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Yo! It’s been a while.

So, hey everyone.  I apologize for using up cloud space to hold my two-year-old blog.  Whoops!  But I’m back!  I read my “About Me” section and I’ve got to say that I don’t really feel like I don’t fit in too well anymore.  I definitely felt that back when I started the blog, though.

I don’t take back what I’ve written in my blog, but I feel different now (and thank god because I was going through some rough times!).  My previous posts reflected who I was and how I thought when I wrote them.  And I hope they provided encouragement or company to those struggling.

To address my last post, I did go to a support group for domestic violence and it turned out the lady who ran it was a complete nut and my time in the group left me with deeper scars than I’d trotted in with.  I saw my old therapist for a while after that.  I then tried working more to keep myself occupied.  Then after about a 5-month hiatus, I started dating again and it still sucked.  Then I met a guy who really broke me.  I found myself suicidal again and it became clear that I needed some focused help.  I’ve since gotten it and I’ve got to say, I’m doing pretty well.  Professional development seems to be my weak spot at this point.

It was recently my birthday and I just shaved my head, so heyyy!  New me!

wayne-rainey-black-dog

Dating is DEPRESSING

Dating is DEPRESSING

Here I am again. After another failed relationship. What is going on!? There are many theories (created by me and others): I sleep with people too soon, I tell them too much about myself too soon, I’m using things like OkCupid and Tinder. I don’t know, but I am going to lose it. I am sick of this crap. I’m going to start going to a support group for survivors of domestic violence, I just picked up a bunch of self-help books from the library about emotionally violent relationships, and I am, sadly, going to start seeing my old therapist again. I don’t see her biggest contribution being to my romantic life, and I hope it is not. My last therapist insisted on telling me to take it easy with the dating, to stop sleeping with guys right away if I want a relationship. Yeah, thanks. Slut shame me a little more, MOM. But really, going back to my old psychologist, I expect to get help with my anxiety and support in getting the rest of my schoolwork done so I can finish up my undergrad degree and MOVE ON.

But anyway, dating. It’s been terrible. My mother said the other day, “No one you’ve met on OkCupid has been OK.” And, though it might be a bit of an exaggeration, it rings pretty true. Some people have been “OK,” but none of my relationships on it have been successful, which is my goal…and a few have been abusive! So, please. WHAT. And there is no way I’m going to take the blame for this. I’m going to read my self-help books, and if I find something in them that helps me understand my lack of dating success, then fine. But somehow, when therapists or parents or friends are telling me what to do with my dating life, I feel like they are trying to blame me for what’s happened to me. And it’s insane. I fucking hate it. I don’t fucking want to be told how to live my life! What happened to supporting people? I support. And I don’t know…maybe one of my self-help books or my old therapist or my interactions in the support group will give me a clue about why I’ve been unsuccessful…and maybe it’s something unhealthy going on with me because of the abuse or something…I don’t know. But all I can say is that I am over this! OVER. IT. (Not emotionally, obviously…but I’m fed up with it…REALLY).

I think I know how to identify an abuser…

I think I know how to identify an abuser...

Soooo…people. My favorite people. Anyway, I think I have figured out how to identify an abuser.

By the way, like the photo?  You know, not actually like it…but appreciate it.  I think it is a really creative way to symbolize emotional violence. I know it’s a bit graphic.  I hope it’s not triggering for anyone.  I apologize if it is.

Sadly, I was victimized again recently. Woo hoo! But you know, with sexual coercion and arguments and blaming comes KNOWLEDGE!

So…I’ve been dating on internet sites. And maybe that’s my problem. But let’s assume it’s not. Lol. For many reasons… I’ve now found a few different guys. Actually, a lot. And when I tell them I don’t want dick pics, I don’t want sex, etc., etc., they get REALLY defensive. To the point where they get annoyed and don’t want to talk to me anymore and stuff like that.

