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LostIntranslation
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Hey,

Firstly thank you so much more for your advise last time. It really helped and I don't know what I would of done without having someone to talk to.

But I'm back and I er need someone to talk to again (sorry)

Basically after everything that happened with my girlfriend we got back together... I knew then and I know now that it was a really bad idea but I love her I did love her... Hmmm I still do.

But over the last couple of weeks things have got really bad, she hmm started hitting me I didn't really think any thing of it I just thought she was having a bad day then a bad week. She would say things that made me feel worthless and trigger of my depression and she knows she would be doing it.

She's carried on hitting me but now she'll kick me or bite me or throw things at me. The whole time this was going on she'd say she was sorry and then sleep with me.. Of course it wouldn't be as black and white as that.

On Monday she turned round to me and said she wants to try again for a baby. I said no which started her of all over again. Since Monday she's been ignoring me as a person just using me as a verbal punch bag.

I dont even know what's happened a couple of months ago things were fine up until she got pregnant. I don't know I kinda feel I'm to blame here. :/

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D

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Heather
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Hey, Lost.

I think you know I'm sorry to hear this is happening, and sorry to hear that you're back involved at all. But you don't need to be sorry. The way abuse dynamics often work, it's often very hard for people in it to leave and then to stay away: developing those skills and that resilience -- and the ability to really care for yourself -- can take a lot of time and effort sometimes, and it's not uncommon for it to take more than once for this stuff to "stick."

Before we talk about the bigger issues, we really need to focus on your safety. Obviously, it is at serious risk right now, and obviously, you need to take action if you are to change that.

So, are you in a safe place, away from your girlfriend now? can you get some help -- whatever you need -- to help you stay away starting right now?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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LostIntranslation
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Hi.

I'm staying in a hotel at the minute after nearly breaking my rib I figured it was time to leave.

I work a lot at the minute I took on extra hours to get away from her. But I can't really turn to my family for help currently. And I don't know how comfortable I am to tell a friend I unloaded about it to my boss about it but that's all.

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D

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Heather
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How about a counselor, a shelter or organization expressly for people who have been in or are trying to leave abuse, us?

How about also considering that you may need to push past the discomfort -- and probably shame, that's usually a big player here -- with telling a friend so that you can actually have some more help with this, including more people looking out for you to help keep you from going back?

[ 09-07-2012, 03:31 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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LostIntranslation
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I can try talking to a counsellor I don't know I find it more difficult to to talk face to face.

I feel so well firstly stupid and secondly yeah ashamed my friends are going to think im a idiot they told me not to go back and I didn't listen. And I've let this happen. I will honestly think about talking to One of them but I am major uncomfortable with the idea

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Heather
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I understand feeling uncomfortable. But sometimes, we have to accept discomfort when we need to do things that if we don't do, will result in a world of hurt for us. And really, if we know anything about dating/domestic violence by now, we know that silence -- especially with friends and family -- is probably one of the biggest players, if not the biggest, in people stuck in abuse staying stuck, and not being able to get out and stay out.

So, you're uncomfortable, I hear you. But having a broken rib is uncomfortable. having a partner grind you down is uncomfortable. Those things are discomforts which serious hurt you, long-term and short term. the discomfort of telling about the abuse usually offers you nothing but things that keep you from more hurt.

Same goes with the difficulty talking face to face to someone who can help you. I think it's important to be honest with yourself for your safety right now and recognize that anything keeping you from becoming and being safe is not something to hang on to, but something to just push through, however momentarily scary, okay?

Do you know where to go near you for these kinds of resources? A place to stay if you can't stay at the hotel, etc?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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LostIntranslation
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I know your right it's just difficult.

I could try and connect my uncle and stay with him. If not my uncle my friend works for or with one of the shelters round here I can talk to her I guess.

The thing I find really weird and I forgot to say she started doing all this after my mum died and I was spending a lot of time at home. I don't know I don't know it just seems weird to me. Sorry

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D

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Heather
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I think that right now, whoever you can think of who you know or strongly suspect will be emotionally supportive is the way to go. Your uncle and certainly that friend sound like good calls to me.

A lot of abuse, if not all of it, is about control. So, it might be that she escalated because you were focusing on something besides her. But really, the why's in any abusive situation are often complex and hard to guess at, especially without knowing all the details and working through them.

But ultimately, the only thing that matters right now is that this IS happening, and it's going to keep happening unless you change something: she's not going to. And the only thing you can change which guarantees this won't keep happening is getting away and staying away.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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LostIntranslation
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I'll contact my uncle tomorrow.

