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Hey guys. So, after my sexual assault and my possible abusive relationship, I haven't had romantic feelings for anybody. My relationship was definitely borderline abusive emotionally, and never physically, but it was complicated. Anyway, this was a couple of years ago. I recently had feelings for this guy. I wouldn't say I loved him, but I had really strong feelings for him, and it was the first time since the relationship that I have been interested in somebody. We became really close friends and my feelings for him grew. I saw him last week, and when we went to say goodbye I was crying (it was a sad to leave, and it had nothing to do with him) and he held my head in his hands really close to his face and wiped my tears away. I pulled away because I know he has a girlfriend, and I'm not that girl. I honestly still think there was something there, but he says he doesn't like me in that way. The big deal was that usually when people hold my head it scares me, because of what happened, but this felt different. If anyone has had similar experiences please comment, and I am a teenager but it sucks nonetheless.


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Been a long time since i was a teen, but not so long that i can't relate to your experience.

Speaking from my teen experience i had a really mixed up view of myself as a person. Growing up female i was made aware of my sexuality at way too early of an age.

I can look back now and recognize how messed up the relationships were.

That being said, it left me confused when someone cared for me as an individual that had nothing to do with my gender or sexual desire on their part, i felt lost.

It sounds from the way you describe this that your friend was showing you true care (for You, for who you are, and the qualities he values in you), and that you're not really sure how to process it?

Your attraction/trust towards him and his tenderness may be a need andreadiness to have some 'real' relationships in your life that aren't stemming from some messed up view of how to relate.

Sure wish life came with an operator's manual! I'm still trying to figure it out.

*just one survivor's point of view

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I've been where you are. After sexual assault, romantic relationships are one of the most difficult hurdles to jump. Almost 2 yrs ago I had my first relationship since my assault. It wasn't an abusive relationship, but it was dysfunctional. I was in love with my bf, but he wasn't in love with me and I knew he wasn't, which was why I never told him how a really felt. Survivors like us often subconsciously seek out dysfunctional relationships because our attackers made us feel worthless. Neither of us are worthless. I know you had deep feelings for the new guy, and believe me, I am the queen of unrequited love. I know exactly how you feel. I'm an adult and I'm still figuring out how to have a healthy romantic relationship after what happened to me. It takes a lot of therapy and self-refection to figure it out. I would suggest that you consider getting some individual counseling. It has really helped me. Hope my perspective helps.

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