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How can I ever forgive my past abusers?

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  • #40836
    Zenhen
    Participant

    Matt,

    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,

    Zenhen

    #40839
    Matt
    Participant

    Zenhen,

    I am happy to share my experiences, because as difficult at some moments have been for me, there has been a tremendous amount of love and light. Adding to the love and light is the only thing that makes sense!

    Your experiences sound very normal to me, and quite encouraging. It makes sense to me that your boyfriend would enjoy being penetrated, and my wife and I have done that. As I healed, the motivation diminished for it, because the beauty and connection that arises when I penetrate her is far more fulfilling for both of us. For me, it was a gateway of sorts, a method for me to find acceptance in the pleasure of the body. It comes down to associations in the mind, and perhaps you’ll find the same thing.

    Consider that when I was young, pleasure in the body was accompanied by shame in the mind. So when I was being penetrated, a split arose. Penetrating a woman didn’t bring about the shame, but it was still influenced by it. When I was first penetrated by a woman, there was a lot of shame. However, the stability and healing I had with me as an adult gave the shame somewhere to go. Said differently, when i saw that I enjoyed it, she enjoyed it, and it was mentally sexy as well as physically sexy, the shame untangled. It left me feeling insecure, but I was able to talk about it with my partner.

    From your side, I wonder if strap on sex is easier for you to get into because the associations aren’t the same. For you, being penetrated was interwoven with hurt feelings, which perhaps makes the different expressions of sexual connection more simple, easy and safe. This could also explain the reason his body responds differently to different styles of lovemaking.

    I will posit a guess that it has more to do with your feelings of safety and involvement than his sexuality. For me, when my wife and in are not sharing a space of togetherness, because one or both of us are spinning in our head, the sex is not nearly as good. She doesn’t orgasm, I don’t stay erect, our rhythm is off… any number of things. Said differently, it is the openness of our root chakra that keeps the sexual fusion alive, and if one of us isn’t open, the fusion fizzles. Does that make sense?

    In response to the shame that arose as you began, that is painful, but also wonderful. It means its healing in my opinion. I see it like pressing a sponge that is full of danky water. When we squeeze it, muck comes out. We see it, surrender to the way it is just old associations cleansing, then let it go. You took off your blinders, the suppression mechanism, by being deeply intimate and open, and so his pushing into you was clearly contrasted! See how that makes it easy to let go? How the shame truly, deeply and completely doesn’t fit now? How there is beauty in who you are, in who he is, in the sacred joining of your bodies… and then the odd and unneeded burden that was placed on your shoulders way back when.

    And that’s just it. The shame fades, as long as we don’t hide it or hide from it. Its just a feeling that isn’t needed anymore. We’re safe, its awesome to have sex, and our history only means we’ll have to wring out the sponge a few times. Each time, the emotion is less sharp, until it is only a gnat buzzing. Then we capture the gnat in our hand and set it free. It kept us safe from even more confusion, but when we release our pain back to god, sex, in all its forms, becomes sacred once again.

    With love,
    Matt

    #40981
    Amelie
    Participant

    Thank you so much for your reply! I’ll send you the blog link as soon as I start it!

    Where is the link to your post at http://www.cybermancave.com. ?

    Answering the other questions:
    6) I’m not sure… I have to think about this. I have a an intuiton that I may have this kind of thought, but at an unconscious leve… or subconscious one… I really must think more about it.

    7) I’m talking more about this in the next post that I’ll write right after this.

    8) I think we must be careful on how we think about this… yes, there are studies showing many abusers were abused. Does this mean you’ll go the same path? NO, ABSOLUTELY NO. We cannot forget that a single human behavior has many, many causes. We cannot say that an abused person will be an abuser. Of course, it’s natural to get worried when you read this kind of thing and you don’t have a study in psychology… But please, believe me that things aren’t like this.

