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Wolfie

Secondary Survivors On The Relationships Board?

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I wrote a post on the relationship board to which I hoped males would respond. I sent out a few PMs to some of our male survivors and one male secondary survivor. He wrote back to tell me he can't see that board.

Eh? :shrug: I would have thought access to the sex and relationship board would be pretty standard for the category to which so many of our lovers belong?

I think it would be good for us because how much time do we spend second-guessing our (non-survivor) partners? My topic was on the lines of "real men don't rape". Our male survivors confirm that real men don't rape or coerce... But reading it you could be forgiven for thinking "ah yeah, but they're biased". Indeed they are, they are all abuse survivors. We need to hear from non-survivors sometimes. I think on that board especially as for the most part the partners we're all trying to understand aren't survivors, so they don't think like us. So we could greatly benefit from having them there.

I also think it'd be good for the secondary survivors as they so often post about relationships and sex that they could really benefit and learn stuff from reading that board.

I would like to know what others think. Do we think we should let secondary survivors use the sex and relationships board?

Wolfie

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My thought is that if people wanted a secondary surivors point of view - then they can always post in the secondary surivors forum? This has happended several times before.

My thought being that sometimes in the relationship forum it can get pretty explicit on how many problems survivors may have - and this might seem something like every surivor will have and may put secondary partners off - or frighten the heebie jeebies out of them?

Your thread could always be moved into the secondary surivivors forum - if everyone who posted is happy.

That is my opinion not sure what other mods think

karen

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This seems like a good idea for all the reasons you said.

But I think there are members here with partners who are secondaries on this board, if they post in that forum would they be happy for their partner to read it?

Although maybe they dont b*tch about their partners as much as I do.

Edited by SaraElizabeth

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Thank you Sara and Karen. I hope this topic raises a bit of interest because it'd be good to see what everyone thinks. Changing the access level for Secondaries is a big deal and so lets all talk it over a bit. Obviously I'm in favour, but in favour or not I think the membership are the people to ask on this one. If you're reading this and you have an opinion don't be shy, lets be hearing it. :)

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My thought being that sometimes in the relationship forum it can get pretty explicit on how many problems survivors may have - and this might seem something like every surivor will have and may put secondary partners off - or frighten the heebie jeebies out of them?

That's what I think also, I'd actually be worried about secondaries reading that board because well, I think in general survivors have unique issues with relationships, which the secondaries may not fully understand, as they're uniquely survivor issues, if that makes sense. Personally I'd be abit worries about secondaries reading some of my things about relationships, even embarrassed to an extent.

But I like how Karen said about using the secondary forum, maybe if there's enough support there could be a secondary relationship sub-forum, or something like that :shrug:

Hehe, well that's my random ramblings on this :) John

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I would have to agree with John and Karen on this one. I would not be comfortable having secondaries reading that forum. I think that it is important to have a place that we can share our intimacy issues with other survivors who understand.

Wolfie you make some very valid points though :flowers:

Sad

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I'm not in favor for the reason's already said. I think as survivors some of our feelings/thoughts and very private and difficult for us to type on a board where no one knows us...I can;t imagine my husband reading all the VERY positive things I say about him and our own issues steming from abuse HEHEHEHE

Andrea

Edited by islandgal

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I've been meaning to post here for a while, but couldn't really decide what to say or how to say it. Which means I'm back to my usual method of posting whatever comes into my head and hoping everything works out okay.

I'm the person Wolfie was talking about. I'm a secondary who also has a survivor who posts on these boards (and yes, she is also in the "we should think about a subforum" camp).

Ultimately this decision has to be made by survivors, so I'm not going to chime in one way or the other. Instead, I'll just talk about my experience here as a secondary, and survivors can decide what they want to do.

I used to be very active here, but I'm not anymore. The reason I'm not is because there's not a whole lot to do here as a secondary. We don't have access to chat, we don't have access to a majority of the boards, we can't track posts in the boards we do have access to because we can't access profiles, and so forth.

What we do have access to is the secondary forum. The secondary forum doesn't receive a lot of traffic. A common argument when these questions are raised periodically is, "Well can't someone just post something in the secondary forum if they want secondaries to read it?"

Yes, they can. How many people actually do that though? Most survivors don't know what secondaries have access to and what they don't. I've had survivors ask me in PMs to read their story in the Share Your Story forum because they thought I had access to it, and I'd argue that the Share Your Story forum is probably the most sensitive and personal forum for any survivor who's posted their story there.

Not only that, but even if they do know that secondaries can't read that forum, most survivors don't read the secondary forum. If I'm a survivor and I want relationship advice, I want relationship advice now. I'm going to post my thread in a forum that's well-trafficked, where I'll get the most responses in the shortest amount of time. I'm not going to post it in the secondary forum and wait a few days to get two or three responses. I'll just post it in the Relationships board where I can get a couple pages of responses in that same amount of time. Having the additional input from a secondary or two who wouldn't otherwise see it isn't worth losing input from ten or fifteen survivors.

