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About 00000000

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    Haven't worked out where I fit in yet.
  • Birthday 09/11/1983

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  1. I'm so sick of hearing "why didn't they come forward sooner". When I got out, my abuser pulled of a masterful piece of misdirection. He convinced my girlfriend dump me. He manipulated her into thinking I was terrifyingly evil so she wouldn't listen to a word I said. He made her afraid and suddenly alone. So she hung out with another of his victims. Maybe even dated that guy. Who knows. What I do know is that other guy was too far gone (brainwashed) to be able to protect her from Him. After I got out, I found it so hard to talk. A cold choking silence would take over me if I dared think of talking about it. I knew that He had done something to me, to us. I tried to write it all down but couldn't get more than two sentences. The best I could manage were small statements about how dangerous He was; about what he might do. I tried talking to the police asking them to protect my (ex)girlfriend but couldn't give them anything they could action. I was terrified of what He might do to her. His lies were sticking in my own head so I actually started thinking I was evil. I became suicidal. I was suffering from depression, PTSD, with DDNOS or possibly DID. Daily and weekly breakdowns became normal. And what did people think? All of what I was going through, everything I managed to say... Most dismissed it as a hormonal teenager who's GF had just left him, "just looking for someone to blame". It makes me so angry to think about it now. I still blame myself for being unable to tell anyone, for being unable to find the words. I blame myself for not remembering what had happened. I blame myself for abandoning her. It took me over a decade to piece it all together and by the time I did, what good could I do? Who could I tell? There was even less for the police to go on than when it first happened. If He was going to hurt her then he did a long time ago. If #MeToo has done one thing then it's given me an excuse to talk about what happened years later. It has told people that even though it happened a long time ago, talking about it is good.
  2. I was reminded recently by another user of just how hard I found relationships after abuse. I was the victim of "puppet master abuse" over some months, forced to do things with my girlfriend by a truly disguising man. In the years that followed this left me believing some of his most destructive lies. Many of them took years to work through; a process that involved experiencing life and seeing the truth with my own eyes. Every area of my life had been tainted. I had to completely relationships with my family. College and work life was messed up. Making friendships was hard as I was no-longer certain what a friendship looked like. And all of this was happening in my teenage years when I was supposed to be building new friendships and discovering who I was. I had a lot of catching up to do. The lies he used lingered in my life for a very long time. The most destructive one was this: He told me and my girlfriend that our love for each other was dangerous without his help. That we would hurt each other without him. I can't give any excuse for believing him. But we did. We begged him to help us. Fifteen years after the abuse I still hadn't exposed and rejected this lie. I needed to fall in love and let myself feel in love long enough, experience love in a safe environment. Every relationship I'd had for that fifteen years had been an utter disaster. I'd fall in love but then the fear and dread of the danger I would bring would take hold. I'd be trying to build trust and a loving relationship while at the same time my subconscious was searching for ways to scream "Run away from me!". No relationship lasted long enough to teach my subconscious that love was safe. One way in was to spend time with my sister's family, playing with my little niece and nephew. Love is a strange thing, there's many different types. It was helpful to spend time in that safety. Learning that I wasn't going to hurt them. Simply playing silly