Who am I?

01 Nov

I think I might have touched upon these things in previous posts but have never really gone in to details. However, after my appointment with cc today I finally verbalised it and got it straight in my head. She said that she could understand where I was coming from and was being extremely rational (something I always think I am).

When I was raped, I lost who I am – what my identity is and in all honesty my motivation and ambition for life. It hit me last Friday when I was sat in for another night whilst people I knew were all getting ready for a night out. That would have been me, I would have been having a drink and relaxing the week away.

And this is where the problem is. I don’t think I want to rebuild my life. I am more than aware that I can never go back to the person I was – I don’t think anyone can after a trauma as life events shape who you are. But when I look forward, everything that I should be excited about leaves me feeling cold. Meeting someone I want to spend the rest of my life with means reliving what has happened. Having children and therefore internals is the same thing – something I don’t want to ever do (where as before it was).

That’s why I have been having so many suicidal thoughts and struggled to fight them – I don’t want to rebuild a life and so in my head what is the point of being here. I used to be a totally different person and I don’t like or want to be the person I have become and therefore feel that I only have one option!

This is no means me saying I am going to do something – it is just trying to give an idea of the daily internal struggle I am currently going through


Posted by on November 1, 2011 in Uncategorized


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8 responses to “Who am I?

  1. theWriteRach

    November 1, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    I haven’t had the same experience as you but for different reasons can understand the feeling of not liking what you’ve become. As if the trauma itself wasn’t bad enough, you have to then deal with what it does to you and your life. I am rebuilding and am desperate to do so – I’m driven to do so because I feel that then I will have won. The thought of not ‘winning’ is unbearable. I set myself very high standards (not entirely healthy!) and want to strive to achieve the utmost because I feel I have to prove my worth having been stripped of it or so it feels. There are times I feel I can’t go on; recovery is a hell of a rough ride.

    Probably a stupid question but are you in touch with Rape Crisis or similar? They must have extensive experience of survivors feeling unable to rebuild and be able to offer support/advice.

    Hang in there. You’ve already achieved so much in getting this far.


    • femaleptsd

      November 1, 2011 at 10:21 pm

      Did you ever go through a point of thinking you couldn’t rebuild though or were you determined from the outset? No, i’m not in touch with anything like rape crisis, I think psychologically if I go somewhere like that then I am admitting things and think i’m still in denial (god that sounds so pathetic as I write it!!)

      Thanks for your comment though! x

  2. theWriteRach

    November 2, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    I think my determination began after my father’s suicide when I was 10. I felt it was such a waste of life that I determined to make the very best that I could of my life, that’s just how I dealt with it.

    I’ve always approached life with that determination but through the years of my recovery/rebuilding after my ‘thing’ – it’s been 10 years to date – I have definitely had points when I’ve felt that I couldn’t rebuild, that it was beyond me. More so in recent years because recovery can be such a long and slow process. I’ve often felt so utterly exhausted by it and wondered whether I have anything left to give it. Each time I struggle I think it will be the end of me but I get back up eventually with renewed vigour. I still worry that before I fully recover there’ll come a time when I won’t get back up – I’ve come perilously close – but I just try to concentrate on putting one foot in front of the other and taking one small step at a time.

    I think denial can feel like a form of protection but it’s actually not a safe place to be at all. Admitting how things are for you means allowing yourself to get the support you need to move forward. Not admitting where you’re at means being held in what is a horrible place. The worst has happened; you’ve been through the worst and SURVIVED, you did that. Now matter how difficult the recovery process, you’ll always be taking a step, however tiny, away from the worst towards a better place.

    You have it in you, you wouldn’t be blogging and tweeting in this way otherwise, you’d have curled up and given up long ago.

    I have a framed quotation on the wall in my study that I came across on Twitter last year; it helps me keep going…

    “Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start.”

    • femaleptsd

      November 3, 2011 at 12:25 am

      TheWriteRach – I don’t want to use these words, but can’t think of another way of putting it; I’m glad you have wrote that because I honestly thought it was something only I was feeling. The reason I didn’t want to put it like that was because I’m obviously not glad that you wrote it as it means you do understand – and I really wish no-one would be in that position!! Sometimes I think now is actually worse than the actual time it happened – I guess adrenaline kicked in, I managed to block out during that time and now it’s just like my mind is piecing it all together and I am finding that harde!! I really like that saying – thanks, it is so true!!!

