Late Bloomer: A Guide To Orgasm After Rape

When my assault happened, I was stunted in my sexual exploration, and I had no choice but to start anew. I’ve learned it will always be an ongoing battle for me, but a possible feat. Scarleteen readers confronting a comparable situation should know there’s hope for you too. Reclaiming our right to pleasure combats apathy by demonstrating our capacity to enjoy again. While we can’t reverse rape, recovery begins when we remember we have alternatives.

Content note: This story contains details about sexual assault

I wish I could forget my rape.

Surely other survivors share a similar sentiment, a collective longing for a magical erase button. Naïve at nineteen, I visited my best friend in college, glad to assert my newfound independence in her faraway town. To be abused somewhere I felt safe among peers seemed like a cosmic blow to my struggling self-esteem. Though I didn’t realize it then, my path to healing would be tormented by uncertainty, weakness, and exacerbated by my detachment. A stranger in my own skin, I once thought I’d never find comfort in my body again.

Experiencing orgasm seemed like a myth perpetrated by television. As a late bloomer, I also never experimented much due to my delicate blend of Catholic guilt and repression. I barely comprehended my sexual trauma, let alone how to rebound from my violation.

Rape is a weapon of war. It’s a forceful invasion on personal property, a pillage rooted in heteropatriarchy, destruction, demoralization. Coming to terms with sexual assault can mean facing humiliation, tribulation, or possibly ostracization, factors made even more discouraging during adolescence. Escapism or avoidance are normal defense strategies. By unpacking our pain, however, we learn to master our psychological scripts, to rewrite our own narratives. When my assault happened, I badly wanted to return to my routine, to lead a healthy love life like my friends. Stunted in my sexual exploration, I had no choice but to start anew, enduring my memories on a panic-inducing loop. In striving to maintain stability since, I’ve learned it will always be an ongoing battle for me, but a possible feat. Scarleteen readers confronting a comparable situation should know there’s hope for you too.

Whether sexually inexperienced or wondering how to regain sexual agency, assault survivors should prepare for an introspective undertaking into a rewarding domain. Reclaiming our right to pleasure combats apathy by demonstrating our capacity to enjoy again. While we can’t reverse rape, recovery begins when we remember we have alternatives.

Heal, Take Time To Process

It’s important to grieve what’s lost. I repeated this to myself frequently following my sexual assault, sourcing strength from a sheer resolve to retain my identity. Though I didn’t want the trauma to change me, I still couldn’t deny my resulting shame. I also thought I’d never crave sex again. Worse, I feared I lost even my ability to lust.

Looking back, I realize the first step toward healing is accepting what happened frankly, weighing facts not as ammunition, but as a channel to recoup control. Rather than fixating on small details, you can tangibly acknowledge your assault, and accept you may be different due to it. As complex human beings, we comprise the sums of multiple junctures in our lives, not just a singular episode. Rape isn’t the end of the road. Consider it a new start to your chosen journey of discovery. Heartache can convert to cultivated resilience when remedied with bravery and the conviction to mend, forgive yourself, and remember all wounds inevitably improve. All you may need is some time.

Don’t Force It

It helps to understand what cues your trauma responses in order to avoid them or see them coming so you can be ready to manage them.

If having sex or masturbating isn’t appealing, you don’t have to feign desire to meet some unspoken criteria. Maybe you won’t have sex for another year, or perhaps you’ll feel aroused again soon after your rape. Determining I wasn’t ready yet, I abstained for at least six months. I even found masturbating difficult. Whatever your own time frame, strive to patch your psychological injuries alongside your physical ones. You can build trust by socializing with friends, meditating to practice mindfulness , or search for another form of emotional relief. After my assault, I attended more local drag shows, which provided a happy distraction from my anguish.

Most of all, I learned to stop suppressing my feelings, anticipating I’d miraculously rehabilitate. Crying, hopelessness, and confusion are standard reactions to distress, and circumvention is rarely conducive to recovery. Don’t shun whatever your personal healing process is.

Work To Consciously Change Mindsets

Recognize sex as potentially pleasurable. When we choose it, it is a consensual liberty we can make willingly, wantonly, and, when others are involved, with mutual respect. A mind-body disconnect is a common coping mechanism among many survivors, and can remain long after your assault. Fostering physical intimacy can empower from within.

