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  • in reply to: Is Buddhism and Depression a Dangerous Mix? #41006


    Thanks for your input! I do agree that we should focus on the light and the lighter sides of things. But sometimes you have to go through the dark before you can see the light at the end of the tunnel. If anything Buddhism pushes us to embrace this inner darkness while other religions sugarcoat life or fight against this darkness. I think Buddhism is the light in the darkness, which doesn’t attempt to distinguish the darkness but to shine some light on the darkness for a deeper understanding.

    The links you gave seem really interesting. I am going to check them out. I am a fan of Thich Nhat Hanh so thanks for that quote. For me it wasn’t a matter of focusing on the toothache but pretending like the toothache wasn’t there until the tooth became infected and now needs removal. I am in the removal process.

    As far as the “Fun” forum on Tiny Buddha not being updated, I really like that. The internet is full of fun things and funny sites. I frequent them plenty. I am an avid watcher of Youtube videos featuring babies laughing, animals doing silly things, parodies, pranks, etc. Laughter is medicine. However, I enjoy that the focus here is on deeper issues. In our individualistic American society, many people don’t have an outlet for their pain or have discussions about their problems. You pay professional people to listen to you. Such is the case with me. We lack community in America. It’s all about pretending to be okay. So I am glad that people can find a community like Tiny Buddha to open up and share their experiences and help others in the process. It’s not depressing ranting like on the FML site but people who are genuinely interested in understanding their problems and finding solutions. And people like you who want to help!

    Thanks Once Again,


    in reply to: How can I ever forgive my past abusers? #41002


    I am so impressed that you are beginning this healing process so young. I am sure it will be the best thing you have ever done and will save you lots of heartache. I had to experience some unnecessary tough times before confronting this issue. I am also amazed at your bravery for dealing with your abuser. You handled it well and didn’t stoop down to his level by being hurtful. So much maturity there to not hurt someone who has hurt you. A lot of times we hurt others just because we are hurting ourselves.

    I just wanted to let you know to not feel bad about feeling angry or hateful. You have every reason to feel that way. You are only human. Now you are doing what it takes to transform those emotions, not for him, but for yourself, for your own healing and as a way of regaining your power.

    I am also glad that you are opening up to others about your abuse. I have found it very helpful to finally start talking about it. I am sorry that you can’t discuss this with your family but glad that you have the support of your friends.

    As far as the intimacy issues with closeness, I have come to realize I need to connect with myself and be intimate with myself before I can do this with someone else. It doesn’t mean that I reject others but understand that I can only go as deep as I have gone with myself.

    I am wishing you much light and love on your journey. Thanks for your insight and sharing!



    in reply to: How can I ever forgive my past abusers? #41000


    Thanks for taking the time to answer the rest of the questions.

    I am glad that you are making these realizations about your self and your behaviors, even though it may be painful. Don’t add more pain to yourself by feeling regret or shame about the way you have treated yourself. Try to be understanding of yourself. The scarring yourself was just a coping mechanism. You were trying to remove the pain. I noticed that I showered compulsively and washed myself at least three times to feel clean. When I got out of the shower, I never felt clean. Now I realized that the abuse made me feel dirty and I was trying to remove the nonphysical feeling of filth in a physical way. I also noticed that anytime I felt like crying, I would take a shower and cry there. However, now as adults we can find a better method. It seems to me that you are doing just that.

    “I made some devastating discoveries about myself… the pain was so intense that sometimes my life didn’t seem like it is my life… sometimes I felt like I was disconnected from the world…”
    I feel you 100%. For me looking at the pain was like staring directly at the bright sun and burning my cornea. I literally could not look at it. I had to look away. So I had to look at it in bite size pieces and unplug/disconnect when it became too overwhelming. I still do this but I have changed it. Rather than hiding or suppressing it, I looked at it like looking at a book of my pain. I could only read a couple of sentences at a time. When it became too much, instead of stuffing the book under the bed or closing it, I would leave it open on the table and choose to walk away. So I acknowledged the pain but still understood that I couldn’t take it in all at once and didn’t try to suppress it. Now I can read pages, hopefully soon I can read chapters and then after that I will be finished reading it altogether and can put it down for good. Then I can move on to another book with drama, adventures, happy moments, melancholic moments and all the above. Because I have not dealt with this book, I haven”t been able to move on to the other books that life has to offer. The process is very slow but at least we are getting there.

