I went with a friend to a retreat/yoga thing today. It was described as more buddhist/spiritual. That kind of stuff I can handle… Only it was in a catholic retreat center, complete with religious symbols all over the place. Luckily, my friend is atheist, so she was as uninterested in the religious aspect as I was (only, I was really triggered, not just uninterested).
I did my best to ground from all the flashbacks, but it was really difficult. My friend was frustrated that I refused to do the meditations. She was convinced it would help my head. I didn’t know how to tell her that being mindful and present in my body brings up intense flashbacks to csa. It was all I could do to distract from them before they came on full-force just by walking into the retreat center. She told me I should have at least tried the breathing… only she doesn’t know that focusing on my breath was something I did to get the abuse over with faster (he would wait till he thought I was asleep to start things).
Even the yoga was problematic. I’m used to doing more standing poses, but these almost all involved laying on the floor… I did maybe 3 of the poses because all the others sent me right into flashbacks.
I feel like such a loser. There are all these things that are supposed to help, but they only make things worse for me. Aside of all the csa stuff coming up, I got flashbacks to the times I was hospitalized… the stupid hallways looked so much like the hospitals…
I know Dr C is more understanding when I tell her things like this trigger me. I get that they make sense in terms of my history. It’s just so difficult to explain to everyone else. I’m not just being stubborn and resistant. It doesn’t feel safe, and it sends me into a tailspin… As is, all I want to do at the moment is self-harm and dissociate. I don’t like feeling the things in my body. I don’t like “remembering” this stuff that should never have happened… and I really don’t like being seen as difficult and resistant.
I should have excused myself and sat outside while my friend and her mom did all the meditations and talks. I could have avoided all this extra triggering. I didn’t want to disappoint my friend though.