So this takes me back to my initial statement that there's not much content here as a secondary. In my time here I've made a lot of friends and found a relationship. I talk to a fair number of people over MSN and AIM off the boards, or over the phone, and yes, we talk about survivor issues too.

I don't think they're as scary or incomprehensible to non-survivors as I think some of you feel they are. Maybe to the non-survivors who aren't registered here, who don't want to learn more about sexual abuse, or its effects, or do anything to help, but as I've said before I feel that the secondaries who register here do care and want to do everything they can to support their survivors.

Since I talk to a fair number of people registered here off the boards as well, I hear things I wouldn't normally know about. Wolfie and I had a couple brawls on the secondary forums before I knew who she was, but then I find out that she's willing to take long distance 3 AM phone calls from other survivors who have hit rock bottom. That's something I can't see. So what do I do when I hear that she's having relationship problems with Mr. Wolfie? Well, I can't see that either, so either I take a risk and PM her, or do nothing (which is frustrating, and makes you just not want to come to the boards). In this case I PMed her, and she was thankful, but what if she hadn't been understanding?

Sara Elizabeth, you've posted in this thread. I don't think you're a crappy girlfriend at all; I think your problems with your boyfriend stem from his own insecurities about never having had a long-term relationship, coupled with the fact that you're a survivor which isn't something he has much experience with so it conjures up this eerie unknown fear of what could happen in the future. He's afraid to develop deeper feelings for you because he's scared it might not work and he doesn't want to get hurt. I can't say that, though, because I can't see that board, just talk regularly with people who do. So I wind up saying nothing at all, in 99% of cases.

This post may not be the wisest idea, as for all I know I'm risking moderation by saying that I talk to people about other sections of the board. However, that's the type of input that I feel survivors are missing out on, and I feel this board loses a lot of the secondaries that register here because they find out that there's not much content for them once they are here.

The last thing that I would mention is that this entire argument is really based around a false sense of security. Survivors feel better that secondaries can't see that board. Well, islandgal, what if your husband just registered an account as a survivor? The mods/admins have no way of knowing whether a new user is a survivor or not. The only people the current system is restricting are honest people who want to help. If you're afraid that secondaries will find out about the problems survivors sometimes have with relationships...

What's to stop me from reading a book about it?

What's to stop me from making an account at pandys.org and reading the relationship forum there?

What's preventing me from doing a google search?

Why can't I just go to welcometobarbados.org, read some of the stories there and draw my own conclusions about what sort of relationship complications could come up?

The information is there.

Anyways, I realize that I don't really have anything else to say on the matter, and that this is probably a tl;dr by now. So, hopefully you think about my experiences and come to whatever decision you think best.

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As a Secondary, personally I don't have any strong feelings about it one way or the other - I don't know what are on the Boards I do not have access to and I don't know if I want/need access to them. I also understand that many Secondarys would want/may benefit from access to them. Well...maybe I should qualify that....this place, in my mind, is for Survivors first and Secondarys (like myself) second. That being said, I think the decision should rest with Survivors in regard to increase access for Secondarys. I know many Survivors would not have any problem increasing access for others but....I am concerned, however, with those Survivors (even if they are a minority) who would be very uncomfortable with those changes being made. I would not want those who are still extremely fragile to feel uncomfortable by my or others presence.

Just my thoughts.

Mike

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Although I can understand why some people would want that part of the board to be open to secondaries, I personally do not want that. I would feel extremely uncomfortable to post there.

The last thing that I would mention is that this entire argument is really based around a false sense of security. Survivors feel better that secondaries can't see that board. Well, islandgal, what if your husband just registered an account as a survivor? The mods/admins have no way of knowing whether a new user is a survivor or not. The only people the current system is restricting are honest people who want to help. If you're afraid that secondaries will find out about the problems survivors sometimes have with relationships...

What's to stop me from reading a book about it?

What's to stop me from making an account at pandys.org and reading the relationship forum there?

What's preventing me from doing a google search?

Why can't I just go to welcometobarbados.org, read some of the stories there and draw my own conclusions about what sort of relationship complications could come up?

I can see your point, but this statement can make people uneasy. If I were to have a secondary in my life, I would expect that I could trust them enough to know that they would never do this. If they did, it would be a huge breech of my trust and I don't think I could feel safety in an online community (or with them) anymore.

We are a forum primarily for survivors. Having said that, I wish the secondary survivors part of the board had more traffic and I'm very interested in hearing ways that we can make that happen.

