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Topics - Contessa

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Checking Out / I don't think I fit in here anymore
« on: June 30, 2018, 11:53:51 PM »
Dear beloved friends at OOTS,

I began to write this post in the revovery board, but as the post developed it became clear that it needed to be placed here.

My comments of late have been few and far between for a plethora of reasons. Yes i've had a couple of personal crises that are devastating, and i've checked in here for help and reassurance. You have been my allies and unwavering support. You have lifted me out of some very dark depths.

I've come to reflect on my current situation and have noticed that for the first time in over eight years, i'm finally making decisions again because I want to and not just to survive. I no longer feel broken. I feel like I have control of my life again. I count my blessings. I feel like I can be a rock to someone else again, should they need it.

I need to continue on this path.

This is a strange, but welcome sense of being. Not feeling desperation. Feeling like myself again, despite all the losses suffered. Yet they won't be the last.

I'll never consider myself free of triggers. I will be weak at times, and I am scared of how i'll cope when inevitable or unexpected tragedies will occur. But i've been reflecting on the latest setbacks, and believe my resilience has been solidifying.

I relish the successes of my friends here, and check in with my fingers crossed hoping to read some wonderful posts, ecstatic when I do. I like to share updates of successes with the view that it might hopefully inspire others to keep at their journey. The many tiny steps add up. Never give up.

But I worry that I'm inadvertantly upsetting people instead. I don't want to do that. I also feel guilty when expressing a problem. I do think, and not with any sense of negativity, that perhaps I don't fit in here any more. Perhaps I have to step away.

This feels very weird. I've never 'stepped away' before. I've always had to escape, mysteriously disappear, or be abandoned first.

I don't know what's ahead, but right now i'm not scared. I think I will always come back here periodically, but will mostly keep my voice silent.

I don't know how to sign off...

General Discussion / Triggered by this word *TW*
« on: June 26, 2018, 10:08:09 PM »
Anybody else find the word "hack" triggering?

The Cafe / Helloo friends
« on: June 22, 2018, 09:34:49 PM »
Hi all,

I have been keeping myself exceptionally busy of late. Despite the rough patches, there have been some massive improvements compared to the last decade. In short, things are moving, the machine has got oil and the gears are working together lately.

So I wanted to check in with my friends here :) How are you all? Seen any good movies or exhibitions lately?


Just the next piece of personal bad news in a long list of things I can't have in life.

I mean seriously? I'm I not allowed one positive thing in life that I want? One or two adversities that make the road of life a bit of a bumpy challenge, sure. It's life.

But every single road, before I have a chance to even tirn into it? Latest life decision is virtually dead in the water before I can even attempt it. Over it.

General Discussion / More serious than a difficult day
« on: May 06, 2018, 06:27:58 AM »
Okay, this is clearly more than just a difficult day. Thought it best to start a new thread.

Can't stop feeling the pain, and i'm starting to get sick from it.

Having an Exceptionally Difficult Day / Feeling Off
« on: April 29, 2018, 02:56:20 PM »
I don't expect responses to this; there are so many members here that need the support right now, my issue is not insurmountable.

But just putting it out here, feeling the drop. Sad, a little bit angry, and am truly starting to believe I've got no hope. A little bit selfish, but also I feel the wasted life. I don't want to put myself down, but I also don't think i'm any good.

I'm a reject. The cheaper convenient model before an inevitable trade in for something better, if i'm lucky enough for the attention.

Questions/Suggestions/Comments / Email Reminder of Updated Topics
« on: April 20, 2018, 01:12:38 AM »

I have been receiving email updates of replies to topics I have participated in, for a few weeks now, and to my personal address. I have unchecked every sort of button in in my account settings, and in topic threads, yet I am still receiving these unwanted updates.

I'm worried that I will not receive wanted updates on topics within this forum now, yet continue to receive unwanted updates to my personal email. How can I stop this please?


Successes, Progress? / No Trigger
« on: April 18, 2018, 04:03:22 AM »
Apologies, I do not intend to gloat or seek any pats on the back for this. I just want to share that how far we can go with our recovery can actually be pretty darn good.

Today has an event occuring right now that should be triggering (well for me it would have), but it's not and I don't care. I have other things to think about that interest me more, and i've been working on those with great enthusiasm. Wow, pretty cool hey? No self soothing, mindfulness exercise, crying or anger. I just don't care.

(Housework being one of them)

Books & Articles / Finally reading Pete Walker's book
« on: April 17, 2018, 12:16:47 PM »
Almost two years sinse the first time I posted here. Knew I would read it, but wanted to give it time.
Good so far :)

General Discussion / Reflection on abuse/abuser confusion
« on: April 11, 2018, 01:21:18 PM »
I have to begin by apologising for my absence. My recent and steady boost in energy has led me to focus on professionally constructive pursuits. I'm not professionally flourishing yet (just timing and what-not), but in the meantime am building quite a solid resourceful and mental foundation for when it does.

