Hi. Maybe I shouldn't be taking up board space, but I feel cruddy today. I don't really know why. There are just days that really, really suck and I don't know if that will every stop. Is it normal to have horrible days where you just can't function every once in a while?
Maybe I should give some background. Many years ago, I was raped by someone I knew and one of his friends. I was just a kid. I was attacked when hanging out at another "friend's" house in the basement. That other "friend" while not involved with the rape, certainly didn't do anything to stop it. I think that its for that reason that I become really anxious in certain group situations in my adulthood. Anyway, I almost got away from them and got to a phone and then it was ripped from my hands and I was knocked down and hit and violated more so.
When it was over, I think that I locked myself away in a storage room in this basement for a while until I was able to leave through the cellar door that led up a few stairs into the backyard. I remember telling my mom about it when I got home and there wasn't much support from her. At that time I took that as a horrible betrayal but I think that she was shocked and didn't know what to do. Anyhow, I seemed to have pushed the feelings aside for a while although I was harassed for a while as these people lived in an adjacent neighborhood but I knew that my dad's company was relocating to another state so I thought that if I could only make it til then everything would be okay.
And it was for a while, until at the end of the next school year I pretty much had a nervous breakdown that summer. I couldn't do anything but sleep. If I was awake I became so panicked that I couldn't function. I was somewhat irrationally convinced that I had contracted somekind of disease from this attack. I felt horrible, soiled, dirty and if I even looked in the mirror I would hyperventilate and cry uncontrollably. I don't know how I was able to fall asleep all the time except that it must have been the only way of easing my distress. I guess by then I started experimenting with alcohol and such and that seemed to help me for some time. These things even helped me through relationships that might otherwise have been traumatic.
Fast forward to college and the first year or two were fine and I dated some okay guys but during my junior year I started to date this guy who was wonderful. He wanted me to not drink quite as often because I would miss classes some mornings and I was able to cut down a great deal. I came to realize how dependent I had become on that stuff to mask the whole attack. I started remembering things that I didn't want to remember. I have read where there is this huge controversy about the recovery of so called repressed memories and how some therapists don't believe that it really occurs. I started thinking that I had made the whole thing up which made me even more ashamed. Why would I want to believe that this had happened to me? Was I some kind of sociopath?
Over time, however, I came to understand that these were real events that were eating away at me. I told this boyfriend about it and he wasn't very supportive, which broke my heart, and then he broke off the relationship citing the sexual assault as the reason, which basically shattered it. It wasn't really that I thought he was the love of my life or that we were going to stay together or anything, but I had at least hoped that he cared a little bit about me, especially since we had been in a physical relationship. Sometimes I think about all this stuff and I realize that its pretty likely that I have never been with anyone who cared about me. Anyhow, that hurt and I started trying to do things to take my mind off of it. I started talking to the school psychologist a little bit about it but to be honest I didn't really trust him so I didn't get very far into it. I started considering taking a medical leave and the psychologist said that he would support that. Then the Dean said that he wouldn't allow it so I had the diagnosis released to him. The Dean still refused to help me even though I was suffering from PTSD, anxiety, depression, etc. to a debilitating extent. At one of the meetings with the Dean I happened to glance at his desk before he had walked from the door of the office to his desk and I found that the psychologist had completely broken confidentiality and supplied the entire counseling file to the Dean, which had not been authorized in any way. I was completely shocked. I ended up going out drinking on the weekends. One night I was at a bar and I had become really really intoxicated and I was talking to my friends boyfriend. I was wearing a little black minidress and the next thing I know his hands were in my panties fingering me in the middle of the bar. I don't think I said anything. I just grabbed the guy that I was there with and we went home. I guess on the way home I told him about it because when I remembered it the next afternoon and asked my friend he said that the incident really had taken place. He didn't understand why it was so upsetting to me though. Again, don't get me wrong--he knew it was wrong and an awful thing for someone to go through but to someone who didn't know my past my response would have seemed like a complete overreaction. However, he also told me that I told my ex-boyfriend who we ran into on the way home what a complete jerk I thought he was. Apparently, my ex recounted this story to his sister who also went to school at the same college. She started following me and some of my friends around and making rude comments and generally harassing the hell out of me. All I could remember was the way the rapist and his friends had harassed me after the attack around the neighborhood. I freaked out and sent him an email asking him to please ask his sister to stop. All I did was ask him to tell me that he had at least asked her. Because of this, he initiated proceedings to try to get me suspended from our college. I promise I didn't do anything to deserve that. I don't know what to say. I was no longer able to function. I was so hurt and screwed up in the head I didn't know what to do. I started throwing up a lot, a few times on purpose but mostly involuntarily. I did have a few supportive friends though. Even though, I couldn't have told them about almost all of it (of course some of it I didn't have to tell my friends about because my ex and his sister had done a great job of telling people about it), they made me feel safe when they were around me. I finally did file a lawsuit against the school and everything went away in a heartbeat which I am happy about. I have tried to go back to campus to visit a couple of younger friends but its really difficult. I have anxiety attacks when I get near the school. On one instance, my friend took me to the ER because it seemed as though I was actually in shock to him when I arrived at his dorm room. I was pale, my lips were blue, I couldn't speak very well, the room was spinning, my hands were tingling and growing numb, I was hyperventilating and I thought I was dying. Its been a couple of years since I graduated from college, but I just can't motivate myself to move on yet. I don't feel like I have had time to not be okay with what happened.