games with them and laughing. Children are easy to get along with and slowly the fear got less. I had a great shock when one day I fell in love and didn't feel scared. I don't know, maybe the circumstances of how I met my wife were too bizarre to set off any trigger. The whole thing seemed like particularly surreal dream. But I spent a couple of days with a girl before she jetted back to her home country. The long distance relationship that followed either didn't trigger me or my subconscious wasn't able to make itself heard over text. Who knows. Well she's coming to live with me soon. I'm scared but happy that she's coming. I'm looking forward to letting myself feel love without any fear. Healing has been long and hard, but I got here in the end.
  3. We English don't talk about Sex. We're known for it. I've only ever talked about it at length with two people: V - The girl I fell in love with at 17 C - The old man who subsequently abused both me and V So it's hard for me as an English man and a survivor to even type the word without getting nervous. But it is a subject that is inevitably going to be difficult for many survivors. There will be many different reasons for it to be difficult. In my last two therapy sessions I've tried to talk about it, about the fears I have being in a sexually active relationship again. In the first session it didn't do so well. Sitting on a sofa with someone telling me "it's normal to feel these things" just reminded me too much of being 17, sitting on a sofa, and an old man telling me "it's normal to feel these things". Nothing my therapist could do to tell me "this is a safe environment" could stop the alarm bells ringing. Anything she did to make me feel more calm just made my subconscious scream louder that I was being manipulated. But I do want to talk about it. I want to express why it scares me so much and how I have begun to resolve that problem. I had some more success in my last session. In talking about it I found I want to be adventurous with my girlfriend (as she has asked to be). But I want to be safe. C twisted my boundaries. He wanted me to do some pretty disgusting things with V in front of him. Frankly, he erased my boundaries in order to manipulate me. It left my fantasies truly messed up. So when I got out, after C, the only boundaries I could find were "avoid sex". After that boundary, after consent, I feel so scared of what to do next. I feel scared I might hurt my partner in some way. As much as I want to trust my girlfriend to tell me when some-thing's wrong I can't really go into sex saying "by the way, I think I'm dangerous". In all other areas of life I've been able to undo his brainwashing. I've observed other people carefully and figured out a map of what is "normal" and "acceptable". In the hardest cases I've simply asked people what was normal. That is, I've re-learned to be me. But when it comes to sex, its much more difficult. All I've got is a 17 year old's memoires of a destroyed relationship, C's abuse and some pretty messed up relationships since. How do you begin to build a map of what's normal with that? It's not like pornography is going to give any idea of "normal" or even "acceptable". Dating J for the past few months has helped. It seems that finding the right person has been important. We began very simply. Very un-adventurous. J didn't ask me what my fantasies are and when she's tried since I've gently but firmly avoided the question. She's since told me she wants to try new things and doesn't really know what to try. She wants me to come up with some ideas and that's where I'm being ultra careful. Under no circumstance do I want what we do to be influenced by C and I know that my fantasies are still messed up. So for the moment I'm able to come up with a few ideas and keep things a very long way from anything C ever talked about or tried to make me do. I know there will come a time when there is an overlap between what happened with C and what we do now. But I'm working on building a map that starts with "vanilla" and works out from there. Hopefully I can re-inforce that map enough so that when things become more "interesting" I don't find myself slipping into flashbacks during sex.
  4. 00000000