It just sucks the whole thing sucks how has my life got to this point when I'm pretty much running away from someone

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D

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Heather
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I know. [Frown]

But alas, the world isn't all made of awesome people, or people who have their shit together, you know? To keep ourselves safe, it'll happen now and then in life that running away from someone is exactly what we have to do.

If it helps at all, or at least gives you something to laugh at, figure we have always done this. Way, way back when in our evolution, when we were still neanderthals, we ran from giant beasts, after all. Now, the beasts have just gotten a little smaller, but no less dangerous. [Smile]

But I think that -- not to put too shiny a spin on it -- that times like these really can give us opportunities. Sometimes when we're at a serious bottom, the only way out is to go up, and then we can use that as a stepstool to keep building up, so ultimately, something like this can wind up being a way we started improving our lives, rather than just something we had to get away from, you know?

[ 09-07-2012, 04:01 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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LostIntranslation
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Haha that was funny [Smile]

That's true I'm pretty sure I can't fall any lower unless the earth crumbles beneath me

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D

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Heather
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Well, you keep us posted, and feel free to talk here as you need to: we'll have your back however we can.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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LostIntranslation
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I will do and thanks. I have really bad insomnia at the minute not helping matters won't lie

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D

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Heather
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I understand.

We're around, if talking a bit more will help.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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LostIntranslation
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I don't really know what will help..

Don't worry about it though I'm not gonna waste your time just cause I can't sleep

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D

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Heather
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Well, I don't think you seeking support is wasting time, but it's up to you, Lost.

If that doesn't seem like the right thing, maybe things that wind you down and give you comfort? A hot bath or shower, a cup of tea, a movie or CD you like?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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LostIntranslation
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It's not even the fact i can't sleep when I sleep I get really bad nightmares I'm in a lose lose situation. Thank god for energy is all I say

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D

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Claire P.
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Hi LostIntranslation,
Just wanted to jump in here with a few suggestions for your nightmare vs sleeplessness situation. I am not any kind of doctor, but I am familiar with a bunch of sleep clinics, and the below ideas are the ones I found the staff of each agreed were at least worth trying:

First of all, what kind of headspace do you generally find yourself in before you try to sleep at night?
Like Heather noted, doing something that you know from experience is personally comforting can be a great aid in relaxation. Going to bed with your head swirling with bad thoughts can be a recipe for disaster, dream-wise.

So, you might want to try a relaxing activity shortly before turning in for the night? This can be an actual activity or experience- or it can be a routine you can introduce to relax yourself. For example, I know some fellow insomniac/chronic nightmare sufferers who meditate with a mantra before bed- not necessarily in a religious way, but rather, the chant they repeated to themselves was something like "I will be okay" or "I am strong."

Do you ever find you are able to manipulate what is happening in a dream while you are dreaming? I personally have not come across this ability in my dreams, but I do know of some cases where people found they were able to 'interfere' to an extent while experiencing a nightmare- thereby changing small details that made it a less dreadful situation.

An awake version of this is trying to re-imagine the nightmare while you are not sleeping. I personally have used this for repeating nightmares, but would not suggest trying this exercise if you would find it triggering, which could be the case in certain situations- not sure whether or not that applies here, depends on how you understand your current experience and feelings.
Anyway, by "re-imagine," I mean making a conscious effort to bring to mind some details of the recurrent nightmare while awake. (I am a visual person, so I draw it, but you could make a list or even just think about it.) Then, think about ways in which you could alter those details in a way that would make the nightmare less scary overall. Remember this is a dreamland, so the details can be as silly and colorful and fun as you'd like. Then, take some time every day to just sit with yourself and picture this altered set of images you have created. Then take the time so that you feel calm(er) as you think about it.

Finally, clinic-stuff aside, my mother has been an insomniac for most of her life, due to situation-caused anxiety. She recently told me that she is sleeping throughout the night, due to a technique she read about on some pamphlet in a doctor's waiting room. Obviously this could just be relevant to HER particular situation, but it's worth sharing: when she lies down in bed for the night, she visualizes all her current worries as objects in a container(she uses marbles in a bucket, but I'm sure anyone could substitute whatever). She also visualizes a chest of drawers where every drawer is open. As she goes through her normal frantic nighttime swirl of worries, she tries to slow her thoughts down and turn them into more of a list- then, while going through her list, she visualizes putting the corresponding number of object (a marble per worrying thought) into a drawer, and then closing it. She continues this until she feels she has covered all of her current worries. She told me that for her, just visualizing all that with that listing activity makes her feel a lot more calm! I do not know if this would work for you or me, but thought I may as well pass it along!

