Social avoidance and self esteem

Entheo

Learning
I been feeling a lot of social anxiety and I see it comes from a feeling of unworthiness triggered by not overcoming the fear that came on when PTSD symptoms created a big challenge. I've fallen into this low place and risen out of it lots of times but I don't consciously understand how ive risen out of it in the past.

I can see the ideas and mental programs that are making me want to avoid. I remember I was real helpless and in need of help when the symptoms hit their peak. This memory comes into my head and I feel unworthy to be around people.

The fear of death is the same fear of being rejected by others, I see that now.
 

grit

MyPTSD Pro
I just want to say thank you for your post. I do not have answers for you (well that goes without saying) but I am just struck two comments you made:
I've fallen into this low place and risen out of it lots of times but I don't consciously understand how ive risen out of it in the past.
and
The fear of death is the same fear of being rejected by others, I see that now.

In my experience, therapy helped me see the conscious ways I get out of emotional wormholes. In the past, I was doing what I am learning in therapy but was not conscious of doing that ( I was operating out of survival instincts). and your second quote resonated with me because I feel the worst thing that happened to me as an infant (I say infant cause this feeling is so embedded in my body) is that the feeling that my mother rejected me and rejection felt death to me as a baby/infant/toddler and a young child. I can only hold the feeling of rejection as an adult but if I give it to too deep, I get depressed and then I know it is in my body. As I process and learn more about my own resiliency, it does get less to ignite me but ooh boy...the fundamental hurt for me as a basic human organism was rejection of love and the feeling of abandonment when I was unable to process or to even be aware.
 

Entheo

Learning
I just want to say thank you for your post. I do not have answers for you (well that goes without saying) but I am just struck two comments you made:

and


In my experience, therapy helped me see the conscious ways I get out of emotional wormholes. In the past, I was doing what I am learning in therapy but was not conscious of doing that ( I was operating out of survival instincts). and your second quote resonated with me because I feel the worst thing that happened to me as an infant (I say infant cause this feeling is so embedded in my body) is that the feeling that my mother rejected me and rejection felt death to me as a baby/infant/toddler and a young child. I can only hold the feeling of rejection as an adult but if I give it to too deep, I get depressed and then I know it is in my body. As I process and learn more about my own resiliency, it does get less to ignite me but ooh boy...the fundamental hurt for me as a basic human organism was rejection of love and the feeling of abandonment when I was unable to process or to even be aware.

That's a deep one. I've heard of people releasing birth traumas in breathwork. My dad left when I was 4 and I can't consciously remember the troubles it caused me, the only memory I have of him was fighting with my mother and I would try to interfere and bring peace but the hostility would shift to me. I have vague memories of believing it was my fault that he left and my mother telling me it wasn't my fault. I see this attachment issue formed where I'm scared people I'm close to are gonna reject me. I
When I look deeper into it, the fear of death and annihilation comes up. A fear of being alone or dying alone, I can't describe it so easy.

With your mother it must be as deep as it gets cuz you're so helpless and completely dependent on your mother at that age.
 

grit

MyPTSD Pro
Yes you are right with my mother, I honestly can say no imagination will ever show me exactly how she rejected me as a baby...if that is even the truth...maybe my language today says it was rejection but it was something else...like postpartum depression or some other thing in the environment...this is all language allows me today to express.

The feeling was death/disintegration. But for me, and this only worked for me, I allowed disintegration and its feeling in therapy with a person who cares about me watching over me...and it felt like deep f*cking depression so hard and long, I do not recall much afterwards for weeks/months at the time. The disintegration/annihilation feeling of a baby felt like a deep depression my adult body/mind today.

I do not know how others moved toward and through this dark cloud of trauma from childhood but for me I went into it using my imagination of what could be possible on the other side (knowing I am safe today in the reality)....and honestly nothing changed. I am still the same. I can see my shit and feel my limitation and delays in development and still fall into depression (I am in one now as I type) but I am also holding and nurturing until the sun comes up. One leg in deep shit and the other leg in imagination of what could it be...holding the balance.
 

Mach123

MyPTSD Pro
Yes being forced out of the group is synonymous with death or it’s a “type” of death. The group needs me to meet its expectations to be a worthy member and I failed in this situation. “If you knew what I was really like you’d kick me out”.

I think the most of it is stored in the subconscious. I had to approach it from seeing myself symptomatic. Why did I want to do those things? Why do I react like that? This eventually led to a recognition of CSA.
 

Entheo

Learning
I do not know how others moved toward and through this dark cloud of trauma from childhood but for me I went into it using my imagination of what could be possible on the other side (knowing I am safe today in the reality)....and honestly nothing changed. I am still the same. I can see my shit and feel my limitation and delays in development and still fall into depression (I am in one now as I type) but I am also holding and nurturing until the sun comes up. One leg in deep shit and the other leg in imagination of what could it be...holding the balance.

Maybe since you've already gone into it, you will have a way better ability to go into it and heal it. Have you tried MDMA therapy?
 

grit

MyPTSD Pro
No I do not even know what MDMA therapy is. I am in intense therapy now both in person and in a group. I look at myself on here and now basis. I do not deny pain but I do not romanticize. All feelings, pain, and confusion are now and I just respect that (respect the body) and hope and wait for relief. One thing I do consciously is belief my body is smarter than me and take its lead.
 

Ronin

MyPTSD Pro
You might reevaluate that...

As fear of social loss / loss of face / rejection / being shunned / not being accepted (all very different things...)

