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Why Sex Binds

21 posts in this topic

Why Sex Binds

The neurochemical Dopamine activates the reward circuitry in the brain. When experiencing orgasm, a person receives the biggest blast of dopamine legally available to them. A Dutch scientist scanned the brains of people having orgasms and said the brain during orgasm resembled the scans of brains during a heroin rush. Just as the drug addict craves his drug to release the dopamine rush, this can also cause the victim to crave the person who gave the orgasm dopamine rush.

But the neurochemical that bonds couples together is oxytocin, which is released into the bloodstream during sex. This is considered the “cuddle hormone” or “bonding hormone” that is associated with nurturing and affection that develops in a relationship. In a woman, the stimulation of the vagina and cervix during sex releases both oxytocin and prolactin, the same hormones released during pregnancy and nursing that is responsible for creating the bond the Mother feels with her child.

Oxytocin is also associated with significant emotional and physical benefits. It helps speed recovery of wounds and it also has a calming effect on a person. It is thought to be a major reason that SSRI’s (Prozac-type drugs) ease depression. High levels of cortisol are involved in depression and anxiety disorders, and oxytocin counteracts cortisol’s effects. (Uvnas-Mobery, 1999).

In a relationship with a psychopath, who is usually very highly sexed, an intense bond can form. Since relationships with psychopaths eventually become very chaotic and anxiety provoking, each time a person has sex with the psychopath, their hormones not only further biochemically bond them to the psychopath, but their anxiety is also reduced through the release of oxytocin. The psychopath becomes not only the tormentor, but also the person who brings relief from the torment. The bond that develops in a pathological relationship is constantly reinforced and strengthened through anxiety and frequent sex which relieves the anxiety. This results in an intense bond and attachment that is often much stronger than those in healthy relationships. Once a strong bond is established, since not only emotions have bonded, but also brain pathways and hormonal chemistry, the bond does not depend on pleasure to maintain it. A person can remain bonded to a psychopath they have grown to mistrust or hate.

Written by victimsofpsychopaths

January 24, 2009 at 2:52 pm

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Maybe this should be moved to the other forum?

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Great article it's so true. Thanks for posting.

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Wow, that explains soooo much. And do you guys find it to be generally true that these abusive, psychopathic types are usually Highly "sexed"? I know mine was insanely so, but just thought it was him.

TooLong

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Mine was actually diagnosed a sex addict while he was in an inpatient clinic for addiction. Yeah, "highly sexed" doesn't begin to cover it...

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Mine is not "diagnosed" but yeah... I think the "highly sexed" label certainly applies! And when I didn't share his enthusiasm, it was always thrown in my face how I "didn't love him as much as he loved me" (yeah, right, that's sure going to make me want to have sex with him even more... NOT!!!) or he would tell me that it "wasn't just because he wanted to have sex for sex's sake... it was because sex released oxytocin and would help us be 'bonded'". I always wondered how come this "bonding-thing" that he seemed to be so enamored of wasn't exactly working that way for me?????? :14:

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It is MUCH easier to detach when you stop having 'relations' with the abuser.

Fortunately for me, he was kind of a lousy minute man. Still, it took me nearly 23 years to file.

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I think sex binds, not only bse of the physical closeness etc, but it also seems as though there is a spiritual connection that is made when sexual intercourse takes place. The Bible talks about being "one flesh". Because it's one person's spirit connecting with and becoming one with the other person's, so it's not just the body becoming one. And also the reason why it's so hard to break the connection (for example-to stop having sex with an abuser even though you are seperated-been there done that, many years ago!!). It's also a reason why it feels so bad when a break-up occurs....it LITERALLY feels as though a tearing and a ripping is taking place emotionally, physically AND spiritually when seperation happens...and I believe one of the biggest reasons for that is the spiritual oneness that's been formed through the sexual relationship.

Just my humble opinion. :-)

AuslanGirl :wub:

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It is MUCH easier to detach when you stop having 'relations' with the abuser.

