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Day 143: Fight, Flight, Freeze, or S** (Trigger Warning)

Posted by intrepidshe , in Crying, Touch, Healing Work 02 May 2014 · 191 views

May 2, 2014 Intrepid Age = 72 Days:
 
I want to start today's posting with a thank you to MacGyver for sharing his amazing gift of insight. He analyzed a repeating nightmare I have. His interpretation has been immeasurably helpful to me. He gave me permission to share his identity. I'm so glad to get to do so, to give credit where it is due and express my thanks to the person who gave me such a wonderful gift.
 
My mind is meandering a lot today, but I'm going to let it go where it will.
 
 
 
Last week MacGyver analyzed my repeating nightmare about being chased by a vampire (while also being the vampire in turns). I originally wrote about it on Feb. 24th. I had a new version of the dream at 2 in the morning that day. Since receiving Mac's interpretation I have been thinking a lot about the vampire, and trying to understand him as a part of me.
 
I realized the dream represents the parts of me that are not connected. So, let me first introduce the cast of dis-integrated characters:
  • The Ship: my body and soul (most of the time the dream takes place in a neighborhood, but I think a neighborhood means the same thing)
  • The Little Girl: the person I was when I was first r* at age 6-8 (I am still not sure how old I was when this happened)
  • The Vampire: my bottled up rage, fear, sadness, and grief (the vampire is always male)
  • The Captain: a brand new member of the cast (the personality I show everyone, also my strength, my courage, my heroism - the rescuer self)
  • Other Victims: there are always anonymous others who are also running from the vampire. They usually hide successfully while I do not. But, he's after me anyway, so it wouldn't matter if they didn't hide. But, they don't know that.
  • The Mamma: she has not appeared in the dreams, but I am attempting to manifest her in order to integrate these characters into a whole. She is in my life through my Pandy's friends here and in my angel friend (DDF).
  • The Baby: she also has not appeared in any dreams and just came to mind for the first time this morning, again as a result of something MacGyver said. He said this in response to my DDF letter yesterday:
     

    This is the bonding experience you were meant to experience as an infant and were denied. There will be massive endorphin releases for you - like a happy nursing with mother and a falling in love all at once.

I had what felt like thousands of thoughts racing through my head this morning. I laid in bed for an extra few hours not willing to get up to capture them all. Besides, my fingers could never type that fast! Posted Image
 
I want to put this dream in context with the healing touch I am receiving from DDF (whom I have asked to provide a screen name by which I can call her that is meaningful to her. She is much more to me than a "doctor" friend). It not lost on me (and scares me) that DDF is the physical manifestation of the Mamma right now. What scares me about this is the ancientness of my wound from denial of nurturing. The above comment really jolted me into understanding my fear.
 
Could I really experience an intense endorphin release if she holds me? I think that's very much possible.
 
I have understood that I could cry.
 
I didn't cry yesterday, or even feel any emotions with any real intensity. My emotions were far underground after releasing the fear of her discovering the truth about me (how messed up I am). Once I admitted to her I need to be held and I need to cry, I released the pressure and allowed my emotions to recede back into the depths beneath my armor.
 
OK, so I need to be held because I wasn't held as a baby, and have been unable to allow anyone to hold me ever since. I need to be held because I have experienced being held as painful or as sexually violating, rather than as safe and nurturing. I need to be held by my friend because I automatically transfer the experience of being held into a sexual encounter, but this isn't possible with her. She would not cross this line. She would not hurt me or allow me to go there.
 
This is a topic I have not discussed with her. My T asked me about it yesterday, if feeling sexual arousal was something I was afraid might happen, and part of why I have been so resistant to the idea of being held, of learning to be held. My answer to that question was "yes." At least, this is part of my fear of being held. This fear was reinforced by my former friend who admitted to being attracted to me when I reached the point that I opened up to her about my CSA history. (I have written about this before, so I won't repeat it here.)
 
