my healing journey

Posts tagged ‘rape’

relationships: relearning the difference between friendship and sexual relationships

Sex after sexual abuse

I don’t really know where to begin with this. Ever since I was a pre-teen I was obsessed with sex, this may or may not have been due to childhood abuse but either way it was part of me. And to be honest I did enjoy being sexually empowered, in those situations when I felt I was in control of my sexuality and not being pressured into it. To put it bluntly – I like dirty, hot , messy, hard sex. But that doesn’t mean that my mind is in the right zone for it.

For the past 3 years I have either been in pain during sex or sexual contact, or mhy mind will drift away during sex, or I may black out and dissociate. This has all added to it being difficult for me to enjoy sexual pleasure or feelings and I’m guessing due to childhood abuse has made me feel embarrassed as if sex is something I should be ashamed of.

This has slowly started to improve with my current and last 2 partners. Its only over the past year that I have begun to slowly open up and let my body enjoy sex. This is important. I don’t want to continue my life associated sex with abuse and letting it impact my physical, mental and emotional wellbeing, aswel as the effects that not being able to relax during consensual sex has on relationships.

I guess the best way to improve at something is practise.. and practise can be fun if you can think of ways to enjoy it. But I do not want to force myself into thinking about enjoying sex, I guess it will come back slowly over time and with care and nurture.

Friendship- or the lack of it

this is a pretty negative post i’m about to write, which kind of sucks because i’ve been pretty happy and stable of recent.

i have a ‘friend’ who takes constant delight in informing me that i am ‘crazy’. tbh looking back at it now, if you have a ‘friend’ who tells you you are insane all of the time, then well yeah.. they probably aren’t really a good friend.

so i decided to give this wonderful chum of mine an explanation to why i am so nuts. i think child abuse will fuck even the most sane of us up.. pun not intended. especially if said abuse has resulted in family breakdowns and abusive relationships ‘(both sexual and platonic) – which is also another thing i need to look at. toxic friendships…

said chum’s reply was that ‘you shouldn’t tell people this kind of shit’, he then went on to explain how i should feel sorry for him because he couldn’t handle the information and the bad effect it has had on him.

this seems to be a recurring theme in the selfish people i seem to meet in this world. somehow i am responsible for them feeling hard done by, by the fact that they have heard about sexual abuse.

obviously some people are stronger than others, that’s life really. but sometimes there is a time and place for cowardice.

there is never a time or place for victim-blaming, in any shade or form.

scared

i have a lot of things i need to write about i guess, because i haven’t written anything in a while. not because i didn’t have anything to, but because i just didn’t.

in 2 days time i will be going to the doctor in order to join an eating disorder group. this is a big change. one that is pretty scary aswel.

i’ve been waking up in the morning and forcing myself to go for walks.. this is scary too.

my counsellor thinks i’m fragile.. this is also scary

and i’ve realised that my counselling will go on for as long as i live… i still don’t know if i want to live.. this is also scary

i met a guy i really like.. and who i think about a lot .. and who makes me smile.. a lot

this is scary.

coming to terms with the fact my family abandoned me as well. scary

getting used to having friendships and maintaining them. scary

rebuilding myself up all over again.

scary

knowing it was me who went through child abuse. is fucking terrifying 

‘what would you like to get out of counselling?’

I’ve started counselling again. this time it will be for a year.

it was pretty strange being sat there again. as if i’d graduated from the last counselling session and now was on to the next grade of counselling. as if i had moved up a level or something.

instead of my usual bravado of joking about and being loud and ‘not giving a fuck’ i was actually pretty quiet and reflective and almost cried once.

it’s always weird when i get asked ‘what i want out of counselling’, because the answer is i don’t actually know. i don’t really have a set goal or motive. i just want to not be crazy. but then i guess thats a goal but it sounds a bit stupid when i say it out loud..