^^^THIS^^^

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So I take it the only way to overcome this binding is by detaching?

You read a lot about trauma bonding, but not a lot about what to do to overcome it. Even if you know that it's not healthy to go back, and you don't have a desire to go back, there is still an inexplicable pull, as if you HAVE to go back. Is this why - because of the bonding that happens? How do you un-bond? I just can't stand this feeling of a magnetic pull, which I constantly strain against. It's almost like I have no choice but to go back.

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So I take it the only way to overcome this binding is by detaching?

You read a lot about trauma bonding, but not a lot about what to do to overcome it. Even if you know that it's not healthy to go back, and you don't have a desire to go back, there is still an inexplicable pull, as if you HAVE to go back. Is this why - because of the bonding that happens? How do you un-bond? I just can't stand this feeling of a magnetic pull, which I constantly strain against. It's almost like I have no choice but to go back.

That is a great question Chris! For me, I had to stop seeing him as I wanted him to be or as he convinced me he was and see him in reality. And reality was, he was NOT a good dad, NOT a good provider, NOT a funny person, NOT looking out for me and my best interests, NOT a partner, NOT making love to me to further our connetion, NOT committed to our marriage and NOT starting a family because he wanted to cement the bond that we forged in getting married. He really thought I had kids because I wanted to have kids and it had NOTHING to do with him. I was blown away when I realized that he would never understand that I didn't just want kids...I wanted to have a family WITH HIM. Those realization totally and completely killed my attachment to him. He wasn't anyone I wanted to be attached to and after that, when he touched me, I cringed. I couldn't stand to have him physically near me. And I no longer "liked" him. Detatchment was much easier when I saw reality for what it was. Who would want to be with who he really was? Not me. I still fall back into the "but....he did/he said" mentality...but it is short lived becuase once I opened my eyes to reality, there was NO going back.

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I get what you mean, Seren.

But what about when you feel only repulsion, and in fact, can't even fathom the thought of sharing a room, but still feel the pull? It's like I couldn't wait to get away, but had to do it without any emotion, and just act with blinkers on, looking straight ahead with determination, because the feeling of guilt was so strong. If I had stopped to feel, I would have felt the pull, like a hook to the neck.

I don't have that feeling if I don't see him, or hear from him for a few days. But the moment I hear from him, see him (which is quite often), or hear from someone else about him, I feel like something is very wrong with the current situation and it HAS to revert to what it was, because that's the way it "should" be. It's like the party is over, get back to reality. Why is it so hard to move on?

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I get what you mean, Seren.

But what about when you feel only repulsion, and in fact, can't even fathom the thought of sharing a room, but still feel the pull? It's like I couldn't wait to get away, but had to do it without any emotion, and just act with blinkers on, looking straight ahead with determination, because the feeling of guilt was so strong. If I had stopped to feel, I would have felt the pull, like a hook to the neck.

I don't have that feeling if I don't see him, or hear from him for a few days. But the moment I hear from him, see him (which is quite often), or hear from someone else about him, I feel like something is very wrong with the current situation and it HAS to revert to what it was, because that's the way it "should" be. It's like the party is over, get back to reality. Why is it so hard to move on?

Oohhhh...yep, that sucks doesn't it? I don't know...for me it was totally addiction at that point. I have heard alcoholics say they were totally fine, never had a craving, never really thought about drinking...but then they would walk by a bar and just get a whiff and without even wanting to, they would find themselves on the barstool getting drunk and hating themselves.

That is how it was for me. So, going no contact was my only option. And when I had to see him, I was wrecked. For years that went on. But for me, I finally got into my head that I no longer wanted to hurt myself and thinking/being/seeing him was killing me. It took time. Alot of time. ALOT. But eventually I won out over him and his "pull".

Today, I have to watch myself with other "unsafe" guys. I still have the tendency to be attracted to guys who are not all together with it. The "bad boys" or the ones who "need" me. MY addiction. MY issue.

Time is what has saved me. Reality and time and working a program of detatchment.

