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Flashbacks and touch aversion.

M

Maunakea

Member
Joined
May 27, 2016
Messages
14
I'm finding it really difficult right now to deal with certain types of flashbacks from my traumas from childhood.
Trigger warning, sexual abuse. Also, very long.. TLDR: I want to be able to enjoy being touched again. Help?
So some things happened to me in my past, some of which I remember and some I don't really. It definitely shaped the person I am and detrimentally affected my emotional development and mental health, but it doesn't hugely affect my day to day life now. That is to say, most days I am largely asymptomatic. Sure I get actually triggered occasionally, and I have the dreams often, but most days I am ok and can put it all out of my mind.
The biggest and most persistent exception to this is in the soft, romantic and intimate interactions with my boyfriend. We have a wonderful and supportive relationship and he really is my rock. Most of the time when I am with him I can think of nothing but happiness. But sometimes when he touches me something he does suddenly triggers a flashback.
For example; tonight we were cuddling with him kind of sitting up and me in between his legs and leaning back on him. He kissed the back of my neck, holding his lips against my skin and kind of rubbing them along my neck and back. I felt his chin hairs, lips and breath all tickling me. Honestly it's those intimate moments that I cherish. But suddenly I remembered how one of my abusers used to do that to me. I was 7 or 8 ( I've blocked out a lot of memory from childhood and now have issues placing them chronologically when I do remember them) and he was a friend of my step brother. He lived with us for a short time. I remember playing a game on the computer in my bedroom. He came upstairs for a while to watch me play, which I think he did often. I remember him sitting or kneeling behind me while I sat on the chair. We were talking about the game (a lion king game from a cereal box, I forget what it was called but I loved it) and he was kind of watching over my shoulder. He was very close to me, and had his hands around my waist. He started rubbing his face/ lip area on my back and neck, tickling me with his stubble. I was immediately uncomfortable, but only commented that it tickled. He kept doing it, and started kind of kissing my neck as well. I was frozen. That lasted for a little while, then his hands started moving around my body, and he told me that if we went to the bed he could tickle me in other places too. I told him that I was hungry, and went downstairs to eat. I stayed downstairs for a while, and eventually he left my room. That wasn't the first time he had touched me inappropriately, or the last. But it was the first time that I had a sense that what he was doing was wrong. My naive little kid brain always assumed innocence in his interactions I guess. But not that time. That time it got through, and I was terrified. I mean I was so scared and shocked and lost and I just didn't know what I was supposed to do so I just let it happen. I'm glad I smartened up and went downstairs when I did because I'm sure that if I hadn't snapped out of it and had stayed frozen, he would have done much worse to me that day. I never told anyone about that day. He lived with us for a short time yet after that, and I always tried to avoid being alone with him. A while later I told my older sister he made me uncomfortable. We already had experience with sexual abuse at that point, so I'm pretty sure she understood without me saying. And then he left and I never saw him again.
Anyways, yea. So a lovely intimate cuddling moment with the man I love so very much, and that came back into my head. I tried not to let it ruin our moment, but it was difficult. That happens pretty often. I have issues being touched. It sucks because I love it, I love when my boyfriend runs his hand along my back, etc. But it reminds some part of my mind about another hand that did that, and I shiver away. I have an actual physical response, like tickling kinda but unpleasant. I just want to be able to enjoy those pure and innocent moments of intimacy with the man I'm gunna spend my life with. I don't want to shrink away from his touch anymore.
Does anyone have any advice on how to be less bothered by these types of flashbacks and the touch aversion?
 
SunnyDaze

SunnyDaze

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Hi there @Maunakea

I'm sorry for what you went through and struggle with now. I completely understand.

Have you had any therapy to help you with this? That's what I suggest you do.That might possibly help.

That being said,I have had years of therapy and still get triggered. There's some things that will probably always affect me in some way.

I worked on being able to kiss for so long that I gave up even trying.I just can't do it no matter how hard I try or work on it and through it.
 
M

Maunakea

Member
Joined
May 27, 2016
Messages
14
Hi there @Maunakea

I'm sorry for what you went through and struggle with now. I completely understand.

Have you had any therapy to help you with this? That's what I suggest you do.That might possibly help.

That being said,I have had years of therapy and still get triggered. There's some things that will probably always affect me in some way.

I worked on being able to kiss for so long that I gave up even trying.I just can't do it no matter how hard I try or work on it and through it.
Thank you for your reply. I have had therapy but I haven't brought up this topic in therapy. It's also been a while.
I'm sorry to hear you go through this as well. It's not fun
 
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