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abhaya

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    Female
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    Pacific NorthWest

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    Survivor

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  1. That's a really beautiful painting, @RubyRosie. I resonate with feeling really overwhelmed, and that sometimes it is the small things that pile up that really make me feel stuck and drained. Sending support and sitting with you, if ok?
  2. Just made a post on the creativity board inviting folks to post any piece of art you feel proud of, I hope folks check it out and add to it!

  3. Hi @Maryphanalia I love crafts too! Maybe if you feel comfortable, you might choose to post about some of your favorites, there's a forum for creativity here, and I love it when people post drawings and other fun stuff! I love crochet, drawing, hand lettering, and singing, myself (and probably a dozen more other things I experiment with from time to time). Welcome! I hope you and your friend find a comfortable supportive place here (I know I feel that way for sure). πŸ™‚
  4. abhaya

    Just tired

    Thank you, friend. I really appreciate and value our friendship too, @Enigma87. ❀️
  5. abhaya

    Just tired

    Thank you both, @feralcat and @seong98. I appreciate your support and kindness. Yes, I have a therapist, though I only see her every other week due to costs. I will be seeing her on Monday, and I have a planned conversation with my primary care doc tomorrow am to talk about my mental health. Thanks for checking that I'm getting care. I think that I am experiencing a bit of overwhelm, and my capacity to bounce back is a little more limited than when I'm feeling balanced and healthy. I had an anxiety attack today at work (well remote work, so I was able to manage it at home) and I'm aware that I'm feeling tender lately. Thanks again for listening.
  6. abhaya

    Just tired

    I only started signing on here and already this community means so much to me... each of your stories, your kind, funny, intelligent and courageous personalities that sparkle through the comments and posts offering courage, humor, compassion, creativity and hope. Already, being here has helped me feel so much less alone than I thought would ever happen, and it has stirred up a lot in me. Some of that has been really hard: I had one of the absolute worst flashbacks I have had in a decade, I have come to see how much I have been holding my memories and trauma locked beneath the surface to keep acting fine, I am starting to feel the edge of what feels like a deep and lifelong grief that I have kept away through numbness and disassociation... but I also think there has been a great deal of goodness in being stirred up like this too: I have been able to tell my story more completely than I had done before, I have shared with y’all parts of my trauma that I could never even acknowledge before, and I have been able to offer support, kindness and belief in you and your experiance in a way that I hope to be able to offer to myself someday. But in the last couple days I notice I have so much less in me to say. I see your posts and I still send you all my care, my wish for your well being, my kindness and compassion has not diminished... just the words, its harder to put it down, perhaps I have run low on spoons. I think I am okay, I don’t mean to worry any of you, I am finding a way through the dark marshes... I just want you all to know that I am still here, still witnessing and caring about your hardships and pain, still cheering and celebrating your successes and strengths. Maybe I am turning inward to process, maybe I am shutting down a bit, I am not quite sure... but it still helps to see each of you, posting and commenting, I think through it I see you role modeling what it looks like to ask for support when things get tough. I am grateful for that as well, It is something I am trying to learn. Whether I have words or not, I plan to keep showing up, and I am sorry if I have less capacity right now but no matter what, I believe you, and I may do so quietly, but I am sitting with you in comfort and kindness.
  7. abhaya

    pluses and minuses

    I am not knowing where to put this, so I thought I would just put it here... <shrug> I'm feeling a bit tender and emotionally sore this morning. I pushed too hard yesterday, opened a door that had been well wedged closed because I so wanted to bring it to light, but then I had the worst flashback last night that I've had in years. Most of my flashbacks these days are at worst like having a sort of double exposure, I'm here and now and the bad experience is overlaid on top, so it gets disorienting and scary but some part of my mind is aware that it isn't really happening again. Last night I got stuck in the past, I really couldn't tell that I wasn't there/then, couldn't tell my husband what was happening because I couldn't tell that it WAS my husband with me. I came up out of it slowly, not like when I have dream flashbacks and I get shocked awake, it was a slow process of verifying reality again. Today I'm tired, and emotionally fragile and sore. I don't regret trying to open up about the memories that were connected to the flashback, but I'm a little worried that there may be more flashbacks for a while... I am hoping not. That one was really plenty for me. But now I know that it can happen again, I know that I may need to talk with my husband about it, and what to do if it happens. I felt so bad after for scaring him. And I have to go to the doctor today, which always makes my anxiety worse... but hopefully the doctor will say that I can start to walk again, I am hoping for that and that if I can start to walk it may help me feel less vulnerable and on edge in general. Well, that's it I guess. Just wanted to notice what was happening.
  8. abhaya