    A New Relationship

    I've taken a break from writing for a while. I've been uncertain how to continue without breaking my golden rule: Anonymity. When I first joined After Silence I was so afraid to speak about myself that I picked a name which conveyed nothing about myself "00000000". Actually it conveyed two things... It conveyed the fact I like computers and it conveyed they way I thought of myself... "null", "nothing", "zero". Over the past few months my experiences have been so unique that I haven't dared talk about them for fear of being recognised. Other events from the past few months have been spoken about in previous posts but today I wanted to talk a little about J. She came into my life so unexpectedly. She has become an integral part of my life so quickly that I find it hard to imagine life without her. But anonymity must be kept so I apologise for the following censorship. We met at a wedding in [country]. Actually we completely missed meeting each other at the wedding and met the day after as the only two who were still there but had no plans. She had the idea of going in search of the [unlikely fantasy object] and after a search on google we rented a car and drove half way across the country. We found it and there were few of us there; only curious people who'd also been surprised to find such an unlikely object in the middle of an otherwise dull country. She got tired and didn't want to drive at night so I drove her home and slept on her sofa. The morning after we had breakfast and I saw her off at the airport. Her travel plans took her to [my home country] after that so we met up again. There things became intimate. To put it bluntly we had sex. Alright she had to ask me eight times "what do you want?" before I could be honest and ask to spend the night with her. You see this was the first time in years. As it turned out it was the first time ever that I didn't trigger. It was just natural Having since met up with her in [country] and then her home in [country] our romance has now covered four countries and three continents. Each time we meet sex has become easier. I'm discovering that she has a seriously naughty side. That's something of a relief because it it was left to me to make the bedroom interesting I would definitely trigger. And here's the thing I just can't get over. I'm calm around her. Calm in a way I've not felt about love since I was abused. She makes me laugh and I make her laugh. It just seems to happen for no reason. We look at each other, tell each other off for being childish and then immediately both pull silly faces. She understands what it is to have been hurt and can comfort me when I'm down. But her experiences are different from mine so that when she goes down I can comfort her and not get dragged into my own flashbacks. We talk on the phone every day and have not missed a day since we first met. These things don't come easily for me. I was single for eight years and the relationships I had before that only triggered me more. It is a constant battle to keep my old self out, to keep the abuse from C well away from this relationship. But so far, so goo. And at last I feel happy in a relationship.
  5. I though I was doing so well I see it on the forums and I hear it from so many fellow survivors. I've said it myself enough times to loose count. In the early days after abuse it's hard to think about recovery but we begin to notice ... ...I made it though another day... ...I made it through a day with only a couple of breakdowns... ...I didn't breakdown today at all. These little things help give us hope. They show us that we're on the mend and they show us we're not always going to hurt this much. As time passes we think about recovery as a series of achievements... ...Today I passed my exams... ...Today I got a job... ...Today I was with my [girl / boy] friend and didn't freak out... But no matter how much we think we have healed, there are times we find ourself slipping down that ladder so fast we wonder "Was I imagining it? Have I really healed at all?" If you are in that place right now then let met tell you, without even knowing you... You are doing much better than you feel If you need medical help or therapy or just someone to talk to then please get help. But as you do don't lose that hope you've built up. Relapses, bad days, bad months and complete crashes, whatever name you give them they happen to every survivor. They can be caused by anything from a death in the family to a relationship breakup. Perhaps the hardest relapses to accept are the ones caused by nothing at all. The way I see it, abuse left a huge crater in my life with me stuck in the middle. The long road to recovery hasn't meant that the crater disappeared it's just meant that I've learned to climb out of craters. In the early days after the abuse it was like measuring how far up the wall I could climb. Now its like measuring how quickly and easily I climb out. What this looks like for me In November I was given a fairly unique opportunity to compare like for like. That is I had a really tough November 2016 which was tragically similar to November 2015: My Grandfathers were diagnosed with terminal cancer I was in two motor bike crashes I went through a rough patch with my girlfriend (then and now) In reality I hit the same low both years. This year I had the added fear of history repeating itself. But then I began to notice that this year things were very different: I went numb at the news of my grandfather but it lasted only two days instead of two weeks It felt right to be low after the news and not like I was loosing it. The rough patch with my girlfriend was tough but I didn't freak out Where am I now? Progress is hard and slow. It's taken me fifteen years to recover this far and I envy those who get there faster. But with time and therapy I've really managed process what happened all those years ago. I know there will be bad days and relapses again; but I also know I will handle them.
  6. 00000000

