Sufferer Terrified - Here because I need to know that people have felt the way I do now and have recovered.

Geopolis

Confident
Hello all,
I'm here because I need to know that people have felt the way I do now and have recovered. After 10 years of clean time, multiple intense rounds of 12 step work, and several therapists I have finally come to terms with the fact that I MUST venture into my childhood emotionally. About a month ago my current (amazing) therapist introduced me to my inner child through guided meditation and I cracked open at the seams. I have been grieving ever since and the sadness is sometimes unbearable.
A quick history:
- Alcoholic childhood household
-Physically abusive/severe isolation
-Emotional abuse/abandonment
-Sexually abused from outside home
-Suicidal ideations/attempts starting at 14
-Addiction kicked off at around 15

At 29 I entered 12 step recovery and began piecing my life back together. By all outward appearances I am a stable married father of 3 who is active in recovery, sponsoring men and emotionally supporting those around me. Inside, I am falling apart. My entire life is spent fending off the deep shame that I carry. I have to force eye contact and I feel like hiding from any possible aggression I could encounter. I feel disgusting, ugly and unlovable.

I understand fully that these are all typical qualities of someone with complex ptsd but im tired of just "knowing" that and moving on with life. I've had it with white knuckling life. My inner child is bursting out without permission now so its time to experience the healing I know I deserve. I have to do this so my children can have a complete and healthy father but it hurts so bad. Currently reading "complex ptsd: from surviving to thriving."

Tldr: Its time to make a decision here. My heart aches and I'm engulfed in shame every second of the day. Looking forward to healing along side everyone here even though this process terrifies me. Thank you for listening!
 

ladee

MyPTSD Pro
Welcome @Geopolis. In many ways you told my story. I got clean in '84, did all the right things for the right reasons and imploded a few years after being clean and sober.

Sounds like you have a good therapist and reaching out here will help in many ways too. The 12 step rooms are not geared for talking about PTSD and we do need support and validation from people who do understand, AND have had addiction problems too.

Sorry for what brought you here, but glad you reached out. This is a very unique place to heal, be heard, be accepted and to be told you are not alone.

Take your time and look around the forum. It's my lifeline to all things healing.

Glad you are here.
 

Friday

Moderator
Welcome to the community! 😁

You and I have totally different histories of complex trauma, and my going to 12step stuff was avoidance of dealing with that trauma… but whilst I’m vexed with myself for having missed out on the opportunity to treat my trauma when my son & his cousins were little? I AM profoundly grateful for the Life101, and the people I came to know, during my years in the program.

Ditto @ladee… whilst meetings may often be eyeballs deep in trauma? They’re not geared to treat trauma, nor to learn to manage & recover from the disorders resulting from it. Like bringing a surfboard to the swimming pool.


^^^ My hands down favourite resource to kick newcomers. Immediately, and perpetually, useful! ^^^
 

Geopolis

Confident
Welcome to the community! 😁

You and I have totally different histories of complex trauma, and my going to 12step stuff was avoidance of dealing with that trauma… but whilst I’m vexed with myself for having missed out on the opportunity to treat my trauma when my son & his cousins were little? I AM profoundly grateful for the Life101, and the people I came to know, during my years in the program.

Ditto @ladee… whilst meetings may often be eyeballs deep in trauma? They’re not geared to treat trauma, nor to learn to manage & recover from the disorders resulting from it. Like bringing a surfboard to the swimming pool.


^^^ My hands down favourite resource to kick newcomers. Immediately, and perpetually, useful! ^^^
Thank you @Friday that was a very useful analogy! I relate to experiencing an overflow while recognizing that others without trauma wouldn't. Also gives me hope that life should inevitably get easier as I deal with my past
 

StillPen

Confident
@Geopolis, you wrote my story from a male's point of view, almost word for word. Having walked and still walking through the female version of your story, what I saw from your post and what I believe is the key word you posted is shame. White knuckle, unrelenting shame. If we could give it up for just one day, oh the RELIEF we would feel. And that is the journey you (with your T) are about to embark upon...one day at a time...the journey of chipping away at, and clearing yourself of shame.

Words of encouragement: the opposite of shame is love. When you are feeling that unrelenting shame, there is a part of you that blames themselves for the trauma. Shifting that blame to the correct abuser is a painful b!tch, but as you process with your T, you release a tiny bit of the shame and it is replaced with self-love, for that part, at that age, or however you experience your inner child. That is the healing that WILL come. Keep coming here. Those of us that understand you, walk beside you. I have found that to be true. By the way, Bill W and I have been friends for 30 years this month, God willing and the creek don't rise.
 

Geopolis

Confident
@Geopolis, you wrote my story from a male's point of view, almost word for word. Having walked and still walking through the female version of your story, what I saw from your post and what I believe is the key word you posted is shame. White knuckle, unrelenting shame. If we could give it up for just one day, oh the RELIEF we would feel. And that is the journey you (with your T) are about to embark upon...one day at a time...the journey of chipping away at, and clearing yourself of shame.

Words of encouragement: the opposite of shame is love. When you are feeling that unrelenting shame, there is a part of you that blames themselves for the trauma. Shifting that blame to the correct abuser is a painful b!tch, but as you process with your T, you release a tiny bit of the shame and it is replaced with self-love, for that part, at that age, or however you experience your inner child. That is the healing that WILL come. Keep coming here. Those of us that understand you, walk beside you. I have found that to be true. By the way, Bill W and I have been friends for 30 years this month, God willing and the creek don't rise.
I've met Bill W a few times but im really close to his son 🤣 I once heard that love and fear cannot occupy the same space. Right now fear is prevalent 90% of the time so the least I can do is practice those loving activities I learned in early recovery even if I don't feel the love behind them. Adequate sleep, showering, spiritual reading... fake it till you make it has never let me down before so just for today I'll pretend to love my shameful self 👍 Congratulations on your 30 year miracle. Truly an inspiration 😉

Btw I can't wait to learn some new clichés 🤣🤣🤣
 

ladee

MyPTSD Pro
Well @Geopolis you have hit the 'oldtimers crowd'. I will have 37 years clean and sober in Dec. So you do have some solid support of at least two people who have pretty much experienced it all over the years and stayed sober. AND learned to care about ourselves.

