Raised to be a Perfect Victim

DISCLAIMER: What I was raised to believe in the LDS/Mormon church doesn’t reflect the rest of the church.  It could have been just my branch that was super shitty.  I don’t know.  My experiences only reflect my experiences and not what may or may not occur on a global scale.

It’s hard to admit that things aren’t my fault.  I was raised that we chose our parents pre-life so we could be as helpful to them as we can.  That we are born purely for the benefit of other people.  Women exist purely for having kids and it’s the woman’s fault if she gets assaulted because she was clearly being immodest and therefore deserved what she got.  I was raised that I must always be polite and that saying no was not an option unless I wanted to get beat.  And that it would always be my fault no matter what happened because I ‘knew’ the consequences and I must have wanted to get beat or molested or assaulted or raped or whatever.  My mum had explicitly said she wouldn’t take me to the hospital after I got hit by a car because I was where I wasn’t supposed to be so it was my fault.  I deserved to get hit.

I was raised that everything even remotely romantic or sexual beyond maybe holding hands was meant to remain behind closed doors and one mustn’t talk about it.  If you did anything beyond a chaste kiss, you would never get to go to the temple and get sealed with your future spouse (straight couples only, the LGBTQ+ didn’t exist) and you would end up in eternity alone with none of your family.

I had a lot of anger issues growing up.  I didn’t have a voice and when I tried to speak up, I was told I was wrong.  Everything got pent up inside until I burst.  I wasn’t aloud to say it was because mummy and daddy scared me and I was being touched in ways that I wasn’t comfortable because that was airing out the dirty laundry and my brother and I would get taken away and it would be all my fault because I couldn’t just fucking act like a normal kid and why must I always be so bad?

So is it any wonder why I’m having issues talking to my therapist about exactly, in detail, what happened.  Block out the bad details, block out the things that no one would believe and no one would care and forget about it because I deserved it because I was bad.  I was where I wasn’t supposed to be.  I allowed it to happen.

The other thing is, I feel like it happened to someone else.  That was me when I was going by my birth name.  I got by a different name now.  I look back and go “but that happened to Darryl, and I’m not Darryl, I’m Kassie.”  (Obviously not real name, I’m not putting those up on this blog).

When I’m doing therapy, the Exposure Therapy, I’m supposed to use the present tense, like I’m narrating the thing as it’s happening.  First person too.  Not allowed to wear my sunglasses.  Not allowed to wear a hat.  It feels like a lot of pressure and I get overwhelmed with sensory stuff because she doesn’t like me wearing my earplugs either for some friggin reason.  She says  it has to do with not wanting me to hide and I say I should at least be able to wear them for the first actual full go around.

I guess it doesn’t really matter, to be honest.  I haven’t gotten through the entire bit.  She says less details, then she says more details.  She says the sequence of events doesn’t make sense, I say repeatedly I don’t remember bits.  I think she’s getting frustrated and I’m feeling more and more hopeless.

I know it sounds like I’m just making excuses and I guess maybe I am.  I’m just tired mentally and psychologically, even though I get tons of sleep.  I want to give up but I promised I wouldn’t kill myself and I hold my promises to the highest regard, even if I think nothing of myself.

I’m going to go try and type out the entire event, as much as I can remember, as many details as I can.  Wish me luck.

Oh, by the way, I pierced my lip on Sunday.  Snake bites.  Advice for the kiddies, go to a professional in a shop.  Don’t just order the stuff online and stab yourself with a needle.

-The Sarcastic Autist

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Tidbits of Realizations

So, part of the whole “exposure therapy” thing is listening to recordings of the sessions.  The sound of my voice aggravates me.  It reminds me of speech therapy.  (Stuttering problem and also trouble forming my r’s. )  Also, I just hate the sound of my voice.

The feedback on the recordings are terrible and make me want to hit my head against things.  Hate the feedback.  (White noise in the background).  It doesn’t help that I make those weird spaz noises when I’m listening to the recordings.  But, on the bright side, they are only about a half hour so I don’t have to sit and listen to an hour long monologue of myself.

