this is hard :(

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sky
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this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Tue Feb 25, 2020 10:43 am

hi! we’ve touched on this before but how do i explain to people that i want to have a connection before i have sex? i just got rejected again because she asked me what i wanted and i said a girlfriend with just like emotional connections, i said i don’t want to have sex that i just want someone to kiss and touch and she said “sexuality is very important to me” and i said “it is for most people :( but i’m cool and we can still make out” she said “ha ha ha ha sadly that’s not enough for me, you almost sound asexual” i said “i am. it says in my bio” and she said “it says demi” and then we exchanged a few more and she literally stopped talking to me. i don’t know what i did wrong.

what the hell do i do. ffs. i feel like i’m never going to be enough. did i say something about it too soon? what did i do wrong? aaaaaahhhhhh :/

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Heather » Tue Feb 25, 2020 2:03 pm

Hey there, sky. Sorry this is so challenging. You are already enough. This isn't about you not being enough: you are. We all are. <3

I have some thoughts and ideas, but can you first fill me in on how and where you're meeting people so I have some clue about the usual (if there is one) context for these kinds of exchanges and meetups?
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

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Tue Feb 25, 2020 3:15 pm

hey Heather. that was a little dramatic i guess. i cried a little and took a nap and now i feel kinda better. thank you. also, it was on tinder that’s where most the bad stuff happens and then like bumble or okcupid they all just ignore me.

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Tue Feb 25, 2020 3:23 pm

and yes i know tinder is for hookups. but i’m just lonely and wanna talk to people and then they bring up sex and i’m like ah shit here we go again. :(

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Heather » Wed Feb 26, 2020 7:58 am

I don't think having hard feelings like this = drama. I think your feelings are valid and understandable. I also think feeling lonely is very hard.

But yeah, for sure, while some people do use Tinder for dating that isn't focused on sex, I'd say that a) that's more often the case for older folks than younger, and b) going to Tinder and wanting not to have sex be a central focus or on the table is kind of like going to a steakhouse and asking if they have a tofu bowl. :P I don't think Tinder is probably a sound choice for someone ace, and it even sounds to me a little like you know that because -- apologies if I have this wrong -- I feel like in that exchange you had, you felt the need to kind of make excuses for yourself, and to even offer up something sexual (making out) when that's not what I hear you saying you want.

So how about first we talk through some other options for you so you can at least start in environments that have at least some likelihood of success for you?
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

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Wed Feb 26, 2020 8:59 am

yeah. i said that we could make out and touch and that’s definitely not something i want until i actually love the person. i don’t really know why i said that, i just wanted her to want me. i just wanna be wanted.

i did delete the app. yes please, options.

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Heather » Wed Feb 26, 2020 9:57 am

I think that there's some stuff we could talk about so far as what you said in your first paragraph here, particularly around how it's really important to try not to use sex or the promise of sex in order to get someone to want us. It's certainly super common, sex as a kind of emotional currency like that, but I wouldn't say it's very healthy, or that it usually leads to the best kinds of relationships or interactions, especially when you don't even really want to be sexual (not yet anyway, and since for you it depends so much on how you feel about someone over time, maybe not ever with people you haven't even met yet).

What I'm rotting for is someone who wants you on your terms, not someone who wants you because you're acting a way *they* want, or putting things out there you know they want that you really don't. I know it can be hard to believe this when you're in a pattern of rejection or feeling rejected, but in my experience the more we are ourselves, without concessions, particularly before we even meet someone, the more likely we are to find and connect with the people who truly want us as we are, not someone else they might want us to be or we pretend to be. Know what I mean?

But let's start with some more options for you of where to start looking for people to date and then circle back to that later if you want.

If apps are the way you want to start, go ahead and do a search for "asexual dating app." I found a handful when I did (like , so there are certainly some to try where you will not even have to have the kinds of conversations like you did there, because everyone using the app is likely also ace themselves.

You also mentioned that you are just lonely and want to talk to people. If this isn't actually so much about wanting to date, but wanting to find friends, then I'd not advise using dating apps, period.