    9) I do feel a little strange about seeing this kind of situation… but now I’m aware that it’s because of my past. About getting rid of the suspicious, I think you are already doing it: you are aware of what you feel, and you know why. Once you realize this, you can look at the situation AWARE that your mind has a bias in judging it, and then you can see the situation, interpret it and think: is this a healthy way for men to show affection for children? Yes? No? Why? When you start doing this, gradually what you feel seeing this situations will change, because you’ll interpret it in the light of awareness and not in the light of your own past.

    10) I’m talking about trust in the next post, but it’s natural that you feel the way you do due to the abuse (and other things that happened in your life – we cannot forget that there are always a lot of causes to a single behavior and feelings toward things). So, don’t judge yourself, please!

    I read the other post where you talk about your sex life, and I truly admire your courage in doing so, and so openly! I’m truly, truly happy for you being able to do this… because this means you are healing. We cannot heal what we cannot think about or even talk about. You are so, so brave! I don’t even know you, but somehow I’m proud of you!!!

    Thank you for your bravery!

    Sending hugs with love,

    Amelie

    #40992
    Amelie
    Participant

    Hello everybody,

    I wanna to share some of my feelings with you…

    This forum thread made me look again at the abuse and see that I’m not healed yet…

    A few days ago I started, for the first time, to read some scientific articles about sexual abuse in childhood. I didn’t wanna do this last year, when I first rememberd… but something made me go for it.

    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…

    The first thing was about self-injury. I don’t let my sores heal, I keep poking them… I do this ever since I was a child, and I never understand it, NEVER. My legs and armas have lots of white scars due to this… old scars. They don’t show very much because the are old, but they are here. I always had the feeling I did this to me as if I was trying to remove something inside my body that wasn’t supposed to be there… I never understand this feeling too. Then I read articles about how self-injury is related to sexual abuse in childhood. It’s an incredible pain to realize that this event is marked in my body until today…

    Then I made another painful discovery…

    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. Was I a boring person?… Through out the years, I gave myself a lot of anwers: “people say I more mature than people my age, so that’s why”, “I have good grades and people envy me” and finally “I’m just like this, I’m different, there’s nothing to do about it”. But then… 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 bound.

    Because, deep down inside, I don’t want to.

    I want to be alone. Hurting myself.

    I discovered so many hatred towards me that scares me to death.

    There’s a part of me that hates me, that is trying to destroy me… and a part that want things ending up ok.

    A few days ago, the part that hates me was winning. I realized I had been sabotaging myself in a lot of ways since my memories about the abuse got back. But the scariest thing was that even though I knew this, the part that hates me was preventing me to do something to change.

    I cried out for God. If I couldn’t love me, if I couldn’t make anything good for my own sake, who would?

    Then… I spent the weekend in a spiritual retreat. I almost didn’t go – I was feeling so bad – but it made me feel so much better…

    Ever since this thursday, the feeling I had lost some months ago of conection to the universe has come back. Stronger at some hours, in others it’s weak…My thoughts stops, my mind is empty. My past is gone, so as my future; now is everything that exists. I feel like there’s love around me. Like I’m being conducted by God. This is such a huge relief… at these moments, my past disappears and I feel a deep peace, or deep joy.

    But I’m scared this feeling will go away (like happened before) and suffering will come back. I’m afraid the part that hates me will come back.

    Zenhen, Matt, JD, Aria, Kristin… have you ever felt these things?

    #40995
    Amelie
    Participant

    Hello Dear Matt,

    Sorry I couldn’t answer sooner.

    There’s a lot of wisdom and courage in your words! Thank you so much!

    Yes, guilt is making me stay so stuck… I feel like I’m skidding in the same place over and over again. Its terryfying to see I’m doing this to myself. I’ve recognized the extent of this only a few days ago… It’s a pain I cannot describe. It’s such a horrible thing for a human being to do this with him/herself… I know I need to love me, and I’m trying, I really am! I’m scared I won’t be able to do it, but I’m going forward anyway.

    I’ll do the mantras as you said; I don’t know nothing about metta-type meditation, but I’ll look for it. Do you have any website do recommend me?