    So Lost

    So sorry for the loss, and the grief that you feel. Grief can be hard when it comes with so much regret and painful memories. Sending you support, and sitting with you if you would like?
  9. "Just like the contrast between crazy and sanity, there is the contrast between intense, emotional connection and being alone. How do I maintain a sense of -being- through sexual intimacy and vulnerability, without becoming scared and paranoid that my personhood is being taken away from me. Every time I have a vulnerable emotion, a romantic moment, or really wonderful sex... I get the overwhelming fear that I am being taken advantage of and the wall is built back up again. Sometimes it makes me mean and cold or distant and away. How does everyone cope?" I don't have a good answer, but I know that struggle too. There's a part of me that feels I always have to be wary against the kind of harm that I know the person I love who is with me now would never ever do. Sometimes I can let that tightness go, but not always, and honestly having a really strong friendship has helped because he has learned so much more about what it is that triggers me over time, but it still happens sometimes. Sitting with you, offering support.
  10. Hello @Shield.ugly, welcome to AS, I hope you will find it a supportive place for you. I'm sorry for what you have gone through that brought you here. Warmly, ~abhaya.
  11. I resonate with this a lot, @Enigma87, and I feel like i vacillate between wanting to scream my story over and over so that everyone will know about it and will hopefully tell me that I'm okay and things will be okay and I'm not the only person who ever felt this way.... and then feeling like I've said too much, I'm asking too much of everyone (especially the people who are offering support because they have problems too), and I just want to hide it all and pretend like nothing ever happened because it's probably all my fault and I was asking for it anyway... or just flat out numbness that makes none of it seem real at all (neither the abuse, or pretty much anything, ever). Ok, those aren't the only three options, I do have some good days too, it's just hard to remember that when I'm feeling so stirred up. Whatever you choose to do with your blog, or any other part of this, I hope you can see that your willingness to share has benefited others too, myself included. And if you do delete things, don't worry, that benefit won't be taken away. Do what you need to do for you, and your best guess as to what is the most healthy and well thing at this moment, and the next, and the next.... That's the best way I've found to try and spiral out of my tailspins... when I can remember to coach myself to do it. πŸ™‚ I'm not sure that I know what your faith tradition is, but I will say (I hope you don't mind...) that it's possible that a loving creator God who knows our deepest heart is probably capable of seeing our strengths and resilience even when we struggle to do so, and an all knowing, all powerful, loving God may be able to see not only the times we make choices we don't feel proud of, but also may see and truly understand the hurt that may be driving those choices, and have the capacity for a depth of compassion we may not be able to offer ourselves until we can learn how to do so, and having lived through hardship like yours may actually allow you to then share that compassion with others who also feel that they are less than worthy of that compassion and love... Not trying to preach at you, just wanting to offer some thoughts that allow for the fact that you are not "sinful and defective."
  12. I'm so sorry that you have carried the burden of feeling that you were to blame for so much bad treatment. I hope that you can see now that no matter what, you did not deserve what was done to you, @Enigma87. I don't have a lot of words this morning, but I am sitting with you, if that's ok. I know what it's like to feel like you're holding things together and crumbling beneath the surface, and the emotional cost of risking to share your story. I also hope that when you did share what was happening, people in your life supported you and offered kindness and compassion rather than judgement and more shame. My own spirituality has been a source of healing sometimes, and at other times it tied me down into self-blame and shame. I hope that you can find a sense of spirituality that upholds you as a person worthy of love, compassion, and healing.
  13. Yes, I resonate with this. For a very long time after my abuse I became more intensely sexual, including putting myself in some harmful situations for myself (mentally, physically, sexually, etc), but it seemed like everyone who saw me from the outside saw me as someone who was liberated and sexually free. It was only after I started really understanding my abuse, and trying to be more present in my body, that I lost the ability to be that person... which was weird because I lost some good things too. I don't know if that makes sense, but it brought up grief over loosing a sense of fearlessness, because when I was that person no one could touch me. I was convinced that I was empty and doing things that were wild didn't scare me because there was no real cost to them since again, I didn't really exist except for others anyway. Please don't feel bad about longer responses, we're both trying to figure ourselves out. I'm happy to listen. πŸ™‚
  14. I know how confusing that can be, @Enigma87 particularly the situation with your teacher. It can make it so difficult to look back and try to figure out how the parts where I participated in the abuse were not me asking for or consenting to the abuse. I don't know if that is similar for you, but if so, I'm sitting with you.
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