Moving on, I’ve been reading “the Body Keeps the Score”, a book about how trauma affects people and how you can move beyond it and stuff.  It’s been a slow and interesting read.  Slow because I stop to allow myself time to process what it is saying.  Interesting because it’s helping me make the connections of what my therapist has been saying and what I should be doing.

Like, I never realized that I may enjoy horror movies and being scared because being scared has become such a baseline in my life that it feels like my natural state, so the feeling of fear is somewhat comforting.  This isn’t true 100% of the time, but it may have some merit.  Another thing is the shutting down of communication when I get too stressed out.  According to the book, the one side of the brain that allows you to communicate shuts down when a situation becomes too stressful or traumatic, even in non-autistic folk.  So, all I gotta do there is figure out how I can reactivate that bit of my brain when I’m starting to shut down.  What is a thing I can do?  I don’t know, but i’m sure my DBT book has suggestions.

I ever tell you guys I am less terrified of the prospect of a zombie apocalypse than I am of being alone with people?  That is a weird thing to realize.

I don’t have much else to say right now except that I keep fucking forgetting how much blogging helps me process things.  It’s easier to talk to people in person if I don’t bottle up all my thoughts and feelings.  Blogging anonymously helps me not form those feelings of being judged for stuff.

That is terribly put, but I hope you get the idea.

-The Sarcastic Autist

Feelings and Lack Thereof

I had a psychiatrist appointment today.  She had me start Lamictal last time I was there but I stopped taking it because I decided I didn’t like it.  Honestly, I’m thinking about quitting the rest of my meds and also therapy.

Reason being is that, those asshole kids from yesterday made me realize something.  It doesn’t matter how hard I work to overcome my past, to move forward, I’m not even a person.  What’s the point of getting over one rape when the next thing I have to worry about is one of the many times I was sexually assaulted or forced to do sexual favours or was molested or beat or treated less than human.

What’s the point when there will always be one more thing to work on, one more issue that needs to be fixed.  Even if I manage to get over, to move beyond all the shit that I’ve dealt with in my life, I’m still stuck in that cycle of not being good enough and only being seen as something to be used, rather than a person with their own hopes and dreams.

Then there’s the fact that I keep fucking shutting down and I stop talking when I’m trying to do the Imaginal exposure thing.  Maybe it’s because I was raised to never, ever talk about such things.  Don’t talk about what goes on at home with Oniisan touching me inappropriately or my dad and mum beating me or the neglect or the piss poor living conditions.  Don’t tell the various therapists about the many times my dad overdosed in front of me and my brother, the many times we were forced to play the role of parents when we hadn’t even hit double digits yet.

There’s the endless shame.  Being molested by my brother and my babysitter.  Being bullied at school.  Being raised to believe that it’s the victim’s fault.  That it’s my fault for not being a ‘good kid’.  I let myself get into situations where I am nothing but trash, a thing to be used and then tossed aside.

Old coworkers insisting on me giving them blow jobs and hand jobs to get home.  So called friends taking me to unfamiliar places and backing me into corners where, if I said no, they would have left me.  Being at the homeless shelter and being passed from guy to guy as a sex object.  Thank the gods the most that happened there was being groped and kissed.

Being gaslit all the time.  You know the drill.  Constantly being told that something happened that never happened or something that never happened had happened.  Being told that my experiences were too storybook to be real.  The endless finger pointing and being blamed for everything.

I’ve been crying a lot intermittently.  I feel so hopeless and helpless and like there is absolutely no reason for me to even try any more.  I’m constantly switching from numb, to dissociated, to depressed, to uncaring, to the verge of being suicidal.  Thoughts of cutting myself are way more frequent than they had been in ages.

If I didn’t hold keeping promises in such high regard, I am scared to think what I would have done already.

I feel like giving up.  I feel like there was an attempt and that attempt just wasn’t good enough so I should just quit and stop wasting everyone’s time.

I feel stupid and worthless and a poor excuse of a person.  I feel like I’m nothing.  I feel defective and I feel like I will never get better.

I feel lost.  I feel like I don’t matter.

I feel like crying.