    “Said differently, our root chakra was thrown out of whack and we slipped into states of craving and aversion. With the bottom half of our energy vibrating, so was the top half. The guilt is just a result… an empty feeling or residue from the out of balance root” – I couldn’t understand this part… I don’t know much about the relation between chakras and feelings. Could you explain it again?

    Namaste, Matt!

    Thank you so much for your words and love!

    A loving hug,

    Amelie

    #41000
    Zenhen
    Participant

    Amelie,

    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,

    Zenhen

    #41002
    Zenhen
    Participant

    Aria,

    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!

    Love,

    Zenhen

    #41010
    Amelie
    Participant

    JD,

    You are already brave. Anyone who have the courage to think about what happened is brave – and you not only thought about it, but also wrote about it. I congratulate your courage! I’m empathic with your pain and suffering… feel embraced!

    I liked a lot of what Zenhen wrote… that healing is not sunshine and flowers, and her examples. Last year, when my memories came back for the first time, I thought that was some kind of challenge from the Universo to make me stronger, better, whatever… that I would “fight” this, win and then everything would be flowers and rainbows.

    And so I did… I thought all I had to do was to forgive the abusers… So I put all my strenght in this. And I thought I had forgive them… But the pain was so unberable that I actually never let all the memories return. And I didn’t want to face the worst aspect of the abuse: that I felt pleasure and extreme guilt for feeling this.

    Then… this forum thread made me realize I have a long way to go.

    Anger came back. Fear. More than once, when I was coming back from work, I suddenly started crying in the street – and I knew that who was crying was that 5 year old child girl that lost her trust and faith in her parents at such a young age.

    I know I am sabotaging myself. I know I must stop. I see I have been judging me so severely that this has become a way of self-punishment. I understand now that this healing is a process that may take a long, long time… I have accepted that it can be long.

    I believe love heals. Love yourself… Please. Don’t give up on you. You’re here for a reason… Don’t ever give up on you! But be patient too. Don’t push yourself too hard… I’ve found recently that push yourself too hard on this things is one of the worse things you can do to yourself.

    I believe the best we can do is go on living our lives, trying to share love, focus on the now… and then, if the bad feelings come, deal with them at the time, but no preassure.

    I totally agree with what Zenhen and Matt answered to you about this. Hope my words may be of some use!

    A loving hug,

    Amelie

    #41014
    Matt
    Participant

    Zenhen,

    Did you see the reply I gave a few days ago to your question? Its fine if you just don’t have anything to say about it, I just want to make sure it wasn’t overlooked because it was on a previous page. The reply mechanism on tinybuddha can sometimes be disorienting for me. 🙂

    Amelie,

    Yes, I have felt that connection, its loss, and its resurgence. In agree with most of what Zenhen has said about it, and only wish to add my perceptions of how to help the recovery stabilize. The more loving kindness we give to the visions in our mind, the memories of our abuse, the more the shame transmutes to humility.

    The way I’ve done this is by opening up my heart to the world, intending that all people find peace, joy and wisdom. Then as that warmth fills my chest, I dive back into my memories, and see the child Matt as a character in a story. I cry for him, to see those struggles and pains he went through, with all those patterns of defense and pleasure seeking, avoidance and secrecy… as pieces that he used to try to find safety and balance. They weren’t his fault, he was just trying to be a kid, and was tossed into situations he couldn’t control or understand, and how could he. I’ve cried and cried, asked God to help me love that child, asked God to love that child, and it all collapsed into a feeling of surrender that it wasn’t me. The conditions weren’t created by me, the resulting defense mechanisms are normal, reasonable and how could I have been any different? I wouldn’t blame a child for being hurt in such a way, how could I? Then past and future collapse into now, and I realize that I have nothing to be ashamed of. I love people, and they love me. I’m worthy of connection, I’m worthy of the love people give me.

    I go slow, gingerly with each memory, feeling compassion for the little kid with the sore bottom, alone and scared, wanting love but unable to connect. Looking for that connection with the abuser, which was the only connection that wasn’t shut down by the feeling of dark secrecy. Even when people would offer me their love, I would say in my mind “if only you really knew me, you wouldn’t, so how could I accept that love?”

