I'm saying similar stuff to Alexa - there's some great advice.
No appologies needed for being complicated! Well done for being your own complicated self! I'm so glad you conneccted with it all, and that it sounds like it can help you engage in therapy too.
One thing, though: I'm not a sir! You can call me Jacob. Jacob is fine.
I think part of this is to actually ignoring "Is this feeling real?" when the thought appears, and pivoting to "Whatever. This fake-real-not-fake feeling is the one I'm having. I'm going to decide to take a leap of faith and call it mine"
Something I've found useful is to move my attention to the physical sensations.
When I start asking stuff like this:
"Am I feeling guilty because somebody frowned at me? Is this guilt? Or is it because I'm awful and somehow they saw it?"...
I (try to) transition to something like this, moving through as slowly as possible:
"Never mind that, what's my body doing?
---> After that frown, my stomach hurts.
---> My head feels dizzy, like I need to lie down.
---> Ok I'll lie down.
---> My poor belly.
---> I'm going to just listen to music
---> I think it's feeling better now.
---> I still feel a little crap, but calmer
---> How are my feet? ...Cold, I'll put on socks
---> I need to go make lunch.
----> Mmmm Lunch."
In mindfulness meditation, giving attention each part of your body is called a body-scan. Something you might want to research!
The pleasure version of that process could be something like:
"Is this pleasure real? Am I just rehearsing a fake response?
---- > Oh no, I'm doing that thing again
----> Right. Forget those questions.
----> How about I think about my body:
---> O.K., What do my hands feel like? ---> they feel O.K.
----> Can I feel my heart beating?
---> What is my breathing like?
---> Oh it's heavy!
---> What about my genitals? ----> ....*censored*....
----> What images is my brain enjoying right now?
I think it takes practice, but you'll notice that the original question never gets answered, because we recognised that it was an unhelpful question. For you in that situation, those other questions are much more helpful!
I haven't listened to the whole 13+ minutes of this audio example so appologies if she starts shouting in the middle, but hopefully not! I don't think you need to do it exactly like this but it might give you some ideas:Compassionate Body Scan by Dr. Karen Bluth
Our own staffer Al also did this great write up a little while back which includes a sort-of-poem for connecting with your body: Sexuality in color: Radical Embodiment
"In between two tall mountains there's a place they call lonesome.
Don't see why they call it lonesome.
I'm never lonesome when I go there." Connie Converse - Talkin' Like You