    “I have never had many friends. I just can’t maintain friendship relationships. This has bothered me for years… I have always, always wondered what the hell was wrong with me…Then I saw that I’ve been pushing people away. My whole life… always pushing people away. People come to me, but I just don’t do what it takes to create a bond.”
    Yep, yep and yep! I let people get extremely close to me. Many people will say that I am a great friend and a valuable asset in their lives. However, I don’t get close to people or let them in. Major trust issues. Major issues with intimacy as I didn’t learn to form healthy attachments and bonds. I fear they won’t like me or accept me if I showed them all of me. I fear that right when I decide to let them in that they will hurt me, abandon me or reject me or use me or all of these terrible things that my mind can conjure up. Also I crave closeness and intimacy more than anything else but at the same time it feels highly smothering and uncomfortable. I have been very vulnerable and open with my current partner because I haven’t done so in past relationships. However, it is with strings attached. I show him my vulnerability then I put my defenses up. I attach many conditions and he has to pass many tests to prove he is trustworthy. I don’t mean trustworthy as in won’t cheat on me but trustworthy as in you aren’t going to manipulate me because I showed you my weakness, etc. Sometimes if I feel I showed him something too ugly about me, then I will be very sweet and accommodating. Almost as if I want him to see that I am still a good person. I feel like I am screaming “please love me even though you truly saw me. See what I made for you. See I what I did for you. I’m not so ugly after all.” This really has more to do with me not accepting myself fully, with not accepting my hurt, pain, fear, weaknesses and all. We have rejected that part of ourselves for so long that we feel others will reject them too. Ironically, when people show me these sides of themselves, I love them more, just as they are. My partner and I both have unhealthy patterns of relating so we are seeking couple’s therapy now. Just last night I told my boyfriend rather nicely and calmly that I just wanted to leave my whole life behind. Just hop in the car, just me and my dog Chopper, and go anywhere. Maybe come back, maybe not. I told him I just want freedom and independence not necessarily from him but in all aspects of my life. I have been a world traveler and we were discussing it in these terms. But after us talking about it more, I realized it was not just a case of the travel bug but a cop out too. It was just because I am getting too close and attached to people here and to this place. We moved around a lot as a child so I never really could form good, close relationships. I notice that right when I get settled somewhere, I want out. I want to start something new, somewhere else. I am unsure how to overcome this at this point in life.

    “I discovered so many hatred towards me that scares me to death.” Same here. I wrote down all of the hateful things I felt about myself. Logically, I knew these things weren’t even close to the truth but I felt they were true. I wouldn’t suggest doing this until you truly feel ready. I thought about doing it for a very long time but worried that I would have an emotional breakdown or spiral out of control. I finally felt ready. It was painful. I only looked at it once but it felt so good to purge it. I felt like I was vomiting these feelings out. Also instead of criticizing myself for feeling hatred towards myself, I was kind and compassionate to myself. This was hard to do. But seeing myself like I would see a friend sharing this information with me helped a lot. I would be kind not cruel. I would console not criticize. I accepted that I felt that way and was understanding as to why. Then I could finally work on changing those feelings. You can’t change, if you don’t know what to change. So the list provided me with insight and understanding. I linked each emotion to a particular cause. For example, I felt unlovable because I was told I was unwanted. I even linked events to memories. So I kind of did an analysis so to speak. So anytime I start to feel hate towards myself, I think of the list and know why versus believing what I feel. I also remind myself that these events happened in the past but don’t necessarily have to dictate how I feel now. So I think of other more recent events when I was wanted, when I was lovable, etc.

    “But I’m scared this feeling will go away (like happened before) and suffering will come back.”

    Amelie, it will be a roller coaster ride. The suffering will come back but each time a bit more gentle. Life is a cycle. So don’t cling to the pain or to the pleasure. Enjoy the happiness, clarity, joy while it lasts, also be present to the suffering knowing that this too shall end. I know we can get stuck feeling like the happiness is temporary and the suffering is permanent but it is all temporary. In a way this can cause anxiety but it can also bring relief if we center ourselves in the present.

