Hi there. This is my first post. I found aftersilence after my therapist suggested I find an online community where I can post anonymously and connect with other survivors. I'm currently struggling with Complex PTSD symptoms and awakening to the fact that I was sexually abused by my teacher when I was 12 years old. The abuse happened repeatedly over the period of a full year. I repressed the whole thing for 11 years, and was suddenly hit with a flashback at the age of 23. I've struggled with my mental health since I was 18 and I'm just beginning to understand why. I now understand all of my mental health issues as symptoms of PTSD. I now understand that the reason I began withdrawing from the world at the age of 18 was because I was in a constant state of being triggered. Every where I go, and everything I do seems to end up triggering me somehow. When I'm triggered I dissociate, become numb, my muscles tense, I get a migraine, and I plunge into the depths of toxic shame and suicidal ideation. The simplest emotional connections with other human beings trigger me, and as a result I don't have any friends or any sense of love and belonging. I feel all alone, and I'm scared I'll never be able to form healthy relationships again. This is why I'm here, I hope through this anonymous online forum I can begin to ease my way into some form of human connection and communication that can be healthy and validating for me. I also hope to begin sharing my story, and with the help of the community find some sense of meaning as I work my way through it. At this point I still don't know how the story ends. My memories at this point are hazy, fragmented, and emotionally charged (particularly with shame) and slowly but surely new memories are resurfacing for me day by day. I know I have a long road ahead of me and I worry I don't have the courage to face the pain and make it through this.
Thanks for reading my post and having me as a member of this community.