Its pretty safe to say that I am frightened of everyone. People really do make my skin crawl. It seems as though everyone in the world is capable of horrible evil...at least from my perspective. And I know its not my fault--intellectually I know that--but how am I supposed to feel when so many people do this kind of thing to me? What exactly is their goal?
Anyway, I am sorry for this huge aimless rant. I didn't mean to take up so much space...hehe...I just wanted to say that.
Okay, I know that I said I was just rambling and stuff but I wonder if the lack of response is an indication that this is something that no one can say anything helpful to or just that no one read the whole post.
Pfunk-I otally relate to your situation- was molested by my older brother repeatedly when I was about 4 or 5 and then I was raped by my ex-byfriend when I was 16-of course I know I didn't ask for it but I really think that I put myself in harmful situations to punish yself because I felt giulty about my brother-he was sent away and I haven't seen him since-about 23 years now. he was young too-about 11 or so-and it was being done to him by his step father-he is my fathers son from a different marriage-anyway-I miss him and I feel so guilty-I know it wasn't my fault but I can't help it. I too feel like I didn't relly get raped by my ex boyfriend-I don't know why that is?? It really did happen but I feel crazy sometimes! That happened about 12 years ago! I did get counseling and it just didn't go away-I have always had a problem with depression-probably from what happened with my brother-so in response to your question-what you are going through sounds like post traumatic stress disorder-like me-I've been on zoloft for a while and it definately helps! I can't believe how much your stor is like mine....well-I really hope things get better for you! good luck and although I'm a newbie to his board-I will be here so write back if you want!...The Slayer
I am glad to hear from someone who understands. I know that its a long, long post, but I think that I was beginning to believe that others found that story to f--cked up to give any sage advice. I know that I should see someone but I just can't bring myself to do it. I didn't trust people to begin with, then that psychologist acted like a complete *******, and just about everything I else mentioned reinforced my anxieties about people and now I feel like if I were to have therapy I would need the support of someone I trusted to go through that. Actually, I have needed the support of loved ones the whole time and there doesn't seem to have ever been anyone. Furthermore, the couple of people that I have mentioned it to annoy me in that they try to overidentify with me and my situation when they have never been through anything like it and quite frankly I don't want anyone whether they have been through this or not to identify with me so much that they feel like they can tell me how to feel or what to do which seems to be what some people do. (Don't get me wrong I don't feel like this with you Slayer.) I don't know, does any of this make sense?
yes it does make sense-this is an extremely difficult thing to go through and your right nobody knows what your going through except you.people who have been through it know what it's like but still everybody is affected differently.It has taken me over a decade to be able to move on from the incident! and you stated in your last response that you know you do need to see someone-that is a really good sign-it tells me that you don't want to suffer anymore and I think judging from my own experience,that when you are ready to confide in another psychologist or psychiatrist you will know.Nobody has to do this alone and neither should you everybody deserves a chance at happiness! but don't waste too much time because your life is so much more valuble than that and they don't deserve anymore of your suffering-this is going to sound shrinky but take your life back from them-everyone that has hurt you-don't let them keep hurting you! well take care of yourself-you are in my thoughts.
"the hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world"-w.r.wallace
No offense, but that is the kind of talk that I really hope to avoid with a psychologist. It seems like pretty silly superficial BS for those of us who have analyzed the situation. Thats one of the things that I can't stand about psychologists other than the fact that the only ones I have ever known were immoral ---holes. There is really no way I could go to a psychologist until I am married and I have the only person to whom I will ever be committed in my life in their with me bearing all of the pain with me.
Hello. I just wanted to say how weird things have been ever since this whole situation with the college boyfriend happened. I keep having these absolutely horrible dreams in which he is in the room where I was raped and he is just standing there watching and not doing anything about it. That's really all that happens in the dream but it hurts soooo much.