    ” I’m afraid the part that hates me will come back.” You must mend the break, the split. There is not a separate part of you. You are a whole person. In the West, we learn that we are good or bad, black or white, male or female. It’s not that easy. We are one person with many different parts all functioning for the sake of creating a whole, balanced person. The part that hates you really just hates your suffering, your pain not necessarily you. We confuse our emotions for who we are. As in my pain is me. We even use it in our language ‘I am happy, I am sad, I am hurt’. If you feel that your emotion is you and you feel pain, naturally you would hate your pain thus hating yourself. However hurtful, these emotions are necessary. They point to something that needs fixing/healing, which you are doing now.

    Also your emotion has nowhere to go so it turns inward. The anger and hate is towards your pain, towards the ones that hurt you. It has no outlet so it just goes back to you. These emotions are volatile because they always end up hurting you. It’s not necessary to hold on to them but not necessary to bury them either. Give them a healthy release. Grab some old plates and smash them with a hammer. Take up kickboxing or fencing. Scream loudly. Write about your anger and hate and hurt. Just make sure to release them not cling to them and not bury them. Someone explained to me that resentment is really meant to be resent to you. Wonderful lesson! Still working on my resentment! Slowly these emotions will settle and begin to transform. All emotion is just energy. It just slides back and forth on a spectrum. You can feel it in your body. When we watch a movie for example, we can see this transference take place. You will laugh then that laughter will turn into confusion then into suspense then the suspense turns into anger then anger turns into weeping then it goes back to feelings of joyfulness when the ending is happy. Our emotional state is like an ocean, on the surface the ocean shifts and changes; it can be turbulent, calm, etc. However, when you swim deeper and move away from the surface, the ocean is still. So know that although there are all of these varying waves of emotion, when you go deeper within yourself there is stillness within you. It is easier said than done. Just like deep sea diving, swimming deeper within ourselves requires training and equipment and learning how to breathe underwater. Remember that we always have to resurface. We can do so without getting caught up in the waves of the surface. I am sure you are acquiring the right tools.

    Thanks for sharing your experience and reaching out! You are doing tremendous work!

    Sending you lots of love,


    in reply to: Girls, I Need Your Help Please!!!!! #40985


    All girls are different but most girls and most people really just enjoy a good laugh. I am really interested in goofy/funny guys, either the guys I laugh with or even the guys I laugh at. A guy that can make fun of himself shows plenty of confidence (so long its not too self-deprecating). So in that particular situation, I would suggest doing something funny like pretending to trip in front of her then saying something corny like “man, I’m falling for you all ready” or writing your name and number on a piece of paper and turning it into a paper plane then flying it to her or make an origami flower with your name and number on the petals. This will make you stand out as many times guys just ask for a girl’s number. Also you give her the choice to call you rather than you call her. I find that rather considerate. I am only speaking for myself though.

    I think you would have greater chances approaching her if she were alone like at a coffee shop or library or something. In that case, notice if she is reading something then ask her what it is about, why she is interested in that book. If she is wearing something nice ‘say I love that x,y,z it really makes your eyes stand out or brings out the glow in your complexion. Be sincere and specific; don’t just say “I like that dress”, say “I like the way that dress looks on you, it really suits you well,” etc. Most girls like to talk, so ask more questions about her, showing that you are interested in her and who she is. Tell her about yourself but don’t divulge everything, leave some things a mystery so that she can be intrigued to talk to you more. Try meet up groups to meet girls that share your interest, then you both have a commonality. Or try making non sexual friendships with girls of the opposite sex. Once you see, that girls aren’t all that mysterious, it will be easier for you to talk to girls romantically. I really hope this helps. Good luck!


    in reply to: How can I ever forgive my past abusers? #40836


    Thanks for sharing your experiences. Your insight has been a tremendous help to us all. I had a strange episode last night. My boyfriend and I went to couples counseling for the first time yesterday. It was actually really great. We felt extremely connected so we tried to be intimate. We haven’t been in a long time since the last time I felt I was taken advantage of. Everything was going great. I was feeling aroused until penetration. Only his tip was in, when suddenly something immediately switched within me and I started sobbing. I was sooooo overwhelmed with shame. There was no flashbacks or memories just this intense feeling of shame. He was so supportive though. But this caught me way off guard. I thought I was doing great. This never happened to me before. I guess I just need to take it slow. And next time I will also try to control the pressure like you suggested. Or maybe I just will abstain until I feel more centered and settled…I dunno.

