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#70636 - 09/08/06 02:20 AM emotional work
cat lover Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/09/05
Posts: 89
Loc: Denver, Colorado
Hi guys. Just needing to check in a bit. Short recap of my story: In 2003, I was essentially raped by a guy I was seeing & had fallen hard for. As a result I've had some trust issues, and have keep guys at bay. I did start to open the door and let a guy in (2006) but he just disappeared, stood me up for dinner, blah blah blah. So the other day I was in a bookstore, and saw a book about emotional abuse, called "Shattered." My therapist already had me work through a different book. I guess there were two pieces that jumped out at me and made me get the book. One was perusing a section where I realized (click, the light went on) that what the second guy did was also emotional abuse (but no physical abuse, we never slept together). And there was also a realization that I guess I still have some trust issues to work through. Disappointing though it was, the first time back up at bat, to be treated so poorly. Surely there are good guys out there. So I'm going to keep reading the book. Okay, that's my check in.


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#70637 - 09/12/06 10:34 AM Re: emotional work
healingtravels Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/06/06
Posts: 1
Loc: Melbourne,Australia
Hi there, really know where you're coming from. I was raped by my first boyfriend when I was 18, then again in my last relationship approx 5 years ago. Thought my life couldn't get any worse, went to some therapists and am slowly making better sense of the world. Now in a great relationship and my current boyfriend is really supportive. Life DOES get better, but it will take time, and there ARE great guys out there. It's just a case of relationships happen when you aren't expecting them. So spend the time looking after yourself, hanging out with friends, doing things you enjoy and that's when you'll meet someone nice. Rick


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#70638 - 09/12/06 10:45 AM Re: emotional work
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Cat Lover,

That's the big problem when we have trust issues - it is so tempting, and reassuring in a way, to see everyone as unsafe.

But the key here is boundaries. Respect your own boundaries by staying with people and places where your boundaries will also be respected. As HT says, there are really good people out there. It's just a matter of developing safe skills in finding them.

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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#70639 - 09/14/06 04:19 AM Re: emotional work
cat lover Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/09/05
Posts: 89
Loc: Denver, Colorado
Thanks guys.

I appreciated the note to stay around people who will respect my boundaries. Maybe that's why I have a lot of lesbian friends. But I'm wanting to expand that to have more male friends, safe ones.

I've been doing the 'take care of myself and do things I enjoy and hope to meet someone' routine for a long time. I'm tired of being lonely.

Where is the balance? I have physical and emotional needs which need meeting. I have safety and boundaries needs which need meeting. I found some guidance in a book about sexual ethics ("Love Does No Harm," by Marie Fortune) and it seems like a good framework for me. I asked the disappearing guy to read it (hey, he asked me to read Camus with him, which I did) but don't know if he ever did. Maybe he wasn't ethical and it was good to find that out. Anyway, maybe there is some balance in that book and that work.

Sometimes I feel resentful at the time, effort, and energy I have had to spend on recovery work thanks to these guys. I wish I could get it back.


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#70640 - 09/14/06 05:05 AM Re: emotional work
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Cat Lover,

Quote:
Where is the balance?
I think that question is somehow its own answer. Have you ever noticed how your various encounters with guys vary enormously? When you are with one it seems like you have to do all the work in keeping things going. He likes to be pursued and maybe it will lead to something, but he's in it all for himself. Meanwhile, with another guy you can feel from the outset that both of you are contributing something. There's a feeling of mutual respect and responsibility.

At the beginning, whether it's a gay or straight encounter, I think those feelings are all we really have to work with. We don't know where things will go or what we will learn later on. So I would listen to those feelings and go for the guy who seems to care. That's not a bad place to start.

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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