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To tell you the truth I would hate this!!! Not that I have anything against any of the S. survivors on the board! its just my ex (well not exactly ex, but not exactly still with each other, confusing situation anyway..) is a SS on the board, he isn't very active but.. if he was on the board, and I was to have writen something in the relationship forum about him, thyen he'd see it. I would not be comfortable with that at all.... Sometimes it is nice to get a SS view on these situations, and I know that often when advice from a SS would be helpfull we never think about it!! but I think the relationship part of the site can contain some very sensitive stuff that sometimes we would not want SS's to see.

So yeah.. I would not like this at all, sorry :(

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I do try to reply to secondary's when I can. I want to give a hug to all the secondary's right now, too! You matter very much. I never post in the Relationship forum anyway, so it makes no difference to me, but I can understand why survivors would not want this.

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I'm not familiar with what features Invision Bulletin Board has, but is there any way to flag topics? Example, would it be possible to modify the forum setup so that you could flag a topic to be visible to secondary survivors? Then you could just give secondary survivors access to all the forums, but with only flagged topics visible. Then just setup the defaults so that all new topics in forums we can currently view are flagged by default, and all new topics in forums we can't currently view are unflagged by default. Then survivors would have the choice of making something visible to us or not, while still posting it in the logical forum.

I don't know if Invision Bulletin Board supports that sort of functionality but that's the best idea I could come up with for satisfying both sides of the argument.

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I am a secondary survivor. :throb::throb:

I am not a lover, but I believe that I am a very, very important secondary - the only one my friend has at this time - and we are trying to figure out how to use this site to help me help her as she works through this unspeakable nightmare of rape and torture.

I read every word that every respondent wrote in this thread. I agree with and understand every word that every respondent wrote. So what does that mean? I think it means that this is a very, very sensitive and confusing question. Under no circumstance should anything posted by a survivor be available to a non-survivor without the survivor's permission. Therefore, should that board become available to non-survivors, all prior posts would require protection from the eyes of non-survivors.

I already know the sensitive details and I know and understand the fears associated with my friend’s attack. I know what my hopes and dreams are for her – she deserves it all. I know the fears she has and the safety/protective decisions and actions that she must assure each day to make her life safe from anything like this ever happening again or from being in a situation where other memories make her think or feel that she is being hurt again.

So, where am I going with this? I have thought to compose some questions to ask survivors about the worst kinds of terror and the resultant emotions and beliefs. However, I don’t think that most survivors will see those questions and be able to respond to me. Like some of the other Secondaries, I think my time might be limited here as I am not sure what can be here to help me support my friend during the healing process. Those who have responded have been very caring and sincere in their comments, but I have felt the need to talk to more survivors and that does not seem possible.

We have bought many books and will buy yet many more. I believe our books have helped us the most. However, I do believe that this site is helping my friend quite a lot right now. She feels safe here and I am so grateful for that. Also, through this site, we can send each other messages that are better protected than our regular emails that could possibly be stumbled upon by husbands and children who do not need to be reading any of our discussions.

I really wish I could have access to the sex and relationship board because we are getting ready for the sexual healing journey......I hope. We have tons of questions that can only be answered by survivors who have had particular experiences. It seems right now that we can pose those questions sooner if I am the one to present them on her behalf. That will not be possible.

Ultimately, I feel that survivors should make this decision and that the rest of us should respect that decision whatever it is.

Thanks for reading such a long comment. Thanks for letting us weigh in on this one. Good luck.

As ever, I am

Trustedfriend :throb::throb:

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The last thing that I would mention is that this entire argument is really based around a false sense of security. Survivors feel better that secondaries can't see that board. Well, islandgal, what if your husband just registered an account as a survivor? The mods/admins have no way of knowing whether a new user is a survivor or not. The only people the current system is restricting are honest people who want to help. If you're afraid that secondaries will find out about the problems survivors sometimes have with relationships...

What's to stop me from reading a book about it?

What's to stop me from making an account at pandys.org and reading the relationship forum there?

What's preventing me from doing a google search?

Why can't I just go to welcometobarbados.org, read some of the stories there and draw my own conclusions about what sort of relationship complications could come up?

The information is there.

This may be a false sense of security as you suggest here, but I know that the secondary's in my life would never disrespect me in such a way as to open a new account. They would know that I would NEVER trust them again and our relationship would be out the door. Survivors don't just share there story with any random person, it takes a lot of trust. I would hope that any secondary would know how damaging that breach of trust could be to a survivor.

As far as going to pandy's or doing a google search or reading a book, I don't really think that relates to the topic of whether or not Secondaries should have access to private forums on AS. I don't think the survivors here who have responded are saying that they don't want our secondaries to know anything about abuse in general, they just don't want secondary's reading our personal struggles and fears with intimacy. The secondaries in my life have read books, searched online etc, I think it is wonderful that they want to understand. But they also realize that AS is a place for me and they respect that.