    Also I had a question for you..if it is too personal you don’t have to answer. You wrote “But my body seemed to prefer the intensity and feeling of being taken by a male. There was a surrender that happened within me that was very appealing, and my body would become overwhelmed with pleasure. It was something that didn’t happen to me in a sexual experience with a woman, and yet I fell in love with women, never even feeling attracted to a male. What a crazy predicament!”. So you are saying your body was aroused but not your mind? What if a woman penetrated you? Would this cause the same feeling?

    I am confused about this because I become very aroused by penetrating men with a strap on. I don’t do it in a BDSM way but in a very nurturing way. I feel as if I am freeing them by allowing them to be penetrated, to be submissive, to surrender, to express a more vulnerable side, a more feminine side. It allows me to express my masculinity too. So it is a mutual, sensual, playful exchange. I find it very healing. However this has turned me off recently, because my current boyfriend seems to only get aroused this way. I was the one who introduced him to all this but now he seems to prefer it over regular sex. He stays erect whereas when he is in charge he goes soft. I typically enjoy doing this with very masculine men but he really isn’t very masculine in appearance or demeanor. I am highly feminine in appearance so I love the juxtaposition of a very masculine male being penetrated by a soft and round faced, curly haired woman. Oh and he was really eager to try it whereas I usually have to do some heavy convincing with other men. I often wondered if he is gay or if he too is scared of his own masculinity. This is very distressing to me as what was once a very healing thing for me now feels more like a perversion. I don’t know if you have any insight to what might be going on here.

    Thanks for your sharing, caring and support,


    in reply to: Life Rant / PTSD #40833


    I am sorry to hear of your abuse. I too was sexually abused as a child and deal with anxiety, depression and a mild form of PTSD. I actually had an episode last night when my boyfriend and I tried to have sex. Since I have been healing, I have avoided penetrative sex. The emotions which I have suppressed for so long are so raw now. I have recently been seeing a therapist, which has been helping a lot. Also reading about abuse victims has given me greater understanding of my emotions. I started this thread about abuse and many people have shared their own experience with abuse and how they have worked towards healing: http://tinybuddha.com/topic/how-can-i-ever-forgive-my-past-abusers/. I hope it can help you.

    Here is a really good podcast about PTSD and restoring the body: http://www.onbeing.org/program/restoring-the-body-bessel-van-der-kolk-on-yoga-emdr-and-treating-trauma/5801

    You did the right thing by speaking up. Just know that it was not your fault. You didn’t deserve to be abused. You don’t have to carry the shame and guilt around. There is nothing wrong or bad about you. You didn’t do anything wrong or bad. You can heal and the process will be very painful. You will be angry. At times you feel just like a child, unsafe, anxious and scared. You will feel alone, isolated or you may not feel at all at times. It will be a roller coaster ride. But just go slow.

    Sending you much love and understanding,


    in reply to: I love myself so why don't others? #40825


    I have found in my experience that most people generally gravitate towards happy people with positive energy. I am unsure why you are having a hard time making friends. Maybe you are just looking for a more meaningful connection than most or desire friendships that connect on a much deeper level than what some people are comfortable with. Friendships take time to build and work on fostering the ones that really matter. And know that the ones that really matter will be few. Having friends has nothing to do with being a “good” person. Even “bad” people have friends, loyal ones even. (Good and bad in quotations marks because I don’t really like to use good or bad, its too black and white for me. Plus at any given point in time we all have been good or bad).

    “I love myself so why don’t others?” Your forum title is rather interesting. How can you assume if others really love you or not? Everyone loves at their own capacity, at their own level. How are you measuring love? Are others mistreating you or abusive or putting you down? That isn’t love. And if it is, it is a tainted love at most. Or are others just not giving you the amount of love you think you deserve? Others can only love you as much as they love themselves. So I wouldn’t expect much from your depressed boyfriend. It doesn’t mean he doesn’t love you, it just means he needs your support while he figures himself out. Here is an article on how to deal with a depressed partner: http://www.healthyplace.com/depression/men/depression-in-men-understanding-male-depression/. I personally never thought I would ever be depressed before. I am intrinsically a joyful, upbeat, high energy person. A smile and laugh comes easy and I can cheer people up in a snap. However when I became depressed, it was the worse feeling ever. Everything was numbed. I just needed someone to listen. So just be supportive of him. You can’t fix it only he can. Also I believe that a little depression is good for growth so long it’s not chronic or last too long.