-The Sarcastic Autist

Fecking hell

Part of Exposure Therapy is In Vivo Exposure, which is going out to real life situations that remind you of the trauma or something and getting used to them, reminding yourself that it’s safe.  Something like that.  That is actually a terrible explanation.

Anyway.  Today I was at the spot where the rape happened for therapy homework, the In Vivo Exposure, and some middle schoolers yelled rape and death threats at me.

Thanks guys, that really makes me feel safe.

I had flashbacks.  I’m still a little stuck in a dissociative/depressive state from it.  Not as bad as earlier where I was strongly wanting to Self-Harm and/or kill myself.  (For the record, I’ve promised not to kill myself so I can’t.  I hold my promises very highly.)

In addition to all that, I’m having doubts that the rape actually occurred.  It’s like… There is no way in hell my life is that textbook shitty.  I think it’s just the history of many abusive relationships and being gaslit all the time.  If I decide it didn’t happen, it didn’t happen, right?

I don’t know.  I know I’m not making sense.  I think I’d rather just believe I am making it up than believe that I’ve been victimized so many times.  Or maybe it’s just a cop out so I can have an excuse to quit therapy.  I don’t know.

-The Sarcastic Autist

Letting go (in other words, acceptance)

So, long time no write.  I really got off the habit of it this year.  I  I want to get back into it because of how it helps me process things.

To update you all, I am still in therapy, doing the prolonged exposure thing.  I  have not made any progress and it’s frustrating to my therapist and to me because I get stuck on this one memory.  I’ve been trying to get her to understand I just have no fucking clue what she wants me to do and that I simply can’t remember most of it.

She bombarded me with questions yesterday and I just kept saying “I don’t know”.  I felt bad.  I felt like I was back when I was a kid being asked about things that I did but blacked out of.  Most of it was my fault when I got violent.  Did I get violent?  I don’t know.  I just can’t remember.

I do these time checks to help myself keep from losing time.  I check my watch or the clock every so often to note the time.  I remember looking at the time but not what I’m doing a lot right now.  This is also frustrating.  I think it’s really frustrating because I just kind of accepted that I’m not good with time and remembering things and I use that as an excuse.

After therapy yesterday, I was really pissed off at myself and decided I was going to remember everything from the Thing whether I wanted to or not because deciding I was going to do a thing whether I wanted to or not was how I quit smoking and how I quit doing drugs.  So I walked to that fucking spot in the woods and sat there and focused because I was determined I was finally going to do it.

I don’t really know how to describe lost time outside of record skips or like when a DVD is scratched so it skips scenes.  It’s also like a block, an almost physical wall that I can’t breach no matter how hard I push against it.

So I stopped pushing.  I stopped trying to force myself to remember something that I obviously didn’t want to remember.  I stopped fighting myself and accepted that whatever happened, happened.  It’s only a memory now and it’s in the past.  I can’t change the past.  Time can only move forward for me.  If I won’t let myself remember, there’s jack shit I can do about that.

So I sat there on my butt.  In the cold.  In broad daylight because fuck going there at night.  And Breathed. And let everything go because I told myself it no longer mattered.  It doesn’t matter if I remember or not, the emotions tied to the experience are the same regardless of my own memories.  Not remembering is a bigger barrier, but if there’s nothing I let myself remember I might as well just let it go.  Because I’m wasting my time forcing something and worrying about what’s going to happen after and having a million gajillion thoughts race through my head and Jesus fucking Christ, I want my hat.  (Therapist told me she wanted me to stop wearing my hat because she felt I used it to hide.  I like my hats.  They make me feel safe and also I can’t pull my hair if my hair is hiding.  And I haven’t a lot of hair because I keep cutting it short.)

For the first time in a long, long time, everything inside me was still and calm.  Not Zen level calm, but peaceful in its own chaotic way.  There was no heart pounding or panicked breathing or racing thoughts or music replaying in my head.  I didn’t wear earbuds or headphones or earplugs.  I wore sunglasses because it’s bright as fuck out, but I wore them over my glasses so my face wasn’t half covered.  It didn’t really matter because I had my eyes closed, but anyway…

I don’t want to say the wall/block/whatever for that particular memory shattered or it fell or whatever you would call it.  It wasn’t some awe inspiring amazing experience that was happy.  It’s not like it was there one minute and gone the next.  I wouldn’t liken it to a puzzle piece falling into place.  It was just me, finally sliding back into reality.