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LostIntranslation
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Hey,

Thanks man that visualising the thoughts actually really helped, for the first time in ages i fell asleep before 3 o clock in the morning. And life just feels that little bit better today because I managed to sleep. So thank you.

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D

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Claire P.
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That's great to hear!! Glad the suggestion worked for you!

[ 09-08-2012, 06:59 AM: Message edited by: Claire P. ]

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LostIntranslation
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Yeah man I was was well chuffed.

Just thought I'd say I'm at my uncles now pretty far away from her.

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D

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Onionpie
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Great to hear that you've got yourself to a safe place far away! [Smile] If you want to talk through anything else around this, let us know!
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LostIntranslation
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Talking sounds good (if that's okay)

I'm really annoyed I've made the mistake of stewing on everything and it's really annoyed me :/

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D

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Onionpie
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No problem [Smile]

So what specifically has you annoyed right now? Do you mean that the stewing itself is what's annoying it, or the stuff you've been stewing on?

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LostIntranslation
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Thanks you I appreciate it

The stuff I've been stewing on I'm really annoyed by everything. I never did any thing to her to deserve this.

I should be at home with my family under the circumstances but instead it's goodbye home. Goodbye family. Hello hour long journey to work because I've had to physically run away from a tiny woman.

I'm fed up with everything she said to me. I'm not a... A wimp I just don't hit women. I'm not a freakking . Bleep I just don't want a baby with her I don't want one full stop.

I didn't deserve this and I'm really annoyed its happened I'm annoyed I was stupid even to get into the situation and annoyed by the fact I stayed with her after the first couple of times not stayed with her to the point it physically hurts to breathe let alone move.

She stopped me from going to my own mothers funeral no body has any idea how bad I feel about that. I stayed at home to get beaten gett cried at and to have sex. That's epically messed up.

Urgh

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D

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Onionpie
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You're right, you didn't deserve this, and I'm glad you're aware of that. I understand that it feels really crap to have to run away from someone, but as heather said, sometimes that just has to happen, and it's better than sticking around, you know? You won't have to run for the rest of your life, so maybe keeping in mind that there will be an end to this might help you feel better about it?

You're certainly not a "wimp". In fact, I'd say you're precisely the opposite -- I know how hard it is to break free of abuse and to get away from it for good. And you know, if you had responded to her attacks with physical force, it may have made her escalate, so it's very likely that you made the best decision to just get out instead.

And you're not stupid. Anyone can be abused, seriously anyone. It's not only women, and it's not only "stupid" people -- I know you're probably already aware of this, but you feel stupid anyway, I just want to reinforce this knowledge for you to maybe help you accept that it applies to you. It's so so hard to notice warning signs, because abusers specifically act so that people don't think they are abusive, and so that people believe them when they say the abuse is the other person's fault, etc. It can be especially hard because I know in the UK (just like in the US, Canada, and lots of other places, unfortunately) it's never addressed that men can be abused by women. Both socially and in education it's never dealt with, and thus boys and men are never taught the warning signs of an abuser and so it can be even harder to recognise when abuse is happening.

I totally understand that you feel awful and guilty for not going to your mother's funeral. But it's not your fault -- you were responding to an abusive situation, and you were being emotionally blackmailed and manipulated by someone. But that wasn't your fault.

Would you like help finding someone that will support you in-person with dealing with this?
Here's a number I found in the UK for male survivors of domestic violence or abuse:
ManKind Initiative
01823 334244

[ 09-08-2012, 02:37 PM: Message edited by: Onionpie ]

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Onionpie
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I've found you a couple of other phone numbers that you could call to talk to about this and get some help setting up housing arrangements, etc, to be able to get away for good.

Victim Support Male Abuse Helpline
0800-328-3623

SurvivorsUK
0845 122 1201

The latter one is more geared toward male survivors of rape or sexual assault -- which you may or may not be, I don't know -- but if you aren't, they can still direct you to other services that'll be able to serve you better.

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LostIntranslation
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Thank you. I'll call them on Monday. It can't hurt to give them a go.

I'll never forgive myself for missing my mums funeral. I'm a grown man I could of said no or walked out the back door but I didn't.

I'm really angry about it. I don't know I'm sorry.

