter how loving or how forceful.

_________________________
"It's your world Dave, I'm just livin' in it"

- Harvey Pekar to David Letterman
(American Splendour)

Top
#68113 - 01/19/07 04:38 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
GWsurvives Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/10/07
Posts: 251
Loc: Atlanta, and here, among othe...
(standing ovation) Wow! I have learned a bunch this evening.. about me and my wife...

Thank you to everyone who contributed!!

(clapping loudly)

"I can see clearly now the rain has gone"

_________________________
"Some times there just aren't enough rocks" Forrest Gump

Top
#68114 - 01/19/07 05:17 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Quote:
The ideology of self help with the reality of impairment. Temporary, but still impairment. and an impairment that has it's own rules and will not bend to an ideology, no matter how loving or how forceful.
i don't know and won't claim to but in my mind, at least, for some time now i no longer see survivors - male or female - as the same as non-survivors, only damaged.

i don't think it's that simple at all.

i think, and again, this is simply my own opinion backed up by nothing more than conjecture, speculation and a great deal of thinking about it - i honestly think that something biochemical takes place during sexual trauma which actually changes that individual's thinking in a fundamental way.

we know how excretion of hormones can change ways of thinking, too much adrenalin, too much epinephrin, others as well, which create long-term differences in brain patterns, reflexes and ways of processing information.

this is entirely separate from actual physical trauma, of course (broken bones, etc.).

as survivors continue to explore their own feelings and share with us their perceptions of our attitudes and behaviors, it's truly as if we are talking about different ways of thinking altogether. different in the concept that even after healing, the survivor will never process information the way a non-sexually abused individual does. it just isn't going to happen.

with that in mind, for me at least, it gives me a sense of what i'm up against in trying to communicate with my bf, and in trying to understand other survivors in my life, both now and in the future.

i also wonder if healing for the survivor may mean something entirely different than what it may mean for his (or her) partner.

all i can say at this point is to reiterate that we do care, we are trying to understand and most of us will not give up.

all the best,
indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

Top
#68115 - 01/19/07 03:50 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
Quote:
The only time I start to improve is when I stop trying to be like you lot, when I accept myself as a victim. And when I begin to feel right bloody sorry for myself, after a time it passes and I feel better.
Iím so confused by this statement. How does feeling sorry for yourself make you feel better? How does it pass and where do you go from there? Iím not being sarcastic, I just really donít understand.

Facts are facts - you were a victim of csa - you have to go through life with that. But not everyone you meet will have such a fact in their background. They are us. We probably donít know about it in the beginning and we fall in love with you. You tell us. Do we stop loving you? Do we say, OK, we made a bad choice, this one is damaged beyond repair and I wonít deal with that, see ya? I was in a relationship for 3-1/2 years before I knew. Thereís no way I could walk away. In a perfect world, youíre already aware of what csa has done to you. How it has skewed your thinking and the way you look at life and you seek help. We stand there with you while you do it. Why, because we love you. Why do we love you, because of what you presented to us BEFORE you told us of the csa. Because you showed us a guy we could love. You were Ĺ of the equation that created the relationship that exists now. I wonít take the blame for that and chalk it up to ďmy poor choice.Ē Our later knowledge of the csa turns things upside down and changes the rules for us! You already knew it. I didnít sign up for a guy with problems like that, I fell in love with a guy who didnít tell me anything about it!

I understand, once I learn, why you didnít tell me and I donít blame you for it. But I need the chance to learn and I have to try to understand. If I donít, then Iím a piece of crap who should have said, ďOK, I made a bad choice, this one is damaged beyond repair and I wonít deal with that, see ya. My b/f wants to stay with me, I want to stay with him so I stand by him while he works and I talk to him when he wants to and yes, sometimes I get frustrated and angry and all torn up inside because this is damn hard on me too.

