Survivor’s Corner: Love, Courage & Connection

A former and very brief friend just reached out to me and I was thinking about how I had never wanted our friendship to end, but it did anyway, and how when we became friends I was afraid or rather I knew it would end soon because we both had such harrowing and abusive childhoods.

Plus we have difficulty finding and maintaining healthy romantic relationships with peers. Or platonic ones with other survivors, it seemed.
Or was it just me? Am I too difficult for other survivors, because I also have bipolar, PTSD, and an eating disorder (the latter of which also affects emotional intimacy and bonding with others).
I was excited to hear from this person and was preparing to make contact when I realized it would have to be detailed.
I am in therapy twice a week now and am both building a foundation upon which to live the rest of my life well, in addition to breaking down and neutralizing patterns that have negatively impacted my past.
I recall SARK’s (Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy’s) statement that she would (never again have an unsupervised relationship), meaning she and her romantic partners now always go to counseling (whether together or not is unclear).
My last partner didn’t want to go to counseling with me, and I didn’t think at the time to ask if they would have gone alone.
My current companion enjoys hearing about my sessions and I believe my going benefits our relationship.
So this morning I was thinking about how I would like to approach reconnecting with this person. Perhaps being postal paper pen pals might be all I can do right now, and ask all of my questions there.
I need a very slow paced social lifestyle, and I have my Facebook Messenger notifications muted, I hate disruptive texts and phone calls, and do 90% of my business correspondence via email.
I think the struggle for connection is a beautiful thing, especially between people who have particular challenges to intimacy and who are perhaps overly stimulated by the world around us.
I am often reminded that “we are meant to need each other.” If that weren’t the case I would not have felt sad when my friendship ended, nor made an effort to connect again, nor would I now be spending so much time and care designing the best approach.
If we were not meant to need each other I wouldn’t have spent the 30 minutes to write and share this, and readers would not identify and appreciate seeing themselves and their experience reflected and affirmed.
If you struggle with some significant challenges in your life, and they affect your ability to connect with, love, trust, and feel safe with others, be patient, willing, and persistent in your efforts at connecting.
Consider psychotherapy, and write personally, privately, and/or publicly about your experience. Be true to who you are and how you prefer to communicate, correspond, and socialize.
Make your own rules and be sure to have fun! You deserve good things. You *can* be happy. The world is safe and loving. People are good. And you are worthy.
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About cassendre

aka Amethyste Rah, aka Amrita Waterfalls “renaissance negresse & ARTrepreneur” (musician/writer/actress/fine artist) Leeway Transformation Award-Winning founder & executive director of the Black Women’s Arts Festival (Est. 2003) and the Women's Writing & Spoken Word Series (Est. 2002). Visit: http://cassendrexavier.com
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