    Also know that the love you have for yourself is enough. If someone loves you, it’s just a bonus. I found that if I don’t really love myself, no matter how much people share their love, show their love, prove their love, its never enough. Sometimes we love what we do and not who we are. Sometimes we love the idea we have created of ourselves but not our true selves as in the good, the bad, the ugly and the beautiful. Sometimes we love how others love us but not how we love ourselves. Sometimes we love what others think of us but don’t love what we think of ourselves. Self love can be confusing. When my self love is strong, I don’t need any love from others. I have too much already, I want to share it with others. It doesn’t mean I reject the love of others, it’s just means whether I get it or don’t it doesn’t disturb me. My world isn’t going to come crashing down. However when I don’t feel real love for myself, all of myself, then it does disturb me.

    Hope you make some good connections!


    in reply to: Afraid of my feelings #40766


    Go for it! Wholeheartedly go for it! Call me a helpless or hopeful romantic but if he truly is everything you wanted then go for it! Let’s say that there was no relocation involved. You both would be staying in the same place. Would being in the same city guarantee that your heart won’t be broken? There are no guarantees in love. None at all. Love really is blind. You have to trust. And if your heart breaks it can really only ever break open. Everything is temporary in life and I wouldn’t give up a wonderful month of being with someone I connect with out of fear of not “having” them permanently. (Having in quotation marks because we can never really possess anyone).

    I had the same situation happen to me and it was over after he left but it was soooo good while it lasted. I also learned a lot about my myself and was able to grow from it. Also think of the movie Grease, they have a fabulous summer romance because they both knew they would be going separate ways. When coincidentally they ended up living in the same town, all of these problems surfaced between them. So maybe this impermanence is what is causing the excitement after all. You know? Knowing that you only have such little time together so you make the most of it. Imagine if we lived our lives realizing just how impermanent we all are, we would live life so much more joyfully, lovingly, and toss fear out of the window. We are not guaranteed any amount of time. Love is all we need. Just follow your heart, it knows best.

    Good luck to you!



    Hi Niraj,

    I’m a girl and you are talking to me! You see not so scary after all. Is your fear around all girls or only certain girls? Do you feel uncomfortable talking to girls or women within your family? There is such a thing as gynophobia, which is a severe phobia/fear of women. And also caligynephobia, which is only a fear of beautiful women. These fears are strongly rooted in the objectification of women. Women traditionally have been seen as saintly, holy, put on a pedestal or as mysterious, dangerous vixens. Thus women have been seen as celestial or hellish but never just earthy and human. For example, I can’t talk to Mary she is too good for me, why would she want to talk to someone as low as me or I can’t talk to Suzzy, she is too adventurous and spontaneous, what if she is bored with me or what if she is too hot for me to handle, etc. Some women do this to men too; seeing men as a hero or a villein, a rescuer/savior or a creepy pervert.

    I am not saying that you objectify women but sometimes one can get caught up on what do girls/women want or what would a girl/women want to hear rather than what does Jenny want, what does Ann like to talk about. I would suggest that when you speak with women/girls, don’t really look at them as women/girls. Just see them as regular, normal persons or human beings. Focus more on that person as an individual and focus less on what she may think of you.

    So think about how it is that you view women and yourself. Do you view women simply as a sexual being or romantic partner? Some people believe that opposite sexes can never truly have platonic relationships. Is this your belief? If you want to talk to a girl without wanting anything in return, then there really isn’t anything to worry about. If you want to talk to a girl because you have a romantic interest, then your fear may be more of a fear of rejection rather than a fear of girls. Rejection hurts but it is easy to get over.

    I wish you luck!

    Warmest Regards,


    in reply to: How can I ever forgive my past abusers? #40619


    Your story brought tears to my eyes. Not because I pity you or feel sorry for you but because I know how awful it is to feel that way. Also how incredibly painful it is. Really rather indescribable. Because even when you don’t want to think of it, it still comes up. In dreams, when you shower, in conversation…always seems like there is some kind of trigger for the pain.

