Ashamed of how little I can do

Friday

Moderator
I’ve no intention of dating again, especially when this is how I feel. Does that make sense?
So here’s the thing…

…if you have flashbacks/panic attacks/nightmares/etc. from going to the grocery store? Or taking a shower? Or breathing? Or any other aspect of life? WANTING to be able to feed yourself, get clean, not die of asphyxiation, have an amazing life… is pretty hefty motivation for learning how to deal with triggers and stressors kicking your ass.

If you don’t actually WANT to date, have a partner, etc.? You want to be flying solo, and are your happiest/best self nixing romance from your life entirely, no matter how many fantabulous friendships, social calendar booked to bursting, etc.? Then, yeah, it’s silly to date. And even sillier to be ashamed of it.

So I’m strongly suspecting that’s not what you want.

I could totally be wrong.

But if it is something you want? That’s something to work for / work towards. The same way you would work for/towards any other area of your life PTSD is f*cking with.

There’s a really old thread Bubblize-ing (a Definition) <<<here!! 😁 >>> That talks about how Avoidance-As-A-Coping-Mechanism (rather than as a symptom) can reeeeeeally overwhelm our lives with PTSD; as instead of learning how to manage the increased stress & spiking symptoms that come along wih living the life we want? We start cutting those things out of our lives. As emotional-reasoning says “I don’t wanna feel this way = stop doing the thing that makes me feel this way!” And our lives get smaller, and smaller, and smaller… as we cut out more and more things. When it’s not the THING that’s the problem, it’s the disorder itself.

The key to feeling better, IME? Is NOT to avoid, cut things out, bubblize, or whatever one wants to call it / think of it.

It’s to learn to manage our disorder better.

Whether we’re keeping the things we want in our lives, or working towards getting them back.

My 2.02
 

OliveJewel

MyPTSD Pro
happiest/best self nixing romance from your life entirely, no matter how many fantabulous friendships, social calendar booked to bursting,
Please can you tell how romance is connected to friendships and social calendar? I am in a similar place as OP. Am confused and afraid of romance.
 

Friday

Moderator
Please can you tell how romance is connected to friendships and social calendar?
It’s just another kind of connection. Another kind of relationship.

***


In the taste the rainbow 🌈 spectrum of different types of relationships? Not everyone wants all kinds, nor do they weight them all the same.

For example? (Staying away from romance, for a moment, to see it easier) With Colleagues / Professional relationships >>>

- Some people want the Admiration & Respect of one’s peers, or fierce competition between rivals, whilst others want Camaraderie, or to be a ‘Leader of Men’, or the opportunity to work with/for the most brilliant minds, or having partners/mentors/mentees, or a team they can rely on or create to their own satisfaction, any of several other key points -or chords- in professionally sourced relationships.

- Others couldn’t give a damn about work based relationships, or work in a field where (the above paragraph, and it’s many possible points of connection) just isn’t a thing, and any relationships formed via their workplace are incidental. Just another way they meet personalities they could have met anywhere, but just so happened to have met at work.

- Meanwhile some actively dislike & distance themselves from professional relationships, full stop. They do. not. want. any of the above, and may additionally (disvalue? discredit?) scorn -or fear- those kinds of relationships. For many reasons. (Although 3 of the most common I’m aware of is the power differential as people rise through ranks differently; or “shallowness” of a relationship predicated on position/skill; or any kind of transaction based relationship.)

***

Romantic relationships are the same way. There’s a ginormous spectrum of what people desire in a romantic relationship, the points of connection they’re seeking, what they value, how they weight it, and why.

Some people don’t rate romantic relationships at all, they’re not opposed to them, they just have far more important -to them- things to do. Others are actively opposed to them. But being too busy -or disinclined- for affairs of the heart? Doesn’t speak to how social they are in the rest of their lives. Some of the most actively social people I’ve ever known, relationships of all other kinds up to their eyeballs, dozens of types, both personally and professionally? Don’t want romantic nonsense in their lives full stop, or don’t come to want it until later in life. Shrug. Which is fine. People value different things.

It’s also 180degrees different from someone who very much wants romantic relationships, and is unable to go about acquiring them; or keeping them, after they’ve acquired them.

So if someone is their best/happiest self without romantic relationships? That’s totally fair. Whether they’re social to the Nth degree, or lone wolfing it. But if they want other points of connection, and are not their best happiest self without those relationships? Romantic/platonic/familial/etc? It’s equally fair to continue striving to be the person you want to be, living the life you love best. Regardless of what type(s) of relationships are missing.

***

PTSD seems to break, or create wacky intermittent thingmys (technical term 😉), the ability to form -or maintain- connections to others. At least for some of us. IDFK why connection gets so damn hard, sometimes. Or why things that are hard (for most people, or before PTSD) become easy, whilst things that are easy (for most people, or before PTSD) become impossibly hard.

I do know there are certain trends amongst trauma types & personality types, but that they aren’t hard and fast. Nor is it a required symptom, just one part of a list… so plenty of people with PTSD must not have connection issues, or what breaks it in someone like me breaks something else in someone like them. Shrug.
 

OliveJewel

MyPTSD Pro
Thank you for the breakdown. I think I understand what you meant now. They still seem like very different things (romance and platonic) both with their own spectrum. I know some people who have plenty of their romantic partner in their life but very few social friends (I was one of them), so now I see the comparison.

another kind of connection. Another kind of relationship.
Different kinds. It helps me to see them as different.
Romantic relationships are the same way. There’s a ginormous spectrum
Each has its own spectrum.
romantic nonsense
It does seem that way sometimes… just nonsense.
Romantic/platonic/familial/etc?
Each distinct categories which can have… crossover sometimes… that’s confusing and not helpful for me currently, generally speaking. Probably the whole “healing from csa thing” blocks me from finding usefulness in blending these concepts presently, since pre-recovery I sexualized most everyone I interacted with to a certain degree.
a lover, a friend that you can have sex with
It’s confusing for me, but that sounds ideal, I think.
 
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