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SleepingLightly

Getting through a trigger?

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SleepingLightly

OK, all. SL has a question about triggers. I have one, just one left, that send up flags and unconsciously makes me want to push away. Does time heal over some triggers? Do I just accept that this will limit possible friendships and possible future relationships?

I faced down my others and they folded like a house of cards. But this is different. It is deep.

Thanks all!

-SL

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homealone
I faced down my others and they folded like a house of cards. But this is different. It is deep.

My experience with the really ugly triggers is that at some point you just have to let yourself feel the reactions, let the emotions wash over you, etc. You can't just push them away or override them forever. They just keep coming back. As somebody had in their signature line once, "The only way out is through." It doesn't happen all in one sitting; in fact, it's probably easier done in small doses. But eventually they do lose their power, and eventually you realize, "Wow, last year that would have left me a major bundle of nerves, but I hardly even noticed today." You will get there.

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Tallulah

It all depends on what the 'trigger' is, SL. I mean, perhaps in this particular case it's a trigger that needs to be there. Even if it feels as though it's an irrational trigger, maybe it's not. Yanno?

Tallulah

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Lorelei

Depends. Is it a "trigger" or a legitimate warning sign?

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vpc

I'm with Tal and Lorelei SL.

If something is triggering a reaction, it could just mean that your radar is working well.

Even if the reaction seems intense for the situation, it doesn't mean that your reaction is wrong.

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Curly

I am with the others. It depends what the trigger is and on the situation. It may be one that needs to be there and heeded.

That said I think you can desensitise yourself in relation to some triggers by going through them in a safe situation. The triggers I have been able to deal with have really been ones where I was reacting to things that were not actually being done to me at all.

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Dove

I'm glad to see this post because I just had an experience with a (stupid) trigger. No need to try to describe it but the most important aspect for me is that I want to get to the point where some little word or incident no longer has so much power over me.

As you all know, I was horribly abused as a child and don't remember most of my childhood. And, I just got out of a 25 year abusive marriage. I'm now married to the only man I ever really loved. For the first time in my life, I'm not afraid of what the day will bring.

I keep telling myself that I was constantly abused for more than 45 years so its gonna take a while to really get past that. Maybe I never will.

Sleeping Lightly - if there's one thing I've learned (not that I'm always able to DO it),

Listen to your little voice. Learn to recognize and trust what your unconscious is telling you.

Sounds so easy, doesn't it.

For me, its almost impossible. It can take me several days to identify what I feel about something said or done. Not just mentally or emotionally, but physically too. I hate it when a doctor asks "... and how long have you had this symptom?" because I just have no clue.

If you can learn to to really hear your own thoughts and emotions, you're way ahead of me!

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SleepingLightly

Thank you SO much all!

Dove. I found what you wrote about listening to your little voice, quite interesting. When I ride or when at work or even when I used to fly, listening to that little voice was no problem at all. I listen, I rely, I trust. But with some people and some situations that little voice tends to confuse me. Perhaps I am over analyzing things.

Thanks again, all. Great food for thought.

-SL

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Dove

Coming back to this -

We have the sweetest smartest dearest dog. My husband had him for several years before I left the ex and married new husband (with dog). My ex had several things that he knew would hurt me or frighten me. He kept his client's records in large 3 ring notebooks. Each one was heavy when they were full of records. He delighted in coming up behind my desk, my back to him and slamming the notebook on the ceramic tile floor and at the same time very suddenly letting fly with screaming filthy language.

Early in our "marriage" I decided he would never make me cry. Same decision I made about my mother. But this often came close to bringing tears of just stark raving terror to my eyes. Finally (duh) I turned my desk so he could not come up behind me.

Anyway, back to the dog - I've been with my new husband 2 years now but even now, when our dog sees one of his enemy cats out the window and barks, I just about come out of my skin. There have been times when I jumped so that I dumped coffee. Its getting better though. Sometimes I don't go straight up and I've finally stopped yelling at the poor dog.

I'm a watercolor artist. When I was pre- or early teens, we lived on a farm. Huge trees and I loved the animals (until I realized the whole point was to kill them). I found that I could hide on top of one of the buildings most of a day and draw or write very silly teenager poetry and stories. I kept everything in a very old red canvas bag that had leather straps and buckled closed. Up on top of that building, I was shaded by a huge cottonwood tree. Or, by moving if I was cold, I could lay in the sun. I hid the red bag by tying it to a branch of the tree. The tree was so thick, it was never wet, never blew away.

Not long ago, I was feeling down, remember some things that I had hidden in the red bag. For some reason I thought that if I painted that bag, it might be a way of letting go of some of the feelings. I can still picture that bag and the worn leather straps, two buckles, one at each side and the faded red of the canvas. I could see in my head exactly how I wanted the painting to look. JEEEZ. I barely got the first sketch finished when I was just about done in. So sad and angry. So much for painting the bag. I rolled up the sketch but doubt I'll ever get back to it.

It made me remember a story I wrote. The story was bad - no doubt about that. It was a mystery called The Barren Room and it was about two sisters and something that they kept hidden in the "barren room". Terribly dark and gothic for a fourteen year old. I didn't finish it. Stupidly, I took it inside and my mother found it. Tore the pages in half and threw them down the basement steps.

As an adult, I went by that farm where we lived. All the buildings and trees were gone. I've always wondered what ever happened to that red canvas bag.

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Dove
Thank you SO much all!

Dove. I found what you wrote about listening to your little voice, quite interesting. When I ride or when at work or even when I used to fly, listening to that little voice was no problem at all. I listen, I rely, I trust. But with some people and some situations that little voice tends to confuse me. Perhaps I am over analyzing things.

Thanks again, all. Great food for thought.

-SL

I think I know what you mean by being confused.

I believe that abuse has the effect of taking our self-trust away. We forget how to trust our own perception of things. I still have trouble with some things, still have to work at believing i know what's best for me.

And,like I said, I still have a hard time even recognizing what I feel and know.

I guess we're all works in progress and always will be.

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