    “I’m afraid that after writing/saying this people will exclude me from their hearts. Is this shame or truth?” I can tell you that it is shame not truth. Opening this thread made me feel extremely scared of judgment. I even began to panic thinking that people will tell me I deserved to be treated that way or will look down on me or not respond at all because I am somehow untouchable. Even when I go back to respond to replies there is always a bit of fear in me.

    In a way your pain is special. It is difficult to talk about abuse when you are a female and even more difficult when you are a male. There is very little support for male survivors. People don’t seem to understand that men were once boys, boys that needed protection and were unable to defend themselves. I am so sorry for your pain and hurt. I personally know that is is even more painful because your own relative abused you. I hate that I will always be linked to him.

    No, healing isn’t all rainbows and sunshine. Sometimes actually many times healing is more painful than the actual event itself. I realized I needed healing in 2009, secretly I knew all along but thought that other things could fix it. I didn’t really do anything until October of 2012. I had to get six stitches to my ankle when I split it open to the bone while on my mountain bike. It was a blunt strike so I felt pain at first but it subsided. However, it was way more painful to get stitched up, to apply the topical solution, to walk on crutches for two weeks and then to slowly walk on it again. The healing process was way more painful. Before this accident, I also had a kidney infection that sent me to the ER. Then in February of 2012 I was diagnosed with allergic asthma. Being a highly healthful person, I didn’t know why 2012 was such a sickly year for me. I realized my body was telling me I needed to slow way down and needed to heal and the reason I had avoided it was because healing was painful. My injury and illness was a powerful lesson for me.

    When I started the healing process in October, I actually became very depressed. I remember New Years Day was a day I stayed in bed and ate all day. I tried meditation, yoga, writing but I would fall back again. Then I had to redefine what I considered healing. Healing wasn’t forgetting. Healing didn’t mean I was okay. For me, healing means opening up, talking about it, releasing this old pain and anger. I finally started seeing a therapist a little less than a month now. I wrote it down on the info sheet but still haven’t talked about it. I just can’t seem to talk to about it face to face yet. My throat physically closes up and my face feels like its burning even when I try to mention it. Before I left the last session he told me, he knows there is still a lot to discuss and that he is just waiting on me. He also told me to feel angry and to grieve. I told him I am scared to feel, scared to grieve, scared to cry. I told him my emotions feel so powerful that I fear I would die if I fully released them. He told me although my emotional pain feels like real physical pain it cannot harm me. He told him I cannot heal until I grieve. So don’t suppress and don’t judge your feelings. What you are going through now is actually part of the healing process even though it seems absurd. You have to feel a lot of pain, hurt, anger before those feelings can be transformed into love for yourself, honor for you and your body, compassion, etc. It is more of a transformation, a transfer of emotion rather than a healing. I have a scar on my leg now. I didn’t scrape my legs up in childhood because I was busy hiding in closets away from abusers or inside reading. Books were how I escaped the trauma from abuse. People have always complimented my legs because they are long, naturally tan and smooth. I like the scar though. It reminds me I that I CAN heal. Also even though it is nearly a year since I got the scar, ever now and then there is a slight pain/itch if I stand too long or am in an awkward yoga position. So the pain will always be there but it will be less and less frequent.

    I am now currently listening to Restoring the Body, it is about trauma. I turned it on while working and since work can get boring, I decided to check Tiny Buddha real quick. I take it as no coincidence that you decided to reply at the same time I was listening to this. Please listen to it. It is highly insightful and is really pertinent to our situation of abuse: http://www.onbeing.org/program/restoring-the-body-bessel-van-der-kolk-on-yoga-emdr-and-treating-trauma/5801.

    What happened to you was wrong but it doesn’t make you wrong. I tried really hard to be perfect because I thought if there were some type of flaw in me then this would point to a fundamental flaw or wrongness in my being and if there is something wrong about me then it would explain why I was abused. Again its a cycle of shame. Shame as described by Brene Brown is “I am wrong versus I did something wrong” or “I am a failure versus I failed”. You are not wrong or bad or ugly or unlovable or untouchable. You are a brave, beautiful man just as you are, abuse survivor and all.