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D

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Onionpie
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No need to be sorry at all [Smile] I understand that you really regret missing your mum's funeral, and I know I can't wave a magic wand or say something amazing that will magically make you feel better about it. But you were in an abusive situation, it's not as simple as just walking out the door -- as I said, she could have escalated, you could have been in even more danger than you already were. You did what you felt was necessary at the time to stay safe, it was basically survival instinct to avoid making her escalate. Nobody can blame you for that decision, and hopefully in time you won't blame yourself either.

After you've talked to the support group and have found somewhere to live and stay away from her, I would really suggest you find some in-person counselling. Abuse brings a lot of crap to the table that takes a lot of time to get past, and counselling can really help deal with that emotional aftermath. I think counselling would really help you to cope with what's happened as well as your regrets around your mother's funeral.

So you could ask the support groups about any resources they know of for counselling, or we could help you find somewhere you could get some in-person help after you've phone, if you'd like. Do you think it sounds like something that would benefit you?

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LostIntranslation
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I've had a really bad experience with counsellors and it makes me really weary... But I know all counsellors aren't the same.

The doctors surgery have offered to refer to a counsellor I've said no but they said if I change my mind I can go back and they will..

I don't know what to do with myself :/

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D

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Redskies
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Lostintranslation, I hope I'm not butting in on the conversation you're having with Onionpie, but I wanted to add a little extra support for you.

I've lost my mother too. I can't begin to imagine the extra pain I would feel if I hadn't been able to go to her funeral. The pain you feel at not being able to go to your mum's funeral comes across to me from your typing so, so clearly, and I'm so sorry for your loss and for the extra pain you have on top of that. Do you have a way of recognising your mum's life and her loss in an alternative, personal way? I know it's not the same, but it might help. You deserve to get to do that if it's something you need.

I hope that with time you'll be able to forgive yourself. As Onionpie says, us not having been able to act differently is part of how abuse works. If we could've acted differently, we would've. It's not your fault, and you have nothing to forgive yourself for. I understand that you feel like it's your fault right now, because we pretty much all do when we've been abused.

I don't know what sort of organisation or healthcare it was where you had the bad experience of counsellors, but I do want you to know that organisations and counsellors who deal specifically with abuse are usually very good and serve people well. Occasionally, in other settings, there are ones who don't know how to deal with abuse well. I certainly understand your hesitation to try counselling again when you've had a bad experience. Organisations like the ones Onionpie listed above often have websites, so what you could do if you wanted is to take a look at the websites and see if you think they might be positive organisations for you?

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The kyriarchy usually assumes that I am the kind of woman of whom it would approve. I have a peculiar kind of fun showing it just how much I am not.

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Onionpie
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I know that having a bad experience with counsellors can really put people off, and understandably so. But you're right, not all counsellors are bad at their jobs! If you do start counselling and find that you don't like your counsellor, it's totally fine to switch to someone else, there's nothing wrong with that. It is, after all, totally your right to get care from a person you can trust and feel safe with [Smile]

I'm not trying to push you to get counselling if you're not comfortable with the idea, of course, and it's your decision, and it's okay to not be comfortable with it. I do think it could help you out, though. So think on it some more, and if you feel that it will help you and you do decide you want to try it, definitely let the doctor or the support line know!

Posts: 1311 | From: Ontario, Canada | Registered: Dec 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
LostIntranslation
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Hey dude I don't think your butting in at all. Your right man. I mean really angry about it. Don't get me wrong being knocked around by my girlfriend has really hacked me of. But not going to the funeral really really stings. I don't know, I should of been there. I know that if I had tried to leave she would of floored or worse. Ehh :/


I know your not trying to push me into it dude. It's a really weird feeling like I know I should try counselling again and I knife it will help but I don't know I just guess I'm scared

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D

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Robin Lee
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Hi Lost IN Translation,

It's completely understandable that you'd feel scared, and while we're all in agreement that counselling can help someone who has been abused, it's not something you have to do right now if it's feeling like it's more scary than it's worth. You have resources for when you feel like it's time for you. Right now you're just freshly away from this, and I can imagine that you're reeling a little bit, or maybe a lot.

So, knowing that counselling is always on the table, what else do you think you need right now to keep yourself moving forward with getting emotional and practical support?

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Robin

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LostIntranslation
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I think I really need to talk to my uncle about it all when he's free and unload. That will help.

I need to find somewhere else to live. Which I don't know I guess housing benefit. Or talk to my friend about staying with her.

I guess as well I should probably talk to my dad which won't be fun.

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D

Posts: 84 | From: England | Registered: Jun 2012  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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