My body seems to have one of four reactions: fight, flight, freeze, or sex.
 
I think I need to find out if DDF and I can move our appointments to a different location. I have a lot of emotions in need of processing, of being allowed to surface. Maybe we don't need to move the neck treatment appointments, but perhaps set up a separate time for me to ask to be held? I am thinking these issues related to being held are complicated for me. I need to be someplace away from work.
 
I'm not sure how this would be accomplished. I need to talk to her about this and about my four reactions. I guess even though this is pretty embarrassing, I need a plan for that too.
 
I think the connection here between the dream and my issues with being held is that the vampire is also my sexuality. I don't know yet what this means. But that makes sense in light of my ongoing questioning.



I am wondering if you could invite the vampire to talk to you about himself. Sometimes in dreams in which I am being chased by something, I will wake up, go back into an awareness of the dream content, and have a safe encounter with the chaser, and ask it what it wants to tell me. Very often they have a good message for me, and that is all. It is a self-aspect.

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intrepidshe
May 02 2014 07:39 PM

Ah! Jiva, what a wonderful idea. You are a blessing in my life, my friend.

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yarnfoolishness
May 02 2014 07:49 PM
That is a wonderful idea. :)

Intrepid, thanks.

the endorphins comment is okay to share as from me.

I guess it was a feeling I sensed even in your posts about your experiences so far - a joy that reminds me of the times I have felt in love.

I also pictured a Youtube video I saw recently about a cat that adopted three ducklings along with its newborn kittens. Of course the ducklings imprinted on the cat, following her even after they got big, which looked hilarious!

In a sense this touch - and even just the freedom of such an open friendship -  is like a hatching for you and I just wanted to carefully warn you not to associate all those positive feelings only with your friend, which might put too much pressure on the friendship. They are part of a new birth for you.

 

Okay I'm going to write this next bit fast.

Often I feel a sudden moment of arousal when I feel emotionally connected to someone - usually through encouraging words given or received - not at pandy's for which I am SO thankful, but in real life.

I just ignore it and it passes.

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intrepidshe
May 02 2014 08:54 PM

Intrepid, thanks.

the endorphins comment is okay to share as from me.

I guess it was a feeling I sensed even in your posts about your experiences so far - a joy that reminds me of the times I have felt in love.

I also pictured a Youtube video I saw recently about a cat that adopted three ducklings along with its newborn kittens. Of course the ducklings imprinted on the cat, following her even after they got big, which looked hilarious!

In a sense this touch - and even just the freedom of such an open friendship -  is like a hatching for you and I just wanted to carefully warn you not to associate all those positive feelings only with your friend, which might put too much pressure on the friendship. They are part of a new birth for you.

 

Okay I'm going to write this next bit fast.

Often I feel a sudden moment of arousal when I feel emotionally connected to someone - usually through encouraging words given or received - not at pandy's for which I am SO thankful, but in real life.

I just ignore it and it passes.

 

Mac, thank you! I appreciate the additional perspective, and sharing your experience with this. It reduces my fear and embarrassment.

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yarnfoolishness
May 02 2014 09:53 PM

I'm afraid I won't say this right, but I want to try.  

I see the most primal basis of arousal as a drive toward life itself. New life.  Creation.  Connection. 

 

So.

 

Feeling some arousal at a sense of human connection- especially a connection that has any intimacy as in close friends and compassion - makes human-sense to me.

 

I hope it's ok to say that.

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intrepidshe
May 02 2014 09:56 PM

Yarn, wow, I totally hadn't thought of it this way. Wouldn't have thought of it this way. Not all arousal has to equate to sex. I'm so unfamiliar with the good, safe feelings I am confused by them. Wow does this idea help me!

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outside_the_box
May 03 2014 12:01 AM

My Dear Friend,

Your fear of reacting “inappropriately” to being held is understandable.  As you said, you only knew rejection and pain with touch as a child.  The only other times you have experienced touch was in a sexual manner.  Unfortunately, so many experiences have served to reinforce your fears.  Please let me gently remind you that you do know what a gentle and loving touch can be, through the unconditional touch of children.  The gift children give us is love, even when we do not love ourselves.

