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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Pregnancy and Parenting » Help me (Page 7)

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Author Topic: Help me
Heather
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Can you, in the next few days, get copies of you and your kids birth certificates? Those are pretty important documents to have, period.

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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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xneed2knowx
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No they are $20 each and an hour away [Frown]
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Heather
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Okay, so maybe you just out a pin in that as something to do in the future, okay? [Smile]

If you want me to talk a little bit about my process of getting out of dissociating now, I can do that. Just let me know.

[ 06-08-2010, 11:16 AM: 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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xneed2knowx
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Okay, I know I need to go get them. I will do that as soon as I can.

YES, I do want to hear about how all this went for you and what brought you through it all.

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Heather
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Like I said, long story, and I'll be frank and say there are some things I'm leaving out simply because I'm so visible online and post here with my name.

But in a nutshell, I had a big blind spot about dissociating. Because I was NOT dissociating about so many traumatic things, I think I kind of had it in my brain that I wasn't about anything. I think that also, I had so much on my plate to process for so many years because of so many different traumas, that as strange as it might sound, sometimes I lost track of them all.

With my sexual assaults at 11 and 12, I wasn't able to talk about them with anyone -- and culturally, we were barely getting to the point where rape was in the public eye/conversation -- until I was in my later teens. I had a great counselor who had seen me through the transition from an abusive home to a different one that was safe, and eventually we got to this, but never really talked about rape and sex much, likely because it really wasn't coming up in my sex life. I had never had any flashbacks of my assaults, either, during sex or anything else.

In college, when I was your exact same age, actually, I was in a wonderful partnership, one where we got very, very close, and then I had a first, very visceral flashback of one of my assaults in the middle of sex. I wound up screaming, my partner didn't get what was going on (even knowing about my history), and I really didn't either. I'd never wanted to remember what happened in a visceral way, so suddenly remembering was NOT okay with me. Of course, until that started happening, and it happened more than once, I hadn't realized I was probably dissociating sometimes without even knowing.

To say I reacted badly is the understatement of the century. My partner handled it beautifully, wanting to help me get back in counseling, talk to some people, and that is the LAST thing I wanted. I just wanted it to all go away. First, I was gone from our place for around two weeks, with no warning, two weeks I do not remember to this day. I honestly have no idea where I was, neither did/does he. Then I came back and basically totally trashed our relationship, leaving it in a really, really hurtful way.

In hindsight, if I read my journals from around that time, it's pretty obvious that this kind of dam-breaking was starting to happen before it actually did, but again, I just didn't have any good awareness around it, and was without the kind of information we give you guys now.

So, loving-relationship trashed, I ran off to a different one, which was actually a very good one, too, but I certainly was employing some escapism in he way I came to it. I was able to talk to some helpers, get some good books to help me work through this, and also felt more able to talk to this newer partner, probably mostly because it wasn't as loaded since they didn't know me as well as the last had, and we weren't yet as close.

I started talking to other people who had been survivors. I did a bunch of work being in my body (yoga, meditation, some general exercise). I wrote, a LOT. I gave myself a lot of alone time, and just kind of sat in and through the pain when it happened when I was alone, until I could basically get to the other side of it. I fit in some extra counseling.

A few years later, I had another experience with my past partner that kind of rebounded me emotionally when it came to dissociation (basically, I sat and talked and made amends, explaining all of what happened, but I also felt a great deal of loss at having lost that person via my own actions and reactions), and put myself in some dangerous situations before I realized I was doing it again, but when I did get that awareness, I just came back to the tools I developed at the time and started over, getting my footing back again. I was also able to learn more about triggers and how to manage them, and about what I needed to keep myself from in my life (especially my sex life, since this is where most of this manifested), that I was kind of inadvertently using TO dissociate on purpose.

That's really such a tiny summation, and obviously, it's somewhat different from your situation, since I was doing it in a pretty limited way with specific traumas (though I'd done it years before about something else: in my early teens, I self-injured pretty profoundly, which had a lot to do with dissociation).