To repair entrenched sexual trauma, try to consciously change your mindset first. It’s normal to initially shy from your mirror due to dysmorphia or embarrassment. To nurture a raw love for my rallying body, affirmations such as I will feel safe again and It’s not my fault helped me during my own recuperation. Aside from positive associations, you can also address any underlying agitators you may have. I’ve spent years unraveling subtle ways I repressed my lust during youth, including never masturbating and disguising the word “vagina” with a euphemism. You can explore your anatomy, and don’t be afraid to follow natural curiosities. Only we control our own sexual gratification.

Reconnect With Yourself

For sexual assault survivors, reaching orgasm can feel like a litmus test for mental endurance.

Beyond prior preparation, attaining a pleasing peak demands patient determination to relax and let loose. Before you become intimate with someone else, I suggest you reacquaint yourself with personal gratification. You can explore extra avenues of desire to get in-tune with your needs, like physical touch, erotica, or sex toys. Listen to your intuition. Experiment with masturbation when you feel comfortable and safe enough. It’s okay if your experience is conclusively anti-climactic. I bought my first vibrator at twenty, and didn’t orgasm until a year later. With any partners, communicate your preferences and establish clear consent agreements and boundaries, but don’t push your threshold if you’re suddenly taken out of the moment.

When I first asked my therapist how to reclaim my sexuality, she suggested respiratory techniques to ensure I’m grounded in the present. For example, breathe deeply through your abdomen to boost circulation and decrease tension, directing concentration toward your pelvic area. Though it’s instinctual to hold your breath when almost reaching climax, try to resist the urge. With this awareness, you’ll gradually grasp that easing up enhances satisfaction. To counteract distractions, I also focus on my physical surroundings or somatic sensations during sex or masturbation, which allows me to orgasm easier. Continue testing your own trial and errors.

Check-In When You Check-Out

Don’t be alarmed by disassociation. Zoning out can happen anytime, anywhere, even when you are enjoying yourself. Many survivors describe sexual fulfillment as an unpredictable minefield after sexual assault; as a subtle switch from ecstatic to numb. I’ve also come to predict these obstacles every so often, whether masturbating or achieving orgasm otherwise. At first, I can be excited to test a new position with my boyfriend, consumed in heartfelt passion. In the next minute, I’m suddenly sobbing because a specific maneuver awakened my latent trauma. While every case differs, I’m left equally shaken each time.

Don’t give yourself a hard time when your body abruptly relives a past event. You’ll undeniably be jolted from your pursuit, but the prospect isn’t gone forever. You can work through these foggy episodes to creep closer to orgasm, presumably while also nearing reassociation. Drink warm water or tea, exercise your ligaments, and be sure to slow your breathing once more. Check in to notice when you’re checking out.

Open Up and Find Support

Vulnerability warrants measured courage. While opening up about assault may be difficult to contemplate, finding reliable people to talk to ultimately makes a significant difference. I attend weekly therapy sessions. With new partners, I try to speak honestly about my trauma when I’m secure enough. Sporadically, I also turn toward the Internet to research complex topics, like rape trauma syndrome and secondary victimization. Whether to a paid professional or a close friend, articulating your feelings help gain outside perspective, and highlight what requires attention. Turning thoughts to words can also later transform guilt into healthy coping mechanisms. For many, it’s also cathartic.

If you’re uneasy about revealing your identity, online anonymity is another viable option for those seeking support. In addition to working directly with survivors, Scarleteen’s forums promote inclusive discussions on sex education to soothe your concerns.

Remember: Recovery Isn’t Linear

Welcome failure as a learning curve. Scars may fade, but it’s impossible to simply brainwipe sexual assault.

Years have passed since my rape, and it still haunts my nightmares on occasion. Sometimes, my subconscious slips farther into darkness, swelling with vivid flashbacks of my incident. I have days I believe I’ve made no headway, even after orgasm or sustaining an intimate relationship.

No one has a tidy trajectory toward self-growth. One instant you may be invigorated, and the next, reality can prove more grueling than expected. I know regression can make it seem as if all progress has been lost, but setbacks are also part of our individual endeavors. Float in your emotional riptides today, so that tomorrow you’ll be free to feel again. Only by embracing the negative can we fully lean into our deepest desires, fears, and discomforts. I’m still understanding this too.

late bloomer: a guide to orgasm after rape


The Attunement Bridge: Healing From an Affair

Many factors contribute to recovery from a relational rupture.