i duno

i’d like to have self-esteem

i’d like to have confidence

i’d like not to be anxious all the time

i’d like not to be ruled by depression

i’d like to be able to live life at a normal pace

i’d like not to be hyperaware

i’d like to like myself

i’d like to be able to have a healthy and loving relationship with someone

i’d like to be able to have male friends

i’d like to feel worthy

i’d like not to be alone

i’d like not to feel like a child

maybe this is what i should say next time.

the whole process is very tiring. maybe this is where i put all the pieces together of everything i have remembered in the past year and come to terms with it? i just want a break. a year ago around this time is when it all started. this is probably why i’m in such a state at the moment. =/

Child

over the past few days i have been very upset. i think it’s slowly starting to hit me that for my own benefit i need to be alone and not be sexually involved with men, because it is starting to turn me a bit crazy.

all my experience with guys has always been sex. i’ve never ever had a guy friend who is just a friend. i find this quite worrying.

even as a child all my experiences with men were sexual.

now i am 20 and still cannot really say i’ve ever had a male friend who i have not thought of in a sexual way or a romantic way or have expected them to be sexually attracted to me.

i think this is mentally unhealthy.

i feel very vulnerable atm. i’ve been getting very depressed as the time comes for me to restart counselling again.

it’s finally dawned on me that this is the 2nd chapter, of perhaps many more to come.

it is very exhausting.

i feel very alone.

all i’d like is a hug or someone to tell how i feel properly without having to cover up my feelings or pretend to be strong. in the past i always relied on partners for that. maybe thats my downfall. trusting people too much before i got to know them.

trusting people not to abuse me.

which led to abuse.

i think i need to give myself a break and hug myself mentally and emotionally.

i’ve always tried to plan ahead, so now i’m going to try and take things as they come, which will be hard and a big change.

i feel very out of control.

i don’t like it. 

change is bringing me depression and confusion in my mental state.

questions

i’m currently in the middle of making new transactions in life.

i’ve completed my first set of counselling

i’ve started university

also for the first time in my life i’ve terminated a relationship on my own terms

 

these are all pretty big changes and i’m not really sure how i’m coping with it. last night resulted in me being triggered by what i saw as rejection, and i went off into a bad depressive state, crying and feeling shaky.

i’ve been feeling lately as if i’m missing out on something. as if everyone else has experienced some form of romantic relationship for a decent period of time and i myself have not been able to do this.

it’s starting to take it’s toll and it’s affecting my self esteem and the way i perceive myself.

is there something wrong with me?

should i just settle for bad relationships?

are these the only type of relationships i will experience in my lifetime?

has any hope of a relationship been tarnished by child abuse, rape, emotional and physical abuse?

will it ever get better?

i don’t know the answer to any of these questions tbh. but i think in the following weeks i will be able to reflect and recognise some of the acheivements i have made. i think i am in a better position as to what i was when i first started righting this blog. 

i’ve recognised that i do have self worth and i don’t need to settle for arseholes.

i’ve recognised that i am the sole person responsible for ensuring my happiness and wellbeing.

i’ve learnt to stand up for myself and realise that i do not have to harm myself emotionally or mentally in order to find favour with other people.

i’ve realised that i need to work on sex and consent, and shouldn’t just give in to situations which will just make me feel worse afterwards. i want to be able to face myself afterwards.

i’ve learnt that i need to stop lying to myself about the men i become involved with and see people for who they really are, not just what i want them to be or their ‘potential’

i’ve learnt that the child abuse wasn’t my fault.

now i need to prepare myself for the second part of my journey. i also need to come to terms with the fact that this is a journey i will be on for the rest of my life. hopefully it does get better, but there is no quick fix solution.

i don’t want to be ill forever

Who owns my body?

The answer to this question should be simple. Me

But sometimes i find that hard to believe.

When someone invades your body through rape, you take a very confused approach to this question.

I remember when i was younger and i’d be on public transport and men would grope me, or guys would ask for me number in the street, then ask for a hug and grope me.

I took it as a compliment, as being normal, as this was the way things were meant to be and that i shouldn’t complain. I didn’t have anyone to tell me that i have the right to dictate who should and shouldn’t touch me, and that i have the right to object to those who invade my personal space.