Might you be up to revisiting the idea of checking into those LGBTQ+ in-person community options I made you a list of back when? Or what about getting active with something else online, to start, where there is a bigger ace community, like the forums at AVEN (https://www.asexuality.org/en/)?
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

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Wed Feb 26, 2020 10:24 am

i get what you mean heather. i feel like you understand me lol. i don’t know if i’m looking to date or what. honestly, i’ve just been having a tough time and this past 2 weeks have been the hardest times of my life. i have 3 friends in this state and all my others are online friends and live in different states so i kinda have no one. i don’t know what it classifies as but i want someone to just come to me when i need them badly like i needed someone so bad a few times these past couple weeks. someone to just hug me and stay with me until i stop dissociating or stop crying. but i don’t have that and don’t think it is real. so i just continue to keep it all in, take naps to avoid life and cry myself to sleep

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Heather » Wed Feb 26, 2020 12:23 pm

I'm going to voice something that is just a thing *I* want for you right now: I really want you to have some in-person LGBTQA+ community. Again and again, today very much included, I hear you saying things that, to me, just speak to a lack of that in your life, and where I can see how much I think you could have some of your needs met if you were able to pursue that.

By all means, online friends are real friends! Some of my best friends started as online friends for me, and often stay that way most of the time because we're long-distance. But there's also really a lot to be said for a phone or video call, at least, and a lot to be said for in-person things like being able to hug someone when you need a hug, or being able to sit down and hang out in person.

I do think that you can have that. It can be real, I assure you. I notice a pretty intense avoidance, though, when I bring up finding these kinds of folks in person. Like, a total ignore. By all means, you get to respond only to what you want to, and you for sure don't have to do something just because I think it's a good idea. But I do think that it looks like you are strongly avoiding the exact thing you maybe need the most. Maybe we could at least talk about that some, with the understanding that you just might not be ready to pursue that in person yet? I'd love to see if we can't get at what's keeping you from considering that when it seems to be what you ultimately want and need, and maybe start figuring out how to help you get there?

I'm so sorry you have been having such a hard time. Kudos to you for hanging in there. <3
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

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Wed Feb 26, 2020 12:34 pm

i don’t know why i avoid it. i guess i’m just scared. i don’t think people like me and when they say that they do i don’t believe them and then i get mad and they get mad because i’m mad. they try to reassure me and i just continue to try and push them away. i’ve tried with all the friends here that i have and they know that i’m just doing it because my mental illness and i don’t know why i do it but i do and they don’t leave me. they often tell me that they see what i’m doing and they aren’t going to condone it and that they love me and will talk to me tomorrow. i am a lot of work as a friend and i’m not really worth it.

i don’t want to get anyone else involved close to me. which doesn’t make sense because i want to date? i don’t know. i don’t make sense. i just want to be happy. i don’t know how to be happy. i’m in therapy and it’s going pretty good. she keeps saying i have borderline personality disorder and that i have ptsd and that’s why my life feels like this and why my relationships are how they are. nothing makes sense. i really don’t want to feel like more people hate me. the more people i let into my life the more i’m gonna feel alone and hated and ugly and stupid because that’s how everyone makes me feel even when they constantly say differently

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Heather » Wed Feb 26, 2020 12:41 pm

Thanks for being so honest. I know it's scary, but this is really helpful information.

If I am remembering right, all your existing friends are straight and cisgender, yes? I ask that because those of us who are LGBTQA do tend to have far worse mental health: no surprise there, that's what happens when people are marginalized. That given, we all tend to be, IME, a lot more understanding and patient with each other about our mental health struggles. We know it's often part and parcel of being friends with each other, supporting one another in this stuff.

Now, for sure, you still need to try and have good boundaries and respect people's limits. But I dod suspect part of the issue with your existing friends may just be that they don't get so much of what you're struggling with. The same probably will not be true with at least some queer/trans/enby friends.

What I hear you saying, I think, is that online feels less risky to you from a potential rejection standpoint: that you think you'd have a harder time with it in person. Do I have that right? If I do, what might you think about something like a support group that is moderated so that you could be pretty much guaranteed to be included, to have people be empathetic, but maybe also to have people who know how to call you out in a gentle way when you need it?

In terms of happiness, it's sure complicated, isn't it? And it probably is the case that having some social needs met isn't all there is to it, but it might be part of it, for sure.

