Yesterday's T - dissociation discussion. *TW* CSA, SH, SUI
A while back - before Christmas - she asked me questions and got me to do some artwork. Last week I read a poem out to her "The Maternal Tiger in You". I said I wanted to read it as often I don't remember what I wrote. In this session it was the first time she used the word 'dissociation' with me. I've been aware for ages that I do this- but I have never brought it up. I now realise she was waiting for me to admit that this happens to me. I had emailed her and said I wondered if we could pull out my artwork as - with my writing- I don't remember what I drew. I then started to feel massive panic and anxiety and two days later I texted her and said I thought it was a bad idea, especially as she was going away.
When I turned up yesterday, she asked if I wanted to look at the artwork. I straight away told her "No!" I said I felt that I couldn't remember for a good reason and when I visit it again- I want to know that she will be available to me if I need her. We then started discussing my dissociation. She explained how it was my protection. She said that as a young child, I enjoyed the body sensations that my sexual abuse gave me. I like the throbbing, tickley, "I need a wee wee" feeling that it gave me. And she's right- I remember that. But when I reached the age of reason (which for me was 8), although my body still responded, my rational mind realised that something was wrong. So I 'split'. I learnt to dissociate. And that this was easy for me because I did it already with Dad. (One thing I haven't asked her is why my memories of the more severe sexual abuse appear again aged 12....)
She said that this was a protective mechanism. And it was so effective for me growing up, that it automatically clicked in as an adult- whenever I have felt under threat. It also clicks in when I SH. So I don't feel pain. And sometimes during sex. And when I am hungry. And when I am in pain. And in fact - I dissociate a hell of a lot- especially in therapy.
I said to her that I wish I could just let go. Let my mind break. She asked what I meant. I said "kill myself". She said that to kill myself I would have to be in control. I said "no- you are wrong. I often SH when a darker Mand is in control and I don't remember it. I only know it's happened when the bruises and burns appear with no memory on my part of them being put there by me". So.......
So I need to keep an emotion diary. Every strong negative emotion I have to score and chart. Every hour I have to do a mindfulness body scan. I MUST allow myself to feel pain, hunger, thirst. If I am tense, I must meditate and relax. Basically, I have to be aware of ME as much as I can. Sounds knackering. It's been hard work today. I am missing her already. I had nightmares all last night. I am tired and frightened and fragile. I want to cry but I can't. My wall is back up. I am unsure with what to do. So I am just 'being'.
I want my T so badly, it's like a physical pain in my heart.