Being with pain

We self-harmed physically yesterday. We do not do that often.

We do not yet have the skills to fill the emotional void that wet intend to fill with self-love. The emotional pain was long in duration and deep in intensity. It’s the pain of Trauma from abuse and neglect. It’s pain of not yet understanding boundaries clearly, boundaries that were dropped like a cold, stone wall. It feels like abandonment, forced isolation.

We also lack the skills to sit with the pain for this long. We are practicing that in therapy sessions. Therapy sessions last about 55 minutes. We typically go 4 days/week. The pain is most of the time, and not all of the time. Next week we have only 2 appointments because T-3 is on spring break.

So we took control of the emotional pain and caused intentional physical pain. Usually, we would dissociate and create fictional situations/delusions that justify the emotional pain. They seem just as real as real life, and that is how we have coped with the void these few weeks: fill it with emotional pain we cause.

And therapists say we had been filling the void with them, as replacement parents. So now there are boundaries to reduce our contact outside session and alter our dynamic in-session.

This change and our resistance and lack of comprehension have caused much tumult in us. We feel punished, confused, very young. We have taken off our glasses twice and functioned around the house without sight. This tells us we are being our little-Littles. They forget they have glasses, that they can see now. They only know the blurry world. How relevant.

For whatever reason, the physical pain we caused us served as motivation, and we did shaking/dancing. That is a healthy way to reset energy. That felt skillful.

We admitted to Spouse about the self-harm. Spouse was not pleased to hear that we had to suffer any more, especially by our own hand. Spouse found the bruise. It was not very dangerous. So neither Spouse nor you need worry that that we are in imminent danger.

T-3, who denied the hug earlier in the week, sent an email maybe to soothe us while T-3 is in vacation: T-3 sets personal boundaries. We can ask for our needs and T can answer how T feels is safe.

The intention was probably to be gentle, give hope. That is generous. Wonder if we’ll accept that gift. We’d already made paper hearts with messages on them to give Ts during session to communicate challenging things, like we want to feel more connected, or we do feel connected, or we’re having intense feelings, or we’re confused, or we’re having trouble staying present.

Asking for touch seems dangerous. Boundaries are new and confusing. Maybe all new things are. We will try to open up to them so that we can learn. Proceed with caution!

We are in emotional pain today. So we will try to practice being with it. Maybe talk to it, to me’s and try to be self-compassionate when possible

6 thoughts on “Being with pain

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