(I'm so glad to hear you're in therapy and even more that you feel good about it. That's sublime!)
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

Heather
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Heather » Wed Feb 26, 2020 12:42 pm

(FYI, I am heading out for the day, but I'll be back tomorrow afternoon and other staff may be by in the meantime if you want to keep talking today.)
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

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:47 am

okay hello, i needed a step back moment from all this so i took one, i’m back and ready to fully comprehend everything again. yes all my friends in this state are cis and hetro. i don’t have one online friend who is straight, i love it. they all are so completely different and i have about 10 who are literally everything on the sexuality and gender spec and it’s so much fun to have them and talk to them about everything.

i’ve mentioned it before but my brother (they are somewhere in the middle of the gender spectrum but they don’t like to be called my sister anymore and they like brother) anyways, brother and i aren’t very close. before they realized they were trans they got married to a woman and so they’ve always been gay. so i have a queer and nb family member right here but i just find it hard to talk to them. their wife is queer too and i love her, i talk to her more often about things but not that much because my mom and her are super close and she never tells but i just her nervous haha.

as far as the group thing, (i’m not exactly sure what kind you’re talking about) but my therapist recommended that too, she said i need a group but i need to work on my traumas first. i’m just gonna say that it’s incredibly frustrating and annoying to have to hear about your traumas that are apparently severe and im just like dude it’s been 19 years since my dad left and like 13 since major childhood stuff. i’m fucking healed?!?! i tell her all the time i don’t have traumas and she doesn’t buy it.

anyways sorry for that rant lol. i am pretty much alone and i suck and won’t be meeting friends in real life so let’s just give that up heather. no offense. i just, the more people who come into my life the more that will leave and hurt me. the more people who will come into my life will have to meet me the piece of shit and i just, don’t wanna do that to me people. no, i’m not trying to cause offense or like gaslight? is that the terming? anyways i’m not trying to do anything wrong. i’m just being honest with you. forgive me if this came off the wrong way

Heather
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Heather » Thu Feb 27, 2020 10:32 am

I do want to just say this to get it out of the way: like I've talked to you about before, there's really just no such thing as being "fully healed" from our traumas, and if there is and they're anything of note, that's something that we *might* be able to get to waaaaaay later in life, like in our 70s or 80s. By all means, we can make some real progress both with healing and with learning to cope and manage the impacts of our trauma. I get that. As an example, I feel like as I'm turning 50, the decades I have spent, mostly very actively, working to heal from many kinds of trauma in my teens, I have made a lot of progress and have done a lot of healing. But I honestly don't see it as something any of us can really finish: it's always ongoing, it's just where we're at with it. The reason your therapist "isn't buying it," is because, from a therapeutic framework, it isn't likely true. Too, if you're being super defensive about this, know that -- IMO -- that can be a good note-to-self that that's probably denial (not just for you, for everyone). Not to mention that even here you have experienced and talked about a lot of trauma in real time, so the idea you don't have any is...well. <3

I get that that can seem like it sucks, btw, this idea that we can't heal completely or quickly. It extra sucks since most of the time we didn't have a choice in our traumas. But so it is, pal.

If your therapist thinks you're not at a point yet where a support group would be right for you or others, then by all means, I think you're probably best served respecting that opinion. I certainly do, so let's figure that for now, my suggestion to do that might be premature for you and set it aside for the time being.

I'm not going to come in and talk to you about options if and when you're in a headspace like you are here where you are telling me it just isn't a thing that you can have. The biggest barrier to things like this is usually our beliefs, so it just isn't a good use of either of our time or energy to try and talk about how to do a thing when you're in a headspace that's presenting a barrier. You're telling me to give up on that, and all I can soundly do is respect that.

If or when that changes, give me a shout, and I'm happy to circle back and pick up where we left off.

In the meantime, since it sounds like you are telling me you *do* have some existing in-person queer community, you can by all means continue to nurture those relationships so that you feel less lonely. <3
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

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Thu Feb 27, 2020 10:45 am

i’m frustrated and stressed out over this. like you’ve talked to me. i’m a fucked up individual. you can’t deny that. i really don’t need anyone. i think i might stop therapy too because it’s expensive and makes me more stressed and frustrated sometimes.

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Fri Feb 28, 2020 5:13 pm

okay Heather. i went to therapy today and i talked to her about everything that has happened during the time i haven’t been and it’s been a lot. well i wrote it and had her read it because writing is easier emotionally on me. she had to pick to get to my emotions like always and she asked if everyone has to do that and she said we’re gonna get my barrier down. i don’t fully know everything we talked about but i ended up getting emotional.

i left and my mom started to bitch at me for a bunch of stuff and it doesn’t feel good, to be hated by your mom. she says things like she just hates my guts. i left my moms and literally lost it. like i had to pull over because i couldn’t see and i scream and cried for about 15 minutes. is that the unresolved trauma you’ve mentioned? i’m not gonna go into detail because this isn’t the place but last week she had the police come check on me because i mentioned something to her and that in itself was traumatic not even putting into effect what else happened that week. maybe you’re right about everything. i definitely need the help and my traumas are not healed. realizing that kinda makes me want to run even more. i just want to know, will i be okay? is what i am a waste?