    Know that you can reach out. Know that you can express the disgust, awfulness, hate, anger, etc. I will listen.

    Sending you lots of love and support on your journey,


    in reply to: How can I ever forgive my past abusers? #40610

    Hello Moonflower (Sean Lowe),

    I am glad that our stories could be of help to you. The Good Men Project has several articles written by men regarding their experiences with sexual abuse (http://goodmenproject.com/). Just look for it in the search engine. Also http://toysoldier.wordpress.com/ is about male sexual abuse. I like this site but it also seems to be a bit anger fueled, which survivors like us need to express that anger and have ever right to be angry but we also need to focus on healing. Lastly there is also male survivor http://www.malesurvivor.org/. Matt, who has shared such healing advice on this topic, is also a male survivor. I am sure you have read his replies but I go back and reread them when I need to be soothed.

    It is a shame that sexual abuse carries the weight of secrecy and even more so for men. People usually think of men as the abusers rather than the abused. I dated a man who was sexually abused by both his step dad and mother. I am glad I met him because until then I secretly hated men and wondered if they were all abusers. He inspired my website http://www.cybermancave.com. I intended it to be self-help and relationship help for men in an amusing yet healing way and also hoped to bring the topic up of male sexual abuse but at the time I just couldn’t face my own abuse much less discuss the abuse of others. Now by creating this topic and through the inspiration found on Tiny Buddha (such a god sent site) I feel I can bravely talk about this, especially seeing how it has helped so many people. If you ever want to share your story on my site please let me know.

    I hope you can transform your suffering via self healing and self love!

    Sending you lots of warmth and understanding,


    in reply to: How can I ever forgive my past abusers? #40567


    Woohoooooooooo! I am so pleased that you were inspired to start a blog about abuse. I can’t wait to see it! Please send me the link once it has started up. If you need any help, please also let me know. I started a blog last year with the intent of writing about relationship issues and taboo topics including sexual abuse but it was for men only. It was my way of learning not to hate men and trying to be understanding. I was doing great with it but I could never get around to open up the abuse topic. I wrote about everything but that. I felt kinda of like a fraud. Then I stopped writing altogether because I felt stuck. However, starting topics here and replying to people has helped me get back into the swing of writing. I forgot how just how much I enjoy it and enjoy the exchange of ideas. I am going to try to write a new post by the end of the month. Wait, I will do it not try. Check it out at http://www.cybermancave.com.

    I look forward to hearing more from you and your blog!

    Thank you for taking time to answer some questions. I could relate to many of them. I am glad that you have begun this road to healing. It is scary but I am glad that we are being brave and facing it.

    Sending love your way,


    in reply to: How can I ever forgive my past abusers? #40563


    Wow! I really enjoyed your writing. I am glad that you have found an outlet like writing to express/release your pain and hurt. I feel you and relate to you on being on high alert. Constantly scanning for danger. It is overwhelming for both the mind and heart. Even though you didn’t directly answer the questions, your story answered them all.

    “i promise it’s over, i promise it’s over, i promise it’s over” Kristin, in a way it is over but in a way it never really is over, is it? It feels like the suffering will last forever. Even though it is physically over the wounds we carry are constantly and forever bursting open. However, I have faith that the suffering will be over, that we can learn to heal and that we can learn to love ourselves and others properly. Yes, the memories will still be there but they will be ever so faint, ever so far, ever so small.

    Thank you so much for sharing and once again I am happy that our heart songs and heart cries can comfort each other. Please don’t be afraid to reach out. You are supported.

    Sending lots and lots of love,



    Buddhist Wife,

    I honestly don’t have any real suggestions just my experience. I started dealing with anxiety attacks just last year and have had severe nightmares for most of my life. I became anxious when a doctor diagnosed me with allergic asthma. Being worried that I couldn’t breath caused anxiety. It was scary when I couldn’t distinguish an asthma attack from an anxiety attack. When I dug deeper, the core of my anxiety was in realizing that there were things despite of my efforts that were beyond my control such as having asthma. Although I haven’t had an asthma attack in a while, having my inhaler with me along with a leopard skin jasper stone (Shaman’s stone) brings me comfort and calms me. Maybe you should find something to carry with you that brings a sense of security. I bet your lack of medicine has robbed some of that security from you.

