coming home makes me stuck in the past.


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im in distress right now. Im a college student who's home for summer and immediately upon coming home I feel more vulnerable and on edge. Its gotten better than its been in the past. But i still feel very vigillant.

The problem is my brother. But the problem is really me and my stuck perception of my brother.

When we were kids we did sexual things together and I've been scarred by it ever since. In general, even besides that, he was someone who i felt held power over me. He was unpredictable and loud and agressive and i tried as hard as i could to seal myself away from him. Over the past couple years ive slowly remembered and confronted what happened and its been a blessing and a curse. It was like opening up pandoras box. I can see myself healing slowly (its easy to say healing isnt linear till its you who walks one step forwards and gets sent 3 steps back -_- ) but it also feels like.. its eaten up and consumed a lot of my mind, my energy, etc. more and more mundane things have started to remind me of it. more and more mundane things have started to make me think about it and think that I wanted to be incestuous and I wanted what happened to me and that im never going to be able to escape from my first introduction to sexuality being my f*cking brother. That for the rest of my life, sex and my brother will be permenantly linked and i'll never be able to escape from that truth. and now im home and just seeing him and how much hes grown since i left.. i feel so awful. like physically and mentally and i feel like an asshole! because he's changed and hes a good person and he's actively kinder and the best version of himself thats EVER been in my life.

but i cant forget cowering in fear because of him. and his presence just feels like the physical manifestation of my trauma. and thats not fair. and thats not true. and theres a lot on my mind and im trying to just watch youtube and decompress and distract myself but i feel utterly surrounded by this. I thought i was ready to mend our relationship as siblings but i dont know anymore.

I know im an adult. im more confident and capable and have grown so much, especially recently. and it feels like a kick to the chest. my inner child isnt just a part of me, it feels like I slowly revert back into them the more time I spend here at home.

how do i make it stop. I know this is a loaded question. i just need any help i can get i guess.
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yes, you are an adult now, but old habits die hard. i never had functional parents or a home to go back to, but at 67, my inner child still asserts her old habits on a routine basis. the good news is that "mini-me" is far better potty trained than she was while i was in college. she laughs more easily, too.

there are times in life where vigilance is in order. flirting with old habits is one of those times on my own watch-list. it's good to be comfortable with the past, but not at the price of personal growth. when i have to flirt with old habits, i watch myself for regression while staying mindful of not letting the vigilance get hyper. to my estimation, vigilance is too valuable a tool to give up entirely. it's a useful tool until i carry it to hyper extremes. balance in all things.


I would move out immediately. Get into therapy to help you not become more stuck than you are. I have not seen my only sister for more than a decade and that is fine with me. My therapist doesn't understand but I am fine without her.


how do i make it stop.
No idea.

My family is completely “normal” and going “home” to stay wih my parents for any length of time? I’m 95% 6yo & 5% 40-mumble / myself.

And that percentage only gets worse, the longer I’m there 😖 Not that there’s much wiggle room, to begin with! Amongst all my friends and acquaintances over the years? The same holds true. Old scripts and schemas burst into active use the moment one returns “home”. The only people who are actually treated like adults are those whose families made the effort to transition into treating them like adults as teenagers, but even then? It’s like all the time they’ve spent away from home, and the people they’ve become, and the things they’ve done/seen/been in the interim… just *poof* vanish into thin air.

“Saints are never recognized at their hearthstones.” Is another way of say the same thing. And that saying is hundreds nearing a thousand years old.

So when you’re dealing with something that is BOTH just human-nature PLUS ptsd/trauma? I expect you’re pretty f*cked in the desiring change front.


I'm assuming there isn't an option to be living somewhere else right now?

If not, then it's trying to find a way of feeling safe around him.
What is it precisely that makes you feel like this? (I.e. being in the same room as him? Just being in the house? Him walking past you? Etc etc).
I don't know if it would help to figure that out and then figure out a plan around that?
Can he not leave?
Can you tell him you don't want to see him at the moment?
Do your parents know what happened?

I'm sorry you are going through this.