    A Long Month

    Its been a while since I've written here. I guess I've had too much going on and too much I didn't understand to be able to write about it. Physically Trigged A month ago I struggled with my subconscious becoming triggered. I could be talking calmly when I realised my voice had cracked and my chest was pounding. It was strange finding myself with all the physical symptoms of being overwhelmed, yet being totally calm and happy. What's worse, these symptoms hit me while I was trying to date. Just flirting with a girl I liked (E) caused me to physically shake. E was fun to talk to. She seemed to like me but somehow I couldn't bring myself to open up to her. This is no worse than previous attempts. Actually, remaining calm and collected while flirting was a big improvement. Every relationship I had since I was abused was tainted. I was in love with the girl I was abused with. I felt a terrible loss when when I got out and she didn't. But worse than that, ever since, falling in love has felt like loosing control. It's scared me so much. It's felt like being brainwashed all over again; it's felt like my thoughts weren't my own. EMDR This month I've worked hard with my therapist to untangle these things; to remember what love was like before we were abused. This has taken time. My therapist has been trying EMDR with me (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing). It's been really effective. Even when the physical triggering has been overwhelming EMDR has calmed my body down. Even when the triggering is completely subconscious EMDR has both calmed me down and allowed sad memories to come flooding back. It has actually allowed me to remember my I am upset. So it has taken me from shaking for no reason to crying for old memories. I've written before about the difference between triggering and feeling and this is just the same. For the first time I've been able to feel clearly how much I loved V and how pure that feeling had been. For the first time I've seen that this pure love ran right through the abuse and nothing C did changed the way I felt about V. C got in the way of us expressing love for each properly but I don't think it ever stopped either of us loving one another. This breakthrough has been huge. For the first time I can think of my relationship with V as pure and not associate it with the things C did. Relationship Status So about a month ago, things with E fizzled into nothing. It was to be expected really but I was sad about it all the same. It happened right before I travelled abroad to a friend's wedding. Somehow it was well timed because at the wedding I met someone. We spent three days just hanging out in a country that neither of us knew. We went on a road trip together for the fun of it. I was relaxed without triggering once. I saw her off at the airport and we agreed to meet again. Her next travel stop took her to England (my home country). And then it happened. I'm in a relationship. All right its now a long distance relationship. But I haven't triggered once. For the first time since I was abused I'm in a relationship and not triggered!
  7. It’s dangerous for me to remember what I want to talk about. On Friday I lost time during therapy. I spent an hour there and I only remember about ten minutes. What I “knew” when I was seventeen was wrong: I didn’t think there was anything sexual going on when we met C. What he’d done was to play chess and teach us his own peculiar brand of psychology. He used it to predict what we’d do. He’d taught us we were in danger without him. He’d taught us we were dangerous without him. We were the one’s who’d done things in front of him. He’d taught us we were Evil. It was my mum that got me out. It doesn’t matter what you see first: a tooth, a claw or a tail. When you see it’s a wolf dressed as a sheep, you know it’s a wolf. No amount of bleating will change it back. What my mum said didn’t change a single thing except I couldn’t deny that C had made me strip naked while he watched. I still believed he was trying to help and I still believed I was dangerous. But you can’t change a wolf into a sheep. I knew I couldn’t convince V. I knew that like me she believed we were dangerous together. I knew that C wouldn’t allow me to get out without retribution and I knew I’d lose her. I had no choice. I failed. I lost her. How did I feel to be Seventeen? Alone. I became locked in for months trying to find any way I could protect her, looking for any way to get her out. It was obsessive but I couldn’t abandon her. I feel like my subconscious is still trying to solve that problem even now; looking for any way to save her. Yet at seventeen all of this was in conflict with the fact I thought I was evil. How did I feel to be Seventeen? Struck dumb. I wanted to talk about what had happened but couldn’t speak a word. I tried over and over. I tried to talk to the police and couldn’t find a single thing to tell them. I tried to talk to a therapist for over six months. I tried to write it down but could barely get to the second sentence. I could talk about C’s own brand of psychology, but I couldn’t speak of the evil things it predicted we’d do. I could talk about C’s dislike of religion, but I couldn’t talk about what we did in front of him. This is the heart of The Confusion I’ve spoken about before. This was the silence that overwhelmed me. Last week I remembered what this silence felt like and it overwhelmed me again. There’s a link in everything I couldn’t speak of and in everything I couldn’t remember. Whenever I tried to talk about what C did it came out as “I am evil”. I was so afraid these three words would escape my lips that I couldn’t speak at all. And even here now, posting on AS, it’s the same phrase that threatens to creep out from my subconscious.
  8. 00000000