    But that’s just a burden I had on my shoulders, keeping my wings tied tight. As I feel compassion for the child Matt, the isolation melts and I realize that I was lovable the whole time… I just pushed it away because I thought I wasn’t. Not only was I lovable, but there have been angels around me my entire life trying to help me see it, trying to help me open to divine, unconditional love. Its in our hearts, and as it opens, we find peace and warmth.

    When it fades, that is just the old ickyness coming back. Its fine and normal, as zenhen said, but when I have the strength and time, I go through the process to transmute more of it. Each diving reduces the shame, increases the potency and authenticity of the tears, and I feel stronger, more alert, and more peaceful each time.

    Release, release, release. Cry the rainbow tears which melt the ice-olation. It gets better. Waaay better.

    With warmth,
    Matt

    #41016
    kristin
    Participant

    Matt, I can totally relate to needing to see the child in me with compassion.

    I can feel the pain rising in me at times and when I have a moment alone in the shower or the car or on a walk I wail for her.

    I question so often where god was!?!?

    I have felt a glimpse of peace that because the kingdom of god is within each of us, the abuse-the terror-the fear happened to god as well.

    that’s why god doesn’t stop it.

    that’s the childlike one in me trying to make sense if it.

    #41018
    Zenhen
    Participant

    Matt,

    I did read your reply. Thank you very much for it. I have been letting it marinate for a while. I started thinking of my current sexual relationship and my past sexual relationships. The best sex I have ever had was with an abuse victim. He was raped by his step father and molested by his mother. Every time we made love it was as if we were healing each other. Without words, we just understood the undercurrents and knew how to work around the fragility. The sex was divine and because of him I became interested in sexual spiritual healing. However, it ended with us because he was an alcoholic and also he was 13 years my senior and I was barely 19. So looking back at my sex history, I feel like its never really been “normal”. I attracted plenty of people with fetishes or with sexual dysfunction or who feared emotional intimacy.

    Until the other night with my boyfriend, I had felt that the abuse affected me emotionally but not sexually. Now that I look back, I am a bit sexual dysfunctional myself. I think I had lots of sex just to prove that I was okay. Engaging in it almost compulsively, then being very disappointed when I didn’t find god in an orgasm or love wrapped in a condom. I would go through periods of absolute promiscuity or complete celibacy. Also I started thinking about my body language. You mentioned in your reply that maybe he prefers the anal sex because when it is him doing the penetrating, I am adverse to it on an energetic level. I thought to myself but I want to be penetrated and I am not adverse to it. But then I started thinking about my body language. What was my body saying at the moment of penetration? Many guys always complimented me by saying “wow, you are so tight”. Now that I think about it, really I was just tensing up. I started focusing on what it was I felt right before a guy would go in. My stomach tenses up and my legs start to close a little bit, my hand is always placed on his hips kinda of pushing away a bit and I scoot up away from him. In the beginning it is always hard to get all the way in and they all say you are so tight. I didn’t realize this was tension. One guy actually told me to keep my legs open and this turned me on. It was like he gave me permission to feel it, to enjoy it, told me it’s okay to be open, to receive. My previous partner, the one who was abused too, would tell me that I was holding back and resisting. I truly didn’t think I was. I was having orgasms thus I thought I was fine.

    Also my mind would be lost in fantasy. I would fantasize about having sex in public for some reason, in front of everyone. Now I realize this probably has to do with feeling shameful about sex and wanting to be okay with having open sexual desires that don’t have to be kept secret. The other thing I would fantasize about would be my partner having gay sex, while I watched. I would imagine another man being with us and all of us engaging together. Not like a gang bang but a bisexual threesome. I actually had the fantasy come to fruition and it only lasted 15 minutes because I was disgusted. It didn’t turn me on. Now, in retrospect, I think I was just fantasizing about the men engaging with each other and being penetrated because I was the one who really wanted to engage freely with a man. I believed that only men could express themselves sexually in a free way. The men also seemed less intimidating if they were penetrated.