The post The Attunement Bridge: Healing From an Affair appeared first on The Gottman Institute.


Depression Q&A: Common Kinds Of The Depression

* What is Depression?

Depression is a disorder, engaged in a person ís body, mood and thoughts. It can influence and interrupts eating, sleeping or judging manner. It is different from unhappiness or a down feeling. It is also not an indication of personal flaws or a condition that can be motivated or wanted away.

Persons with this disorder cannot just gather themselves together and get well. Usually, treatment is important and significantly vital to healing.

* Are there different types of depression?

Yes, there are actually three primary types of depression. Most of these are established by how ominous the signs are. They are:

Major depression This is the most serious type of mood disorder based on the number of signs and austerity of symptoms. It has become a severe health disorder and significant health concern in this country.

Manic depression  This type involves both high and low mood swings. It also indicates other major symptoms not found in other depression types.

Dysthymia depression identifies the low to moderate level of depression that continues for about two years and sometimes longer. Though the symptoms are not as serious as a major depression, they more lasting and defiant to healing. People with this type develop a major depression for a moment when depressed.

* What is major depression?

This is the most serious type of depression. More symptoms found in this depression that are usually severe and serious.

Sometimes, it can be an effect from a particular disturbing incident in your life or it may develop gradually because of various personal frustrations and life struggles. Some people seem to develop the signs of a major depression with no apparent life problems.

Major depression can happen once, because of a major emotional trauma, react to healing, and will not happen again as long as you live. This is normally what they called a single episode depression.

Some people are inclined to have habitual depression, with events of depression followed by periods of a number of years without depression, followed by another one, typically in reaction to another distress. This would be continuing depression.

Usually, the healing is similar, but that healing normally is over a longer period for continuing depression.

* What is Postpartum depression?

Postpartum depression can vary from temporary “blues” following childbirth to serious, unbearable and emotional depression.

Postpartum depression signs are just the same to those experienced by other depressives, involving desperate belief, feelings of despair, low self-confidence, and constant fatigue and mood changes.

It can be healed successfully as long as the mother and her support group identify the warning symptoms and examine them with considerate clinical experts. While some psychological occurrences and depressive feelings might be completely normal, constant feeling of unimportance or desperate views are not.

The secret to healing is to be honest with what you feel during each postpartum meeting with your physician.

* What is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a mood disorder felt by most people during Winter months. It is characterized by a seasonal depression, the down feeling, a longing to sleep for too long and habitual desire for starchier foods.

The signs of SAD normally start in the late Fall where there is already less daytime. It may not start subside until late winter or spring.

Symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder include:

  • Symptoms such as unnecessary eating and sleeping, weight increase normally take place during the Fall or Winter months.
    Complete reduction from despair happens in the Spring and Summer months.
  • Indications have taken place in the past two years, with no seasonal depression episodes.
  • Seasonal episodes considerably outnumber no seasonal depression episodes.
  • There is a longing for sweet and starchy foods.

* What is bipolar depression?

Bipolar depression, also identified as manic depression, is categorized as a type of affective disorder or mood disorder that happens during life ís normal difficulties. It can become a severe clinical condition. It is a significant health concern in the United States. This is distinguished by irregular episodes of acute excitement, elevated mood, or bad temper (also referred to as mania) opposed episodic, common depressive signs.

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Domestic Violence And Depression

More and more people are reporting incidents of domestic violence to the police. If you are a victim of domestic violence you will be aware of just how frightening it can be. The question that many people ask is what are the causes of this violence, is the person just a lunatic or are there other reasons behind it.

According to the latest reports alcohol has a large part to play in leading to cases of domestic violence. In the example of a husband hitting his wife when he is drunk, this is typically what can happen. For the sake of making this article easier to read, I shall call the husband John and his wife Linda.

John is a really nice guy when sober. Linda is very much in love with him and hopes that they will grow old together. John is a great father to their two children, is helpful around the house and is a great cook. The problem occurs after he has had rather too much to drink. John now becomes a whole different person, he starts to accuse his wife of having an affair, becomes abusive and very argumentative. Linda realizing he is drunk attempts to walk away to leave John to his bad mood, this only adds however to his anger and he starts to become violent.