    It's Time to Talk

    Where do I start? Where do I start? The words don't come easily today. I'm planning to talk to the police. The thought of it stifles every word I try to find. Every word is stolen away before I can speak or write it down. I've been dong so well in talking to my therapist I'd almost forgotten that I've not talked to anyone else. I'd forgotten how difficult talking is. This is the same silence that struck me dumb right after the abuse. I'd tried to talk back then: to my parents, to my friends, to the police, but I was completely unable to find the words. I tried to write it down so many times but couldn't get so much as half a sentence. I didn't understand what had happened to me so that even if I had been able to talk I wouldn't have been able to tell them what C did. My therapist suggested I talked to the police at our last session and I like the idea. This will be a way for me to start making this real and not just some horrible nightmare that I talk about. So what's the problem talking now? I don't really know. I keep hitting a wall. I like the idea in principle but every time I try to take any action towards actually speaking the police I trigger. There is some part of me that's been fighting for so long to be heard, "shouting in silence", and the idea of it actually being heard, the idea of me acknowledging "yes this really happened" triggers me every time. Never the less I will be talking to the police. I've made up my mind. I want this. Maybe if I make a list of the things I need to do it will help me... To be able to talk I need to: Set a Date Putting a date on going to the police will help me by forcing me to make progress with other things. Otherwise I know I'll just put it off again like I have done for the past two years. Find someone to take me I can't do on my own or I'll have a meltdown. I need someone to take me to the police station with me, someone who can look after me if I break down. That's going to be tough because the only friends who know what happened aren't the really emotional type and I'm nervous about them seeing me in a state. Write Down what happened I'm planning to have my statement written before I get to the police station and take a typed copy with me. Even if they want me to talk it will give me something to focus on to help me keep it together. I've tried starting this already but that's making me trigger so I'll need to talk to my therapist about it and get some help. Warn work. I don't know how severe the after effects are going to be so I'll need to tell work what's going on before hand. That's going to be a fun conversation with a manager that has no clue there is even anything wrong. I need to take this slowly This is simple. It's easy. It's nothing I've not already talked about. It scares me. I feel like there's been some little voice inside me that's been screaming in silence for fifteen years. Like a TV on mute. There's some force like a blanket of silence that hits me every time I try to let the little voice be heard. That force wants to keep me silent so much that it may silence me all together and strike me dumb again. I have to take this slowly so that I don't get overwhelmed. Progress is like this sometimes I've come so far that I can now speak out. I can talk to the police. But it isn't easy.
  9. 00000000

    Once upon a time...

    Once upon a time there was a teenage boy who fell in love with a girl his age. He was too shy to tell her how he felt but became friends with her. He loved the colour of her eyes, the way she smiled, the way she beat him at chess mercilessly. As they grew up they went their separate ways and for a year after school didn’t see one another. After the first year of college the boy called the girl up and got chatting. He found out she now had a boyfriend. Jokingly he said “so who do I have to be jealous of?”. Something in the silence that followed told him everything he needed to know; that she had felt the same way about him and had wanted there to be more between them. The two met up, they were totally in love and started going out together (now both seventeen). Intimacy came very slowly. She told him she couldn’t have sex because of the abuse she’d suffered. This didn’t matter to the boy; he was from a “straight laced” Christian family and the subject of sex was one he was happy to leave alone for a long time. He loved her. Then one day the girl introduced the boy to an old man she’d met in the year they’d been apart. This old man seemed to be a fatherly figure and one who somehow took place of her own father. They talked and talked about anything and everything from science to religion to philosophy to sexual fantasies. Here in our story we have to take a step back from the detail because the old man abused the two of them forcing them to do things while he watched and trying to make them do much worse than they ever did. Needless to say it destroyed the relationship. The abuse involved such extreme brainwashing that neither of them really knew what they were doing. Even when the boy tried to break free of the control he didn’t know what he was escaping from. And the girl… well she was last seen walking naked down the street at the old man's command and nobody knows if she ever got out from his control. All the boy knew was that the girl of his dreams, the only one he’d ever loved was taken from him and somehow he blamed himself simply not knowing what really happened. He broke down. Not totally but repeatedly. Time and again he forgot who he was while inexplicable memories would twist his nightmares. Over and again he had to reinvent himself because the memories would surface and destroy his self image. More than a decade later our boy, now a man began to collect these memories together and at last could see what had cause so much pain in his life. As he began to work at it the memories they became clearer and more coherent. Piece by piece he worked out what had happened, who he’d been before and all the re-invented versions of himself since. So now there’s me. Too many version’s of me to know which one’s the right one. I guess for now I’ll be the one who can remember and not break down. I’ll feel the love I felt for her so deeply and hope that somehow she got out, hope she is somewhere safe now. I hope that tomorrow I can be someone who can love without feeling the loss. I hope there is someone out there who can accept that I’m more than just one person, accept that I will love them with all the versions of me.
  10. 00000000