I lost my son to suicide last year in Jan. If I had not had this place to come to, I don't want to think what would have happened. It was not about drinking/drugs, it was about staying alive.

Sometimes we just get the blessing of being in the right place at the right time.

Hope it's ok to send an AA hug. I went to AA for a while but most of my meetings were with NA. I related to the 'street people' better. Doesn't matter tho, here we are!!! Not alone and one day at a time.

And all the old cliche's still apply. Sorry. 🤩
 

Geopolis

Confident
Well @Geopolis you have hit the 'oldtimers crowd'. I will have 37 years clean and sober in Dec. So you do have some solid support of at least two people who have pretty much experienced it all over the years and stayed sober. AND learned to care about ourselves.

I lost my son to suicide last year in Jan. If I had not had this place to come to, I don't want to think what would have happened. It was not about drinking/drugs, it was about staying alive.

Sometimes we just get the blessing of being in the right place at the right time.

Hope it's ok to send an AA hug. I went to AA for a while but most of my meetings were with NA. I related to the 'street people' better. Doesn't matter tho, here we are!!! Not alone and one day at a time.

And all the old cliche's still apply. Sorry. 🤩
NA brethren here too! I cannot believe I made it to "old timer" status lol. Especially because I can remember crawling through those doors so vividly. Hugs will always be welcome here 🤗

As for your devastating loss... I am so so sorry. 3 years into recovery I had a child. Because of a labyrinth of terrible choices on my part and pure vindictiveness on her mothers part I haven't seen my daughter in 7 years. Her loss from "my life" is the most painful thing I've ever experienced. Ever.

With that experience in mind I want to thank you for holding on through it all. In the short time I've been here you've helped me feel comfortable and heard. Safe even!

I had to pause and cry while writing. I guess the therapeutic value of one's experience helping another is still as unparalleled as its ever been. Thank you for sharing your truth. Thank you for surviving 🙏
 

grief

Sponsor
in my opinion treating addiction without treating trauma is like treating a broken leg without setting the bone. my addiction problems improved dramatically with even a little therapy and dbt. i have never vibed with aa or na but i was addicted to heroin for a while, and got clean ~10 years ago.

you're doing the right thing by starting to work through the trauma, and having sobriety with that will make it easier to actually employ healthy coping mechanisms (like not getting black out drunk every single night! yeah! 🤪)

i had a pretty bad relapse recently (not on heroin, thankfully)-so just be aware that when you do start to go through the trauma therapy and things, having a plan for stability is very important because relapse is more likely without it.

barring some rather extreme circumstances i highly doubt you are disgusting, ugly and unloveable. you sound like someone who is working through a lot of their pain and problems and divesting a good amount of energy in doing so, which is commendable, not disgusting.

welcome to the forum. 👋
 

Earthdog

New Here
Hello all,
I'm here because I need to know that people have felt the way I do now and have recovered. After 10 years of clean time, multiple intense rounds of 12 step work, and several therapists I have finally come to terms with the fact that I MUST venture into my childhood emotionally. About a month ago my current (amazing) therapist introduced me to my inner child through guided meditation and I cracked open at the seams. I have been grieving ever since and the sadness is sometimes unbearable.
A quick history:
- Alcoholic childhood household
-Physically abusive/severe isolation
-Emotional abuse/abandonment
-Sexually abused from outside home
-Suicidal ideations/attempts starting at 14
-Addiction kicked off at around 15

At 29 I entered 12 step recovery and began piecing my life back together. By all outward appearances I am a stable married father of 3 who is active in recovery, sponsoring men and emotionally supporting those around me. Inside, I am falling apart. My entire life is spent fending off the deep shame that I carry. I have to force eye contact and I feel like hiding from any possible aggression I could encounter. I feel disgusting, ugly and unlovable.

I understand fully that these are all typical qualities of someone with complex ptsd but im tired of just "knowing" that and moving on with life. I've had it with white knuckling life. My inner child is bursting out without permission now so its time to experience the healing I know I deserve. I have to do this so my children can have a complete and healthy father but it hurts so bad. Currently reading "complex ptsd: from surviving to thriving."

Tldr: Its time to make a decision here. My heart aches and I'm engulfed in shame every second of the day. Looking forward to healing along side everyone here even though this process terrifies me. Thank you for listening!
I accepted that PTSD/Moral Injury would be a lifelong commitment to manage for myself and loved ones. I also accepted that there would be no easy quick fix, that there would be victories and setbacks, and committed myself to keep rising to the challenge and help others do so along the way. Volunteerism was something I naturally gravitated toward as part penance, and part empowerment to change things I could have control over. Activism was rewarding in victories along the way, but moreso in getting to meet extraordinary people over the decades. My grandfather and dad both admonished me to "DO GOOD" in my life. I work on the forgiveness exercise...Forgive Others, Allow Others to Forgive YOU, and Allow You to Forgive Yourself, the last being the most difficult. Another exercise that I have found useful is being thankful. I give thanks to all in my life from friends to medical staff and support people as my aging body succumbs to the punishment I doled out to myself.
 
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