    I don’t really know. I just know I have some strange sex issues that I am figuring out. I am abstaining at the moment not due to fear like in the past but because I just want to figure some things out. When I do engage again, I want it to be fun, carefree, fantasy free, playful and most of all loving. I did service my boyfriend orally yesterday. This is something that is hard for me and I never liked to do it because it was something I was forced to do when I was being abused. When I did do it, I sometimes would feel disgusted, other times like a servant or other times like I was just trying to gain validation. Yesterday, I did it simply because I wanted to and did it out of love for him. At first, it felt a bit weird but I consciously made an effort to stay in the present moment and focus on him and on the physical sensations. I kept my eyes open, we locked gazes and whispered our love to each other. It was very beautiful and a big step for me. Afterwards, I started feeling a little angry and some shame. But I reminded myself that I am not angry about the present moment but the past. I put the anger where it belonged. I reminded myself that it’s not shameful to be sexual, have desire for another and to express it in a loving way. I didn’t let him touch me or try to please me and I was okay with that. I am going slow. I can see now and understand how I shut the energy down. How I never really allowed myself to receive, thus causing some tension in the lovemaking process.

    I can also relate to you wanting to kill your masculinity. I hated my femininity for a long time. I saw being feminine as being a victim. My mother was raped and she was a victim of domestic violence. Being Latina, women are seen as weak and as second class. Being feminine meant putting others first, sacrifice and not getting a say. So I didn’t want to express my femininity because that meant I was carrying a license to be abused and hurt. I was called a tomboy and people could not understand this because they claimed I was too pretty to be so butch. My mother even accused me of being gay. I hated my body for a long time. I have a classic hour glass figure, pinup girl type body. I blamed my sexual curves for the abuse and dressed in loose clothing. I still don’t wear makeup today at the age of 27. I put it on only for special occasions. I am slowly trying to dress sexier without feeling awkward. It took me a long time to accept my femininity. It took redefining what it meant. It is still hard for me. Sometimes I do still think to be a woman means to submit. But I am finding my own definition. Once I reconcile this masculine/feminine split and find a balance, I am sure that engaging sexually with men will come easier.

    I am so glad that you are sharing your light and experiences with us. I am also glad you stated it too is difficult for you. I started this thread and am grateful for all the feedback but sometimes it is hard to reply. However, it has been sooooooooo helpful and healing to share with you and others. It is funny how I would often read your replies before I created this thread and felt connected to you. I never thought I could learn this much from you and connect with you like this. Even though, we don’t know each other, I feel you have helped me so much. I am so glad that you found yourself and found love for yourself and your wife. I am inspired by your love for each other. I hope to build a mindful and loving relationship like that one day.

    Take Care and sending you my love and light,

    Zenhen

    #41019
    Zenhen
    Participant

    I heard this song tonight on the radio…it reminded me a bit of our pain:

    #41044
    Matt
    Participant

    Zenhen,

    Thank you so much for sharing so much of your perceptions and feelings. Namaste, and I love you too, dear sister. I can relate to a lot of what you’re describing, both in trying to lose myself in fantasy and in tensing up the root area. I experienced it a little differently, though the healing looked much the same.

    I really like the way you described and noticed the connections between body language and energy. I also liked the way you notice that femininity has a component of surrender, and how as abuse victims, it can be scary to surrender.

    For me, something which helps me find that surrender is something my wife and I call “tickies”. It is a light touch, where our hands gently, slowly, barely touch the skin and pour across it. Think of how water pours over the skin, not pressing into it, but conforming to the curves and creases, flowing gently across the surface. My wife and I both experience a tingling vibration, almost like goosebumps which follow the hands like a comet trail. It melts tension in the mind and body to be lightly nourished and tended in such a way.

    It is highly sensual, but not highly sexual. I think for me at least, it has helped me relax and surrender, because my body knows it is safe and cared for. I don’t think that the surrender aspect of feminine energy is a problem… its actually quite potent to relax and accept the yearning, the needing to be filled and moved. The problem is how the surrender has been forced in the past… before the body and mind were ready.

