Sexual Confidence

Discussion in 'General Sex Discussion' started by Cora, Nov 23, 2007.

  1. Cora

    Cora New Member

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    I'm having a lot of problems over loss of sexual confidence lately, and I want to do something about it before it gets worse, as I'm going down hill fast, and can see how this could progess to the point of phobia.

    I am diagnosed PTSD, and have had a long history of abuse and traumatic events (way too much to go into, including some violent and some sexual assaults... some situations severe enough to be life threatening). In fact, I have barely had an abuse free period in my life at all... although I'm happy to say that I do right now.

    I had a few fairly minor (but still notable) hang ups about sex, right from the beginning of adulthood... but on the other hand was always open about sex related topics, a liberal thinker, non-judgemental, and still had a high sex drive, so I figured I was ok.

    It's frustrating, as I get turned on as easily as I ever did, and have no loss libido... but have actually gotten to the point where the idea of acting on it feels frightening. I can't handle eye contact during anything sexual, being on top, and for the last couple of years even just having the lights on. And here's the irrational part... if I do, I feel like I'm being exposed... and that the guy can see every dark secret about my abusive background, every flaw I have, every mistake I've ever made etc... like they're finding out I'm a fraud of some kind.

    After a certain period of time with a partner I get a bit better with regards to sex with them, but because I obviously need more patience from partners, and they simply haven't had any (I'll admit I haven't chosen well)... that leaves me in a worse state for the next. Some of their attitudes have made me feel like I'm being punished. When I look back over how I was sexually a few months ago, 2 years ago, 5 years ago... I realise that this problem has been progressing all this time. Comparing me now to say 10 years ago... two completely different people. Just in the last week or so I've felt like I can't bring myself to any sexual activity with a partner at all.

    I am very far from a prude, as even a few people on :sf would know well by now, and I'm dying to get back to myself in the bedroom (...or kitchen, or bathroom, or patio... :lol nice to know that if I never have sex again I'll still have my sense of humour). I have barely ever found counselling to be the right solution for me, although have come across one exception who I have found helpful for other issues. I'll look into seeing him. Other than that... anyone know of any other resources that could help me out?
     
    #1 Cora, Nov 23, 2007
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2007
  2. Bluesy

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    Being with the right guy can make a world of difference. There are controlling men who will withhold compliments, make derogatory comments about your body or sexual aptitude, who will make you feel like a sexual failure (through subtle behaviors or "off-handed" remarks), and then there are men who will make you feel cherished and beautiful and appreciated--do NOT settle for anything less. You deserve no less. I promise you that if you stick to your guns, you'll find a guy whose very attitude towards sex, towards you, will help diminish those inhibitions. But you have to work on your self-esteem, too (you know, a woman's degree of self-esteem determines what she will/won't tolerate in a partner). If you have yet to find the right counselor to help you work through these issues, keep looking. I'm sure you can get past this in time.

    You might find some useful resources through these sites:

    http://www.rainn.org/

    http://www.aardvarc.org/
     
  3. AnonymousOne

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    I think a lot of this matters in regards to WHO you are with. Trust is one of the key parts of a relationship, sexual or otherwise. When traumatic events shatter that trust it can be terribly hard to rebuild it. I think it might just take some time to rebuild bits of that trust with the right person before you become more comfortable being bent over the kitchen table.

    On a side note, Bluesy it's a MONTH until Christmas and you're already under the mistletoe?!
     
  4. Cora

    Cora New Member

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    Thanks for the replies. It's good advice... these fears have crossed the line so far into being irrational, that it's going to be hard to break through this barrier even with someone I do trust implicitly (I know because there's someone in mind, and there's no question as to whether I can trust him, or whether he understands).

    I've had the same thing happen over a lot of other fears (non-sexual)... where I've developed a phobia, compulsion or secondary disorder, had to find ways to nip it in the bud before it gets too severe (which has taken a lot of determination), only to find that I automatically pick up another one every time. In fact, that's part of the reason I always feel like I'm "hiding" something, and that what people see on the surface is a deception. I've managed to hide all this even from key people in my life.

    But I digress... I'm going to make calls on Monday about seeing that counsellor again (there have been so many failed attempts at the counselling option, and when revealing the extreme nature of some of this abuse I've been called a liar making me far worse, but the one I'm going to see really is good). And I'll try and focus on the things I still can do sexually without fear... even if they're not much. I mean I managed to take those pics and upload them, which terrified me at first, but then made me feel pretty happy once I'd done it... and now I could do it again easily.
     
  5. Bluesy

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    Omg! I can only imagine how that made you feel :( I think it's great that you're willing and able to put the bad counseling experiences behind you and try again. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you that this new counselor is exceptionally kind and competent.

    That's the spirit, girl! :) Baby steps is the way to go. One tiny step forward at a time (and maybe some backtracking, which is normal), and you'll achieve your goals before you know it.

    Umm...the early mistletoer gets the smooches? :uhh: Hey, at least I practiced some self-restraint and haven't yet unpacked and hung the x-mas avatars up yet :p ;)
     
  6. AnonymousOne

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    Irrational fears are always the ones that take the most work to get over, if they WERE rational to begin with, reason can help to calm things down. Just stick to your guns hun and let the chips fall where they may.


    Between the mistletoe and the tits avatar ... :lol