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I don't know what I'm doing here

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I don't know what I'm doing here... I'm 36. I had a... Nonconsensual sexual encounter at 16. The crazy part is that I was fine. I had pretty much left it behind (physically and metaphorically) 7 years ago. But I'm a foster parent and things got really emotionally fraught here in the last year so I went to a therapist to help me manage it all and now I feel like I'm right back at the beginning, twenty years ago. 

There's a part of me that wants to blame the therapist, but I think it's more likely it was all bubbling up anyway. The truth is that I'm just so mad that I have to deal with it at all. I should be fine at this point. I think I came here to see if I'm crazy.

I haven't looked at those memories, like really looked in a while... But now I find I'm missing things. Is that normal? Is it normal to be fine, no nightmares even, for years and then backslide? No need to answer here but that's what I'm looking for. I appreciate all the emotional labor you've all clearly already done and will do my best to search from here.

Anyway, that's me. Thanks for being here. This was an incredible thing to find.

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Hi @twentyYrsAngry, welcome to After Silence.  I'm so sorry you have reason to be here, but am glad you've found this diamond in the rough community.  I sincerely feel that being here, surrounded by people who support and understand, has changed my life for the better.

Yes, it is very normal to 'put things away' for many years and to not deal with it until much later after the actual event.  I did the same exact thing.  I, too, had a nonconsensual sexual encounter at 17 - I wouldn't deal with this particular event until over a decade later.  There are still some things I'm trying to process, as sexual violence is so, very complicated.

It did bring up things that I'd previously buried - and safe to say, it was a domino effect.  I do believe that things we might have missed are stored in the memory banks, and will reveal themselves when we are emotionally and mentally prepared.  Sometimes we never reach that point, sometimes we do.  We all do have to start somewhere, though.  I'm glad you've seen a therapist.  That's definitely a tough step to take when it comes to recovery - so, good for you. :) 

Anyway - I do hope that being here brings you clarity, as well as peace, comfort and healing.  

Take care,

- Cap

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@twentyYrsAngry i think i understand why you think of your current state as having backslid. from my perspective you haven't backslid. i think you're moving forward in the right direction, toward your freedom. i'm sorry that the process will be more difficult while you are responsible for a young person. i believe you can do it though. it's an often messy process but you found a good place here for support, and support is very valuable with these things. the resolution of trauma is an important matter. i'm sorry you were hurt.

clarity of memories will come in due time. it's common to struggle with memories in different ways.

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Hi @twentyYrsAngry. That is very normal. You are definitely not crazy. 

Welcome to AS, I hope you find what you're looking for here. ❤️I'm sorry that you have a reason to be here, but this is a very supportive community so I'm glad you found us. :notalone:

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@twentyYrsAngry welcome to AS…. I am sorry that you endured trauma, but I am glad that you found your way here.  As other have already said, putting the memories away and being “fine” for years is a normal coping mechanism.  I can definitely understand how working with children who have had traumatic lives can start to trigger one’s own trauma to come back to the surface.  I had suppressed so many memories from my childhood until I started teaching at a school with a high level of generational trauma in the community.  

Again, welcome to AS! You are not alone here.

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Hi, you are not crazy. Unresolved stuff comes back later in life when we are ready to deal with it. It's like suddenly having the feelings of the images that happened.  Know that you are not alone and that healing is possible.  I can relate to what you say.  I was fine and put things on the back burner till one day wham.  It does get better.  Gentle thoughts your way. 

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@twentyYrsAngry Hi!  The r* for me was at 5.  Buried for about 21 years... Unearthed now for 35+.  It's all denied by family and community.  Hurts like the dickens in that situation.  Especially when children have no faith in Mom who was labeled as "crazy' all the while they were in late grade school on.  My faith in God is what got me through.  God actually opened the doors and explained, then showed, then has walked with me through it all.

Being 'crazy' means having a diagnosis of different from others by people who don't understand the difference. 

I'm accustomed to it now.  But now, I'd much rather be here or in the bible readings or with friends than anywhere else.  And that means only that I"m much stronger and wiser than i used to be.


Edited by PearlofMary
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I definitely don’t think you are crazy. Healing takes time. It is normal to have issues years after, as I am also experiencing. Mine is five years but still some years in between. I don’t think there’s  a should be fine. I think one day you will be, as will I but it is ok if it takes time to get there. 

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