Alone and Hurting

Warning: there’s some talk of sex and rape down the page a bit, after I start talking about BF.  Feel free to skip it if it might trigger you.

I’m hurting today.  I feel sad and alone, and I just want a hug.  I think it’s the combination of being sick, the aftermath of Mother’s Day, and some triggers I accidentally ran into the past few days.

I talked to my mother yesterday.  I’m ashamed to admit that–for the past couple months, I’ve been in touch with her sporadically.  I think I’m afraid people will see me as weak for going back on the no contact.  But to be fair to myself, I’ve gone into this with no illusions.  I think the years of no contact let me get the distance I needed and grow up enough that I no longer think she can be a mother to me, no matter how sweet she acts.  I see her for what she is now.  When I told her I was sick again and my liver might be in trouble, she said, “Oh, that’s too bad” and then went on and on about her upcoming neck surgery and her troubles with her and her husband’s insurance companies.  A small part of me wanted her to be concerned about me, but I wasn’t crushed when she wasn’t.  I didn’t give her personal information about my life that she could use to hurt me later.  I mean, she knows I’m working for the Democrats, which used to terrify me, but I’m done looking for my family’s approval.  (The way I described it to A, in talking about going to my sister’s wedding and talking to the adults in my family was, “I GET DEMOCRATS ELECTED SO FUCK ALL Y’ALL!”)  She may be my mother biologically, but I know now that she’ll never really be a mother to me.  I’ve come to terms with that as much as anyone can, I think.

But it still hurts.  There’s this hole inside me that will never be filled.  Therapists and self-help books talk about how you have to reparent yourself, but I think that’s probably bullshit.  It’s not going to fill that yawning empty hole or all the pieces broken by my parents’ years of abuse.  I think maybe that’s something that’s supposed to hurt so you know, without a doubt, that what they did was wrong.

I don’t want it to hurt, though.  I don’t want to be alone.  I don’t want to be sick.  It’s beautiful outside, sunny and warm and summery.  The birds are all singing.  And I’m stuck in bed because I don’t have the stamina to do any more than that.  Last night, I couldn’t stand up long enough to boil pasta–I collapsed on my kitchen floor, occasionally pulling myself up on the counter to see if the noodles were soft yet.  I can’t afford to buy enough frozen dinners to last me the whole week, but cooking doesn’t go well when I’m this sick.  And not eating makes me weaker, but eating hurts.  Fuck ulcerative colitis.

And last night, I went to bed exhausted, but then I started thinking about BF and how much I miss him, and then I couldn’t sleep.  It’s been four months since I’ve seen him, even though New York isn’t that far away.  He was doing the play, and I’ve been busy with the campaign.  But we don’t even talk that much anymore.  When I was in the hospital in Baltimore, he called every night, even though he couldn’t always get through.  (22 patients, 3 phones: you do the math.)  When I was in the hospital in Texas, he called every night, and we talked for at least an hour every night.  (We had our own phones there.)  He was my lifeline in that hellhole, the only thing that kept me sane.  He even flew down to Houston for the weekend to see me.  And now it’s been 4 months.  We text and Facebook message.  He hasn’t called me.  Of course, I haven’t called him either.  I’m too afraid of rejection, even from him.

I want to spend the rest of my life with him.  He wants to spend the rest of his life with me.  I even want to have kids with him.  I never thought I’d want that with anyone, but I do.  I just don’t know if it can work.  I’m asexual and sex-averse.  I’d be willing to try to overcome that for him, for us, but I’m not sure it’s even possible.  I don’t think my asexuality can be changed, but I’m okay with that.  It’s the aversion to sex I’m worried about.  I honestly can’t imagine having sex without it feeling like rape.  Hell, it even feels like rape when he kisses me and pushes his tongue in my mouth.  Even though I say it’s okay, anything even vaguely sexual feels like rape to me.  Is it even possible to overcome that?

But I don’t want him to just have to bend to my needs.  He has already for all this time.  I want it to be a partnership, so he shouldn’t have to be the one who sacrifices all the time.  That’s not fair to him.  I want him to get what he needs, and for him sex is a need in a marriage.  Plus, I actually want to have at least a couple of kids with him, and that kinda makes sex necessary.  I think I could just lie there and let him do it, but that’s not what either of us wants–I want to be able to participate, you know?  Because I love him.  I don’t want to feel like he’s raping me.  I don’t even know for sure that it wouldn’t make me flip out or dissociate.  I’ve never had consensual sex, so I don’t know for sure how I’d react.  (I know, I’m 27, but please don’t judge.)