    It reminds me of a flower. As a bud, it needs warm light, cooling water and space in order to gently open and bloom. If someone (our abusers, and ourselves since) tear into it, it doesn’t actually bloom, and petals fly everywhere. There may be fragrance, but not nearly as much beauty. Said differently, there may be orgasm, but not spiritual union.

    It makes sense to me why you would dress baggy, without makeup… trying to deny, avoid and hide the sensual and beautiful body you’re in. If sensuality and sexuality brings pain, of course. However, you’re strong now! You can put a knee in the balls of an aggressor, and just because someone finds you beautiful doesn’t mean you have to open for them. You have choices now that you didn’t before, and its OK and safe for you to embrace your curves and features.

    However, its also about you. If you like cute underwear, wear them. Your partner’s enjoyment plays into it, but its not about “him” but about how the feelings you feel as he looks at you combines with the way the fabrics hug, squeeze, tickle and arouse the body parts. When you look in the mirror, do the colors and shapes bring enjoyment? If you wear a skirt, does the swooshing of the fabric tingle and delight your senses? Do your eyes sparkle with pleasure to see your boyfriend allured by the contrast of skin and fabric?

    We each have such a unique and beautiful path to joy that there aren’t any right answers. As we awaken our sensuality, we see its not about sex, its about the tingle. Much like tickies are about the connection and tingling warmth of being caressed, dressing and being sensual with our partner isn’t about penetration, its about mental tickies. The penetration, the opening of your body to him is actually a small part of a greater surrender. Knowing and accepting that your body inspires his… your yearning to be overcome, be filled, draws him into you, pulling, gravity… sets within him a creative fire that you swallow, capture, surround. But, in your time, at your speed, as you’re ready.

    This is why I find tickies to be such a blessing. They help us attune to the tingle, the gentle warmth of intimacy. Sex increases the vibrancy of the tingle, but when the goal remains rooted in letting the tingle remain primary, the intimate connection between two hearts in love the soil, then the bodies don’t get lost in the sense pleasure. After all, orgasms are usually simple and can happen in a few minutes of focused motion. Those are nothing. Bliss arises from the blossoming of two hearts, minds and bodies joined together as one.

    With warmth,
    Matt

    #41062
    Zenhen
    Participant

    Matt,

    It makes sense to me why you would dress baggy, without makeup… trying to deny, avoid and hide the sensual and beautiful body you’re in. If sensuality and sexuality brings pain, of course. However, you’re strong now! You can put a knee in the balls of an aggressor, and just because someone finds you beautiful doesn’t mean you have to open for them. You have choices now that you didn’t before, and its OK and safe for you to embrace your curves and features.”

    Thanks so much for this. It is rather a matter of safety. And the sensuality and sexuality do bring pain. I need to understand that I am no longer helpless or powerless. This healing process is also about regaining my power. You are right, I don’t have to give in to everybody. I really need to learn this. I am getting better at it. I realized I felt that I wouldn’t be loved or liked otherwise. Part of beginning to love myself means having choices and creating boundaries. I won’t make ill choices based on desperation for love because I’m building self love.

    “The penetration, the opening of your body to him is actually a small part of a greater surrender. ”

    I really enjoyed your perspective on surrender and relaxing not just the body, but the mind and heart too. I like how these tickies or soft sensual vibrations are about waking up the senses and the body. I never preferred soft and slow, it felt boring. Now I see it was mainly my discomfort with intimacy and when you take your time, your forced to be present more. I do hope to experience the union you speak of and to discover what lies beyond orgasm. Now that I think of it, orgasms can be simply mechanical. It is not the end all and be all of sex. I also want to shift sexuality to sensuality.

    I really hope I can find that union of heart, mind and soul with my partner, if not with another. I worry sometimes that I won’t find a good partner. I think that I need to do a lot of self work before I can have a partner. However, I have found that with issues like this, I can only work on it with a partner. How do I work on trusting without someone to trust, or on surrendering without someone to surrender to. So many times I want out of relationships but at the same time I have experienced such growth from them, even if they don’t last.

    Thanks once again and have a great weekend!

    With Love,

    Zenhen

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