God almighty it’s hard. It’s really really hard. I knew it would be hard but I was pushing it aside I guess. I had gut clenching fear the whole time, the demons were harassing me and telling me things to upset me, wow. I like him, I really do, and I feel comfortable with him, but oh my lord. Not even anxiety just straight fear of being touched. And I let him put his arm around me and even an (awkward) goodnight kiss, but I didn’t want to. But I did. I knew it was an irrational fear and it’s not going to lead to me being raped but the fear was there.
Just sitting on the couch and having his arm around me was exhausting. I don’t even know how to describe it but the feeling is so so powerful. It’s like complete massive arousal because my body automatically assumes if I’m being touched sex is going to happen thanks to my tactile hallucinations which is why I avoid touching like everyone. So I’m completely overwhelmed by those feelings, gut clenching fear that I’m going to be abused, sadness that I can’t just be enjoying this date with a guy I like, that I can’t just be normal and he doesn’t know I’m not normal.
I don’t know how I’m going to do this. I can’t keep up with this. I don’t know how to decide what steps I’m ready for and what I’m not. My body tells me I want everything my brain tells me I want nothing and my heart just wants a comfortable in between and all of these sides of me are battling. I feel like crying. He wants to kiss me more and I’m terrified.
That nightmare I had the other day messed me up. Because in it the guy was so kind and enjoyed spending time with me and didn’t have to be doing physical things but then at some point he touched me and then he went insane and lost control and couldn’t stop and it ended with me being drugged and raped. That was all I was thinking about when he had his arm around me and I kept trying to push it away. The thoughts of don’t let him touch you, once he touches you it won’t stop. My heart is hurting. I just want to have a nice date. I just want to have fun and be happy with it. Not this. I don’t know how to fix it.
summary: Had my first official date where he paid for everything drove me had his arm around me kissed me goodnight but my ptsd was just making me inwardly an absolute hot mess the whole time it was incredibly challenging for me and upsetting and I’m deeply sad because I just wanted it to be a fun happy date.
Hey. It is a work in progress and you did well. You should be proud of that!
Living in your head isn’t the greatest thing for schizophrenics but I know your trying hard! That is important. Lot’s of normal folk have other reasons and go through similar things…
I know it’s hard but I think you did really well. Might pay just to say you’ve some issues with physical stuff and just do it slowly so he has a guide. You don’t have to be specific and you don’t have to let the relationship just go!
It’s important to do things at your pace and it’s always good to not let a good thing go. A decent guy will understand your hesitancy and be cool. It’s a two person progress after all…
@Anna. I really do hope you sort this out! I’m cheering for you to get through all this stuff and just enjoy yourself!
The fact you put yourself out there I’d say is a good sign.
I wouldn’t let nightmares get you down. I have them all all the time - and a lot of it is driven by my past. However, although reminders of these things can damage your confidence, you need to tell yourself these are just dreams, and not let them make you feel vulnerable like that.
It sounds like this date really put you outside your comfort zone. Do you think if you saw this person again, you could try a different environment? Might be worth a try. I know certain things trigger me off. Can you think of anywhere that this might subside a bit so you can focus more on the date?
Seems like doing this was a big step for you, and it sounds like it went well despite how you felt inside.
I don’t even know how to bring up that I have issues with physical stuff without opening a massive can of worms. He wants to kiss me more after our goodnight kiss and that horrifies me. I’m thinking back to my last relationship I had that was like fresh right after I developed ptsd and didn’t know what I wanted and we kissed on the first date as well and when it started it didn’t stop and he just ended up wanting more and more and I ended up getting way too stressed and shutting down entirely and avoiding him and then the relationship fell apart. It’s not that he pressured me, he was always very polite asked consent etc but I just wasn’t really in the mental place to handle any of it at the time. I am worried this is heading down the same road. He will want too much from me before I’m ready, I will push myself too far to try to keep him happy and end up ruining everything.
The guy I am dating now is the sweetest ever he would be SO mortified if he knew what this was doing to me and would probably never touch me again. But I don’t want that. I DO want to do these things because I will never get over my fear and be able to build positive experiences otherwise. I’m just not sure how to go about it without sending myself spiraling into ptsd, psychosis and ruining the relationship in the process.
Oh yes me going a date is MASSIVELY outside my comfort zone. But I stayed deep in my comfort zone for half a decade, completely avoiding guys and acting cold towards any who showed interest in me even if I liked them. And I was unhappy. I was lonely. I felt I was missing out on this huge important part of life. And I don’t want to die alone. So I’m at the point now where I’m brave enough and feel ready to take that step. But touching? Oh my god. Touch. Is so, so, so overwhelming to me. Not necessarily all in a bad way, but it’s a LOT. I wish I could just send all the feelings it brings up in me directly to him so he could understand because I really have trouble explaining it in words.
The whole aspect of being with someone romantically is a massive trigger to me. The only way I’d feel truly comfortable is if I knew he was not going to touch me at all. That’s why I felt so comfortable on our first unofficial dates where we hadn’t come out that we liked each other yet. He wasn’t going to touch me, he didn’t touch me, and I was happy, and I felt I could trust him. But when he put his arm around me tonight it was like the trust went in the garbage and I just got an intrusive repetitive thought like “he touched you and now he’s not going to be able to stop”. And then I didn’t feel safe anymore and I was scared the whole time.
So it seems easy to just say ok no touching right? Except I don’t want that. My whole point of going into a relationship is to try to replace my negative experiences with touch and intimacy with positive ones.
If I had to summarize it, when a guy touches me, even if it’s a really innocuous touch like how his hand was just resting on my arm, it’s like there’s this one side of me that’s suddenly MASSIVELY turned on like wants to immediately tackle him rip off his clothes and just f*ck for lack of a nicer way to put it. At the same time, there is an equally intense and POWERFUL fear and repulsion to being touched at all, screaming to move away to make it stop to get to safety, that this is extremely dangerous.
I deal with this literally any time I’m touched, though if it’s not a guy the feelings are not as intense. They can even start up just by being in close proximity with a guy, or if I’m with a girl who I suspect is attracted to me. It is so overwhelming and confusing. Any good guy if I expressed my need to go slow physically would just say “well we’ll just do what you feel comfortable with!” But you see how that’s impossible. How am I supposed to glean what I feel comfortable with when the only 2 feelings I have are completely contradictory and involve either f*king or fleeing. My feelings are completely unhelpful in this situation and get me nowhere at all.
It is ok and healthy to have boundaries. It would have been perfectly fine to turn down the advances and say you like to move slowly. You still can. Just tell him you want to get to know him a little first before kissing and physical displays of affection. If he’s right for you, he will respect that. Once you have feelings for him and trust him, it will be easier to hug, or kiss or hold hands or whatever.
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