  3. Mike

    November 2, 2011 at 11:20 pm

    Reading your post makes me both angry and incredibly sympathetic — especially the part about how you feel what’s happened makes you feel like you can’t have what you wanted before — the lifelong partner, family, etc. It’s awful that the way you were attacked is so intimately linked with those aspirations — so I can (as much as is feasible for someone in my situation) understand your feelings but, if I was being really simplistic, what I’d say is what you need is someone who you can have a healthy, loving relationship with. I know this is really Catch 22 in your situation but hopefully you can overcome the barriers with patience and help and encouragement.

    There are some points about your situation that you may be deliberately keeping unclear to protect your anonymity but one question I’d have is whether the sort of fear that keeps you from going out or even getting out of bed is fear in the abstract (i.e. of how you would cope in general circumstances) or whether it’s because you have a very specific fear that you might find yourself in the same situation with the same people (I know this has happened once but you were understandably vague about the circumstances). I’m not suggesting you answer this on the blog (but if you want to e-mail me then please do) but I can see that your ability to try and recover will be influenced by how much you might be reminded of it when you venture outside.

    From what I’ve heard, CBT (as mentioned in your tweet) might be very helpful for you. I have a book on it and I know at least one person who’s found it very beneficial — activities like writing down things that have made you happy or pleased you. It must be good or there wouldn’t be such long waiting times for it!

    • femaleptsd

      November 3, 2011 at 12:33 am

      Hi Mike – Thanks again for your insight – I always like reading your thoughts. I guess from an outside perspective you put a different slant on things and that makes me think a bit differently!!

      I think the catch 22 situation means that I do find it so hard to see the future and hence the things stopping me from moving on in any way.

      The fear I have isn’t really to do with being attacked again – I know I am relatively safe in that situation (well from the same people – it could always happen with someone else I guess!) but there are a couple of reasons why I don’t want to go out:

      1 – I constantly feel on high alert – always looking around me and this is tiring in itself. I don’t feel safe, i’m scared of noises, smells, people – anything that could trigger a flashback as I had a bad one once when I was out on my own.

      2 – I don’t like crowds – being in the fracture clinic today tested me completely – I was on edge the whole time and just wanted to get home. I think i’ve become afraid of people – I said to my cc yesterday that this world is full of horrid people. She said it is full of good people and then said reality is somewhere in the middle with a mix of both. I get that, but it seems I attract the bad and I don’t want any more hurt and so my bed is the safest place for this!!

      Is that what you meant? In terms of CBT, I am hopeful of the process, just scared of a) letting someone in to my thoughts and b) being alone after that with no cc to contact!

      • Mike

        November 3, 2011 at 12:46 am

        I agree with you somewhat — loads of potentially horrible people.

        I’ve had a strange year where I spent quite a lot of the first few months being based at home and seeing very few people I didn’t know to suddenly doing a job in the centre of London which involved, probably, seeing more people in the first day on the way to the office than I’d normally have seen in a month.

        I’d rather avoid the tube if I could but I must cross paths with several thousand people a day. It’s weird when you start to recognise some of them too.

        I like doing solitary things — sometimes I think it would be good to live in the Hebrides or something — but I’m also quite sociable. Sounds like you might be a bit like me — in which case it might be good that I’ve come to tolerate crowded places over the past few months.

      • femaleptsd

        November 3, 2011 at 12:54 am

        I never used to be like this – I was always ok with my own company, not someone who needed to be around people 24 hours a day. But I also had be very sociable – having own business meant networking alot and meeting clients, having coffees etc with them where I was always expected to lead and make sure there were no silences.

        I also enjoyed going out to bars with friends and crowds in those places never once bothered me – I think that’s what is so hard for me – I am so far removed from who I was that it is difficult to see my way back which brings me back to having to rebuild a different me and whether I can be bothered to do that – questions, questions, questions eh!! Sometimes I wish I wasn’t such a thinker (and my cc said the same, it can be a hindrance for me!!)


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