Psycho-Babble Social Thread 221574

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Re: Ummmm...... Dinah

Posted by leeran on April 22, 2003, at 19:46:22

In reply to Ummmm......, posted by Dinah on April 22, 2003, at 18:39:58

Dinah,

The reason I asked "how far do you want to go with this topic" is because I don't know the parameters regarding certain subjects here on the board.

My first husband called me "frigid" and perhaps I was - but I left the marriage multi-orgasmic and it had absolutely nothing to do with him OR with a third party (oh, here I am, teetering way out on the limb, as usual).

To say that this is a subject that's near and dear to my heart might give the impression that I'm a nymphomaniac*, when in fact, it's just that this is one of the few problem areas in my life that I can take credit for overcoming on my own (and not due to anyone else's agenda or insistence).

Aversion could, I suppose, be linked to many factors - medications, attraction, self-image, hormones, etc.

Looking over that list, I know I've experienced aversion based on each one of those factors:

1) medication (Paxil)
2) attraction (more accurately, lack thereof, with my first husband)
3) self-image (always a factor with me)
4) hormones (another "or lack thereof," the newest player in the line-up).

The downside for me is that sexual aversion (when it has existed in my life, for any reason) is just one more issue I can use to berate myself.

As you can tell, I'm an open book on a message board (although very shy in real life).

I'm more than happy to answer any question you might have regarding what worked for me.

Lee

*Note - absolutely no slur intended toward anyone with that dx, it just doesn't happen to be mine.

 

Re: Ummmm...... leeran

Posted by Dinah on April 22, 2003, at 19:58:36

In reply to Re: Ummmm...... Dinah, posted by leeran on April 22, 2003, at 19:46:22

I think Dr. Bob has proved quite tolerant of the subject in the past.

I don't think in this case it could be caused by any of those things. It's been a problem for as long as I can remember. It's only a problem with other people. Any other people. Not limited to any single individual. Alone, it's no problem *at all*.

I rarely had more than one date, because it extended to kissing as well. Feelings of suffocation, urges to flee. And I don't like to be touched. Except holding non-moving touches.

I can overcome it with a combination of a smidge of alchohol and a lot of dissociation. But it takes plenty of warning for that to work.

Given that overly expansive wealth of information, do you think that any of what worked for you would help me (or, ummm... my friend).

 

Re: Ummmm...... Dinah

Posted by leeran on April 22, 2003, at 20:10:55

In reply to Re: Ummmm...... leeran, posted by Dinah on April 22, 2003, at 19:58:36

Dinah,

I'm going to ponder this while I cook dinner and see if I can relate what your friend is experiencing to anything I've ever felt.

I think I can (and no, repeating that line wasn't one of my methods) but I have to go back to the seventies/eighties (or perhaps just to last week, thanks to the Wellbutrin outage).

Lee

 

sienna

Posted by justyourlaugh on April 22, 2003, at 22:00:46

In reply to Re: Ummmm...... Dinah, posted by leeran on April 22, 2003, at 20:10:55

hi friend,,you do not appear to be okay?
are you okay?
ive read your posts..
and i worry you put all the worlds pressure on yourself..you are okay..i am okay..
j

 

Re: Ummmm...... Dinah

Posted by tina on April 23, 2003, at 8:13:04

In reply to Re: Ummmm...... leeran, posted by Dinah on April 22, 2003, at 19:58:36

>
> I rarely had more than one date, because it extended to kissing as well. Feelings of suffocation, urges to flee. And I don't like to be touched. Except holding non-moving touches.
>
> I can overcome it with a combination of a smidge of alchohol and a lot of dissociation. But it takes plenty of warning for that to work.
>
Hi Dinah
This sounds just like what happens to me. Urges to flee, discomfort, just wanting to get away from it. I was sexually abused though. Could it be a part of your upbringing? WAs it looked on as naughty or not talked about in your house when you were younger? Sometimes a parental aversion causes the children to have aversion even when there isn't an abuse history.
just a ramble
take care
tina

 

Re: Ummmm...... tina

Posted by Dinah on April 23, 2003, at 10:16:37

In reply to Re: Ummmm...... Dinah, posted by tina on April 23, 2003, at 8:13:04

My mom was pretty relaxed about sex, I think. When my best friend and I were at the giggling, wondering what it's all about stage (15 or 16 I guess), my mom heard us trying to get access to Playgirl and bought it for us. And offered to explain anything we didn't understand. Kind of took all the fun out of it, but I doubt it was traumatizing.