    I kissed him

    I talked! On Friday I finally managed to tell my therapist that I kissed my abuser. I'm sorry I keep obsessing over this one. I guess it's just shaken me a lot. Talking about it helped it to feel real. There's some part of me that has been shouting in silence for fifteen years and it's a relieved to have now been heard. I guess it hit me hard because I've not had any new memories return for a number of years and I'd forgotton how potent they can be. Sure I've had a bunch of revalations more recently as a good deal more detail returned but nothing really new. Well nothing if you exclude that weird non-sexual (?) one of him touching my knee. My point is that this one got the jump on me. No other memory warned me of this one and for fifteen years I didn't know that I had physical contact with him in this way. This memory is sketchy but my body remembers When I first tried to tell my therapist about it (and failed) I was perfectly calm and coherent and able to talk. But as I started to speak my voice cracked, my chest began pounding and I started shaking. Emotionally I felt peceful and calm but my body was overwhelmed. I've had doubts about wether the memory was real but my body really had no doubt what so ever. Then when I managed to talk on Friday I found it less like remembering and more like re-living. My eyes kept trying to refocus on his face like I was back in that room with him and not in 2015 with my therapist. As I talked I could feel his mustache on my top lip. I hadn't even remembered he had a mustache until I felt it again on Friday (gross )! This memory has been dangrous It has bled through before now, giving me pictures of kissing other men and confusing my sexuality. When I try to recall it now and try to work out what I was feeling at the time, I feel myself being pulled into his way of thinking. It confuses me and scares me. I was a teenager of 17 and was impressionable, egre to try new experiences. Was this just another thing I was exploring? (me a 17 year old strait boy, him a 53 year old man). It's lke whatever brainwashing or hypnoses he controlled me with is still there frozen in that memory, waiting to jump out and drag my personality away leaving only him. And that's been what I've been fighting with - trying to stay myself while at th same time remembering what he made me be. I'm scared that there may be more The very existance of this memory scares me. I'm scared there might be something more than i don't know about. I don't have the energy to waste on a wild goose chaise hunting for it but I wonder what else I burried for so long just like this memory Nothing majorly positive to say this week. Though I think I may be ready to talk to my family about stuff. It would be nice if they knew.
  11. Triggerd Pounding pressure on my chest hands shaking and barely able to get a word out. And all of this because I tried to say that I kissed my abuser. I went to therapy knowing I wanted to talk about this new memory. Its a small memory, yes, but in context it’s so surreal and disturbing. I tried to talk about it. I failed. My therapist still doesn’t know what I wanted to talk about. I was talking quite calmly up to that point and not feeling emotional at all but then my body just lost control. I tried to talk around it, I tried changing the subject completely but nothing worked. Something inside had triggered and it wanted to be heard. The Conflict My therapist (who’s been awesome over the months) helped me break it down and figure out where the internal conflict was: Two forces at odds with one another. One wanted the memory to be heard, to be talked about and to be understood feeling that it was being ignored and shouting with everything it had to be taken notice of. And other which was scared I was going to lose control, forget who I am, fighting as hard as it could to hold on to “the real me”. But neither of these were triggering my nervous system. When I find what’s causing me to trigger I can calm it down. Even having explained to my therapist what was going on my nervous system on fire and nothing would touch it. This is Real The thought pinned me to my seat. I’d been struggling to believe the memory even after I began to write about it as “fact”. This triggering showed me that my subconscious knew the memory was real no matter how uncertain I may have been. I think this memory was so hard to connect with because at the time it happened I was in complete disbelief of what was happening and so out of control that C could have made me do anything he wanted without me realizing it was him making me do it. When something in me tried to push this memory forward screaming at me to take notice of it, the memory itself was saying “I don’t exist”. And when I tried to keep control of myself while thinking about it, the memory was saying “you don’t know who you are”. Looking on the Bright Side I may have been unable to talk about the things I’d wanted to but I am glad to have unpicked another little lie. It feels good to have remembered what happened and believed it. I’m happy to say that contrary to the feeling in the memory “This did happen” and “I am still me!”
  12. 00000000