When our children hug us, we feel a joy, a satisfaction, a warmth and a peace within ourselves.  It is not sexual.  It is not disgust.  It is not fear.  And it is not confusion.  It is a pure loveWhen a friend is able to hug you, to hold you when you cry, there is a connection formed that is not wrong.  It is nurturing.  It offers solace and grace.  Unfortunately, because of our abuse and skewed boundaries we do not know how to interpret the feelings we experience when someone shows us kindness.  We are embarrassed by our emotions, because we were told it was bad or we were wrong.  Only certain emotions were allowed.  Fewer emotions simplified our lives when we were younger.  Unfortunately, fewer emotions do not serve us well now.  Please do not be embarrassed.

Your history of abuse is nothing to be ashamed of, because you had no choice in it.  You were a victim then, but today you a survivor and a hero.  The hero of your story.  Your children’s hero.  A hero to many other survivors as you inspire them to find healing and peace. 

I think it is probably best if you move your sessions some place other than work, as it will allow you the freedom to express yourself fully and limit the possibility of co-workers knowing more than they need.

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intrepidshe
May 03 2014 12:07 AM
Wow, I am trembling as I read that outside- the-box. I very much appreciate the gentle reminder and supportive words. Take gentle care!
:hug: This is very interesting to read Intrepid. And don't be surprised as you start to write and process this internal landscape, if more parts of you come to light. I have far more Mand's than I write about, but the strongest ones inevitably come to the fore and dominate.

Don't be shocked if you find each hold different emotions and memories as well. It was only when I allowed my Mand's to start talking to each other- to start sharing perspectives, that certain emotions were released. This confused me because I didn't understand what they were- I couldn't name them- because the I who is now ME had never held them. The deeply suppressed Mand's had held them for me. I love them. They are so strong and kept me going and surviving in the most amazing capacity. And now they are ME. And so, I realise, that the THEY have become I. And I am amazing and strong. And I can FEEL. Still waiting to be able to cry though.

Mac, just to add:

"Often I feel a sudden moment of arousal when I feel emotionally connected to someone "

Yes- me too. Very strong. This is one of my biggest 'programming' issues that I am working on now I have an awareness that I do it and I know why I do it too.
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intrepidshe
May 03 2014 12:28 AM
Mand, I have to tell you how much your writing about your integration experiences helps me. I would never have identified Little Intrepid if it weren't for you. I so appreciate you sharing this wisdom with me. It helps me know what to expect or what is possible. Thanks you!
:hug: any time. I am glad I have helped. As you and many others have helped me. I am sure that being here has expedited my healing massively.
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intrepidshe
May 03 2014 12:35 AM
Yeah, me too!
:hug:

intrepid.

The idea of the vampire also being your sexuality resonates with me. It can fly. It is powerful, unfortunately it was captured as a child and warped into what it is now, but it can be unwarped too.

 

I also like the 'human-sense' insight of yarn on connection to arousal link.

We are born sexual beings, but a discreet and separated sexual awareness is not meant to arise until later in life.

Curse those who interfere with this process.

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intrepidshe
May 03 2014 07:16 PM

Mac, I think this explains something for me. I don't know if I'll write about it tonight . . . I'm thinking about how young I was when I first engaged in sex by my own choice.

About Intrepid She

This is a moderated PUBLIC blog. This blog is a therapeutic tool I am using to help me get over my fear of doctors, which is made difficult by a history of abuse by them, to learn to grieve, and ultimately to integrate my dis-integrated heart.

 

View postings specific to health care.

View postings specific to touch.

View postings specific to crying.

 

The content of this blog is not appropriate for children or for anyone who might be triggered by reading about sexual abuse.

 

To the many others walking your own version of this path, I wish you well on your journey. -Intrepid

 

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