Friday, 9 September 2011

Recognising vulnerability, and understanding feelings of abandonment. #amsosa

Where does the feelings of abandonment and vulnerability stem from?
Having been sexually abused, and made to feel powerless, afraid, hurt, upset, etc. you often end up carrying the same fears into any situation you may find yourself, and still wrongly continue to feel some responsibility for what happened to you, and when let down, by friends, lovers or anyone you have build up some hope in, the feelings of abandonment and vulerability can set it fast and leave you devastated
Those feelings can manifest in anger, low self esteem, confusion and even guilt, in that you feel bad for anything that happens to you or even those around you. You also feel bad about yourself, and who you are or seen as. (Weak, stupid, afraid, nervous,)
Feeling vulnerable and abandoned, and allowing that feeling to dominate your thoughts makes you shy away from situations that cause you to feel that, imagining or fearing, somewhere deep inside, if you’re not careful, you may be abused and hurt again, even just your feelings.
So, what do you do instead?
You avoid making friendships, avoiding any potential dangers that may exist.
You avoid letting people near you, especially partners, just in case they discover who you really are.
You do not trust anyone, because the last time you did, look what happened.

OR
You build up excessive expectations in people to do, be or say something for you, and when they let you down, you end feeling lost, unloved, raging and confused as to why they would even consider treating you that way, but in reality they didn't know that the abuse you suffered would affect you in this way,so can't always be blamed for making you feel and react the way you have done.
OR
You avoid making mistakes, because if you do, you will be again be seen as vulnerable, and lacking in some way.
OR
You allow the abuse to continue to live your life, by letting the fears that has arisen since, control your thoughts, and you allow yourself to be controlled by your inactions to say, do or speak about what is really fucking you up.
Why live that way, afraid to say or do what you want to?
It has to be said that in order to heal fully, and to become the person you want and need to be, you have to experience that vulnerability again, in a safe place, in order to get to know the real you, which can almost as scary as being abused again, but is a necessary part of the healing to undertake, and will show that you are in fact no longer vulnerable or abandoned.
If anyone tells you that isn't the case, then believe me when I say that unless you do so, you will never fully heal and will always have the ghosts that come back to haunt you.
Arising from the above, there is a clear need to have an understanding about the external factors that led to the abuse occurring.
Almost all incidents of abuse are physically isolated and acted by one person; therefore it is not surprising, that you may gravitate towards anyone who will give you some attention.
More often than not, survivors end up in destructive relationships in early life, which pre-sets the pattern in later life.
As this pattern becomes set, you often end up believing that it is a normal role of life, accepts what has happened, and continues to live that life, even though you may not be happy, satisfied or feel good being in that situation.
By undertaking a process of healing, it dispels the internal belief that he did something to cause it or even that he didn't do something to prevent it.
Everyone wants and needs to be loved, needed, respected and acknowledged, but when abuse takes place, the boundaries become confused, and any defence becomes unclear.
They also remain bound in the memories that haunt them, so they need to find a focus on which to anchor onto.
That can be almost anything, but should, without doubt, be something or someone who is able to support them fully, without fail.

Feelings of Rejection and Abandonment
All aspects of your daily life are negatively affected by what happened to you when you were abused. Confused? Read on....
Everything that happens to you is based upon a throwback to previous events in your life, and how you react to those situations.
It is based upon the split second response that happens when faced with an issue.
You automatically go into the following thought process;
MEMORY : Looking back at what happened last time, and what the outcome was, and basing your actions on that.
THOUGHTS : On what happened last time and what could happen this time.
FEELINGS : Based on what you felt like time, and how much it may have hurt you.
DECISION : Based upon previous issues, even if this time it calls for a different reaction.
ACTION/INACTION : Either you repeat the previous behaviour or run away from the issue again.

All of which leaves you feeling like "you've been here before" and with very little results.
Negative reactions are bad ones to develop, especially when feeling low, tired, or just a little pissed off with life in general.
Those emotions arise for many reasons, anytime, anywhere, so try to confine them to where they belong, which is firmly in the past.
What happens when this occurs is that you become focused on a previous event, and in doing so, allows it to re-surface again, and "dent" your recovery process, yet the best move is to not allow the past to haunt you any longer and with the right support, allow yourself to move on. 

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4 comments:

Faith McDaniel said...

You don't have to a male survivor for this to apply. I am a female survivor and while reading the above, I felt like you were reading my mind. Yes indeed, the aftereffects of the abuse are with us forever but it is how we choose to retrain our thought process that allows us to be set free. Thanks for sharing.

celesteka said...

I am also hearing my consistent inner thoughts in your writing; it rings true to this day.

I am learning to be vulnerable in my relationship with my spouse; still a daily struggle to trust and be open. I expect perfection from him, which is not only unrealistic but completely unfair and judgmental.

Thank you, Jan for reminding me to be kind to myself and accept the journey as a non-linear process.

touched2mysoul said...

My experiences in words.... Thank you for expressing and sharing such important and valuable information.

Anonymous said...

U definitely hit the nail on the head. Thanks

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