Sunday, October 21, 2012

About This Blog

I came to visit Tucson, Arizona out of a need to get away, clear my mind & think. My relationship with my business partner was already not good. And now my relationship with my partner was hanging on by a thread. I hated being at work and I hated being at home. So I emailed my dear friend Sandy - my teacher, my mentor, my friend - to see if I could come and sleep on the couch in her office for a few weeks. Her response to every invitation in life is YES! Though she had a better idea than the couch. I could stay in her casita in the back of her property. Ella's old room. Ella being the homeless woman Sandy let live on her property until she died. A small one room casita with red and orange curtains, blue/gray walls & and a big comfy bed. Perfect.

When my relationship crashed into a wall a few weeks ago, I found myself at a low point that I had not been at in a very long time. I felt like everything that I had grown to know in the past 5 years was suddenly over. So I did what I had done many times in my life. I got into therapy.

I was sexually abused by my Scoutmaster beginning when I was 12. One of the long term effects of childhood sexual abuse is what is called splitting -you shut down sexually with your partner or you become very sexually active. I did both. For about the past 3 years we barely had sex. Maybe once every 2 or 3 months. And I was feeding again my off and on online chatroom sexual addiction. This time it was in full swing. He knew about it. I thought he was ok about it. He wasn't about any of it. So that on top of he and I not having any sex....well you do the math.

When I went to see Suzanne, my therapist, for the first time I told her EVERYTHING. Even things I don't think she really wanted to hear. I had an hour and I had found someone I could pay to listen to me and not talk back. It was perfect. The first thing she asked is if this man was still around children. I couldn't answer that. I didn't know. She said that if he were I needed to go to the police. I didn't know what to do with that. My hour ended and I paid her fee. I didn't go to the police. I went home.

Being here now in Tucson my mind is full. I find myself once again late at night feeding my online chat addiction. I'm not getting any rest. Clearly this break was not working. Sandy even had me accompany her to a dance workshop weekend. It was not working.

So today Sandy's husband Michael and third child Oren and I went to Maynard's for brunch. Michael started telling me of a woman he knew who when confronted with cancer started blogging about her experiences. That's when I knew that is what I needed to do. I had already started writing out my story of the abuse when I got to Tucson. I had already begun.

So if anyone is reading or anyone is interested, this is my story. Everything. And like my first therapy session - more than you really wanted to know. Perfect.


  1. Thanks for educating me about one of the long-term effects of abuse- splitting. My Boyfriend of 5 years has shared with me that he was abused as a child. Sex started strong for about 3 weeks and after that it diminished to about twice a month to once a month and now, never. I don't know what to do. He doesn't think he needs help, he always has an excuse for not wanting to be with me sexually.

    Any advice?

  2. It is a difficult relationship to be in. You have to decide if you want to be part of his healing or not. Just know that it isn't about you so don't make it mean anything. If he can't go into therapy right now then you need to. Therapy will help you learn how to navigate through it all and understand what he is going through. And to learn how to be part of his healing. Find a place inside yourself to have compassion for him. He is doing the best he can right now. Has he shared with you what all happened? Telling our stories can be a huge piece to starting our healing. Ask him to tell you his story. And when he does just sit there listening to him, without judgment, and without offering advice or telling him what to do. And thank him for telling you his story. We grow up thinking that no one listens to us. And we also grow up thinking that the only thing anyone wants from us is sex which makes sense that we shut down sexually. Its about being able to control that piece of our lives that we had no say in as a child. Now ask yourself some questions: Are you willing to take this on? Do you love him? Is the relationship worth it to you? Is he? Educate yourself. And when shopping for a therapist make sure they have training in sexual abuse. I will post here later to my blog a letter I wrote that was published in my local paper. I wish I could say this was going to be easy for either of you; it's not. I can say that through this your relationship and love for each other will grow stronger. I'm here if either of you need anything.