I have a lot of expectations of my b/f. I expect him to do well with his company, itís his livelihood; I expect him to treat me well; I expect him to be faithful to me; I expect him to take care of the dog; I expect him to pay his bills; I expect him to be good to our friends and at least decent to strangers; I expect him to get better because the man I know deserves it.

ROCK ON...........Trish

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

Top
#68116 - 01/19/07 04:14 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
sweet-n-sour Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/06
Posts: 409
Loc: chicago
Trish, perfectly stated!

s-n-s

_________________________
"As long as he continues to try, I will meet him in that determination and commitment."

cm 2007

Top
#68117 - 01/19/07 07:39 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
beccy Offline
Member

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


Did you mean something along the lines of perhaps being kind to yourself/less hard on yourself? Kind of like going easy on yourself sometimes? Accepting certain struggles/difficulties, making some allowances and not punishing yourself for them? If that's what you meant, that does make sense to me. I think it ebs and flows......Don't you think though, that there are times to go easy and times to push yourself? That's what I've found personally.

Following the post by Trish,

I certainly did not know my bf had been CSA when we first met....he didn't tell me about his sister till 7 years later, at the same time as telling me he was worried cause he fancied men and wondered if the two were connected.....when(soon after) I fell pregnant he told me he was worried he might be gay....3 years later, after building tensions, arguments, many difficulties and resulting in daughter showing some behavioural problems, I first went to a homeopath, during which time i rebuilt my own mental health, following that, insisted bf do the same. Finally, after realising many of our problems might be related to the CSA by his sister, I soon after discovered(by snooping around/finding xtra safe condoms & lube) he had gone out with the intention of acting out with total strangers. His idea was truck drivers in service stations. Never mind the shock/infidelity/family situation, I cannot tell you how worried I suddenly felt for the safety of the man I love......after telling him I felt he was still hiding things from me, and I didn't feel I could trust him and that maybe we should just be friends, that was when he told me that that very day, he recovered a memory of possible CSA with a teacher......


Well, I don't need to go into the rest of it all. You get the picture. After all this happened, I recovered a memory of my own, which explained many of my own problems too, so as it turns out, we both have shit to sort out, although mine is very minimal compared to his.


Did I make a mistake in choosing him? That is a question I have recently asked myself. I wonder too if he has asked himself the very same question, because in many many ways, I really don;t feel I've been good for him at all. But I love him, I love him, I love him. I believe in love.

I know that line of thinking which goes, "don't expect this/that from me, I can't give you this/that, it's just the way I am....." Been there, thought that myself many many times, but you know what? I have decided I HAVE to get past that. Get past myself............as me and my bf are communicating more, we learn the truth of how the things we do/don't do hurt each-other. Some things take longer to change than others, and I suppose the test of time will show if we can be happier together.....


I have been through total hell this past year, and 12 years of a totally dysfunctional relationship. I have been hanging on by a thread to my sanity and desperately trying to hold my family together/take care of the kids. The way I see it, mine and my bf's lives have been blighted through no fault of our own, and now we have the chance to make some changes, so we can BOTH be happier and live the life we are truly entitled to live. That certainly means there'll be expectations from me, as I've never been very good at having them before! Before I was confused, tentative, afraid, careful, followed by hysterical and a mess. Oh well, at least that made me laugh!


peace everyone
Beccy


Top
#68118 - 01/19/07 10:36 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
Just thought of something else....


