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led astray

January 2013

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led astray

thoughts on trauma


I get more insight talking to my friends than my therapist.  Sylvanstargazer was here last night and I told her about the conversation I had with my therapist in which I explained that being held down and tickled was more traumatic for me than being raped.  When I think of My Trauma, my rape doesn't ge included.  It doesn't occur to me what was so different about that moment than any other moment when I felt helpless.  Because the feeling is the same.  I was raped.  I didn't associate that word with what happened until years later, talking to revenant.  But even then, it wasn't a huge, life-shaking, soul-crunching thing.  It was an uncomfortable situation that I was helpless to change...much like the rest of my life.  I had had so much humiliation and powerlessness in my life, and had become so comfortable with my sexuality, that it was just another inconvienience, akin to someone cutting in front of me in line, tickling me, or pushing me out of the way.  I wasn't uncomfortable with the act, (I had been trying to get in bed with this guy for a while) but dissatisfied with the circumstance.  There are so manymany things people do that I dislike but cannot stop.  I didn't feel powerless or shattered, anymore than taking a math test.  It was something I had to sit through that annoyed me.  And for years I felt like I should have been more broken by it, be scared of men or sex, something.  It just didn't affect me that much.  I was raped.  It was not a trauma for me.  I realise that my sensibilities are established differently than people who haven't had much other trauma, who haven't felt helpless so often as to be numb to just one more incident.  But there it is.  I was raped and shrugged it off, but pat me on the head and you're likely to be slapped.  *shrug*  I'm wired funny.

Comments

Trauma is relative. You lived your life in an environment where you were systematically abused, day in and day out. You lived, eat, drank, and breathed abuse.

A single night of abuse, from which you can escape and never have to return? To someone who lives or lived in an inescapable situation, a hostage to emotional connections inborn? It's not going to register as being as traumatic as everything else.

It's one of the reasons why we don't compare abuse as "worse" or "better" over in the survivors group - everyone's experience is different. There may be a time, after you've had more processing time with the long-term abuse, in which the trauma of that rape hits you. But for now, it's not the focus; for all I know, that time may never come.

Everyone processes abuse differently. You're not weird for it - just uniquely you based on who you are.