Have any of you ever dissociated before?  It’s sort of like the world is blurry and everything is just a dream.  That’s how I live most of my life.  Lived most of my life.  It’s sort of similar to a Depression Fog, where everything is dampened by misery and uncaring.  There’s been times where I thought I was out of it, back into ‘reality’ but I’ve just gotten used to seeing the world in a distorted view, not really participating in life.  Barely existing.  Being automated.

Another thing is the reminder that I’m 26.  I’m not 15 anymore.  I’m not who I was back then.  I’m not a scared little girl.  Honestly, I’m not even sure I consider myself a woman or what since I’m struggling with my gender identity most of the time.  Regardless, I’m not a teenager.  I’m an adult.  I am a Goddess Warrior and a Warrior Goddess.  I am me.  I’ve been called strong and brave before.  I don’t really consider myself strong or brave.  I’m just stronger and braver than I was yesterday, if I let myself be.

I read in a book that the only easy day is yesterday because yesterday is gone.  I’m trying to let myself believe that.  To me, that means I need to be able to do what needs to be done, regardless of my own ability or understanding of the situation.  I still believe I’m defective.  That there’s not much worth to me.  I also believe that I have a right to know myself and that I have no right to determine how others view my worth.

Today was hard.  I went to that spot again and while I didn’t stay there as long today (it’s cold as fucking balls), there was considerably less anxiety.  Less fear.  Less uncertainty.  Less pain.  And more acceptance.

I kind of feel like I’ve been all over the place with this post and that’s probably true.  At the same time, I’m here and I’m present and that’s what matters most to me right now.  Whether it’s being here and present in the now or being here and present in the past, remembering shit I don’t like or want to pretend never happened.  It’s here and present.

Whatever works.

-The Sarcastic Autist

Hiding in books and things,

Slipping in distorted dreams,

Dying paupers and Greasy kings,

No tears are shed and so it seems,

That nothing’s right and nothing’s wrong,

When silence is still and forever long.

 

 

These days are hard.

So, I’ve been having a lot of migraines and something has been going on with my heart, so I’ve been seeing a cardiologist.  Just got done doing a holster monitor test this week and I’ll find out the results of that within 10 days.

Also, I’ve been depressed.  Honestly, I think I’ve been depressed a majority of the year.  I’m only now realizing it.  The thing about depression is that it can sneak up on you.

Any time I thought I was depressed, I would dismiss it because it doesn’t feel like before.  I’m not suicidal even though I still wish I didn’t exist sometimes.  I’m not stuck in a fog and dissociated 24/7.  I’m not cutting or doing drugs or drinking or engaging in high risk behaviours.

But still, I’m depressed.  I finally realized it wasn’t just a small episode yesterday when I was getting ready to see Styx, my psychiatrist.  I’ve been sleeping a lot more (during the day, I feel safe during the day) and I’m seldom blogging, which I really do love to do.  My books have fallen to the wayside again and I don’t study my Japanese as diligently as I have in the past.  I just feel like I’m going through the motions of existing and not really living.

And it’s hard to admit and it’s terrifying to think that depression, that lying, cheating son-of-a-bitch, can slowly integrate itself back into my life without me realizing it.  How long have I been this way?  I’ve known I’ve been getting a small sadness mist rather than a full depression fog, but is it really just a mist and not a light fog that’s just beginning to roll in?

I did talk to Styx about getting on a supplemental anti-depressant to take in addition to the Viibryd.  She prescribed Lamictal, which is a mood stabilizer.  I’m a bit wary about taking it because it’s commonly described for bipolar and I’m not bipolar, but it’s also prescribed as an anticonvulsant and off the label uses are numerous as well.

I’m going into town on Tuesday to pick it up.  I will update you guys as to how I’m doing with that.