I suppose as each partner learns to realise then communicate their expectations/needs, both are given the opportunity to find out if those needs can be met. Then I suppose, if certain expectations can't ever be met, and depending on how fundamental they are to either person, each one has to consider if they can live with that reality. If not, perhaps that's the point when both have to decide if the relationship can continue?


peace
Beccy


Top
#68119 - 01/20/07 01:50 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Quote:
Unless you are a hindu or similar you had total freedom of choice in choosng a partner. Don't try to blame them for your poor choice. To me making demands and being 'reasonable' is just acting out your own resentment.
after re-reading this statement, and comments from others, i can't help but wonder if this is part of the "i'm so unlovable so anyone who loves me must be crap* also" attitude... (or *crazy, mixed-up, neurotic, pick your favorite psychosis).

i certainly hope not because one can take that sort of thinking and stick it where the sun won't shine.

and i'm not going to apologize for being blunt; i think a lot of people are trying very hard to understand survivors, as well as survivors themselves; to bare their feelings and the difficulties, sometimes insurmountable, in this regard.

so the last thing anyone needs to be told is there must be something wrong with US because we care about YOU

indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

Top
#68120 - 01/20/07 04:04 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
shadowkid Offline
WARNING from ModTeam, September 2013: user "Shadowkid" was exposed as a hoaxer. His entire online persona and stories of sexual abuse were fiction. We encourage you not to become emotionally concerned by anything you see in any of his posts. Thank you
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/18/05
Posts: 2437
we just wanna be like everybody else ,but we dont know how

_________________________
its not hard to fall
when you float like a cannonball - damien rice

Top
#68121 - 01/20/07 07:01 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
Hi Ash,

Quote:
Originally posted by AshSurvived:
I find myself reading through earlier posts about to erupt with righteous indignation at the audacity of partners who actually sincerely believe they can issue a list of demands. But, thanks to your wise words I've calmed down.
Well it's always nice to be called wise \:\)
To be honest with you it makes me more curious than indignant; I just see issuing a list of "I need you to..." as a bad strategy. I mean, demands in most contexts do not make people eager to please you. Most of the time they don't even work.

I have to believe that partners know this from experience. Forget about relationships even-- the above is true for all kinds of human interactions. Children, coworkers, siblings, customer service reps-- the best bet is generally to make an honest, polite request, to provide some motivation for the person to accommodate you, and then to step back and give the other party room to respond.

In my opinion it is RIGHT AT THIS POINT-- the survivor's response-- that things break down. I sometimes see a lack of trust/acceptance in partners where the survivor's actions are concerned and this is where I think your "invalid" comments have merit.

I think some partners cannot or will not separate

1. Needs that the survivor does not understand or know about
2. Needs that the survivor recognizes, but will not meet
3. Needs that the survivor is trying to meet, but can't.

I am using an example that is not an issue in my relationship:

It might be that my partner really does not understand my deep need to have a relationship and home which are relatively calm and free of anger and shouting. But once I express that to him, how much trust/respect am I really giving to him if I continue to act like "maybe he just doesn't GET it?"

And what if he continues to get angry and shout? I think I owe it to both of us to evaluate things correctly. If he is cursing and walking out of the house in a rage, and doesn't apologize or show any effort to use other coping methods, I am TOTALLY stripping him of power to assume that he is just doing the best he can. Do I really believe this guy is that incapable of doing something he wants to do? That he is unable to grow and change? If I really do believe that, maybe there is something abusive in our relationship dynamic. Maybe I get something out of being with a person who has no personal power or ability to do for himself.

Then again, if he does seem to be working on this, but he wakes up late one morning, smashes his shin on the desk and snaps at me when I ask him if he's okay, is it fair of me to react as though he's not trying? Should I punish him and myself by dragging out the whole long list of needs again, and by getting upset at him for other angry incidents in our past, all over again? Maybe in that case I should consider that he IS doing his best, and that I am putting unrealistic expectations on him if I want him to protect me from ever experiencing someone's anger.

And in either case it is totally up to me to decide what level of anger is non-negotiable in my relationship-- not to continue in a relationship that has been shown to be unacceptable to me and then blame the other guy for it. Am I willing to accept life with someone who will NEVER greet me with a smile in the morning, as long as he is cheerful after breakfast? Am I willing to accept the name calling and storming out of the house if things are improving in other areas? etc.