I feel as if a lot of men i have come across in life feel as if they have some right to my body. This happened again recently at a party where a refused to hug some random stranger and he got aggressive and tried to start a fight with me. It’s a bit of a revelation to know that i can actually exercise this right. And that – NO- these guys don’t have the right to touch me without my consent.

That i have the right to wear whatever the hell i want and not feel as if i have to accept ‘compliments’ by force, and my clothes do not give men the right to expect me to smile when they make sleazy comments. that i don’t have to respond to random strangers in the street out of a sense of ‘duty’ and out of fear.

It will take a while to absorb this and actually be confident about it. and to be honest it’s pitiful really, that to me and many other girls this mindset is a revelation.

Consent and stereotypes

i was in a situation a few days ago where i was with a partner, i wanted to have sex but he didn’t. it was funny because when i think of consent and sex, it’s always me portraying men as ‘the bad guys who do n’t listen when you say no’, instead in this situation it was me persisting when he was clearly saying no.

i didn’t pay much attention to the situation , until he said ‘you can’t make me have sex’. it wasn’t an unpleasant situation but those words made me think about me and my perception of consent.

i think i have to relearn what consent is and scenarios in which i can be seen to be crossing boundaries. it’s interesting as it’s not something that had really crossed my mind before.

maybe it’s to do with the idea reinforced through patriarchy that men always want sex and females are the ones always ‘giving in’. i’m not excusing my persistence, and i will apologise for that incident next time i see him.

it made me a bit sad because i’ve been adamant not to let abuse define me and my actions and for myself not to turn into an abuser myself. however, i guess it’s not as simple and clear cut. i’ll have to look at my actions and how i communicate with partners and it probably would do well for me to stick it in my head that no does indeed mean no.

‘Brothers’

I remembered something when i was reading my book on child abuse.

it spoke about how some survivors of csa may fantasize about abusing other children in the same sexual way. while i was reading that i remembered that sometime i used to think of my siblings in a sexual way. not openly. more sort of supressed. but then push the thought away because it was wrong. i also remember reading stories about peadophile rings and chilod porn and subconsciously thinking maybe these actions weren’t so bad. but then snapping out of that and forcing myself to think that it was wrong. because rationally i know it is wrong, deep down i do not know if i believe that. my own belief system sexually has been tampered with so it’s very confusing.

yeah so as i was thinking about this , i remembered before my rape i think one of my grandparents told me that the 2 boys who lived with them were my ‘brothers’. not brothers as in blood brothers but somehow older substitute brothers because i didn’t have any and they were close to my age range. i don’t think this is a false memory because i remember saying to someone i have 2 brothers in nigeria and they are older than me. (actually i just remembered that now), i told that to one of my friends in school. i remember being so happy that i had these ‘brothers’. and often wondering whether in fact they were my real brothers.

so somehow i have experienced almost incest and child sexual abuse.

i connected this link to why in the past i sometimes thought of my uncle in a sexual way, or my siblings. because if it was ‘normal’ for my ‘brothers’ to do this, then it must be ‘normal’ for me to have these thoughts’

I don’t think it was normal at all. No , it’s not normal , it makes me feel sick.

I’ve always had problems with any form of relationship with older men. i always think that the relationship is sexual and find myself acting out and wanting to look ‘attractive’ for older men that i have no actual attraction for and generally feel sick at the thought of imagining them in any sexual way.

I always felt as if i had a duty to look ‘pretty’ for men and to exp[ect them to touch me in a certain way ande not be repulsed.. and to ‘want’ it.

i out myself in dangerous positions on purpose in the past. walking down alleyways, wanting to be harassed by men and be attackled in a sexual way. almost getting excited from the prospect of thinking about it. thankfully nothing has happened to me. actually i don’t know if i am really thankful about that just yet.

recently i find myself avoiding groups of older men, crossing the road and walking faster. i feel threatened when men approach me. i feel compelled to give out my number if men ask for it m, because ‘i have to’. i feel scared when guys try to chat me up or try to talk to me when i walk past them.

i have a weird relationship with men at the moment right now.

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