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Thread: Supporting others in abusive situations

  1. #51
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    I am sorry that your ex experienced the wrong that you describe, but am glad you are there for her.

    Thing I find when acting as a non-professional support person is to not to get confused between my role as a friend move into an expert role. Secret I find is to be there (if this is my and their wish) but not to tell the person how to manage the situation or give unsolicited advice.

    Seems like others have told her about the option of reporting this guy...however as an adult it is up to her to decide if this is one she wants to pursue.

    I am glad that she sees his explanations as him making excuses and is reframing this incident for what it is...as a non-consensual sexual violation ...rape. The act of a predatory man. That you are reinforcing this message. Also glad you are reassuring her that nothing she did or didn't do gave her attacker the right to criminally violate her.
    Rest in my arms precious child; cradled and warm. You are safe. The war is over.

  2. The following 4 users say thank you to Jane for this useful post:

    Manya (08-31-2017),Reblisa (08-17-2017),Sunfl0wer (08-17-2017),weepingwillow (08-17-2017)

  3. #52
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    In a somewhat similar situation I did not contact the police, and he talked me into being his friend again (I was gullible) and it happened again. He stalked me like this after, too - even after I told him to stop contacting me. I did eventually have to call crisis services because he was threatening to kill himself, but otherwise probably never would have called. People wanted me to file a report, but not only was I afraid of him and ruining his life, and his parents, and his brother, I did not want to put myself through the stress and pain of filing a police report while trying to deal with how betrayed I felt. For me, more than anything, it was the betrayal itself that hurt me. I had tried to be kind, had tried to help him etc. I knew he was attracted to me, but I was engaged and pregnant towards the end of everything. Many people told me I was selfish, and a coward.

    Thing is, he was the coward not me, but it took a long time for that to sink in. I'm glad I didn't let anyone push me into filing a report. I have other mental health issues and truly believe I would've wound up in the mental hospital. Given the situation, he would've gone free also. There was no evidence or anything really but my word to give the police. 17 years ago, that wasn't enough and the police would have probably laughed at me tb perfectly h.

    I can't give advice or tell you what to do, but I can tell you what I wanted from the people around me. Sympathy/empathy was nice at first, but quickly felt like pity. Idk if that was the intent on their part, probably not, but that's how it felt. Yes, it sucked (as an understatement) but hearing that and "sorry" over and over again made it harder to try and move forward with my recovery. If it came up to me on my own - flashbacks/triggers and such - I wanted someone to lean on about the flashback/trigger, but not necessarily the reason for it. I'ma try to explain that, but idk if I can. I needed to deal with the trigger itself, not go back and process the attack. I needed to say "wow, that reminded me of {blank}, and I need to find a way to not be triggered by {whatever it was} in the future." So my focus would not be the memory itself, but the thing that bothered me. Triggers can be weird. Taco Bell can trigger me, being near or in an enclosed space. I'm 37, and I'm afraid of the dark. Mallocups. Weird random stuff that you can't avoid, so I had to learn to be around those things and still function. A lot of times I wanted someone to come with me for support, but I didn't want to bring it up because the point was to separate the two in my brain for me. One friend came with me to Taco Bell several times. They'd sit and crack jokes, or we'd play word games. Just something fun that helped me to relax and not think of the fear.

    Touch was another big thing for me. I needed space, needed to not randomly be touched, but some people need extra affection. It really depends on the kind of person. Not feeling forced to hug people helped me though. Some people mean well, but to have someone hug you when you don't want to be touched is really hard for rape survivors. Not being told over and over again that I should file a police report would have been nice. On person in particular, I know, was trying to be supportive but failed miserably. Again, I don't think people really meant to be so mean, they just didn't understand what I needed and didn't know what to do. I did not communicate very well at all about what I did need though, which didn't help anyone. That's something I'm learning to work on, to understand how I'm feeling and communicate that to the people around me when appropriate. If I had been able to do that, someone asking me what I needed in that moment probably would have been helpful. My fiance was really good about this. He'd just kind of ask me what I wanted to do and maybe suggest stuff I might want to do. A card game, a nap if I seem exhausted, lunch, a walk, etc. Sleeping while my fiance was awake I did a lot too, because I was able to sleep if someone I completely trusted (and he was the only one really) was awake keeping watch. That doesn't work for some people I guess, but was immensely helpful for me. Sleep can still be a battle all this time later, but it got so much better.

