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Unlovable? Single For Some Time Now

Discussion in 'General' started by Daomadan, Jun 1, 2007.

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  1. Daomadan

    Daomadan New Member

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    I've read of others saying they often feel this way. I've been single for some time now and though I've dated some people, inevitably I get afraid of the possibility of intimacy and I run. I know this is a result of five years of being in an abusive relationship growing up, and nothing has ever been the same with men since. I want to be in love and I want to let someone love me and yet it feels hopeless and that if another person comes around I'll just run away again. I think I'm reaching a point in my healing process where I won't run but will instead confront fearful feelings, and yet I sometimes feel like damaged goods because of my PTSD and the trail of tears behind me. I truly fear that I'll just be alone forever because no one will ever want me.

    Thoughts?
     
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  3. Monarch

    Monarch I'm a VIP Premium Member

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    I have said this to other people, have you read Dr. Burns "Feeling good". There is a wonderful section on these types of thoughts and how to shut them down. Also, I am married with 2 kids and I feel unloveable sometimes but then I remind myself that is a completely false statement and all in my head. It is my past talking, my parents, my teachers, whoever put that thought in my head to begin with, it was their junk and I don't have to feel that way. I am not saying it is easy, feeling that way when you are overwhelmed is kinda normal, but in everyday life you have to think positively. I have learned alot in the last year, mainly in therapy and going to church, spiritual growth has helped me in this area. I go to a great Church called Solomon's Porch in South Mpls, if you are in the area sometime give it a try.
     
  4. Daomadan

    Daomadan New Member

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    Solomon's Porch? Whereabouts is that? I'm from Southwest Minneapolis and currently live in the Wedge area near downtown. I'll try to check it out sometime. :)

    Therapy has definitely been helping me get rid of the "I'm not lovable" thoughts but sometimes it's hard when you're under so much stress or worn down, as you said, and I just try to work through those times and know that just because I feel one way today, doesn't mean I'll feel that way tomorrow.
     
  5. vcc123

    vcc123 Active Member

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    or.. what about...

    what about being unable to love? I feel like I have nothing to give now.. I love my husband.. but after 9 years together, of course I love him.. but not with the intimacy he wants and deserves.

    What if I have never really allowed myself to love anyone.. how do you know? I've had passion, lust, crushes, whatever.. but lasting, TRUSTING, deep unconditional love.. I dont know.

    There is no perfection, I know that.. the kind that stays forever.. whole hearted trust.. deep, true, love. I know there is no perfect love.. but I want it anyway.:dont-know
     
  6. permban0077

    permban0077 Policy Enforcement Banned

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    Vcc I wish I did not have stretch marks. Love and the initial passion wanes. Being comfortable and happy is it. Hot passion lasts even shorter than tight skin and a perky bod.

    Like you said no perfection. It just is not there. Being happy can be.
     
  7. becvan

    becvan Queen of the Blunt! Premium Member

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    Oh yes, I feel unlovable or unable to love often. I used to focus outside of myself about this. I would think about why no one could love me or why I wasn't good enough. I had a thousand excuses.

    What this comes down to is self-esteem and self-worth. So I've started focusing on myself instead. I'm learning how to love myself first. For example: My hair is long and fried. Being sick and on meds is just killing my hair. So for my going-away gift, Nic and I are going to get it chopped off. Short, cute, flinging, flippy.. it will be great. We are doing this for me. I'm treating myself and getting stylish. Today.

    Stop focusing on what other people can or can't do. That is just mind-reading and we are humans that don't have that ability. Focus on yourself and what you can do. Learn to love yourself and love from others will follow later!

    Bec

    P.S. If I get the chance I will take a picture and see if I can upload it on nic's computer (which is what I use to check in here.)
     
  8. Monarch

    Monarch I'm a VIP Premium Member

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    Good for you Bec... I go to this fancy ass spa to get my hair cut, sure it cost more but it makes me feel better to get treated nicely, my husband would die if he knew how much I spend but I work really hard too so I deserve it. Everyone deserves to do something nice for themselves. Let's make that this weekends mission, do one thing nice for yourself, don't think about anyone else and do it for you!

