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Intimacy is too much




I'm new to this and unsure about the whole "online talk therapy" thing, but I'm just giving it a shot because it honestly feels like a diary entry with feedback.

Something happened today and it has happened before. 


My partner and I used to be very very sexually involved. Like there was a fire between us! But these days, ever since I started uncovering my real sexual trauma, I shiver at the sight of his or my naked body and feel like I'm being ripped apart by any loving touch. This is new for me, it has been happening about 5-6 months but for the first time in my life. I used to have such a heavy sex drive and these days even when my body wants it, my mind can't get on board. Sometimes we can be involved and it will go smoothly until afterwards I find myself having a panic attack. I can't seem to differentiate the touch of my partner to the feeling of being raped. I feel ashamed, guilty, unattractive, needy, and like I am going to drive him off into the arms of another woman because I'm not the same girl I used to be.

He has never made any indication of my trauma being a problem for our relationship, but it does affect us both. He feels unwanted and we both are unfulfilled. I'm very sad about it. I honestly don't know what to do! My counselor (who just moved on to a new facility) and I had talked about the issues before, but I don't feel much healing going on. I need alternatives and I need to fix this. 

RANT: I'm only 21 years old and I have no sex drive. I don't find my partner attractive right now because that feeling brings on the worry of intimacy and I can't handle that. I'm losing myself and my relationship to the rape of my body years ago. I'm so mad! 


Anyway... I know a lot of people have dealt with this to, but I've never actually had any confirmation for my personal situation. It would be really nice to know i'm not alone.


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Shaantiamor... unfortunately, I can relate. I guess that's why I'm back again, after another break for a couple years. And this has actually been going on for awhile now. Sometimes I guess it's just easier to sweep it under the rug. I want what we used to have before we had been married 20 something years. Before I opened up to him and let him into my dark past. It used to be so easy when we were younger. Before he knew. And he's been so good to me. He understands as much as possible. I wish I had some miracle fix for you, and for me. I'll think on it for a while and try to come back with some kind of an answer. What I can say, is when we do it's usually great that one time a year. It's a lot of guilt to live with. And then after I feel guilt, especially if I wasn't able to keep the ghosts from the past out of the bedroom. And I'm relieved that I'm off the hook for awhile. And sometimes giving in just gives him the idea that I'm ok now. I've been throughy therapized over this. For me, it comes up when I have any kind of health issue. Could be a common cold, this time it's a serious injury that could actually give me a great excuse not to. Maybe someone will come along on this thread and give us both an ah ha moment. I love my husband. We've been though a lot together and he must love me a whole lot too, to keep sticking around. And I'm sure your partner does too, since you're here looking for a solution. And really maybe I know the answer. Communication is key. I know this from experience, yet it's easier said than done. And the world is a strange place to be these days. Hang in there, it will get better, then worse and better in between. Keep a good foundation. As long as the foundation is good. The rest can be fixed eventually. Any advice anyone has on this subject would be very welcome. Safe hugs to you, if that's ok. ❤

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No big "aha!" here, but I resonate with what you both have said.  My drive was very strong in my younger years, but also very edgy.  I think in some ways that as long as I stayed disassociated and sex was a performance I could do it and not really feel the impact, but as I've gotten older, and done more healing, and come into alignment with myself and my trauma, it has gotten harder to be that person.  That said, I am grateful to have a really kind and supportive partner.  We have been together about nine years and there are times where nothing happens between us for a couple of months, and then we may go through a week where it happens once, or a bunch, and then it's off again.  I think part of why I struggle is that the parts of my that are most exciting to me are pretty close to the parts of me that are most traumatized, so its like I can get closer and closer to that place where I'm really engaged and then if I'm not careful something switches in my mind and I tip over into flashback.  It was very difficult at first because he started treating me so gently because he didn't want to hurt me that it completely made me turn off, and he started to feel less attracted because he was worried that every time he tried to be with me he would end up feeling awful for bringing up the trauma.  I agree, communication is really important, and maybe couples counseling with someone who understands trauma if you can, and resources like the supporters board here on AS if your person is open to learning more?


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