Top
#68122 - 01/20/07 07:06 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Quote:
I just see issuing a list of "I need you to..." as a bad strategy. I mean, demands in most contexts do not make people eager to please you. Most of the time they don't even work.
with all due respect, sar, i cannot fathom at all what you are thinking both in someone stating their needs to another person as well as whether or not it works.

case in point: the ms website clearly states 'guidelines' for posting - these are needs that are meant to keep this site running smoothly and minimize harm to users

every day of our lives we interact in situations where certain needs are expressed and we are expected to follow them if we wish to accomplish whatever it is we are wanting to do at that time - to use a library, we need to return books we borrow, follow the rules, etc. so others might enjoy the same privileges.

in personal relationships, people are often unhappy simply because their biggest failure is NOT expressing their own needs to the other person - this can be in any relationship, friends, social, family, work, academic.

however, in order to express our own needs we first must identify those needs - clearly, succinctly and realistically as is possible between those individuals.

women in society have (almost always) been brought up to put their needs second to those of their male partners, friends, family, virtually every man in their life. to break through this pattern is not easy and yet break through they must in order to find their own fulfillment as individuals. one of the first steps is identifying their own needs. the second step is expressing those needs to their partners, as expectations in the relationship, how he might meet those needs.

how on earth can the survivor-partner ever grapple with the complexities of a relationship - much less be successful at it - if he doesn't even know what's expected of him? :rolleyes:

to tell someone, or worse yet, to be angry, turn away, even cry - and not tell your partner why - ! that's downright as dysfunctional as one can get.

it also seems that disclosure comes about when the survivor is at the point where he wants to express a certain need to his partner/friend/family and is taking steps to do so, however difficult it might be.

i believe if one is interested in an honest relationship one must be forthright about it first, then work on what can and cannot be accomplished second.

if i cannot abide by what's requested of me, then i have a choice to say no. we owe it to our partners to let them know our needs so they can also have that choice. what comes next is between the individuals to work it out from there.

Quote:
we just wanna be like everybody else ,but we dont know how
when we express our needs to you, and asking you for what yours are, we are also teaching you how to understand yourself and become whoever it is you want to be. \:\)

all the best,
indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

Top
#68123 - 01/20/07 09:54 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
Hi Indy,

You are not so far off from what I was trying to say. I posted late at night and maybe wasn't as clear as I could have been.

I am not saying there's anything wrong with expressing your personal desires in a relationship. I am a big advocate of identifying and being honest about our personal needs, and of letting people know what we expect from them. I am certainly not saying it's better to be silent and resentful or expect people to guess.

But it is as you say-- expressing your needs is one step in a process... identifying needs, then expressing those needs AND boundaries (not just "I need my partner to speak to me with courtesy" but also the boundary "I will not remain in a room with someone who is yelling"), and then giving the other person room to choose how to act, and then responding to the other person's actions in a way that communicates your boundaries.

I see a lot of folks who just get stuck on expressing the needs and do it over and over instead of moving forward in the process. There is a disconnect between their words and actions that ends up negating some of the message of NEED, and messes up the balance of power.

This is where expressing becomes demanding, and they are different. One is effective, and in my experience, the other is only effective where there is an imbalance of power.


Top
#68124 - 01/21/07 05:37 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
AshSurvived Offline
Member

Registered: 01/07/07
Posts: 167
Loc: Australia
I read the replies and I'm so confused. But I'm glad some people had a think and are looking at these issues in their lives. By now I've forgotten all the replies but I pretty much stand by my concept that you get what you pay for.

Righteous indignation is something well bred children probably do best, so I can't relate to it at all. If you picked a partner with no idea of what you were actually picking, that's a reflection on you. And the righteous indignation confirms that to me, lest you should examine your own motives overmuch because you want to insist they are pure. To use another cliche: "birds of a feather...." I'm just stating the obvious, because it's not something everyone seems to factor in to their relationship equations. Maybe it's the mothering conditioning in you, maybe it's the ideological programming from Uni, maybe it's a lot of things, but your surviving partner will pick up on every nuance of your shortcomings before you even know about it. They've got you pegged, labelled and filed away.