She did maybe volunteer a bit too much about her sex life with my dad, but not when I was a *little* girl, I don't think. Probably when I was a young adult.

I don't remember my dad talking about sex, which was fine with me.

 

Re: Ummmm...... Dinah

Posted by Tabitha on April 23, 2003, at 11:47:18

In reply to Re: Ummmm...... tina, posted by Dinah on April 23, 2003, at 10:16:37

Dinah, that makes me sad to hear.. I wish I could fix it. Maybe some desensitization exercises like they do with fear of flying and other phobias?

 

Re: I'm fine Dinah

Posted by sienna on April 23, 2003, at 15:25:19

In reply to Re: I'm fine sienna, posted by Dinah on April 22, 2003, at 19:44:33

hi dinah,

i was hoping emdr would help some with flasbacks. i dont know though. .... i have had them so long and nothign helps .. theyre so overwleming... and go so fast into it and cant stop it. its tottlaly out of constrol. im not sure what emdr you would use it for. did you ask your doc before? my meds dont help at all...

sienna

 

hi jyl justyourlaugh

Posted by sienna on April 23, 2003, at 15:30:28

In reply to sienna, posted by justyourlaugh on April 22, 2003, at 22:00:46

im ok. thanks for thinking of me. i am ok. just been gone so long and came back and wrote all over the baords. its ok. i feel ok just am not sure of what to do with my meds but talked to my pdoc adn now theres a plan i should stick with it probably will for a week then wil call him i f i think i cant do it anymore. i want to be normal, exsept i guess i dont realaly want that.

i do put alla worlds pressure on me but its ok...

sienna

 

Re: hi jyl sienna

Posted by justyourlaugh on April 23, 2003, at 16:58:00

In reply to hi jyl justyourlaugh, posted by sienna on April 23, 2003, at 15:30:28

"normal"people lack passion.
j

 

Re: Ummmm...... Tabitha

Posted by Dinah on April 23, 2003, at 19:15:40

In reply to Re: Ummmm...... Dinah, posted by Tabitha on April 23, 2003, at 11:47:18

Well, it doesn't make for a perfect marriage. And desensitization hasn't seemed to work. (wry smile) But I'll live (with the help of alchohol and dissociation).

 

Re: I'm fine sienna

Posted by Dinah on April 23, 2003, at 19:19:05

In reply to Re: I'm fine Dinah, posted by sienna on April 23, 2003, at 15:25:19

A friend had just started EMDR and I asked my therapist if he would mind if I saw someone who practiced EMDR for just that purpose. To my surprise he agreed and asked what my goal would be. I was stumped there, did some research, and decided that since I didn't have any traumatic memories to work on I really didn't know what I would do with an EMDR therapist. So I dropped it.

 

Re: I'm fine Dinah

Posted by Pfinstegg on April 23, 2003, at 21:28:27

In reply to Re: I'm fine sienna, posted by Dinah on April 23, 2003, at 19:19:05

Even though you don't have any specific memories of trauma, you may have had intense fears that something wrong would happen which would have been traumatic. It sounds as if you may not have had any sense of safety when you were a child; This could be the equivalent of actually having been abused or traumatized. My father was an alcoholic, and although he never abused me sexually, I felt a continual sense of danger around him-something I'm working on now in therapy. I am finding how intense these fears still are, so many years later; I didn't know how much I was minimizing and denying them until now: because I wasn't actually abused, I kept telling myself that my anxiety was uncalled for. When you have a "meltdown", I wonder if you aren't re-experiencing an extremely fearful state that you originally experienced as a child. To me, how you describe your life seems to have PTSD written all over it .I, too have heard interesting things about EMDR; maybe you shouldn't reject the idea of it completely. My new therapist has favorable views of it as an adjunct. It's so good that you are bringing these topics to the board, Dinah. You are not not the only one by any means, but you often have the most courage in leading the way.

