Nightmares

**CSA triggers/dreams**

I’ve had several vivid nightmares this week, and they feel like they’re slowly beating me down.

The other night I dreamt I was being pursued by a killer.  He was taunting and would explain how he was going to kill me.  At one point in the dream he shot at a friend of mine to get me to sacrifice myself.  At another point, he threw me down a mountain and pushed a car down behind me to make sure that it fell and crushed me.  As he threw me off the cliff, I remember him explaining that he wanted the car to crush me.

Last night was worse.  I was shopping (I don’t normally do that..) and a couple came up to me and asked for my help with something, although I can’t remember what it was now.  I left with them and we were in their house, and for some reason we needed to call a cop to help us.  I remember thinking that the cop seemed to not care about what I was saying.  Then it was just the other male, the cop, and me in a room.  The cop started to get closer to me and then wrapped his arms around me and picked me up, at which point I knew what was going to happen.  The other guy just ignored my crying and my pleas for him to stop and left, closing the door behind him.

Sometimes, in nightmares like this, I will wake up at this point, but I didn’t wake up.  I was “there” for everything, every moment of it.  Once he was done, he just let me leave.  When I walked out of the room, I was crying and the girlfriend saw this and her eyes widened, but she didn’t do or say anything.  I left and continued to cry.  No one said or did anything.  That’s when I woke up.

I haven’t had flashbacks since waking up, but what I have felt is the overwhelming and profound sense of helplessness, shame, and disgust, and I’m distinctly aware of how I felt these things when I was a child, too, whenever “he” would hurt me.  I feel defeated.  I just want to give up and stop fighting and just let all of those feelings have free rein, because the more I fight them, the more I feel like they must be true.

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7 thoughts on “Nightmares

  1. Hey Kashley – I absolutely HATE it when people say “I’m so sorry” to me, because it just feels like a cliche phrase. I tell people, say anything but that. So I won’t say that – I will say I know, not exactly, but closely, what this is like. I know that terrible truth of having to feel the pain in two time periods at the same time. When I woke up to the truth, I was SO MAD, because it meant I had to wake up to the terrible things that happened THEN, but I had to feel all the feelings NOW. It felt like I was doubly cursed – I was never going to have a peaceful or calm or nice time. It wasn’t nice when I was a kid, that was true, and it wasn’t nice now, because I was trapped having things repeating and terrifying feelings in the NOW time.

    I’ve learned a lot. I’ve made a lot of progress. I know the truth is that terrible things happened now. And the feelings were trapped inside me, where they solidified into a solid mass. And my work now is in two time periods – I have to FEEL all of the feelings that are in that box, I have to FEEL them now, and by FEELING them now, I have to know – to really, really know – the truth of what happened then. That is a ginormous job. It is a terrible job. It’s a job I have to keep doing. But it’s a job that gets easier and easier now for me – the stuff trapped inside isn’t as much, isn’t as toxic, and I have so many more tools in my toolkit for dealing with them.

    So, I wish that this wasn’t true for you. But it is. And I see you, and I’m cheering for you. You can do this.

    1. MMM.. I hate that you understand it, but it helps so much to know I’m not crazy. 🙂 Yes..You nailed why it’s so tiring and can feel so unfair, having to rehash something that happened decades ago with the “promise” that you can have a better future. Thanks for always being so supportive. ((hugs))

  2. Kashley it sounds absolutely horrendous for you ATM and I can hear how you’re struggling to hold on and go on thinking.

    When you start to see childhood abuse differently, the part of you that has become n internalised abuser feels threatened. So in an attempt to survive, they ramp up the feelings of disgust, shame etc.

    remember you we’re a child and you were helpless. You are in no way to blame. The badness, shame and disgust belongs to your perpetrator. You were 100% innocent.

    Hugs to you xx

    1. Thanks, GreenEyes. That makes a lot of sense why those feelings are more intense now. It’s hard to not own them when they feel like they do belong with me – but I also know I wouldn’t keep going through the process of therapy if some part of me didn’t think I can release those feelings. ((hugs)) Thanks for being so wonderful to me. xx

  3. It took me a long time to understand the sense of disgust, but being violated IS disgusting. The body of the perpetrator is disgusting, their desires are disgusting, their worldview is disgusting, their whole personalities are disgusting. It only makes sense that we leave the experience being disgusted.

    The shame is difficult to understand, but we all feel ashamed when we feel too exposed, whether or not the exposure was within our control. So I think it also makes sense we feel ashamed after intense violation. The overwhelming emotions we feel automatically when we are violated are part of the harm done to us. It is no different than feeling pain if someone whacks us over the head. The pain the assault causes us is part of what makes it wrong–just as the shame it causes the victim is a part of what makes violating someone wrong. The emotional harm is a part of the harm done to us.

    1. Yes..the disgust thing is something that my T and I have discussed. We’ve talked about how the acts themselves are disgusting but, in her view, what’s incorrect is that I’ve taken that on to mean that I’m disgusting. And it’s hard to believe that’s not the case because the acts were so disgusting.

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