As for therapy, we just restarted Prolonged Exposure.  I don’t know why I’m so resistant against it.  I decided it would be easier to start off with an instance with my sperm donor.  However, I can’t decide if I should do the time he overdosed in front of me or the time he told me that CPS was coming to take me and my brother away and made me go ride my bike around town for a few hours until I finally went to the library to hide.

I might just skip those and go straight to the rape when I was a teen.  So, basically it’s talk about my douche nozzle dad or the group of assholes.  I can’t figure out which one would be easier for me to talk about.  My brain is all over the place lately and it’s been hard for me to concentrate.

I can’t remember if I’ve posted since starting, but I’ve began playing Magic the Gathering.  I really like it and I have a lot of fun playing.  I also do Dungeons and Dragons once a month.  My Dungeon Master said I’m the only person in his many years of playing who decided to eat a goblin.  So I got that going for me at least.

I’m still dating Flapjack and I am trying to get out to the UK to visit around Thanksgiving.  I’m mostly nervous about having to sit in an airplane full of strangers and the possibility of having to sit next to a fat person.  I like my personal space a lot.

Anyway, I don’t have a lot more to talk about right now.  I’m supposed to be filling out diary cards again for therapy (I am not good at this.  I keep forgetting that I’m supposed to do that.)

I hope I can start blogging more and more again.  I miss doing it.  It’s really helpful for me to blog because it helps me process.  I would just write it down in my journal for therapy but writing longhand is hard and painful for me.

Oh, one more thing before I forget.  Charon told me I needed to come up with a phrase that would help motivate me for therapy.  一生もっと頑張る.  Isshou motto ganbaru.  I will try my hardest in life.

Thank you for your time.

-The Sarcastic Autist

Update

I haven’t had the energy or the motivation to come on and post.  I’m sorry for that.

Trauma therapy take 3 starts next Thursday.  Charon and I have started and stopped for various reasons.  This time we are doing a trauma therapy that’s based on DBT.  Marsha Linehan, the woman who started DBT, created this just recently.  There isn’t even any literature on it for me to read.

I’m going to really have to try harder than I have been.  I don’t know how, but I’m going to have to dig real deep inside and use all my courage and strength to get this shit done.  Charon said it should only take about 13 weeks for this new therapy.  13 sessions.  I’m both thrilled and anxious  and highly skeptical that it’ll take only 13 weeks for me to get better, but I’m also ready and willing to give it a shot.

I’ve been having nonstop nightmares about my ex.  You would think I would be having nightmares about the Thing, the rape, since it’s getting closer and closer to the anniversary.  But I’m not.  I’m having them about my ex and my aunt and uncle when I was living with them and my dad.  I find that all really rather silly.

Flapjack and I are still going strong.  We’ve been together for over 6 months now.  Still haven’t met up.  I am planning on going over to the U.K. to see her during the week of Thanksgiving since I hate Thanksgiving and really want to use her as an excuse to skip out on family time.

I’ve been avoiding my aunt and uncle a lot more recently.  I’ve been coming up with nonstop excuses for not going over for birthdays and holidays.  My main reason is that I don’t feel safe over there and I always feel terrible by the time I get home.

Oh, I have purchased Vibes Ear Filters.  They work great.  I want to purchase another pair so I can have one at home and keep one in my bag.  I really recommend them.

I’m struggling with my weight and my eating disorder and I was just put back on the pill because my cooch is bleeding again when it shouldn’t be.  I’ve gained a bit of weight (probably from eating so much salty foods to help my low blood pressure) and I’ve been doing a weird binge/restrict cycle and I’ve got a FitBit.  (Charge 2).  I love my FitBit.  It does not help with my ED.

There’s not much more to tell.  I’ve started learning how to play Magic the Gathering and I joined a Dungeons and Dragons group.  I’m still studying Japanese (just started N1).  I’m obviously still doing therapy.

I’m going to be trying to come on and blog more.  Blogging really helps me process things better.  I also just miss it.

Regards,

The Sarcastic Autist

I don’t know what the fuck my problem is that I can’t fucking open my mouth and speak. I’m very upset with myself because I tell myself I can do it and then bloop there goes my words.