The next morning John can not believe what he has done and is full of regret and remorse. He can not say sorry enough and begs for Linda’s forgiveness. He promises that it will never happen again and states that he will give up the alcohol if that would make his wife happy.

Linda is not sure what to do, she would love to forgive and forget but feels that it is very likely that it only happen again in the future if she does.

In many cases people like Linda will forgive their partner or husband a number of times before eventually losing patience with them.

My advice for John would be to stop drinking alcohol straight away. This seems to be the cause of all of these problems, therefore you need to find something else to have an interest in.

Another cause of domestic violence is known to be depression. Some people who are normally very relaxed can become very angry and abusive when in a deep state of depression. They can take their problems and frustrations out on their partner much like in the example above.

A few days or weeks later when the person in question is feeling a lot happier, they will not believe what they have done.

Whether it is because of depression or alcohol, one solution to this domestic violence problem could be to attend some form of anger management program, that is for people like John.

“Seduction Techniques” – Are They For Losers?

Imagine that you are already in your college days and still you can’t find a date. Or even asking someone for a date is a misery for you. In short, you find it hard to approach women and lacks confidence in yourself.

Seduction techniques in this new millennium are on the rise. Seduction techniques can greatly help guys who find it hard to get the women they always wanted. So it is never a problem now. Seduction as thought by many is not wrong. You are just simply studying the best techniques that will make dating and picking up easier. Seduction techniques in the other hand are simply getting to know and basically mastering the proper ways of attracting women.

But did you know that seduction techniques are not just for men? It is also most useful too for women. These are the women who have been waiting to get noticed by their special men. Well it is indeed nowadays, a perfect help that life has to offer. Not that it is offering easy tactics on how to collect men or women but making it easier to enjoy life and find that perfect mate. Seduction techniques are commonly practiced by people who are not well skilled in terms of attracting the opposite sex. Not that they are ugly or what, but there are just people who needs seduction techniques to boost their self-esteem and develop confidence in themselves. Seduction techniques are therefore not as bad as other think of unless you are using it to enhance the inner skills that humans usually possess.

Seduction techniques are not generally focused on developing your tactics on attracting the opposite sex. It can also be very helpful in businesses. Like for example, you are a car salesman. And you find it very hard to approach prospective clients. You are wasting your time and effort on studying how to deal with them when you can actually make business with them. Seduction technique is one great help. You wouldn’t imagine how it can greatly affect your sales by simply practicing the principles used in seduction techniques.

Job seekers can also benefit from seduction techniques. While on interview, you can mesmerize the interviewer with the tactics that you have learned in seduction techniques. Not that you are inviting them to indulge into sexual activities, but you can impress them with the way you are boosting your self. Seduction techniques can tame any roaring beasts.

Seduction technique in general is an absolute solution for losers, men and women who possess low self-esteem, job seekers and even businessmen. People who are in immense need for help, in terms of capturing the hearts of the people they always wanted will be overwhelmed if they discover the wonder of the so-called seduction technique. So go, and share the seduction technique to your friends whom you know are suffering from different encumbrance in their lives. You can absolutely be of great help in solving the miseries of their own lives.

Adult ADD: Are You A “Fire” Fighter?

In business, we refer to the word “fires,” a lot of times. These are fires that happen,not literal fires, but things that need to be taken care of. A fire could anything that someone else thinks is really important and they come to you, and try to throw it on you as your problem because when you have ADD, you’re probably good at putting fires out.

You may say, Oh, let me go take care of that because when you have ADD, you have a tendency to want to control things. But you can find people that will work for you to put out fires, to take care of interruptions. Stop your ADD brain from the fear of losing control. There are wonderful people out there that specialize in taking care of certain types of problems. Though your ADD may tell you that you need to be on top of everything, you don’t.

Here’s an example: If you regularly run into unexpected technological problems in your business, perhaps you have found a few people that are very good at responding, at lightning speed, and fixing any problems that you might run into with any of your websites. But maybe they’re not particularly good at keeping ahead of those problems on their own, given their own devices. If you just say, ìHere, monitor this and make sure it stays okay, they may not be good at that. If a problem goes unnoticed, it just causes a bigger problem. You still have to manage your delegates, so you can put your ADD mind at ease. Even when you delegate tasks, you are still in control.