    I guess it all boils down to me needing someone to be there with me, but not be pushy.

    What he did is truly awful, but like Jane said, I'm glad she has your support. Having someone I trusted, and that I knew cared about me, helped my recovery. I also found a therapist very helpful and would suggest it to anyone dealing with trauma. Not for everyone, but generally people find it helpful. I hope for the best for you both.
    "You're only given one little spark of madness. You mustn't lose it." -- Robin Williams
    "Don't be afraid of the shadows, that only means there's a light nearby." -- Evanescence
    "So when you’re feeling crazy, and things fall apart, listen to your head, remember who you are." -- Three Days Grace
    "But I am not really worried, I am not overly concerned. You try to tell yourself the things you tell yourself to make yourself forget." -- Counting Crows
    "Our brains are sick, but that's OK!"
    "Peace will win and fear will lose."

    "And I will say that we should take a moment and hold it, and keep it frozen and know that life has a hopeful undertone."
    "It ain't the speakers that bump hearts, it's our hearts that make the beat!" -- twenty øne piløts |-/

  4. The following 3 users say thank you to weepingwillow for this useful post:

    Jane (08-17-2017),Manya (08-31-2017),Reblisa (08-18-2017)

  5. #53
    Unregistered Guest

    Thank You

    I wanted to thank you both for the kind responses and support not only for my partner but for me too. A lot of the things you both said speak many truths and great volumes to the things she has tried explaining to me on how she feels and the way she would like to deal with the situation.
    My apologies for the late reply, I have just been doing all i can to take her mind away from things such as trips out, going for walks, the cinema....anything that i know she enjoys and at times she seems the person she used to be...then you see her hit a wall, facial expressions change and that look of "zoning out" comes across her and reality hits home and tension seems to build.
    Understanding the thoughts of a victim and what they need and crave from a man or someone close to them is a struggle in itself, being a man, instinct tells you to grab hold and hug them or give them a kiss on the head or even just hold a hand for comfort but those things spark those triggers and escalate the situation, and when words dont come out right you seem like the bad guy and that every frustration and built up anger inside that they have had bottled up is vented on you.
    I struggle to contend with the daily uncertainty of how each day is going to be, i'm not sure if that does make me a bad person and that the last thing she needs is me complicating things for her.
    We have a councilor coming to talk things through and due to the fact she is still receiving messages and attempts of contact through other forms of social media she is hoping the police may be able to put an end to him contacting her if nothing else.
    In terms of the law and prosecution, i dont care if he gets done or not, i honestly only want the fear of her phone ringing, a knock at her door, or notifications from apps on her phone to disappear. i cant describe the anxiety and fear you see in her face and her actions when those things happen, nobody should have to live in fear. But.....as these things are still coming through and messages are being received, i see that it is all further evidence towards some form of justice being served if she wished it. My hope is hearing this from a person of authority helps with a bit of closure to know she isn't and wasn't to blame for anything that he chose to do.
    Time will tell.

    Again, many thanks for your kind words and support

  6. #54
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    Thanks for your update. Is not easy supporting someone following a traumatic event...imo it takes patience, caring and a lot of energy. Thing I found that helped was to ensure I remembered my own needs in the midst of all else that was happening...to recognise that to be emotionally available I needed to self care...sometimes this meant having a day 'off' focusing on doing things that I truly enjoyed.

    For you and your friend...I hope life soon gets back on track for both of you.
    Rest in my arms precious child; cradled and warm. You are safe. The war is over.

  7. The following user says thank you to Jane for this useful post:

    Reblisa (08-30-2017)

  8. #55
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    Rediscovered this thread - . Hope others also think it deserves a second 'top-billing'.
    Rest in my arms precious child; cradled and warm. You are safe. The war is over.

  9. The following user says thank you to Jane for this useful post:

    Manya (09-02-2017)

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