Sorry that I've been out of touch for the past 2 years - I have been hospitalized several times - twice cheating death.

I had multiple blood clots in both lungs and a massive clot in my pulmonary artergy. It was only pure luck that I went to the hospital before the clot moved and killed me.

Then, I ended up in the ER twice in 3 weeks with heart racing to the borderline of fibrillation. The 2nd episode took 4 hours to get under control. This was finally treated with a catheter procedure by "frying" an electrical circuit that was causing the problem.

So, as all can see, I've been a little "preoccupied".

I'm very discouraged at this point in my life. After 10 years of chronic pain, 10 years of sleep deprivation, several life-threatening episodes, 30+ years of therapy, and I still see no hope of recovery from the CSA.

Because of health and work issues, my emotional life is stressed to the point of breaking. I still put up tremendous walls in my marriage and generally don't trust anyone around me. I'm on an emotional roller-coaster and my stress level continues to skyrocket. Many times I have NO sense of hope for anything close to a satisfying life.

Memories continue to haunt me, upsetting and invasive dreams still crop up, and I shut down emotionally when I feel cornered.

I apologize that this posting sounds so "negative", and those who have known me over the years know that I'm usually a relatively optimistic person. But, I'm just laying it on the line - I'm desperate and discouraged.

I read the occasional story of someone who has overcome the demons of childhood and is able to go on with life. I'm so happy for those individuals - but I have a hard time envisioning that as a reality for me. How many more years of therapy do I have to attend? How many more anti-depressants do I have to try just to help my ability to cope with life, only to have them lose their effectiveness after several months?

I'm frustrated that, because of lack of funding, the local support group where I live had fallen apart and the one guy with whom I have kept in contact is so caught up in his own problems can't find the time or energy to meet on a regular basis.

I have always been honest with my therapists, my wife, and close friends. But the more time that passes brings stronger feelings that I am really broken to the point that there is no way to "fix" me.

I'm basically living an existence at this point in time. I go to work, use all of my energy to get thru the day, come home and collapse at 7:30 and wake up at all hours of the night from physical pain (back problems), then get up the next morning and start all over.

I just don't know where to turn next. I truly wish that someone had some profound words of wisdom that would give me some sense of hope. All that I want out of life is to wake up in the morning and look forward to a day, have a trusting relationship with my wife, be comfortable with being close in my marriage without feeling threatened (the threat is completely perceptual on my part - I have a very patient and understanding wife).

But folks, after so many years of struggling without success, it gets very discouraging. Though I am NOT suicidal, there are times that I wonder why I go on... what is it that keeps me going every day?

I've read all the books, done every therapy imaginable, and taken just about every anti-depressant on the market and still feel that my abusers have won.

Has anyone ever felt this low? Is there any remote possibility of shedding this emotional baggage that I've held on to for so many years?

Thanks for "listening".

SD