    Dao - Solomon's Porch is just off 35W and 46th I think the cross street is Blasdell. PM me sometime if you want to talk about it. I love the Wedge area by the way, some of my old friends used to live there so we hung out alot there. I still make it down at least once a week, we have breakfast at French Meadow on Sat. mornings, go to the Wedge for this stuff called "Amazing corn snack" and the juice bar, oh I could go on and on. I miss working downtown, I need to find a job over there again, I work down in Eden Prairie now (sucks).

    Monica
     
  9. Monarch

    Monarch I'm a VIP Premium Member

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    by the way Vcc, I guess I am lucky, my husband and I are totally in love, passionate love after 10 years and 2 kids. We don't always love each other but we always come back to it. We have always been that way though we knew on our first date that we would get married, after 2 months we were engaged, after 3 months we were pregnant (oop!) but we got married after our first was born. It has it's ups and downs (marriage) but we always love each other and the sex is still hot!
     
  10. becvan

    becvan Queen of the Blunt! Premium Member

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    I put my new do here: [DLMURL]http://www.ptsdforum.org/thread1008/27.html#post32545[/DLMURL]

    bec
     
  11. This is an interesting question. I know I am loveable because I have had long time gorgeous friends with crushes on me propose. Now I have never dated in my life and can't do a sexual relationship in any way so I told them No, because marriage = sex. . Even though they were perfectly willing to try and help me work through my terror of being touched and understood the PTSD issues they thought... .
    I made a choice some years ago when I was no longer someone's property that I would always stay alone so I would never be owned by anyone again.

    But see they did not see me as damaged.
    I am the one who sees it that way. I really have no reason to decide to change in this area regarding dating or relationships because right now it is safer for me to live alone and be alone. But things may change as I get older.

    Nora in Colorado
     
  12. Ubu

    Ubu Active Member

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    Hope this is ok to add

    PTSD suffers have alot to juggle. PTSD symtons themselves, the issue that caused it and possibily a lifetime of smaller issues that have been stuffed for who knows how long.
    You in the know please correct me if im wrong it just my 2 cents. I found this and it may have already been brought up before. But as spouse of a PTSD survisor. I have helped me all little to under what my loved one is dealing with.


    VA NATIONAL CENTER FOR PTSD

    Research and Education on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

    PTSD and RELATIONSHIPS

    A National Center Fact Sheet

    Trauma survivors with PTSD often experience problems in their intimate and family relationships or close friendships. PTSD involves symptoms that interfere with trust, emotional closeness, communication, responsible assertiveness, and effective problem solving:
    • Loss of interest in social or sexual activities, and feeling distant from others, as well as feeling emotionally numb. Partners, friends, or family members may feel hurt, alienated, or discouraged, and then become angry or distant toward the survivor.
    • Feeling irritable, on-guard, easily startled, worried, or anxious may lead survivors to be unable to relax, socialize, or be intimate without being tense or demanding. Significant others may feel pressured, tense, and controlled as a result.
    • Difficulty falling or staying asleep and severe nightmares prevent both the survivor and partner from sleeping restfully, and may make sleeping together difficult.
    • Trauma memories, trauma reminders or flashbacks, and the attempt to avoid such memories or reminders, can make living with a survivor feel like living in a war zone or living in constant threat of vague but terrible danger. Living with an individual who has PTSD does not automatically cause PTSD; but it can produce "vicarious" or "secondary" traumatization, which is almost like having PTSD.
    • Reliving trauma memories, avoiding trauma reminders, and struggling with fear and anger greatly interferes with survivors' abilities to concentrate, listen carefully, and make cooperative decisions -- so problems often go unresolved for a long time. Significant others may come to feel that dialogue and teamwork are impossible.
    Survivors of childhood sexual and physical abuse, rape, domestic violence, combat, or terrorism, genocide, torture, kidnapping or being a prisoner of war, often report feeling a lasting sense of terror, horror, vulnerability and betrayal that interferes with relationships:
    • Feeling close, trusting, and emotionally or sexually intimate may seem a dangerous "letting down of my guard" because of past traumas -- although the survivor often actually feels a strong bond of love or friendship in current healthy relationships.
    • Having been victimized and exposed to rage and violence, survivors often struggle with intense anger and impulses that usually are suppressed by avoiding closeness or by adopting an attitude of criticism or dissatisfaction with loved ones and friends. Intimate relationships may have episodes of verbal or physical violence.
    • Survivors may be overly dependent upon or overprotective of partners, family members, friends, or support persons (such as healthcare providers or therapists).
    • Alcohol abuse and substance addiction -- as an attempt to cope with PTSD -- can destroy intimacy or friendships
    In the first weeks and months following the traumatic event, survivors of disasters, terrible accidents or illnesses, or community violence often feel an unexpected sense of anger, detachment, or anxiety in intimate, family, and friendship relationships. Most are able to resume their prior level of intimacy and involvement in relationships, but the 5-10% who develop PTSD often experience lasting problems with relatedness and intimacy.