    For me, I kinda feel like the anxiety is really pent up energy in my body. So vigorous activity really helps me both physically and mentally. It is strange how there are some activities that can soothe my anxiety but then they become anxiety provoking activities. This happens when I tend to worry about all the what ifs. I took up rock climbing which I really enjoyed for a while. However, a new person belayed me and he almost dropped me when I slipped. Since then I have been feeling anxious about climbing. I do it still on occasion but really have to focus on my breath and calming my fear. I volunteered at a therapeutic horse riding park. My task was to walk alongside the horse while holding on to a mounted disabled child. I really enjoyed this but became anxious about all the what ifs. What if I drop the child or what if the horse acts up and I can’t gain control of the horse. So I haven’t gone back to that. The pattern that I have noticed is I feel anxious when I allow my mind to race and I don’t focus on the activity at hand. I also get anxious at night especially if I have been sitting all day. The remedy for me is to:

    1. Release energy via vigorous exercise

    2. Release mental energy by engaging in brain games or puzzles or reading ( I have a lumosity account)

    3. Release creative energy by writing, making things, cooking, etc

    4. Learn to recognize my threshold, not put too much on my plate

    5. Slowly learning to be okay with not being in control and with uncertainty ( The main reason I feel I need to be in control is because I want certainty and stability. My household was unpredictable, uncontrollable and unstable so in order to feel safe I needed to create order.)

    6. Handling uncertainty by preparing myself. I acquired the confidence that comes with preparation in order to handle the unknown.. I don’t prepare by building a bomb shelter : )…but I am working on doing internal preparation…gathering the internal strength I need to deal with situations, if sh*t were to hit the fan

    7. Learning not to worry about being worried…learning not to feel anxious about being anxious because this usually brings on an anxiety attack

    8. Sometimes you just can’t fight it. Sometimes you just need to take a deep breath and say I am feeling anxious. Accept it. Also I was getting to the point where even routine things was causing me anxiety like playing board games with friends (friends I have known for 5-7 years). I almost didn’t want to leave the house. Instead of continuing to avoid events, which was causing me more anxiety, I just started being honest with them. I then discovered that two fellow friends suffered from anxiety. Now I feel supported and like its no big deal if I have an attack in front of them.

    9. You seem to be a really caring person. Put that caring and loving energy into volunteering. I remember watching the news and getting really upset too. At times, I would wake up in the middle of the night and pray for all the suffering souls in the world. Sometimes I would even weep for them. I cut the news out entirely. You really don’t have to watch it to remain compassionate to others. This doesn’t mean I tune things out and pretend like the world is a perfect place but I just chose to be informed about what I want to be informed about. I care about certain world events and these are the things l research. Because now versus the past, we are inundated with so much information that it is crucial to filter. You have to for your own sanity.

    10. Take a break! Take a walk, a bath, watch something funny! Relax. Make sure to make time to recharge. We charge our phones daily, our computers daily, we refuel our cars often but we forget to recharge. It is important for balance.

    11. Trust

    I really hope that you find some peace of mind. I am sorry for all the struggles you have had to endure. Sending peace and tranquility your way!

    Warm Regards,


    in reply to: What is the secret to change? #40558


    “The key is to get comfortable feeling uncomfortable…there is nowhere to go, nothing to do”

    I am slowly getting comfortable with discomfort. I am doing it with my body first, hoping that it will translate over to my mind. For example, I get cold frequently and I normally keep a light cardigan in my office or turn a space heater on. Now I have been waiting to turn the heat on or to put on a cardigan until I can’t bear it anymore. Slowly my body adapts. Our society is highly uncomfortable with being uncomfortable. The moment we feel pain, sadness, or anything else unpleasant there is something to numb it or make it go away. This transition at times has been very uncomfortable but it is exciting too. At times, the excitement turns into anxiety because I do fret about what next or what now or I was supposed to do this, etc. Now I am learning to just do what I can and to not come undone by the things that are left undone. Sunday I slept a little later than usual and I immediately felt guilty. How unproductive! But then I laughed it off because no one was expecting anything from me that day except for me. My expectations are all self imposed.

    I am learning to trust! Paradoxically, I feel like I can trust more the deeper I go. Even though nothing is planned out or can be seen, I know deep down, it’s alright!

    Thanks for the insight and inspiration!



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