    Not Feeling Great

    I'm seeing my therapist again tomorrow. Its been a few weeks since I last did because she has been away on holiday. When we last met I was doing really well and I thought might not need therapy again. Three weeks later I 'm wondering how I'm going to make it through the 22 hours to our session. Everything has built up like a pressure cooker that's had its valve opened. Without being able to talk I suddenly feel like the valve is closed and things are building up. I think I went too far and let too many memories come out this time. My abuser did so much to brainwash me and in the last couple of days I've been getting flashbacks where I believe his lies again. That's just scary. It's screwing with the way I see the world, right from making me think my friends are out to get me through to completely screwing with my sex drive. I know my T will ask me what I think triggered it all. The biggest thing to happen I've already talked about on this blog. I got the memory back of kissing my abuser and it still makes my skin crawl just mentioning it again now. Yuk. That left me numb for a couple of weeks. Numbness always catches me without me noticing it. It happens when I've triggered over something and it can (and has) lasted a couple of weeks. I only notice it when I start feeling again. Reconnecting with my feelings is like waking up. Or perhaps like that moment you realise you don't know why you went upstairs. I find myself in an odd state of mind and can't work out how I got there and then every thing comes rushing in and I can see, taste, smell everything suddenly very vividly. So yeah. That's been messing with me for a couple of days now and I'm struggling to work out which way is up. I'm sure I'll be okay soon. Just a bit confused right now.
  13. 00000000

    Unpicking The Lies

    I lie to myself I think its important to be real. I do lie to myself about the abuse and despite the fact that nobody ever said this is a good thing I do believe it has been necessary. Please don't misunderstand me I'm not suggesting that you start lying to yourself. But the lies we tell ourselves can be there to protect us. Unpicking the lies can be a difficult and even dangerous. Before I go any further... It is not your fault. No matter how many layers of lies you've constructed it is not your fault. You don't need to rush to find the truth. It's okay to let the lies be. There is no rush to be brutally honest with yourself and confess. You can rest in one very simple truth: IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT! Dangerous How? It all depends on where the lie came from. Did it come from C (my abuser) or did it come from me? There's a mix of lies all fighting in my head and they can cause complete confusion. I've talked before about the lies C caused but there are also lies I constructed. Just after the abuse I was in such a breakdown that I did a lot of things without being conscious of them. This is where I constructed protective; I changed memories so that they wouldn't portray me as "guilty". And there's the problem. I wasn't "guilty" but C had so effectively twisted my world view that I thought I was "evil" and "dangerous" and I blamed myself for everything that happened. I couldn't find a way out they were lies. So the only thing I could do was lie more to myself. It was never a healthy way to exist but it was more healthy than the breakdown. As twisted as it all was the lies formed some sort of balance. What were the Lies? I don't want to be specific here. Even in anonymity I can't talk without shame. But the lies of in the form "C told me to" do something. The truth is that he rarely told me to do anything. C manipulated me to do things. The lie that "he told me to" helps protect me from thinking that it was my fault and saves me being confused over the manipulation. But that same lie makes it impossible to heal. I have to come to terms with what really happened and not simply what I pretend happened. How to Stop Lying to Myself This is hard. I've always known where my own lies are. The challenge is unpicking them without unbalancing, without blaming myself. I have to unpick several lies together. It's a little like the way a cardboard box can be closed by closing all four sides overlapping each other and it holds itself shut. The sides have to be closed together, it can't be done one at a time. Okay it's more like opening a box but the same image applies. The quickest way through has been to hear "It's not your fault" in response to the truth. It felt needy the first time like I was practically begging my therapist say it. But I did need it. I needed someone to know exactly what happened and still think it wasn't my fault. And for it to be real, for it to have any meaning, my therapist had to know the truth otherwise: what's the point? Telling my therapist was a massive leap of faith. I had to trust in the simple statement "I was abused" and hope that telling the truth wasn't going to change that. I had to speak about things mechanically and completely disconnected to avoid triggering and I had to avoid even thinking about who was to blame. It was worth it. The pay off was an enormous release that made me cry. Don't Rush It These lies are there to protect us. If you're not ready to explore memories in this way then just trust in the truth. It is not your fault.
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