But what I hope you can see in that is a few things. One, it as around a 10-15 year process for me. It did not happen overnight. I also had progress then fallbacks, and that's okay: it happens to most of us healing from big stuff a lot. It also took a lot of work and effort, and I really had to be in and stay in safe spaces to do it. Without a lot of external supports, creative outlets, reading, education/counsel, and also doing things in my life and work that were of real value to me where I COULD do very well (rather than only being in the parts of my life I was having trouble with), it certainly would have taken a lot longer and been a lot harder and scarier.

I probably just babbled on a bit, but hopefully there's something of value for you in there.

[ 06-08-2010, 11:43 AM: Message edited by: Heather ]

--------------------
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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xneed2knowx
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No you didn't babble on at all. Thank you so much for sharing what you did with me. I think a lot of times when I see people like you - so smart, so educated, you seem so STRONG - I just assume that you got through everything crappy in your life the same way you handle everything so flawlessly here. It's good to see that even you had to go through a process (not that I'd ever wish that on you) but that it took work and lots of time even for you.

Sometimes I think it's too much work, too much pain, too much struggle trying to change. Sometimes I think that I'll never be able to do it, but then I read what you wrote and you had a lot of shitty events in your life but you made it through, you put in the work, the effort, the pain and now your living your life fully without being controlled by it. That's inspiration.

How are you now? Do you have bad days (not just in general but in relation to your past)?

I have to sign off and find something for the kids to eat and put them down for a nap now. My 5 year old is telling me that he's starving, sheesh.

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Heather
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Oh, believe me, I have been a complete and utter mess sometimes in my life. I just haven't been while I was here, helping all of you, because goodness knows that's no space to try and help other people in.

I'm really good now. Certainly, like everyone, I have bad days, but I don't think I have numbed myself out in any way to deal with the bad stuff, be it the old bad stuff or new bad stuff, in around a decade. Anymore, when things just get or feel really, really bad, I just go ahead and give myself the time to go through it, allowing myself to feel all of it, working it out creatively or talking it out with someone else.

I remember once in high school -- this is about another trauma entirely -- that after my first real big love died, I was dissociation city. I said and wrote a lot then about how I just needed to make myself not feel anything at all, and was successful enough after a few weeks of that that I found I couldn't feel things even when I wanted to, which scared the crap out of me. That's still a very scary prospect to me now, for a lot of reasons, but centrally because the idea of being alive without really being alive is just the antithesis of how I want to live my life, how I know I enjoy and fully experience my life, how I am, truly, actually HERE, if you follow.

In my experience, working towards positive change is freaking hard, but it really feels a whole lot better than the alternative. Not struggling to be able to live our lives, to be happy and whole, strikes me as being a lot like an animal that gets caught in a trap and doesn't try to get out but just moves around a whole lot fruitlessly or makes a lot of noise. It also doesn't mean we're not expending any energy, not working for that: you've been putting a LOT of energy into doing things the way you have been, for instance, it's just not going to get you anywhere. It's energy expended totally on surviving, but not in thriving.

Obviously, when we are in crisis, sometimes our survival has to come first, and is what is most important, but if we keep putting ourselves in places and spaces where that's all we can do... well, you know that's a problem, and will mean it's going to be hard, if not impossible, for you to move forward.

So, yeah, I'm good now. Oddly enough, for the last two yearsish, I've also been with that partner I handled so badly way back when, which has been pretty darn amazing. It's become more and more obvious to me that part of what I reacted to so badly then was earnestly being seen, for real, very wholly, whether I was with him or by myself. That was scary then, terrifying, really, but it's wonderful now.

Ah, the starving 5-year-old. Their appetites are so big, they pretty much do always feel like they're starving when they're hungry. [Smile]

--------------------
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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September
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Hey need2know! I've been following this conversation because I (like everyone else here at ST, I think!) is really rooting for you and hoping that you can find your way to a better space, emotionally and physically. I know you've said that you feel alone in this sometimes, but we're all in your corner!

My ears have been perking up especially at what you've said about numbing out and dissociating, because that's something that I can relate to, as well.

I started to dissociate when I was around 15, shortly after the first time I was sexually abused. I didn't know what I was doing at the time, or where it came from and what it meant. Everything that I know now about all of this, I learned years later in therapy. I was abused by the father of my best friend, and I could not share this with my parents, because I had a difficult relationship with them, and because previous situations had left me with the feeling that they would not take me seriously. And I could not talk about it with my best friend because, well, I did not want her to know what her father had done. So, I kept quiet about it and tried to forget about it.