I know there’s therapy that can help with this.  BF and I have discussed doing couples therapy before, and whenever we finally move in together, we will do that.  But a lot of this stuff belongs in individual therapy.  It would crush BF to find out that anything remotely sexual we’ve done has felt like rape, and I don’t think he necessarily needs to know that.  And dealing with this would have to involve details of my abuse that I don’t particularly want to discuss with him–I want him to see me as I am now, not as that broken, abused little girl.  I discussed some of this with A before I fired her, but even discussing it with another person triggered some dissociation and severe anxiety.  Will I ever be able to get past this?  I don’t want to be alone forever.  I want to spend my life with him.  There has to be a way, right?

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8 Comments

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8 responses to “Alone and Hurting

  1. I think there is always a way, but it might take time to find it. Sending virtual hugs xx

  2. kat

    i wonder if it might help to put a chair in the kitchen when you know you are going to be cooking? sometimes, i am just too tired (from nothing specific) to stand in there, so i bring in a chair and sit somewhere close enough i can monitor the stove.

    as for breaking NC with your mom, you are right not to worry about what anyone else thinks-this is your life, your mom, and if you choose to talk to her, thats ok! but you ask, ‘ can i ever fill this empty hole where mothering should have been?’. and the answer is yes, you can. and maybe its not thru reparenting yourself, but thru making the traumatic memories just be plain old memories instead. this calls for therapy, and most likely, EMDR–its faster and sticks better than just processing (talk) therapy. i have filled in the hole my mother should have filled, and i have let what she did go. i still remember it, but i don’t feel regret, hurt, shame, pain, sadness anymore when i think of her/the trauma. it can be filled in, and you can move on.

    as for bf, and your fear of not being able to be intimate, i would direct this to therapy with EMDR as well. I was in that place before I was separated from my husband. but you can work through this because it is related to your triggers from the rape and trauma you endured. you can process those memories and put them in their right perspective and take their sting away, and help create a you that doesnt pull away from positive, loving feelings and actions.

    but just so you know, im not saying EMDR is a fast fix–it still takes time, but at least its faster than only talk therapy. it has taken me at least the last two years to make that progress in this post. all the therapy i had in the years before never got to the heart of my issues–but i wasnt ready yet then anyway. so it kind of prepped me for the therapy i am getting now, and now, i am progressing. so i know you can do these things, and it is not hopeless (even tho it really seems like it). so hang in there, youre worth it!

    sending hugs and happy thoughts to you.

    • I’ve done EMDR before, and it was kind of disastrous then. It triggered the worst eating disorder relapse I’ve ever had, one that continued for three years and nearly killed me more than once. I was still in a chaotic, unstable, unsafe situation then–I kept bouncing around from my mother’s house to my grandparents’ house and back, and eventually they kicked me out, and I lived in my car, and then I was arrested because I didn’t have the money to get new tags or pay the tickets I’d gotten for expired tags. It was an all-around bad situation, and I think the therapist should’ve known better than to go poking at my trauma with a stick.

      The ED relapse and so on were probably not caused directly by EMDR, but it’s still left me with a deep mistrust of EMDR in general. I don’t know that I could trust anyone enough to try EMDR on me again, honestly. I need therapy to deal with some of the therapy I’ve had. (Wow. Now I feel really fucked up.)

  3. Having an aversion to sex. I get that, totally get it. How to get over it? No clue. I’m just slightly older than you, and I guess, when it comes to sex, I have generally just suffered through it. Even the thought of sex makes my anxiety climb. Now being single again, it’s not something I want to have to face again so my plan really will be to stay single as long as possible or until I can get it figured out. Surely there is a way, like you say.

  4. You are on the right path knowing that you can find a way. Hugs

  5. A very poignant post, thank you for sharing all this. What strikes me is how positive it is that you’ve got someone who really liked/likes you, and you feel the same way about them, despite the challenges. That speaks so well about your strengths and about the human spirit in general.
    I think it’s possible for anyone to be “reparented” and to fill the void created by abuse and the lack of a loving relationship in childhood. My father was a very violent man, and after growing up with him I thought I would never be able to trust anyone… it was extremely hard but eventually I did, and I forgave him.
    About dealing with the problem of distrusting others and getting the fearful alters to risk deeply trusting someone else… which is a problem I once dealt with, as I had such an alter… I learned a lot on that subject from reading Lawrence Hedges’ casebook on severely dissociative abused “borderline” people. That book is called “In Search of the Lost Mother of Infancy” – it refers not to the actual mother, but to the potentially loving relationship which the abused young person wanted but did not receive as a young child.

    • I’ll see if I can get my hands on a copy of that book. Thanks for the recommendation! It’s always good to hear what’s worked for other people.

  6. It can be had for about $4-5 used at Amazon, including shipping. That’s how I got it.

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