    Yet many trauma survivors do not experience PTSD, and many couples, families, or friendships with an individual who has PTSD do not experience severe relational problems. Successful intimate relationships require:
    • Creating a personal support network to cope with PTSD while maintaining or rebuilding family and friend relationships with dedication, perserverance, hard work, and commitment
    • Sharing feelings honestly and openly with an attitude of respect and compassion
    • Continual practice to strengthen cooperative problem-solving and communication
    • Infusions of playfulness, spontaneity, relaxation, and mutual enjoyment
    For many trauma survivors, intimate, family, and friend relationships are extremely beneficial, providing companionship and belongingness as an antidote to isolation, self-esteem as an antidote to depression and guilt, opportunities to make a positive contribution to reduce feelings of failure or alienation, and practical and emotional support when coping with life stressors.

    As with all psychological disturbances, especially those that impair social, psychological or emotional functioning, it is best to seek treatment from a professional who has expertise in both treating couples or family issues and PTSD. Many therapists with this expertise are members of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, whose membership directory contains a geographical listing indicating those who treat couples or family issues and PTSD. Types of professional help that survivors find helpful for relationships include:
    • Individual and group psychotherapy for their own PTSD
    • Anger and Stress Management, and Assertiveness Training
    • Couples Communication Classes and Individual and Group Therapies
    • Family Education Classes and Family Therapy
    SUGGESTED READINGS
    • John N. Briere and Diana M. Elliott, "Immediate and Long-Term Impacts of Child Sexual Abuse," Future of Children 4:2 54-69 (1994).
    • Rebecca Coffey, Unspeakable Truths and Happy Endings: Human Cruelty and the New Trauma Therapy (Sidran Press, 1998, ISBN 1-886968-04-7 or 1-886968-05-5)
    • Patience Mason, Recovering from the War: A Woman's Guide to Helping Your Vietnam Vet, Your Family, and Yourself (Viking, 1990, ISBN 0-670-81587-X; Penguin, 1990, ISBN 0-14-009912-3)
    • Aphrodite Matsakis, Vietnam Wives: Facing the Challenges of Life with Veterans Suffering Post Traumatic Stress (Sidran Press, 1996, ISBN 1-886968-00-4)
     
  13. Ubu

    Ubu Active Member

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    sorry i tryed to clean it up. :crazy:

    As one of you said I think to some extent it has to do with self-esteem. But there can be child instilled thought processes that may at time be useful and at other time not.

    Everyone of us have issues that we have to deal with, we all ought to be having annual mental check ups. But PTSD just muddy the waters.

    I love my wife with all my heart and i wish i could take the internal conflict away from her. Not because I could handle it any better. But it pains me so to watch her suffer. I do suffer with her being gone the old non useful feelings... insecurity, worry, will she still love me...etc.

    I know she loves me, but as she says where did the intamicy go.....in my mind side effects of the PTSD, and or medication.

    I have told her that PTSD happened to us. We are a team, I am You and You are me and we can work through this however long it takes.

    I understand the needing to be away from the site of trauma, But its hard not to be there to give support. So i do the best i can from a distance. Sometimes im strong and do good, sometimes i am a weak suck puke and im not much help at all.

    May God bless all of you in this battle with the comfort and peace that he can give you.
     
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