Obviously, abuse isn't something that you can repress completely for very long. So I soon started to have a lot of troubles that I could not connect to each other, and that I did not have the tools to cope with. I started to feel really divorced from my body, and to have what I can only describe as out-of-body experiences: I felt like I was outside of myself, watching myself, but unable to control what I was saying and doing. This made me feel so out of control that I started to self-injure as a way to re-connect with my body.

This went on over the years, along with escalating bouts of depression, but I still wasn't able to connect any of the dots.

Then, in my freshman year of college, I was raped. I initially didn't recognize it as a rape, but my body clearly did, because I just completely crashed. I was starting to feel more and more depressed and, along with that, I started to dissociate more severely, as well. Half the time, I was walking around in a daze: I would find notes that I had obviously taken in class, which I had no recollection of attending. I would find food in my kitchen that I had bought on shopping trips I could not remember. I was repressing my experience of having been raped and all that that meant for me, and my coping tool was simply to not be inside my body, at all. To some extent, I was subconsciously aware of my 'ability' to check out, and I used it freely because it gave me a way of not dealing with what had happened, and still functioning more or less normally.

But eventually, what was going on frightened me so much that I went out and got help. It wasn't an easy process: it took me weeks to go from calling a crisis hotline in the middle of the night to actually making an appointment to see a counselor. And I also had a lot of friends at my side who were cheering me on and supporting me.

So, during the summer after my freshman year, I had counseling for the first time. And oh boy, did I ever need it. I had the most kick-*** counselor, and she helped me to remember my childhood sexual abuse (which I'd repressed to the point of almost not remembering it at all), and to link it to my self-injury and my out-of-body experiences. She also explained to me what these experiences really were, and she told me about dissociation and what it meant.

I spent a lot of that summer in therapy. I started to let myself remember all of the things I had repressed, and to let myself feel all of the things I had pushed away via dissociation. It wasn't pretty. Or easy. But I learned that allowing myself to feel my emotions, while painful, was the best way to deal with them. And I learned a lot of coping mechanisms that were healthier than cutting myself, or checking out: working out, writing (I'd always loved to write, but surprisingly, I did not start working through my own issues on paper until my therapist suggested it), talking honestly about what was going on.

It's not an easy journey, or a quick one. But it's an entirely possible one. I'm mostly okay, now. I still have rough days, but now I now how to deal with them in healthy ways. I've actually, maybe because it's still such a novelty to me, started to really enjoy being fully inside my body and being able to fully feel and experience, with all of my senses.

Well, this turned into a novel. I hope that you can find something in this that helps in some small way.

--------------------
Johanna
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"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

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xneed2knowx
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Thanks to both of you for discussing the numbing out with me, I really appreciate hearing your stories. Both of you said things that I can totally relate to & you helped me to feel maybe a little bit more normal than I thought I was. I've always felt so different than everyone else, I feel 'crazy' at times but know that I could never tell anyone else...you've made me think that maybe I'm not after all.

I have numbed out when I haven't known too. A few years ago I was driving down the freeway - I don't remember anything after that but what I remember next is sitting on the sidewalk in a town over an hour away, bleeding from my head and arms. I looked into the street and my car was there totaled. They said I just drove through a stop sign and a truck hit me. Very scary but I don't remember it at all. I was terrified to drive after that for the longest time and still don't like driving too far because of that fear even though it only happened once. I guess I numbed out and just kept driving and driving. It's amazing that I didn't crash on the interstate or that I wasn't seriously injured.

I've noticed that with myself and you two we have sexual abuse in common. Does this happen with everyone or just some people? I can understand how it's helpful when crappy stuff is going on, like how I use it with my partner now, but I don't understand why it happens when we don't want it to. Does counseling help you to get control of it where you can stop it from happening if you don't want it to?

September, I was blown away when I saw your post and read that you are rooting for me too. That is pretty cool to have people on my side, I've never had that before and it feels pretty damn good. Not only having people on my side, but people who UNDERSTAND. Thank you for your post and for telling me about your numbing out and therapy experiences.