Pfinstegg

 

Re: I'm fine Dinah

Posted by judy1 on April 23, 2003, at 23:55:20

In reply to Re: I'm fine sienna, posted by Dinah on April 23, 2003, at 19:19:05

I have a history Dinah, and for me a specific trigger (it can be a memory, smell, etc.) will cause me to dissociate during sex. it certainly doesn't happen all the time, but when it does it's pretty clear to my spouse who will do everything to reassure me (doesn't really help, but it's a nice gesture). has this been happening a lot Dinah, or just occasionally? I went the EMDR route, it was somewhat helpful- but it really is for specific memories, and I had too much fear to continue. would it help to have your spouse come to sessions with you? just some thoughts. take care, judy

 

Re: I'm fine Pfinstegg

Posted by Dinah on April 24, 2003, at 17:49:18

In reply to Re: I'm fine Dinah, posted by Pfinstegg on April 23, 2003, at 21:28:27

Fools rush in.... (grin)

I haven't ruled out EMDR. It's just that my understanding is what Judy said. You have to have a target memory. I don't have any traumatic memories. I guess I have a few sad ones, but they aren't very specific. It would be hard to isolate one given memory. By this time they're more memories of memories than actual memories, if that makes any sense. And they have long since been stripped of their emotional content. So I can remember my first panic attack, and my brand new brother almost throwing up on me, I can remember how I felt, but it's not even movie quality memories. It's more like transcript memories. They have no power to move me at all any more.

Are you planning to use EMDR as an adjunct?

 

Re: I'm fine judy1

Posted by Dinah on April 24, 2003, at 17:55:19

In reply to Re: I'm fine Dinah, posted by judy1 on April 23, 2003, at 23:55:20

My husband doesn't really know about it all. I mean he *must* know to some extent. I was far more overt about the fear before we were married, and it was in fact a condition of our marriage that I get over it, or overcome it or something. He *can't* be totally oblivious. Although my husband manages to be oblivious to a lot of things, and that's just as well I guess.

It's a pretty global fear and it comes up with any sort of touch with sexual overtones. It also comes up when someone very tall enters my personal space, even when no touching is involved. At least it *feels* like the same fear. Similar at least. Feelings of suffocation and urges to flee. Dissociation can be a terrific thing sometimes, and allows me to function as if.

 

Re: I'm fine Dinah

Posted by Pfinstegg on April 24, 2003, at 20:23:09

In reply to Re: I'm fine judy1, posted by Dinah on April 24, 2003, at 17:55:19

I think I have an unusual psychoanalyst- he uses art therapy regularly, and is thinking about EMDR and sensory integration therapy, although not recommending them yet. He thinks that a lot of stress reactions to neglect or abuse aren't accessible to memory or verbal expression, and he wants to use as many non-verbal channels as he can. It is becoming a fascinating, terrifying and tremendously powerful experience -undergoing therapy with him.

I do notice something, Dinah. You don't have any memories of anything terrifying in your childhood- just "memories of memories" and sadness. But you have intense fear reactions now to particular people and situations when no actual danger is present. Where do these come from?

Pfinstegg

 

Re: I'm fine Pfinstegg

Posted by Dinah on April 24, 2003, at 20:36:32

In reply to Re: I'm fine Dinah, posted by Pfinstegg on April 24, 2003, at 20:23:09

I guess I always assumed it was because I was crazy. Not insane, but crazy, nuts, whatever. I do remember that. I remember the looks I got back when I was crazy. Maybe that's why I can be so honest here on the board. No one to look at me as if I was about to go off. Well, maybe once or twice the looks made it through the written medium, but not often.

Is remembering how people looked at me as if I were a live grenade a sufficiently traumatic memory for EMDR? I know it's still traumatic. I have the vague memory of crying and accusing my therapist of looking at me that way just recently.

 

Re: I'm fine Dinah

Posted by Pfinstegg on April 24, 2003, at 21:15:33

In reply to Re: I'm fine Pfinstegg, posted by Dinah on April 24, 2003, at 20:36:32

I feel crazy, and even worse, paranoid, myself, sometimes, too, but we are, for better or worse, stressed but sane! I have had that terrible feeling of not wanting anyone to look at me, too. It's hard to offer suggestions to anyone, as it's so hard to know whether they fit or could be helpful. I would say that staying with the feelings around your fears, and trying to explore them- honoring their reality, even though you don't know their origin- would be the way to go when you are working with your therapist- of course, I know you are doing a wonderful job of that already, but I do feel from reading your posts over the last 7 months that some kind of trauma or intensely fearful state occurred when you were a child, even though you can't get in touch with it now. If I am completely off-base, just ignore it; I know I am influenced now by my present therapist's thinking, which is very PTSD-based for everyone with disabling psychiatric symptoms, whether anxiety, depression, phobias or a tendency to dissociate under stress.