Now…this could be me identifying abusers…because, honestly, the guy who would get really finicky about me telling him I didn’t want to have sex eventually coerced me into it and stole my underwear. Whaaaattt? Who does that? Ugh. Orrrr, maybe this is just me being overly sensitive, telling a guy things like this a few times (in what I think are non-threatening ways), and him feeling attacked and then choosing not to talk to me because he thinks I have issues or am too anxious.

What do you all think?

I honestly don’t think a nice guy would get OFFENDED by me asking for there to be no sex. If I kept saying that, the mature guy might say, hey, is everything alright? I’m totally cool with not having sex, but you bring it up a lot. I worry you’ve been mistreated by someone.

Am I right? Am I right?

Anyway,
Alex

the-cycle-of-domestic-violence.jpg

So I am kind of having an “Oh shit” moment.

I just started dating a new guy and, you know, I have a lot of suspicions this could turn into something abusive.

I was originally going to title this post, “Is he sensitive or is he abusive?” And you know what, after refreshing my memory on the cycle of abuse with a few diagrams found on Google Images (thank god for the internet), I think I may have answered my question. Sometimes I wonder if I am paranoid that I’m being abused…but it might be that I just keep finding abusive people (which they say can happen with victims). Our first date, everything was great. He seemed like a very happy and caring guy. But as soon as our second interaction, things started getting bad. Unexpected (though not really coercive) sex…then the arguments. The arguments, the arguments, the arguments. I’ve only known him a week and we have been arguing a ton. He went out of town this weekend so I wondered, maybe he doesn’t do well communicating long-distance…or, he’s with his friends…he doesn’t want to bother with me, especially if we’re disagreeing. Maybe we’re so different (he’s an artist type…you know, they’re so off in their own world, or sensitive, or whatever, whatever <—sarcasm), we need to talk about serious things in person or, at the least, on the phone. But then weird comments started coming…and I do DEFINITELY have the “walking on eggshells” feeling. Comments like “You know how you are” (criticizing what he thinks is my constant communication) and now he doesn’t want to hang out with me on Monday, his original plan, because I had mentioned that maybe we’re incompatible. When I asked if we were going to hang tomorrow, he said, “Why with all the stuff about being incompatible, etc.?” He stops answering messages when he wants, and man, the arguing. I think that is key. I argued A TON with the guy who last abused me. I’m starting to get scared, but I’m also really happy that I can recognize the signs. I’m not saying for sure that this is the case, but I fear it is. I’ll stay vigilant and try to call on adults (seriously) for help. The other thing…I’ve been trying to bring up my past abuse with him and he keeps basically telling me to stop. He thinks I’m projecting my past experiences onto him. It’s (communication) getting impossible. That’s a bad sign. I had been raped before I was with the last guy whom abused me, and he didn’t like hearing about the rape either. Didn’t give a fuck. Only used the information to suit his purposes.  Oh, and he also kind of has the perfect story to have developed into an abuser…left alone by his family (neglected, perhaps), no father figure, sisters with different dads who also aren’t around, and a mother who has experienced rape and probably other violence.  It is bad.

Man. Again!? But like I said, I’m happy I can see the signs. REALLY happy.

-Alex

It is hard being an abused woman…

It is hard being an abused woman...

Man.

Seriously.

It is hard having suffered emotional abuse in a past romantic relationship in terms of forming new romantic relationships. I think, justifiably, I am paranoid as fuck. Lol. I am afraid I’m being manipulated, that I’m not really liked, that I will be coerced into sex for his benefit and not mine, etc. And, of course, unfairly, this paranoid behavior may halt the development of a new relationship because it freaks new partners out. Buuuttt, listen up here, fellows: YOU NEED TO BE MORE UNDERSTANDING. I was abused. That’s not my fucking fault. And you attaching words like “paranoid” and “presumptuous” to me is NOT HELPING THE SITUATION. And yes, is it my responsibility to heal myself after the circumstance that led to my clingyness? Yes, it is. But where is the sympathy? Where is the intuition? Why can’t you seem to understand that if I am acting like this, it is not a reflection of you, but a reflection of me? Help me out here, man. Because the last thing I need is to be told I’m crazy after I’ve been treated like shit by another of your sex.