Are nowhere in the land of death.
Imagined, anxiety symptom intrusion, depressive symptom compulsion, much less real.

That your head even makes the connection, from normal relational stuff straight to disaster straight to the end of all?

That's super workable on.
And not set in stone.

But validating it as this actual, happening, real thing will do you no good.

For it's based in distortions that ARE helpable. Nowhere near as ultimate as you perceive them to be.

And nah.
Actually shunned by communities?
Still doesn't mean a guaranteed death.

It simply means you move town. Or country. Or ship. Whichever one you got shunned out of.
 

Ronin

MyPTSD Pro
Added to...

Noticed that piece about birth traumas & breathwork...

And I would be damn careful choosing who you go into it with & their having actual medical education, should you pursue that.

As hyperventilation & breathing alterations common to say, holotropic breathing et similar pose a variety of health risks, both if you have undiagnosed or undertreated conditions and bad execution of technique, or if the sitter just isn't experienced in watching out for vital signs & monitoring changes in them - not even starting on consciousness changes.

It's super easy to miss or mistake very warning signs for something else, if misinterpreted.

And quite often the better result of it gone wrong are severe psychoses.

So yeah, don't want to spoil the fun, but there are waay safer ways to access & process early physical traumas than that.

As to MDMA therapy, check out the site & its articles section. I'm sure pros & cons of the therapy were heavily debated.

Tldr the conclusion was, as far as I recall, that MDMA isn't the therapeutic agent itself - but faciliates opening up & starting on the actual therapy, super well. Bypassing the trust & opening up & inability to verbalize & detachment issues.

But is not sustainable long term.
And access to MDMA is still quite controled & experimental. Other reason why it's not a long time therapeutic solution.
 

Entheo

Learning
You might reevaluate that...

As fear of social loss / loss of face / rejection / being shunned / not being accepted (all very different things...)

Are nowhere in the land of death.
Imagined, anxiety symptom intrusion, depressive symptom compulsion, much less real.

That your head even makes the connection, from normal relational stuff straight to disaster straight to the end of all?

That's super workable on.
And not set in stone.

But validating it as this actual, happening, real thing will do you no good.

For it's based in distortions that ARE helpable. Nowhere near as ultimate as you perceive them to be.

And nah.
Actually shunned by communities?
Still doesn't mean a guaranteed death.

It simply means you move town. Or country. Or ship. Whichever one you got shunned out of.

I discovered experientially that they are actually are connected. I used to think they were completely separate, but seeing deeper into my fears and being really honest with myself, I been seeing these connections. Fear of social rejection IME is a manifestation of the fear of death and annihilation. These things are subconscious, they run deeper than your logical analytical mind. All fears are helpable, they are all distortions IMO. When you develop a fear of social interaction because you were abandoned by your parents as a kid, this fear is not rational, other people aren't guaranteed to abandon you and cause you the same kind of pain you felt as a kid, but the fear is there. And yes, you can heal them and transform them.

There's a book by Thich That Hanh called Fear. He says that all human fear can be traced back to what he calls Primordial fear which develops when we leave the womb. It's the fear of separation. And the fear of death is one in the same thing as this.
 

Entheo

Learning
No I do not even know what MDMA therapy is. I am in intense therapy now both in person and in a group. I look at myself on here and now basis. I do not deny pain but I do not romanticize. All feelings, pain, and confusion are now and I just respect that (respect the body) and hope and wait for relief. One thing I do consciously is belief my body is smarter than me and take its lead.
MDMA therapy is a bit like EMDR in the sense that it gives you the ability to access and process traumas that may not be so easily accessible in your ordinary waking state of consciousness.
 

Entheo

Learning
Added to...

Noticed that piece about birth traumas & breathwork...

And I would be damn careful choosing who you go into it with & their having actual medical education, should you pursue that.

As hyperventilation & breathing alterations common to say, holotropic breathing et similar pose a variety of health risks, both if you have undiagnosed or undertreated conditions and bad execution of technique, or if the sitter just isn't experienced in watching out for vital signs & monitoring changes in them - not even starting on consciousness changes.

It's super easy to miss or mistake very warning signs for something else, if misinterpreted.

And quite often the better result of it gone wrong are severe psychoses.

So yeah, don't want to spoil the fun, but there are waay safer ways to access & process early physical traumas than that.

As to MDMA therapy, check out the site & its articles section. I'm sure pros & cons of the therapy were heavily debated.

Tldr the conclusion was, as far as I recall, that MDMA isn't the therapeutic agent itself - but faciliates opening up & starting on the actual therapy, super well. Bypassing the trust & opening up & inability to verbalize & detachment issues.

But is not sustainable long term.
And access to MDMA is still quite controled & experimental. Other reason why it's not a long time therapeutic solution.
Yeah definitely best to be careful with breathwork. I've never been able to go deep with it but when I first tried it in a group, a girl next to me told me she relived her childhood sexual abuse in that session. I just got intense physical reactions, pins and needles all over my body and my hands cramped up. This has happened me every time I've done breathwork. The only other times I've experienced these pins and needles and cramping is in Ayahuasca ceremonies. It's interesting because on Ayahuasca it had nothing to do with hyperventilation.

And yes MDMA doesn't heal you in itself, it's a tool that helps you access and process your issues so you can heal yourself. Psychotherapy of any form requires you to actively participate in the process. With MDMA therapy you still need to be in a safe and trusting environment, otherwise it can do more harm than good. MDMA doesn't just automatically let you access repressed issues, the conditions have to be right for these things to surface.
 
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