i used to be hypersensitive to being touched by anyone. i couldn't stand it - especially if it was a surprise or didn't see it coming like if someone came up behind me and put a hand on my shoulder. i would freak out inside, and though i often startled or flinched quite visibly, i was able to hide the emotional disturbance it caused.
I cannot stand to be touched, especially if I'm caught off guard. Just this week, there have been about three times when I've been talking with someone, and they reached out and touched my shoulder or back. I just freak out when that happens. In fact, one person apologized and didn't mean to make me jump like that. I'm sure it's related to CSA, and the memories of being first touched, and then later held down and restrained while being abused. I haven't brought it up with my T yet. I don't know if I will. It seems awkward to bring up, and also there is more stuff I need to deal with first. Thanks for your story. It will help give me some perspective on all this.
Hey guys. I just had to chime in a little here as I can relate to this topic immensely. Being touched is an issue for me and has been at least since I was a teenager. Especially being touched when I'm not expecting it. Even more so when the touch is on my hip, sides, shoulders or butt. I totally freak out, badly enough that people notice and it makes an impression on them.
Over the years I've had a lot of co-workers and friends that have used this to tease me and it really pisses me off. They always think it's funny to watch me jump. I don't think any of them have understood how badly I freak out on the inside when I'm doing that jumping though. Or they didn't care and even thought that was funny, I don't know.
I don't know if this problem is natural, if it is a CSA symptom or possibly a symptom of other childhood trauma I could think of. Or, maybe it's some combination of those. Either way, it's something I struggle with to this day and I don't think there is any "cure" for it.
I guess I have to clarify that being touched when I am expecting the touch is usually ok. Hugs are usually ok. It's the unexpected touch that sends me jumping through the ceiling.
I had one male coworker in particular who used to poke me in the side or ribs every time he walked by and it never failed to get a jolt out of me. He thought it was hilarious until I finally snapped on him one day and threatened to "kick his fucking ass" if he ever did it again. It was one of the only times in my life I've ever stood up for myself or threatened to fight someone. He actually had the nerve to accuse me
of being a dick for reacting the way I did but he never poked me in the ribs again.
A few years ago I had a female coworker who I had a pretty good working relationship with. Although I am not and never have been interested in romantic/intimate relationships, I can be very flirtatious with female coworkers if I like them and they are flirtatious first. As long as I feel like it's "just for fun" and we are only joking with one another, it feels safe. Anyway, on one occasion this female coworker walked up behind me and pinched my butt. I just about jumped out of my skin! As usual, I was embarrassed by my own reaction and it showed. I could tell she was also embarrassed, and she apologized, saying , "I didn't mean to scare you like that." I told her it was ok but that I just really didn't like being touched when I wasn't expecting it. Then, she held up her hand, making a pinching motion with her index finger and thumb and asked "can I?" I smiled, stuck my butt out and said "yes." Then, she pinched my butt again and it was ok, and funny.
After that, it became almost like a little game for us. She would walk up to me, make that pinching motion with her fingers and ask, "can I?" Normally without responding I would just smile and stick my butt out and she would pinch away. It's ok when it feels safe. Peace,