**Obviously, there is a whole other side to this story, but this is a rant. And is, thus, one-sided. Sorry.

And the worst part is that I have not only suffered from this crazy-calling by men and prospective romantic partners.  My own girl friends have said similar things, discounting the experience of being abused.  And, in the field of abuse, sexual assault, mental illness, etc., you hear that people, many times, do not react in helpful ways to victims.  And I know that.  But I guess I have dealt with so much of this “CRAP” that I’m done!  I’m done with it!  Where are the fucking understanding people!?  I’m sick of the excuses professionals in our field make up for people who say insensitive things.  Stop being ignorant!  (is what I would like to say sometimes).

Learning to Value Myself

Learning to Value Myself

Hello Everyone!

So, yes, as the title states (if you can even see it…I’m having trouble figuring out where the title disappears to on a “photo” post), I am learning to value myself.

As I am figuring out, I am new to all this love stuff. And I was never really taught how to value myself, as strange as that may sound. My parents loved me, but I don’t remember them teaching me how to love myself. Maybe that’s not a parent’s job, anyway. But I’ve needed to learn it recently (though it’s more of a journey, I think, not a piece of information you memorize) because I haven’t been getting what I want in my love life. I want a relationship. I keep getting repeated hookups. Haha.

I’ve heard the past few years of my life things such as, “Ladies, value yourselves otherwise a man won’t.” Those things pissed me off. I thought, what the f***, I should just be treated with respect! Why should I have to guard myself!? Men are assholes! But, being a survivor of rape, and later, emotional abuse, I guess I ESPECIALLY had to be keeping a watch over myself. For whatever reason, I give in easily to people, I let people push me around, etc. And guys, or girls, or people of any gender, may take advantage of me if I don’t guard myself. I think I’ve been taken advantage of by friends, as well as lovers…it usually just hurts more when it’s lovers because of the greater level of investment and intimacy. I like to love without boundaries; but when I do that, people mistreat me (not always, of course). But I AM a sensitive person…I need to understand that about myself. Because…loving freely and being sensitive…they are kind of opposites. I can’t have both. And if I can’t “toughen up,” then I need to exercise some restriction over my behavior. It becomes a logical equation. Sensitivity and unbounded love do not yield the correct solution.

Also, as I discussed with my doctor the other day, women who have been abused and assaulted tend to become promiscuous after being victimized. I’d like to research the “why” of that more sometime, but we concluded that the “power” in sex becomes something we desire since our experiences left us feeling powerless. And forgetting that sex shouldn’t have to do with power, we may get caught up in acquiring sexual experience just for its sake…to gain the power we think is inherent in it. But for me…because I want intense love and security, sleeping around doesn’t work. And I am aware that even if I find a committed relationship sometime soon here, I might be cheated on. But I at least want to TRY for a deeper connection. It’s got to be better than (or different) from these surface level, “I barely give a shit about you” situations. I love deeply…it’s time I’m loved back.

So, yes, this is me. I am valuable, and I’m going to start treating myself like I am.

Adios!
Alex

change.jpg

So…I’m figuring out I need to make a change. And it’s hard. I have a question for my few readers (or hopefully new readers!): How do you embrace change (if it concerns your behavior) without hating how you HAVE BEEN acting? Is this, like, a stage in the process of changing yourself? I’m sure I could read something about this (and may resort to doing so if I can’t find an answer for myself), but I would rather talk this out with people, hear their experiences, create my own answer. If I find out this self-hatred IS a step in the process…well, then I hate it, too. 🙂 And because my past behavior has led to unhappiness, it makes the self-beatings more likely, I guess. I would LOVE suggestions.

A New Tide: An Update

A New Tide: An Update

Hey Everyone,

Again, I have not written in a while. School keeps me busy…somehow. I’m not really sure how since I barely do homework. And that’s not in a “I’m too cool for school” way, more like a “My anxiety is overpowering my ability to do it” way.