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Sam W » Sat Feb 29, 2020 11:26 am

Hi Sky,

Getting emotional during therapy is a pretty common experience, but it sounds like you and your therapist are making progress in addressing some of the more urgent aspects of trauma.

I think a more helpful question to ask, and one your therapist can help guide you through answering, is: what would being okay look like to you? The idea of being okay, especially when you're dealing with trauma, can feel so nebulous and unreachable that you get demoralized. Figuring out what your version of okay looks like and working towards that can be much more helpful.

With your mom, that sounds less like unresolved trauma and more like a response to her being actively unkind (although trauma responses can certainly mingle in with that). It sounds like your mom is not supportive right now, and I would encourage you to bring that up, and talk about how to approach it, with your therapist as well.

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Sun Mar 01, 2020 2:22 pm

i’m going this week and not again i don’t think. my mom told me not to go anymore. i don’t agree but i just can’t afford it and it’s easier to go along with what she says because i can’t handle the fights with her.

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Sam W » Mon Mar 02, 2020 8:19 am

Hi Sky,

I totally get that feeling that going along with your mom's demands is more pleasant than trying to push back on them. That being said, from everything you've shared with us during our conversations here, it's clear that mental healthcare is something you really need right now, and something that will help you address a lot of the trauma you're dealing with. So, this may be a time where a short term unpleasantness is wort it in terms of looking after yourself in the long run (with the caveat that you know your mom better than we do, including whether holding a boundary could put you in danger).

Too, if the alternative is to find a way to access therapy without her financial support, there may be ways to do that as well that we can connect you to.

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Tue Mar 03, 2020 8:05 pm

so i went today and we talked about a lot of past things that have happened to me and i feel a lot of relief that i told someone and she thanked me for opening up to her and she really helped. i explained what happened last week and she said she’s been trying hard to not open up a lot of trauma and then send me on my way because she doesn’t want that to happen. she said i let out pain and that’s not weakness. i said i didn’t know what to do and she said i did the right thing by just letting it all out (i don’t cry much and when i do it’s a lot and i hate it, it makes me feel weak)

she’s incredible. i like her a lot. my family doesn’t support me going in it but in retrospect they don’t know my life and what they’ve all caused me and what i’ve dealt with behind the scenes of everything. she told me that i have a lot to still work on and she needs me to be in therapy. she’s having me get a workbook that she’s picking out and having me do homework. her supervisor recommended that cause she was talking about me to her and i agreed to do so. i’m very happy with my life right now. last night i went out and was stupid and got drunk and i smoked a cigarette for the first time, well 2 and i didn’t like it but it was the social aspect of it. i’m glad i didn’t like it. i feel kinda guilty for it but it’s okay. this guy was buying my drinks and then he started to touch me a lot and i freaked out and text my sister and she came to get me.

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Sam W » Thu Mar 05, 2020 9:08 am

I'm glad the therapist has clicked so well with you, and that she's giving you multiple tools and approaches (like the homework) to try as the two of you work together. Having a variety of things to try makes it easier to find the coping strategies and mental health tools that work for you. Since it sounds like she clearly sees the value of you continuing to work with her, have the two of you discussed the fact that you're receiving pressure to drop out of therapy? If so, has she suggested ways of addressing that situation with your family?

sky
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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby sky » Fri Mar 06, 2020 4:53 am

Yeah, i have talked to her about it. She said that we will talk about boundaries and getting away from my family next time i go in. the way i look at it is, that’s money i could be saving to get me out of the toxic living situation i’m in. i’m gonna talk to her about everything and hope her and i can come up with something. i like the progression i’m making as a person with her, i just want out of my house with my grandparents. they are kind people don’t get me wrong but they constantly try to get me to believe their political beliefs (which is very frustrating) and they don’t care about my happiness. they think this job is okay for me because it’s a good company. they don’t care at the fact it’s making me miserable. i have to do so much for them, i don’t mind it, i’m just tired of being a caretaker when i really need to be taking care of myself. hopefully that articulated right and i don’t sound like a bitch

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Re: this is hard :(

Unread postby Mo » Fri Mar 06, 2020 5:19 pm

I think you articulated yourself just fine. :) I can understanding wanting to take care of yourself right now. I'm glad your therapist has a plan to talk about boundaries and some family issues at your next appointment.


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