I'm trying unsuccessfully to show that a catalyst for change in the survivor is honesty, a bit of good old introspection on the part of the healthy partner, a bit of acceptence of complicity in the relationship and in the furtherence of the abuse. They wouldn't be with you if it wasn't working for them. Harsh words I know, but that's what I like about this place, we talk about the really big things and peoples lives are changed, it's all real.

No one replied to the bits I thought were important, which I notice happens a lot, and I assume it's because the brain blocks out the bits that hurt to avoid trauma in the same way the brain blocks out painful memories. And I wonder further if partners who block out things that scrape against their ideology which they are forcing on their relationship are acting out here as well, or acting out in their actions to their partners. Protecting themselves from change by putting up a big ideological front or a big front of demands, anything to maintain control, cos it's scary looking into lonliness and thinking' that could be me tomorrow. They might leave, and I might wake up alone, they might decide they are gay and stay the night'. It must take real courage and real character to weather that. I do think for all the terrible years we've been together I have built charcter in my wife that wasn't there before. Not wholly intentionally, but the trauma for her has built that character. She went through a hoity-toity 'I'm the boss of the world' stage too, and she went submissive, and other things, and then she started to grow.

That's why I have plagued her to read Victims No Longer. I think it's crap, but I also think it will help her recall and make sense of the awful past and move on, because it catalogues the demands that survivors make on their partners.

On reflection, I want to post>
_________________________
"It's your world Dave, I'm just livin' in it"

- Harvey Pekar to David Letterman
(American Splendour)

Top
#68125 - 01/21/07 06:53 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Quote:
I do think for all the terrible years we've been together ...
??? is this an honest evaluation of your relationship?

ash, i can't help but wonder if you are trying to convince yourself all survivor's relationships are "terrible" so you might justify your own.

no doubt the survivor/non-survivor relationship is difficult and sometimes does end in separation but not always. a healthy relationship in any situation promotes growth and well being, being a suvivor is no exception, it just takes more time and effort.

i'm sorry you are so negative and see so little hope because it is there, it is possible, for you as well as everyone else.

all the best,
indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

Top
#68126 - 01/21/07 08:26 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
I just wrote a load of stuff, then deleted it. I'm not sure I'm one of the 'healthy partners'. I am learning about the differences between my bf's problems and mine and have come to wonder why either of us has stayed with the other. At the same time, I can see a number of things which must have made sense enough for both of us to stay.....

Over the past year, I have come to see some of
my own ideology come to fruition with my bf. I have seen changes which are monumental for him/me/us. These are ideologies which I had long ago forgotten/learned to live without, never mind realise/ask for/hope for. I have also seen myself change in ways which have proved some of my own beliefs about myself to be not necessarily 'stuck' that way. Because of these things, I will not underestimate either my bf, or myself and our capacities to grow and change. (It has taken both of us seeking (good) proffessional help to begin to change these things) Whether we grow and change in the same direction and still want to be with eachtoher is yet to be seen. That is a reality. But maybe that's always the reality really......


Ash, are you saying your wife didn'thave any character originally?

Also, you say you don;t do feelings, but in one of your other posts, you said you love your wife. Is that love a feeling? I read other feelings too in your posts. Do you mean you feel numb a lot of the time?


I hear your feelings of indignation about partner's expectations. I also know the reality of having expectations and the absolute importance of learning to realise what they are, expressing them in a constructive way. What happens after that will be particular to each individual relationship and no-one can predict that future. Do you have expectations in your relationship with your wife?


I'm just going to post this now, before I delete it again...


peace
Beccy


Top
#68127 - 01/21/07 10:40 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us.
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
I've just re-read what I posted, and I don't know if I was very clear...