So, some updates. I’m completely off of medications for depression/anxiety, including natural supplements. I’m seeing how this goes. My depression seems do have dissipated, or even disappeared, which is good. My anxiety, though, is certainly holding on. I’m trying to read some books to help me deal with it. It’s hard to do stressful self-fixing while in school, where I’m already kind of “failing.”

Spring is sort of here where I live.

I thought I had an STD, which was awesome (not at all). I didn’t.

I’m making some friends on campus. Some. Like, a very few. And I only really hang out with them on an individual level. I don’t have a group of friends anymore…and that’s REALLY hard. I wouldn’t suggest it.

I don’t like partying anymore, so I really can’t wait to be out of this social arena. It’s not for me. Though, I’m not looking forward to traveling back to my hometown after I walk at graduation.

I’m thinking about going back to my old birth control pill. I think it did better things for me in terms of my mood, acne, etc.

I hate the mood swings that come with the monthly hormonal changes. (Thus, desiring changing birth control pills).

I tried a “studded” condom for the first time. Fuck. No. It hurt. Lol.

I left my dorm building once today, for less than five minutes. And the other times I left my room were to go to the restroom down the hall or walk my laundry to the basement, unable to do it because some dude hadn’t retrieved his wet laundry from the washers. One washer had one pair of boxers. I don’t want to know what was wrong with those boxers that they needed a washer all to themselves. Eeeuuh.

I have my second yeast infection in a two month period. Oww!

My dating life has been pretty unsuccessful and there have been some stupid shit heads I’ve had to deal with.

I’m finding out my psychologist is pretty conservative. Ugghhh.

I don’t know. I guess that’s it. Sorry. It’s a bit boring and not as well-written as I would like. I’m feeling weird.

Love.

Rape

Rape

So, yeah. Hi people. It has been a while.

I find myself responsible for spreading awareness, okay? (As self-assured as that sounds). So let me copy and paste (without names mentioned) a conversation I had with someone on a dating website during the past couple of days. I gave this guy the benefit of the doubt, but I shouldn’t have. *I have posted on my profile on this dating website that I am a rape and domestic violence survivor, so I often get heartfelt responses about that in messages…or I get this…* By the way, I wish I had the confidence to post this on Facebook, but my FB friends don’t know I am using a dating site (and yeah, there’s still societal stigma around that sort of thing), and many don’t know I’ve been raped.

The messages between this person and me (he started messaging me, btw) started JUST LIKE THIS:

HIM: How did it make you feel when you were raped?
ME: How do u think it made me feel?
HIM: If I knew exactly I wouldn’t ask.
ME: Well, wouldn’t you assume bad? Or do u somehow think rape might be thrilling?
HIM: Depends on the situation you didnt enjoy it at all? The primal instincts of a man taking what he wants didnt turn you on?
ME: Oh fuck no. Rape is really scary. Rape fantsies are completely different from being penetrated when you said you didn’t want to be. I think ur thinking rough sex. Rape is never enjoyable. Plus, there is the fear of stds and pregnancy bc this guy obviously didn’t care one bit abt me (bc he disrespected me), so if he had had something, he wouldn’t have cared much to keep me safe. He was a pig. He wanted sex and took it even tho I told him I didn’t want to. I’d also never had sex before and planned on staying abstinent until marriage, so it was a highly traumatic psychological situation. Why do u ask this? I will tell u that this is an extremely insensitive thing to ask a rape survivor, but I am giving u the benefit of the doubt and trying to teach you because you obviously lack knowledge. If you are just asking to fulfill some sick ideas you have in ur head and chose to use a conveniently placed rape victim who u don’t know at all to answer your questions having to do with these sick ideas, I am not okay with discussing this.
ME: And playing out a rape fantasy or having intentionally rough sex is always a consensual act. Rape is never, and that is why it is so terrible. It is an act of asserting power over someone and getting something u were refused bc u have a desire to control someone. And that is why it is so traumatic to victims…not bc it is sex, necessarily, (in my case that was part of it, too), but because any power u had was forcibly taken from u. When u genuinely want something or don’t want something and someone chooses to override that.. basically deciding for u that u aren’t worth any sort of respect, that is never a good feeling. That is all I am going to say.
HIM: Lol ok thanks for the long story i simply asked out of curioisity i dont need to rape women to get what i want 😉 peace
ME: Fuck u