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So I take it the only way to overcome this binding is by detaching?

You read a lot about trauma bonding, but not a lot about what to do to overcome it. Even if you know that it's not healthy to go back, and you don't have a desire to go back, there is still an inexplicable pull, as if you HAVE to go back. Is this why - because of the bonding that happens? How do you un-bond? I just can't stand this feeling of a magnetic pull, which I constantly strain against. It's almost like I have no choice but to go back.

You do it the same way you do drugs or alcohol...

only instead of "cold turkey", we call it "no contact".

Oh, you could do it in "stages", just like a step-down program for addicts...

but cold turkey and no contact take a lot less time, save heartache in the long run, and get you FREE FASTER.

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exactly what lily said. cold turkey.

then the fog lifts.

then you gain your self worth back.

i think it's about us snapping back to our self worth. once that happened to me, that was it. i went NC and the only time i have had contact since i left was thru emails. i have never spoken to him on the phone in the last 3 years and we have 4 children together. never once have i even thought about sex with him---in fact, the thought physically repulses me.

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A quote from a women's Wisdom Flip Calendar by Christiane Northrup, M.D.

"Your relationships with other loving adults increase your levels of bonding hormone known as oxytocin, which lowers blood pressure and is relaxing. This hormone is present in every cell of your body and can enhance the brain sensors that are connected with the heart and digestive system. Your organs work better when you're in healthy relationships. "

When it all gets mixed up with psychological/physical abuse and control it makes it all the more complicated. Oxytocin is the love hormone, the bonding hormone. It's involved with traumatic bonding......... it complicates it..... and it's like that for many of us.

Everyone's experience of separation is different. Perhaps some of us are more traumatically bonded than others. Everyone's relationships are different with their own variances. Sleeping with him doesn't physically repulse me, even the thought of it now, that's probably why it's been harder for me to separate. But definitely since not sleeping with him, I can say I've been more able to emotionally separate.

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When I see him I have a strong attraction/pull to him also Chris. And that's despite everything. There he is smiling, being polite in public, charming, sexy in his tshirt or whatever, or he is offering this/that help, etc

It's so much easier when I don't see/hear from him.

I can get on with my life.

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What? So you always, ultimately, leave your ball in the other person's court, to do whatever they want with it? More to the point: whenever they want ...

Don't you ever, at some point, want to take some kind of total personal responsibility for yourself and want control back over you to say: "No" or "Yes" for yourself over your own life outcomes and your own destiny, no matter what they may say or do?

I mean, it is YOUR life ... is it not?

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I don't have that feeling if I don't see him, or hear from him for a few days. But the moment I hear from him, see him (which is quite often), or hear from someone else about him, I feel like something is very wrong with the current situation and it HAS to revert to what it was, because that's the way it "should" be. It's like the party is over, get back to reality. Why is it so hard to move on?

This is kinda how it is for me. I was fine, strong,and determined. Until we spoke on the phone for quite a while. About the kids, about day to day stuff, about how he is seeing someone else now.

He called me Baby accidently and it make my heart jump. Now all I can think about is him.

It's so much easier to be angry than it is to be sad, hurt and lonely.

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I think you can have an attraction to someone and not act on it, .... and that's effectively saying no, is it not?

Isn't that showing a measure of inner strength, self worth, self responsibility?

Let it go Disco, let it go.

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This is kinda how it is for me. I was fine, strong,and determined. Until we spoke on the phone for quite a while. About the kids, about day to day stuff, about how he is seeing someone else now.

He called me Baby accidently and it make my heart jump. Now all I can think about is him.

It's so much easier to be angry than it is to be sad, hurt and lonely.

HE called me gorgeous once - not too long ago .. maybe 6 months ago? - can't remember how long ago and it was just strange as well. It affected me - but it was also really weird - because he hasn't called me that for an extremely long time - he calls our girls that now.

It made my heart jump too ((((((stayedtoolong))))))

It's never easy. It reminds you of the dream again. But thats all it is, you know, it's a dream, it's not real.

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