Ash, I am not doubting your experience/feelings after reading about some of the partner's expectations on this board. They are your feelings and no-one has the right to doubt or invalidate them. But some of the things you said made me feel like you were invalidating and ridiculing those expectations.


peace
Beccy


Top
#138702 - 01/23/07 05:35 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us. [Re: beccy]
Junyah Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/07/06
Posts: 52
Loc: Mississauga, Ont
Hello all, just wanted to say I am not an invalid, I am a survivor, just felt that was important for me to say.
Peace...

_________________________
"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."
ó Albert Einstein

Top
#138704 - 01/23/07 06:04 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us. [Re: Junyah]
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
It's really good to read that Junyah.

From the first moment my bf disclosed I viewed him as probably the strongest person I have ever met. I believe that would catagorise him as a survivor. That was before he started any of his therapy/recovery.

Equally I have come to realise I have a whole host of my own 'problems', stemming from certain events in my own childhood, which I could often be tempted to view as meaning I am 'incapable'. Some days I can become very wrapped up in these issues, feel hopeless, believe there's no point in even trying because everything fails anyway. (This week has been one of those weeks actually). Then tell myself, that's just the way I am and I can't do anything about it. But, what I have found recently, is that if I am kind to myself, forgive myself those shortcomings/failures/messes, give myself a little time to come around, I can get back on my feet again. Try again. Learn more about my capacity for growth. Believe I am MORE THAN THE SUM TOTAL of those negative thoughts/behaviours.


peace
Beccy


Top
#138749 - 01/23/07 03:47 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know About Us. [Re: beccy]
Junyah Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/07/06
Posts: 52
Loc: Mississauga, Ont
very well put Beccy
same has been happening for me lately, the sooner i forgive myself for my action or lack there of I am able to recover a little faster each time...

_________________________
"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."
ó Albert Einstein

Top
#139034 - 01/25/07 10:09 PM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know Abou [Re: Junyah]
AshSurvived Offline
Member

Registered: 01/07/07
Posts: 167
Loc: Australia
I hope Junyah, that you are getting the help you need. I don't know your background, but I do hope you're not trying to be a brave little boy. The partners may like it, ideologues may like it but it won't do you any favours. A kid with a broken arm can think just about anything they like, it's what others do to help them that really counts. Make sure you are getting help, specialised help, not people who through their own incompetence prop up your scared cows. This isn't an online word game, it's us vs. charlatans and people who will compund our abuse. But even a site like this can be turned into a means to hurt yourself if you are not careful.

_________________________
"It's your world Dave, I'm just livin' in it"

- Harvey Pekar to David Letterman
(American Splendour)

Top
#139066 - 01/26/07 04:35 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know Abou [Re: AshSurvived]
beccy Offline
Member

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


I think it's great you shared your positivity. Hold onto those positive feelings,



peace
Beccy


Top
#139074 - 01/26/07 07:25 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know Abou [Re: beccy]
compassion Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/07/06
Posts: 33
Loc: Illinois, US
I am drinking coffee right now, but I would still say..."I'd drink to that!"

_________________________
The ocean that flows in you; flows in me...all colors of humanity.

My "avatar" is a lotus...a beautiful flower that thrives in muddy water.

Top
#146343 - 03/21/07 02:29 AM Re: Survivors: What We Would Like You to Know Abou [Re: compassion]
Junyah Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/07/06
Posts: 52
Loc: Mississauga, Ont
thx beccy will do...

ashsurvived, I'm not sure what your post means, so I will only say this...nevermind,
Peace....

_________________________
"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."
ó Albert Einstein

Top
Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5 >


Moderator:  ModTeam, peroperic2009 

I agree that my access and use of the MaleSurvivor discussion forums and chat room is subject to the terms of this Agreement. AND the sole discretion of MaleSurvivor.
I agree that my use of MaleSurvivor resources are AT-WILL, and that my posting privileges may be terminated at any time, and for any reason by MaleSurvivor.