Pfinstegg

 

Re: I'm fine Dinah

Posted by sienna on April 25, 2003, at 14:47:32

In reply to Re: I'm fine sienna, posted by Dinah on April 23, 2003, at 19:19:05

hi dinah i dunno maybe that T that does the EMDR could tell you if it could help. I dont rememer much details in what hapenned to me and i am going to see if i can try it. but i dont now will it work or not. somthing needs to fast though.
sienna

 

Re: I'm fine Dinah

Posted by judy1 on April 25, 2003, at 18:46:10

In reply to Re: I'm fine judy1, posted by Dinah on April 24, 2003, at 17:55:19

Dinah, forgive me if I've asked before- have you been hypnotized? I know you insist on having no memory of abuse, it's just so many of your symptoms are indicative of that (or a severe PTSD response). Has your therapist ever encountered someone with your symptoms who didn't have a history? It's amazing what the brain can store away. (If this bothers you, please don't answer).
As far as your spouse, he seems comfortable with his denial, but are you? Would it be too stressful for you to have him involved in your recovery, or would he prefer not to? I was amazed how willing my husband was- but it came down to acknowledging or ignoring the 'elephant in the room'. take care, judy

 

Well... (unpleasantly graphic and overdisclosing)

Posted by Dinah on April 25, 2003, at 20:14:02

In reply to Re: I'm fine Dinah, posted by judy1 on April 25, 2003, at 18:46:10

Actually, while I thought my therapist had finally accepted that nothing had happened, this subject cropped up in therapy today (as topics often do after I post here). And it turns out he still can't quite believe that nothing ever happened.

I do have one memory. I checked with my mom when I first remembered it, and she verified it and asked me if anything had happened.

I tend not to give to much weight to this memory, first of all because I remember that nothing had happened, and secondly because according to my gyn I was at least partially errr... "intact" in young adulthood.

It was between ages 3 and 4 1/2 while I was living with my Mom in my grandparent's house. I had insisted on wearing a too small for me shorts outfit. A shirt with a cute little frog in the same blue fabric with tiny white polkadots that made up the matching shorts. That evening my mom noticed a bloodstain in the shorts. She and my grandma grilled me about whether anything had happened that day. Where I had gone, and who I had been with. I remember quite distinctly looking down at the shorts in my hands. The blue fabric with the tiny white polkadots. There in the crotch in the relevant area was a blood stain about 1/2 inch on either side of the seam. About 2 inches long. As best I can judge from memory image. They were insisting that something must have happened. There was the evidence right in my hands. And I knew that it was my fault because my mom hadn't wanted me to wear the too tight shorts. I was confused and upset at their questions. I honestly couldn't remember anything unusual happening that day. I promised them I had stayed around the house area. I hadn't gone in the corn fields.

They probably at least looked me over. I can't remember. They finally decided it must have been the too tight shorts. And the matter was dropped.

While I'm pretty sure nothing happened (because I remember remembering that nothing happened) I guess that could have been traumatic in itself. It never did feel traumatic as I remembered it, and surely that isn't enough to account for my fears which extend all the way to kissing. It is just a stray childhood memory. No more traumatic than the other embarassing things I remember from childhood.

I'm gonna regret this post, I can tell even as I hit submit.

 

Re: Ugh. Never mind. Don't read above post. (nm)

Posted by Dinah on April 25, 2003, at 20:16:35

In reply to Well... (unpleasantly graphic and overdisclosing), posted by Dinah on April 25, 2003, at 20:14:02

 

you may regret post but cathartic nontheless I bet (nm)

Posted by lostsailor on April 25, 2003, at 20:22:15

In reply to Well... (unpleasantly graphic and overdisclosing), posted by Dinah on April 25, 2003, at 20:14:02

 

Re: mostly embarassing :( (nm) lostsailor

Posted by Dinah on April 25, 2003, at 20:24:43

In reply to you may regret post but cathartic nontheless I bet (nm), posted by lostsailor on April 25, 2003, at 20:22:15


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