I really hope that I can get into some sort of counseling soon. I need help so that I can get away and stay put together, not falling apart in a million pieces. You both give me a lot more faith in counseling. It's hard writing the words here about my past, and even scarier thinking about saying them out loud to someone.

My partner has been texting me mean messages today. He never does that, I've told you before he always sends really sappy unbelievable ones. Today he's sent these...(I know this is tmi, I just thought maybe you could help me sort it out). I will call him P for my partner and M for me.

P - Did you get my voicemail?
M - I see there is one, but I haven't listened to it yet. Keep losing signal.
P - I am worried about our situation.
P - You never talk to me anymore.
M - I'm sorry I'm not myself lately.
P - I take it you are ignoring me!
(I had responded but my bad signal made my last message not go through)
P - It's because of u I have no money in my savings account u bi_ _ _. You got pregnant on purpose!
(At this point I was ignoring him because I didn't know what to say. He never texts like this, his texts are the only things I can count on being friendly. Also, how did I get pregnant on purpose when I am the one always worried about it and he's the one who wont wear the condom the whole time?)
P - You owe me some money!
M - why do I owe you, I didn't ask for it you gave it to me and told me to take care of it?
P - I will call my attorney and see about that!
M - I'm sorry I've been depressed. Just do what you need to do.
(Then I got nothing from him for the next hour and then got the following)
P - I have been depressed too. Please forgive me.
M - it's okay
P - We will talk about this tonight and work it out. I love you.
M - you too

----

Okay that was it. Now I'm worried for him to come home because he's never acted like that via text message before. I know it sounds like no big deal, but he's just so different lately. I'm worried what if I say the wrong thing tonight? I don't know what the right words are. I just don't want him to come home at all. What do I say to keep the peace? Just agree to everything?

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Heather
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Dissociation is exceptionally common with sexual abuse victims and survivors, more so than with survivors of other abuses, even though it can happen with those, too.

With this guy (I don't mean to be a jerk not calling him your partner, I just can't bring myself to do it since he's not been one in a real way), abusive and/or controlling people are pretty attuned to if and when their abuse or control isn't having the same impact anymore. So, someone being abused or controlled who seems to have more strength or resilience is something they will tend to notice.

As well, from the sounds of your dynamics, he has been trying to do things to entrap you, like marriage or pregnancy. You choosing to terminate that pregnancy, and thus, not be controlled in that way, was probably felt as a very serious affront in his head, as a refusal of his control or power.

Per keeping the peace, it certainly is sound to kind of go along with certain things to some degree until you can leave. But I think this is another one of those scenarios and clear signs that you really need to start planning to leave, rather than planning to cope with this and stay. Know what I mean? I know this is difficult for you, but at the same time, the longer you stay in this, the deeper you get in it, the harder it will be to get out. I'd make sure that you recognize any coping behaviors now as very temporary so you don't get yourself more stuck.

(I just have to say it: he'll call his ATTORNEY? About you owing him money because he chipped in for an abortion due to a pregnancy he caused? This guy is so out of touch that if I wasn't worried about you, and he wasn't playing a part in keeping you from a life of quality, statements like that would be hilarious.)

--------------------
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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xneed2knowx
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Yes, he always says that he will call his attorney and he DOES sometimes. His sister is a lawyer in Houston (I've never met her)...he says he calls her and he can get whatever he wants.

One time our phone bill was really out of the ordinary high and he called them but they wouldn't do anything. A couple days later he told me that he called his attorney and that the bill was dropped to $50. Whether that's true or not, I'll never know...but he likes to tell me about his 'people' down there.

I know what you are saying about going along with things and getting deeper into this, I really do - but since I can't leave today or tomorrow, I have to do what I have to do. Generally I just try to agree with him, tell him he's right, say sorry, and tell him I love him. Sometimes it works sometimes he stays mad.

I don't feel good today and am really not up for all this tonight. Sometimes I wish bad things to happen to him on the way home (morbidly awful I know) but they never happen and he always comes back.

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Heather
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Wow, so his sister is not only a lawyer, but she can change the law? Or be the tooth fairy? Wow, how awesome. I want one of those, too.

I do want to make something clear: you CAN leave today or tomorrow. That shelter is an option and a good one. I respect your own choices if you don't want to or don't feel ready to, but that's different than not being able to. I want to watch the lingo on that because if you keep telling yourself "can't" it's going to be harder to accept that you can.