I think it is great that AS has a place for secondaries, and I think you are all wonderful people for being here for your loved ones. I just think that opening up the private forums to secondaries would take away the sense of safety for many members here.

I am not saying my opinions are right, it's just how I feel. :flowers:

Sad

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I wasn't bringing up that particular point to say that I think any secondary here is going to create a new account. I was bringing it up because the default forum registration is as a survivor. You have to click the dropdown menu and select "secondary survivor" to be a secondary here. If I wasn't technically inclined, or if I was rushing through registration, I'm going to wind up registered as a survivor. It could also take a long time to be fixed, depending on what the person is doing with their account. If they're just using it to find information to help their survivor, and don't post, it probably won't be. If they are posting, depending on the nature of their post, people may or may not notice that they seem more like a secondary than a survivor. If they do, the question still has to be asked, as some secondaries are also survivors themselves.

I don't think any secondary who has posted in this thread wants survivors to have less privacy. Instead, as I mentioned earlier, I think it would be ideal if survivors could simply tag or flag which threads they want visible to us and which ones they don't. That way, if they don't want secondaries to see it, they don't have to do anything, and if they do want secondaries to be able to respond, it's as simple as clicking a button, rather than cross-posting your thread in multiple forums. If that's not possible with Invision BB, then a subforum would be great. The whole point is to have more options, not less.

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Hello :)

Sorry I didn't go back into this post a while back..after I stated my position. I would like to say that there may be ways to manipulate the system in such a way as to register as a survivor when one isn't but I would like to have faith in people that they are honest about their situations. I must add that many have come forward when they were registered as survivors in error and not secondaries to have it corrected-to those people-thank you for you're honesty and respect for survivors.

Personally, I have been on my healing journey for years and my husband is very supportive...but as one would know who has attended therapy in a formal setting that survivors often need to work on boundaries, trust, etc. and My husband respects me enough, as we have an truthful and honest relationship with effective communication-that he does not need to sign on to AS and see what I say on here. Anything I say on line I have and can say in person. This journey isn't just about me-it;s about my husband too and if you ask me, he is a victim as well-he too has lost, struggled, cried, and laughed with me.

With that said, I still believe that AS is designed to help survivors and offer more limited support to secondaries and for that I am grateful. To those who feel the need to see their spouses/partners writting..I suggest therapy together..I can honestly say..it will be the best money ever spent. That is the environment that the difficult conversations can be had and deep feelings can be support appropriately.

I appreciate your opinion-however, I do not change my position :)

I do have suggestion for you tho...there is a book called "Allies in healing: when the person you love was sexually abused" by laura davis -may wanna buy it or take it out from the library...its a book designed for partners in healing

Andrea

Edited by islandgal

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Thank you all for sharing your thoughts and ideas.

There is a pinned topic in the Secondary Survivor forum. Please feel free to use it to discuss issues of intimacy with secondary survivors.

This will also help moderators understand if there is enough interest in the topic to justify a subforum.

:tealribbon:Relationship And Sexuality Discussions Between Survivors and Secondaries :tealribbon:

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Is there still an SS board? It doesn't show in my list...Ah well, it has been informative while you all let me in. I wish you all well with happyness and comforts going through life's ride.

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Hi I am tired, Yes there is still an SS forum on the boards. I am sorry that you are having trouble viewing it. Here is the link for it. If this does not work for you I would suggest writing to one of the board mods because they may not see this thread for awhile :flowers:

http://www.aftersilence.org/forum/index.php?showforum=35

Hope it works for you :flowers:

Sad

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Maybe I just said something wrong on it and had rights removed. :unsure: Even following your link, I can't get there. I wrote mods this morning. I'll check back tomorrow or in a few days if I don't get an email. Otherwise, I'll just assume I should find another SS forum. Sadly, I couldn't find any when I was looking last year and only found my way here from the postsecret.com message board and a kind soul who pointed me this way.

It has been interesting and useful as I see so many replies in the actions of my wife. To that extent, it's been great to hear how others have responded and occassionally to hear the "why."

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Maybe I just said something wrong on it and had rights removed. :unsure: Even following your link, I can't get there. I wrote mods this morning. I'll check back tomorrow or in a few days if I don't get an email. Otherwise, I'll just assume I should find another SS forum. Sadly, I couldn't find any when I was looking last year and only found my way here from the postsecret.com message board and a kind soul who pointed me this way.

It has been interesting and useful as I see so many replies in the actions of my wife. To that extent, it's been great to hear how others have responded and occassionally to hear the "why."

Hi,

It's not just you. I know of other secondary survivors that have been having this problem as well. Hopefully a mod will get back to you and sort this out for you.

Mandy

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Fixed. My apologies for the issue as well as the delay.

Thanks for your patience. :flowers:

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