Maybe this week I need to focus on talking like how I want and stop trying to speak like people want me to

Also gonna have to try speaking about the thing aloud by myself. If I can say it when I’m by myself, I should be able to do it in therapy next week.

Honestly, one of the reasons I think I have a hard time talking about these things is because my dad would beat me when I made a fuss about things or do it to convince me not to talk to anyone about what was going on at home.

Don’t talk to anyone because you’ll get in trouble. You’ll get taken away and raped over and over again if you do. You won’t have your dogs.  You won’t have your mum or your brother or your books. No one will let you go to the library.  No one will believe you anyway. It’s your fault. Stop being a brat. Stop crying or I’ll give you something to talk about. 

Basically, keep it all bottled up because no one gives a fuck and it’s probably my fault anyway.  My mum will blame me for things if I’m not where I’m “supposed to be”. Or if I’m somewhere she doesn’t like.

And then there’s the fucking mormon thing. I’ve been reading a lot of stuff from exmormons and I’m like… I didn’t have a choice. I was no longer temple worthy because of the thing and to top it all off, I was gay. It was leave or deal with their bullshit of blaming me and excluding me even more. It sucked.

I’m just really upset with myself. I hate shutting down.

Emotion Regulation Revelation

I did have therapy today but we didn’t do the in vivo exposure thingy or whatever, where I’m supposed to recount my rape in present tense.  Mostly because I did not want to and decided that listening to Charon speak was 100% better than talking.

However, despite that, I did end up talking with her a bit about Emotion Regulation and how it finally hit me what it is.  For some backstory on this revelation, I had been browsing reddit and came across a post from one of the Autism subreddits I frequent.

There are hills worth dying for in life. I tell the staff in my room that meltdowns are like our bad days. We can drop our coffee walking into work, get pissed, curse a few times, and then get over it. Our students can have Wheaties instead of Cheerios (a small change can throw off an entire day) and they’ll come in and be hitting people, yelling, and throwing chairs. We would all love to throw chairs when we have a bad day but we have the emotional regulation that tells us that would be a bad idea. In that moment the students lack emotional regulation. It’s not about us. We just happen to be the responsible adults in the room. Sometimes you just need to throw a chair, chill out on a bean bag, drink some water, then clean up your mess (if you destroy my classroom, you clean it up).  -skittles_rainbows

Tada, I did it.  I think.  I have no idea if that link stuff is good or not.  I hope it works for you.  The comment was on a thread about ABA therapy, which terrifies me.  But skittles_rainbows really made emotion regulation understandable for me.    It’s an important thing to know.  That makes me sound really childish, but I don’t care.

I got a dick pic sent to my facebook on Saturday.  (Note: Henceforth, triggers are going to be known as Activators because I don’t like the term and it goes nicely with my Activated instead of aroused thing.)  It really Activated me because of prior sexual assault involving oral sex.  I did tell Charon about the dick pic, but skirted around telling her of the assault thingy.

I had a full blown flashback and managed to calm myself down, but then I got Activated again by doing the SUDs thing because I’ve been going down by the river to the isolated spots where there are lots of places someone could jump out at me or hide until it’s too late for me to notice them.  Anyway, so I got activated because there was a bunch of men down at this one spot and there was a beer can and so many people and I just could. Not. Do. It.

I felt bad.  That I didn’t do my homework for one day.  All things considered, I think I’m doing stellarific on this.  Charon even commented how well I’m doing at “internal adjustment”.  Also, apparently I’ve got a pretty easy face to read.  I wouldn’t know because I only see myself in the mirror or in pictures.

Oh.  And one more thing.  Session recordings.  I have to listen to myself talk about the rape thingy.  Which I don’t even talk about.  I just build up the suspense and pretend not to cry.  I don’t cry, but I’m also pretending I’m not.  Don’t question it, just go with my illogical logic thingy.

I don’t know.  It’s been so freaking hot lately and I got my first ever sunburn yesterday.

Have a good one.

-The Sarcastic Autist