But for sure, so long as you are still there, my advice would be to do what you can --within limits -- to keep yourself safe.

--------------------
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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xneed2knowx
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I know that I'm stupid listening to the things he tells me, even worse for believing them. He's just so convincing it's hard to block it out and not take it into consideration. I know that he really believes that he can do whatever he wants, and if I left he would try everything - even if he was unsuccessful - just knowing that he's going to go that route is frightening.

You're right about the lingo. I will work on not saying that I can't anymore.

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Heather
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You're not stupid. It's easy for things like that to sound ludicrous to someone who is hasn't been trying to control or abusing: inside that context, the cycle of abuse and the dynamics of abuse can be so effective and huge that it's hard to really think critically anymore about what an abuser is saying or does.

So again, you're not stupid: you've just been stuck in this cycle and these dynamics for long enough that they look and feel very different to you than they will to those of us on the outside.

--------------------
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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September
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I' glad to hear that I've been of some help to you. You're not crazy, and you're certainly not alone in your experiences!

As for learning to control dissociation: What I have learned is to recognize when it starts to happen, and how to stop it. How successful I am with that depends on how I'm doing overall: there are still times when I don't realize what is happening, or when I do but resort to self-destructive behaviour to feel 'in my body' again. But for the most part, having awareness of the fact that I do this, and that it's not good, and having tools at hand that I can use to deal with it is helping me to dissociate a whole lot less.

I know that it can be really scary to consider opening up to someone else about painful experiences, especially when you are so much in the habit of keeping things to yourself and pushing them away. But while it's not an easy process, it's definitely one that tends to be healing and positive in the long run.

--------------------
Johanna
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"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

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xneed2knowx
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It's really helpful for me to hear that it can be controlled like that, I never knew that it was somewhat common and that it could be stopped. It makes me feel reassured that maybe with help I can live a 'normal life' after I leave here.

Last night was okay. He took away my cell phone because he said I don't ever respond to him anyway but I don't really care - at least now I wont have to respond to him during the day so whatever.

It's pouring down rain here and I'm still not feeling well so we wont be going out anywhere. Next time I'm in town maybe I can get the nerve to finally get out of the car at the crisis center. It's not even talking to anyone, the first visit is filling out paperwork. It's really not complicated, I don't know what my problem is.

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xneed2knowx
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I took a bath this morning. My first bath in 2 weeks and 6 days. I finally feel clean again...clean in a way that the shower doesn't leave me with. I woke up this morning with no motivation to do anything and then I thought to myself, "Tomorrow makes three weeks since the abortion - that's close enough for me to take a bath today" and suddenly my feet sprung out of bed and made their way into the cold damp bathroom. The sound of the running faucet was music to my ears, it was preparing the tub - for ME. I added a cap-full of my son's Toy Story bubbles (gotta work with what you got) and melted into the hot water. I laid there forever letting the steamy water penetrate my skin washing away every fingerprint that was laid upon me, everything that's touched me, rested on me, caressed me. The shower doesn't do that. It gets me clean on a surface level but not completely like this. I sunk deeper into the bath with my head against the edge with a good book that I'm reading [Wink] . I never wanted to get out, three weeks was too long to wait for this cleanliness, way too long. I could have stayed in there all day but unfortunately parenthood started calling my name and I had to be removed.

His touch isn't on me anymore, my skin is clean. For a few moments in this day I will not be his. I am free...until tonight and then I will be looking forward to my next bath.

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Heather
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I totally hear you on the diff between baths and showers. Glad you got some time to baby yourself. [Smile]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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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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mma
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I'm so thrilled that you took some time to take good care of yourself! And Toy Story bubbles look the same as Calgon bubbles, I'm sure. [Smile] I've been working so much this week I haven't had a chance to use my personal computer at all. But I have been thinking about you and hoping that you're doing well. I hope you can check in again soon.

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xneed2knowx
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Thanks, both of you. Sorry I haven't responded I've been a bit under the weather lately.

As of right now, I'm scared.

I posted that my partner took my phone away (really it's his phone since he had it switched to HIS plan) and he's threatening to call all my contacts in there and tell them that I had the abortion.