I know this has been discussed before, but for a long time during intense suffering, I would often wonder if it was in fact me that had turned into the narcissist/abuser, and was no longer an innocent victim.

But now as I continually settle, relax, and interact with those I can truly trust in my support network, I've noticed that my self sufficiency, solid independence and ability to be dependable to others is building again. After seven, loooong years.

My reflection leads me to think that yes, abuse was the case in the ever increasing need to protect myself. I was not able to look after myself as I once had, and nobody else was. I was doing the best I could in situations that were ever sustained or elevated in abuse toward me. Had I not already been a boiling pot ready to explode, yes situations could have been more diffuse or avoided altogether.

So maybe yes in terms of protection of myself. But it was that - protection of myself - and not the other - self indulgence, lack of care for others, a need for control of others - that it was done for. That is what the other person was doing.

I'm not who I was before the trauma. But I am getting closer to it, not out of guilt or remorse, but because it is fundamentally what I am; a person who cares for other people.

That is more than enough assurance to feel settled, and know that the answer is no. I am not the narcissist or an abuser. I was in survival mode however.

What are others thoughts?

Successes, Progress? / Building resilience?
« on: March 02, 2018, 02:09:44 PM »
Today was an interesting day.

It was a bit tough in that I copped it from two different people, had to part with a lot of money for large transactions, and was put on alert for the mortality of a family member.

In a fragile state, this would easily throw a traumatised person in a spiral. I had a few anxious moments, but quickly regathered focus. The difficulty of the situation was acknowledged, understanding why the others put heat on me like they did, yet personally not agreeing with their behaviour meant I did not get gripped with shame...

I worked with the situations and did not fight or lose my temper. Nor did I lose concentration. Utimately, I still achieved my goals for the day, the negativity was just an unfortunate happening along the way to get things done. Not my problem really.

This is a step up in overall emotional resilience. Not all adversities will be handled this way, but it is a promising overall improvement. Hang in there me :)

Having an Exceptionally Difficult Day / Loss
« on: February 24, 2018, 04:13:17 PM »
Feeling so much loss everywhere I think.
Nucleating with my siblings, it led to the loss of friends, professional peers, partners.

Feel so unimportant. And like a piece of meat.

There is another thread dedicated to two types of anger, I believe started by Blueberry or Dee. I gave up after a few clicks to find it again, because I am not even too sure if it is on the new forum. Also this is a tangent to that main conversation.

I think I have reached a point in recovery where a transition may be made. I've entertained this though for several months now, but can now begin to feel it. I am actually starting to recognise that:
My anger is no longer justified in certain circumstances

and therefore as a result:
My anger is no longer a response to danger
but now a contributing cause for greater negativity

Why has this happened?
  • Assertive approaches to negative situations were rudely, aggressively and abusively rebuffed or ignored
  • When the need for legal intervention was recognised and sought after, again these 'authority' figures often invalidated and dismissed the recounted events of my reports, and I was often reprimanded for what I was relaying (nb; I never once went so far as to assume what these people were thinking or feeling as I hear so often when others share their accounts, only the facts)

In these situations, I did not do anything wrong. I had to employ fight or flight for my safety, or to diffuse a situation when it was becoming abusive. In my experience, fight (aggression, arguments, call out the faults of others etc), or flight (passivity, own the blame, etc). They became the norm.

I have lost the ability to assert myself.
I have forgotten that in many circumstances there is in fact is nobody at fault.
So the anger in these situations are not justified. Fight or flight behaviour takes over, and as a result, what happens does fundamentally and justifiably become my fault now.

I have decided that some circumstances no longer require my thought or care, and therefore my anger.
So I am no longer the victim to that circumstance. If I no longer need to employ fight or flight, I therefore need to relearn how to be assertive. Because fight or flight is not appropriate in the other circumstances that I am involved in.

I've hit another uncomfortable cusp of recovery.

General Discussion / Resilience
« on: January 22, 2018, 03:23:53 AM »
I've realised that I haven't quite built up enough resilience to handle adversity with grace yet. I feel more pain than I should. Or I put more hope in the flashes of happiness than I should.

My recovery hasn't gone far enough to cope without my whole being suffering. I need everyone that I can to be around me.

I am still fragile.

Having an Exceptionally Difficult Day / Stuck
« on: December 30, 2017, 03:35:28 AM »
It has been building for a couple of days, and I cannot escape with something pleasant.

Everything, and I mean everything, is annoying me. I can't divert my attention from one thing to another, because there is something significantly frustrating about every next thing.

It was like this yesterday, and it feels worse today. There is nothing to sooth or comfort.

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