Putting out fires is a symptom of systems–or a lack of them–and it’s that ADD fear of losing control. Even if you have people working for you, that doesn’t mean you don’t have to manage whatever the task is, stuff still happens. Some of the people that are best at putting out fires actually are ADD types. People with ADD are good at switching gears. People with ADD are good at changing directions. And though some would call it “being distracted,” people with ADD are good at allowing their minds to switch from one thing to another and taking care of something when it needs to be taken care of.

Most ADD people try to go one way or the other. Some have extremely strict policies about when they’re going to make appointments, how they’re going to do it, and are very strict, which allows for zero flexibility. Their ADD has them terrified of losing control. Yet, if something comes up, they’re in trouble. Rigidity can cause a lot of anxiety.

Or, it flips to the other side of, Oh I guess I’ll just look at this open calendar for the week, and whatever comes up, comes up. While that’s not what people say consciously, that’s generally what they tend to do. It’s one end of the pendulum to the other.

But you don’t have to be that rigid to control your ADD. You can have a flexible calendar. You can get all these things in. You can have the fires as they come up, if you need to, and you can deal with some of these things and manage your ADD.

It’s all about expectation–what other people are expecting of you. If you are always available to put out fires and your ADD has you always wanting to be in control, then people will expect you to always be available to put out fires. Oh my gosh, We’ve got to pay this bill right away! Oh my gosh, we’re running out of money! Oh my gosh, a customer is calling and they’re upset. Oh my gosh, we have to do this refund.

You may have to put up a sign that says, Use your own brain, mine is busy.î If you don’t have people that are coming in, you still have phone interruptions, and fires, and so on. It’s about NOT setting the expectation. If you don’t set people up to expect things from you, they won’t.

Depression Is An Equal Opportunity Condition

Depression is a serious medical condition that can affect anyone. Men, women and children are all susceptible to this disease which can have devastating effects on someone’s daily life. Depression can come on suddenly, for no reason, or it might follow a traumatic experience such as a death or some other traumatic experience.

Symptoms of depression can interfere with a person’s ability to work, sleep, study and enjoy life in a fruitful way. If you find that these symptoms persist for more than a few weeks you should discuss it with your doctor. The symptoms to look for include: sadness, irritability, no interest in hobbies and activities which once were loved, hopelessness, problems sleeping, fatigue, thoughts of suicide or death, feelings of guilt and significant weight change.

Once these symptoms start affecting the way you live your life, it’s time to seek help. M.I., who has had depression on and off for many years says, “I never really knew what was wrong with me. I would have these bouts with trying to cope with life, but all I would end up doing is staying sad and crying all the time. I couldn’t see any way out of what I was dealing with in my life, but I’m glad I hung in there. Being able to find out what was wrong with me and knowing that I could get treatment for it changed my life.”

Depression can also affect the physical health of a person, which is a symptom that is often overlooked. I. A., a depression sufferer shares, “I would get these pains in my arms, shoulder and hands. My doctor told me that he couldn’t find anything wrong. Nothing wrong with my bones or my joints, but the pains never seemed to go away. Now I know it was related to the depression.”

No one knows what exactly causes depression, but some believe it might be caused by an imbalance of certain chemicals in the brain, and in that instance you and your doctor might decide that you need to take antidepressants. One form of depression called “Seasonal Affective Disorder” (SAD) uses light therapy as treatment since it’s thought that a lack of sunlight during certain times of the year could be a cause.

If you think depression might be entering your life, don’t wait to get help. There is nothing wrong with asking questions and trying to get help. Many people are too afraid or feel guilty about asking for help for depression. A lot of the world still thinks that depression is “just the blues” or just a person feeling down. Depression is a very real medical condition that is just as valid as having a broken bone that would need to be treated.

“A reluctance to get help can lead to years of disability and not having a good and happy life,” says B.D., “I could have gotten help a long time ago, but I waited for about ten years before taking action. I thought I should have been a person strong enough to beat depression on my own. I sure wish I had made the move toward help instead of waiting.”

Remember, depression is a treatable condition that can get better. You need to take the steps to get the help you need.

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