I know it probably sounds like no big deal but I'm so worried. No one knows what I did. I don't want him calling my grandparents or the few friends I have in Fort Worth. If I wanted them to know this is something I would tell them myself.

I don't know what to do. I wish I could find the phone so I could erase the numbers or change them or something but I have no idea where he's put it. Maybe he's just talking and wouldn't really do it but the fear of it is awful.

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Nightshade
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Hi.

I just wanted to let you know that I to am on your side, and that even though I've never really met you, your safety and well being has become very important to me. I care about you, and I want to see you safe and happy. I hope someday soon you will be able to leave this situation. That you and your kids can move to Fort Worth, or anywhere else you want, and lead fulfilling, joyful lives. Somewhere you can be you and not afraid. Somewhere you can raise your kids away from the hurtful broken place you are in now.

That aside, if it's a big deal to you that he is threatening to call your contacts and tell them these things, then it's a big deal. I'm really not sure what suggestions to make.

But, I just wanted to know that you have one more person in your corner. I hope you can get out of there soon.

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Heather
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I totally understand you being very concerned about your privacy being breached. Reproductive choices, no matter what they are, often are things people like to keep private, especially if a given choice may result in harassment.

Unfortunately, though, it doesn't sound like you have any control now of if he does that or not, you know? Mind, it may be a bluff, something controlling people do all the time, but even if it isn't, I'm not sure what you could do at this point to prevent him from doing that.

So, since this is something out of your control, it sounds to me like the best thing you could do is maybe think of the couple people it would be VERY important to you only got told by you and go ahead and tell those people yourself. That way, you have that base covered, even though it's not ideally what you wanted, and you also take away his power to manipulate you with this.

--------------------
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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xneed2knowx
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Nightshade, thanks for the support. It's always nice to hear that someone else is in my corner, I never thought I'd ever have this kind of support that I've found here, it's overwhelming to me. I hope that I can leave soon, too.

Heather thank you for the advice, I'm so worried. I came here for the abortion advice because there is no one that I know personally that would support even the thought of that. I wasn't planning on telling them, period...you know? Especially my grandparents - the only two people in the world who think I still have some good left in me somewhere (not that abortion makes anyone bad...but the way they believe it would be another mark against me). I can't stand the thought of him calling them and telling them about me which would disappoint them even further. They are always asking me why I haven't married him yet...how it takes a good man to step in when there was already a child involved. Everything that isn't right(to them)...is because of my faults in their eyes.

I could call a couple of my friends and tell them but it's just so awkward to tell them because I have to and not because I want to. Unfortunately you are right...I don't have a choice at this point and at least I wouldn't have it looming over me as deeply.

Crappy either way.

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xneed2knowx
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Today I ordered a new cell phone online...under MY name. It's supposed to show up tomorrow. I'm going to keep it a secret from him.
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atm1
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Hi, I hope it's okay for me to jump in here. Heather is busy right now, but I want to make sure you know that there are still other people here rooting for you.

Getting the cell phone is a really, really great step. That can be hugely useful when you leave.

Have you thought about what to do about telling or not telling others?

Too, I'd suggest only giving this new number to a very few people who you can really trust. It's likely that when you leave him, he'll call your friends and ask them to tell you to come back to him. It would just be easier if they did not have a way of reaching you, at least not right away.

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xneed2knowx
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Thank you atm1, that is a very good point. I haven't thought about who to give the number out to - the only thing I have considered is NOT telling him. I've got to find a good hiding place for it and make sure it's always turned OFF before he gets home. I need to think about who to give the number to...it's true that it's probably best to only give it to a couple of people right now. Thank you for bringing this to my attention. It will give me a little comfort having a phone back in my possession, just in case I ever needed it for something.
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naplement
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I wish you good luck with the running away. Noone should live so afraid and dominated by someone else as you do, and noone "deserves" it. I hope that one day you will be able to escape.

sorry for not being able to say anything useful for your questions... Do your friends know anything about the problems with your partner?

[ 06-16-2010, 09:33 PM: Message edited by: naplement ]

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xneed2knowx
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I got the phone today. I've got it turned off now and in the console of my car.

