Hello: I don't know if this is the appropriate website for this question, but I couldn't find a help line or a non-emergency number.
I have called the Trevor Project in the past with suicidal ideation. I have been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, Clinical Depression, and a severe anxiety disorder. Some doctors have thought I was bipolar but there was never a unanimous agreement between my psychiatrists/therapists.
I have been in therapy for 3.5 years but stopped about 2 months ago because my class schedule did not work out with my therapist in Chicago.
A therapist I had when I was about 16/17 mentioned that she suspected I was sexually abused as a child and don't remember it. I understand that internet searches on diagnoses can be unreliable, but I saw a few things that suggested it was a possibility.
I have no memory from the age of about 13 and prior. The memories I do have are not very good ones. I began masturbating extremely early and quite often. I was a very anxious child, and I remember confiding in my mom about what I called "My thoughts." I would have awful thoughts that I could not control, oftentimes about being buried alive, murder, and one time I told my mom that I couldn't stop thinking about what it would be like to rape her (my own mother). I was very young and haven't gotten into these "thoughts" with any of my therapist as I stopped having them around 11.
I identify as gay but I have some sexual preferences that were listed in possible signs. I am quite attracted to BDSM type sexuality. It is beyond just simple play BDSM. I have many fantasies about being embarassed, harassed, and dominated over in what I don't think is a healthy way. I have a very bad self image and I've convinced myself that that's why I enjoy that sexual preference, but I'm beginning to question if put with the other symptoms, it may mean something more.
I also remember a deep seeded fear of my father when it came to physical contact or any emotional dialogue. I hated saying "I love you" and hated hearing it from him even more. I cringed every time I touched him, and to this day thinking of physical contact with him gives me quite a bit of anxiety, even though I haven't seen or talked to him in 3.5 years after he got up and left me and my mom. He was a heavy drinker and gambler and is now in and out of the court system along with his 10 other siblings who have very similar addictions, including cocaine and crystal meth.
I do understand that these don't point to me absolutely being abused, but I just wanted to see if this was something that needed immediate and consistent attention. I don't know if I need to start therapy over, and before I start the arduous hunt for one that I like, I would like to hear a professional's opinion of whether or not it is likely that I'm just making all of this up.
Please get back to me as soon as possible, as my anxiety is growing around this subject day by day. I am off most of my prescription pills (Ambien, Clonazepam, Lorazepam, Geodon, Prozac, Lithium, Lexapro -- these were all prescribed to me, not at the same time but in various combinations) but am still on 200mg of Seroquel (Quetiapine Fumarate) that I take nightly.
Thank you for your time, any feedback would be appreciated.
You have an incredible level of self-awareness. Trust your instincts to find answers. Even if your questions do not lead you to a certain conclusion, they are worth pursuing. If your schedule does not permit you to see your current therapist, you could ask for a referral. Perhaps there is another therapist who can see you . You may also want to contact the therapist you had when you were 16 or 17. She may be able to refer you as well. Does your college have a counseling/student health department? This may be another source of support.
Being sexually abused can be devastating and can affect you in many ways including psychologically, emotionally and physically. It can make it difficult for you to trust people, cause you to have trouble understanding that you have the right to control what happens to you and cause you to experience flashbacks (when memories of past traumas feel as if they are taking place in the current moment) to the abuse. Sexual abuse can affect your self-esteem and your intimate relationships. It can cause you to experience symptoms of depression including feeling sad and down for more than two weeks, sleeping and eating either much more or less than usual, losing interest and pleasure in activities you previously enjoyed, isolating socially, feeling worthless, seeing everything is a negative way and having recurring thoughts of death or even suicide. You may feel guilt or shame about what happened to you but remember that you did nothing wrong and that it was the person who abused you who were wrong in what they did to you. The memories of the abuse may interfere in your ability to engage in sexual relationships which may leave you feeling frightened, frustrated, or ashamed. RAINN, the Rape, Assault, Incest, National Network is the nation's largest anti-sexual assault organization. On their website at http://www.rainn.org/ you can learn about the effects of sexual abuse, recovering from sexual assault as well as ways to get help and support including by calling the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE. You could also contact the Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists by calling 215-222-2800 or visiting their website at www.aglp.org for help in finding someone in your area for you to talk and work with about your questions regarding your sexuality.