So, yes, I got a little feisty there near the end, but I think I’m allowed to. Give me an I! I! Give me a G! G! Give me an N! N! Give me an O! O! Give me an R! R! Give me an A! A! Give me another N! N! Give me a C! C! Give me an E! E! What does that spell!? IGNORANCE.

*****THIS JUST IN, THIS JUST IN!  Things just got a lot worse…this was in response to my not super friendly comment…

HIM: And there would be the reason why you deserve what you got good for him

I’m reporting this dude.  No question.  I hope he’s not a paying customer to the website (for you can be a free beneficiary or a paying customer…) because I fear, if he pays, they will let him stay.

Yikes! Sorrow…

Yikes!  Sorrow...

So wow. Hey. I haven’t spoken to you all in a looonnngggg time. I’ve been back in school and shit has seriously been crazy. I can’t even explain it to you. Failed relationships, failed medications, (basically) failed classes…it has been chaos. I’ve been struggling seriously with getting over my (apparent) PTSD symptoms from being in an emotionally abusive relationship over a year and a half ago. And currently (why I’m writing), I feel super anxious and super lonely. I just started taking natural sleeping meds instead of all the other ones I’ve been prescribed and they haven’t been so successful…not the like the ones I was being prescribed were either. Insomnia is SERIOUSLY the worst! Maybe not as bad as depression and anxiety, and abuse…but it’s up there! God, what I would give to get some fucking sleep! It’s just been super hard the past few months. REALLY hard. And, unfortunately, things don’t seem to be getting substantially better. Yikes. Sometimes…I mean, you guys feel this, right? You depression/anxiety sufferers? Sometimes I just want to give up. I feel like I’ve been racing my hardest and I’m still being left in the dust. I wear myself so thin so often and it’s getting EXHAUSTING! Like, where is the relief? I guess some of my feelings are due to not having seen a therapist in a couple or three weeks and having some stressful stuff going on. But I just hate being caught in this mess. I don’t see a fucking therapist again until Monday. God. Days of suffering sit in between now and Monday. Like, you know what I mean? Doesn’t the constant fight ever get tiring? Don’t the revolving bouts of suicidal thoughts and extreme anxiety and sleeplessness get to you eventually? It is SO hard to deal. Seriously. I’ve never made a suicidal attempt before, so I wouldn’t get too riled up about the hopelessness seeping from the lines of this essay…but man. I just get tired. I need to sleep. I need to talk to my therapist. I need…man, I don’t know. But when I feel like this, I pull away from people more…I assume I’m a burden. My loneliness shoves me further in the closet. Do you all know what I’m saying? That’s why I felt I had to get something out–anonymously. And I just have so much shit to do for school…all the shenanigans from this past semester left me with numerous incomplete assignments…which I am given the chance to finish, but it’s just so much. Yikes. Alright, I’m gonna sign off and do something completely inconsequential, I’m sure. That’s the worst part, too (for me at least); when I’m suffering from sleeplessness, I straight up can’t do anything productive. I just sit and obsess or eat. It’s bad. It sucks. Yeeeoooyy! I hate it.

Well, actually, I’m gonna make a quick couple of moves. I’m going to e-mail my therapist. And I’m going to look up requirements for school and see what kind of options I have in terms of lessening some of the stress on me right now. I guess that’s all I can do right now. And better I do that than sit here miserable for, I’M SURE, many hours. Ugghhh. I think I’m gonna try a new sleeping med tomorrow, and hopefully that one works better. And one more time: yikes!

Oh. And sorry for all the foul language…

Alex