I called my friend that took me to the abortion to give her my new number. We talked for a little while today, I told her a little of our problems but certainly not the things I have written here.

She called me back an hour later and said she had talked with her husband and they want the kids and I to come stay with them. She even said that her job is hiring and she will talk to them tomorrow to see if they would hire me.

This is all VERYYYYYYY overwhelming and totally unexpected. I don't know what to think or what to do. I'm so scared to just jump up and leave from my little town back to Fort Worth (although I want to more than anything). My mother would be so furious with me. Furious wouldn't even begin to describe my partner.

She also said we could ride to work together and I could put back a months worth of paychecks before I start looking for my own place. She said they have 2 extra bedrooms and my son could room with their son for now. I can't believe they would even offer that to me...and I don't know if it's a good idea for them to say that on a whim like that. I don't want to put them out in any way, you know?

I don't know....my mind is in a stupor! It's such a scary thought.

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naplement
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"I don't know if it's a good idea for them to say that on a whim like that."

their decision doesn't seem to me as a whim at all: they love you, they want to help, and they doesn't even know the depts of the problem!

Ok, I don't know these people... but personally I use to be glad when I can help my friends in important stuff. And I imagine, that for them, even if your stay would mean some little inconveniences, knowing that they have helped you in such hard times would make it more than worth it. And anyway, we aren't talking about too much time here.

And you are in one of those situations, when you can permit yourself to ignore the way your mother will feel - we're talking about your and your kid's life, after all, and these things are more important than her opinion. It's her responsability to understand you, as an adult, and not yours to make your life according to her wishes. Even if you two disagree about you, she certainly wants to have happy grandchildren, and you know that you have to go away for them to be safe.

I hope someone who knows more will talk about security measures and practical advices too, this was just a personal little reply.

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mma
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I agree it's not on a whim; she and her husband mulled it over first. I know it seems scary, but you're not going through this alone. This is your in-person support network: use it!

I hope one of the volunteers will be able to come along and help you finalize your safe exit plan very, very soon.

I have to go to sleep now, but I'm so glad for this good news for you. I am doing a happy dance here!

--------------------
http://www.safeplace.org

1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
http://www.ndvh.org

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xneed2knowx
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Thank you...but I don't know if I can go through with it. It's all happening so fast and I'm so afraid. I don't feel like I'm prepared yet - I don't know how to just go. It's all so scary.

I feel all guilty inside like I am planning on doing something really wrong just because I am thinking about it. I don't know why I feel this way because I know it's the right choice - but it's hard making myself feel that it's right.

I just wish I wasn't so damn scared. This really would be a good way to get back to Fort Worth. I keep telling myself that she didn't really mean it when she told me to come...but I know her well enough to know that she doesn't just say things she doesn't mean.

To most people it probably would be a lot scarier staying here than it would be going there...but I can't turn that around in my head. I'm so afraid of leaving and of him coming after me or finding out before I go.

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September
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I'm so glad to hear that your friend is ready to support you and help you with this! Having friends to support you is pretty key for leaving an abusive relationship, so this is absolutely good news.

I can also understand that you're feeling scared. It's one thing to idly think about leaving, quite another to have a workable option for actually leaving. So, don't beat yourself up over hesitating.

Can you call your friend, and let her know how much you appreciate her help, but that you need a couple of days to think this through? That should give you a chance to get used to the thought, and also to really prepare this thoroughly and make sure that you've got all of your bases covered.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you!!

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Johanna
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"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

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xneed2knowx
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I can't do it... I'm too afraid. How do I get around this fear?
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mma
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I know you can do it. What if you called the hotline or the shelter and talked to someone about that? I bet they can give you professional advice about getting around that fear.

--------------------
http://www.safeplace.org

1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
http://www.ndvh.org

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atm1
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You can definitely do this. I also encourage you to talk to someone at the shelter, or your friend, to get an on the phone pep talk.

Over the course of these past few weeks, I have seen how strong and brave you are. You are an amazing, strong, and brave woman, and you can do this.

If it helps, think about providing a better life for your children. Sometimes, it's easier to to scary things when you think about another person needing them, rather than yourself.

Your fear is completely understandable. You know that saying from somewhere, that bravery isn't about not being afraid. It's about doing what you need to do despite your fear.

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