I think the trigger these days—aside from feeling my body because it is sick—is separation. If I cannot do this part of my appraisal (and this is the beginning of the cycle—it is like goal-setting), I will be forcibly separated from C. I am enacting those feelings I had during forced separations.

Specifically, it seems to me I am having the same feeling as I did when being trafficked, which something like a temporary kidnapping. Feel very afraid, then silence the fear with shame and worthlessness. Shame creates, for me, a stillness, a paralysis. In a trafficking situation, it meant I did not resist or defend myself or cry. I went with them, even though that felt like the most dangerous thing in the world to be doing. Not going was more dangerous. And then I was raped.

That’s what I am feeling inside. Fear, and then stillness, and then the disorganized state of being raped.

I’ve never really processed or understood my feelings before, and they are filtered through this lens of experiences I hadn’t accepted occurred before a year or two ago, so this all new to me.


11 thoughts on “Kidnapping

  1. Rachel March 26, 2016 / 11:18 am

    And the triggered feelings make it so hard to complete the task responsible for the triggered feelings. It is such a difficult cycle to be in. This is such great insight and you are feeling and it makes so much sense to me why you’re struggling. Those little parts are so scared and need reassurance and protection and to know they won’t be separated from their attachment.

    • Ashana M March 26, 2016 / 11:24 am

      The hard part is that I could. I really don’t know. It’s one of those things where I really just have to sit with the feelings and be with them. I emailed someone in the office who helps the foreign teachers out to get some more information about the new immigration rules and about how the new system of forced rankings(1% outstanding, 19% very good, 79% good, 1% needs improvement or something like that) will affect us.Your validation helps so much. I don’t think anyone has ever said, “It makes sense you are struggling.”

      • Rachel March 26, 2016 / 11:36 am

        Ah, good point. So I suppose they need to know they are safe now, even with separation. And sitting with the fear does seem on par. You’re welcome. Really, your situation (possible transfer) is such a powerful stimulus given your conditioning and it does make complete sense to me why your body is feeling it and why you are scared and frozen. Nice work in taking the action to send the email – I find just taking any action can help mobilize some of those really frozen younger traumatized parts.

  2. Rachel March 26, 2016 / 11:20 am

    And feeling the disorganized experience of rape. Ashana, that is unbearable and you’re bearing it. I’m in awe. You’re doing such good work.

  3. Rachel March 26, 2016 / 11:38 am

    I also wanted to say (and then I promise I am done) is that you can do this. You can do your appraisal.

    • Ashana M March 26, 2016 / 11:40 am

      Thanks again. I really need to hear that. It’s so engrained as a strategy when I am scared to just scare myself more, in hopes that that will lead to some action. Of course, it never works.

      • Rachel March 26, 2016 / 11:46 am

        You bet. And that makes sense too – a helpless child who freezes stayed alive. Now, the strategy is no longer effective. Good information. Adult Ashana is quite capable and solid and has priorities and those include staying connected to C for as long as possible. It’s a fight, to re-train the brain. And you’re doing it quite well. Probably more than you realize, but I see it so clearly from this distance.

    • Ashana M March 26, 2016 / 12:21 pm

      Also, you can be done whenever you decide to be done. It’s not an issue for me. I really need to hear this.

      • Rachel March 28, 2016 / 12:39 am

        This made me cry. The idea that I have choice, and my choice is okay, is so stimulating for me. I’m still processing it. But thank you nonetheless. This was a very sweet thing to say.

      • Ashana M March 28, 2016 / 7:50 am

        You do have a choice. 🙂

  4. Cat's Meow March 26, 2016 / 12:45 pm

    And you are doing this while sick. I know that being sick always brings out feelings of helplessness in me and it sounds like it might do the same for you, as well.

    I agree. I have confidence that you can get this appraisal together. And deal with how out of control it feels to deal with someone capricious having a say in whether you are able to stay or not.

    Sending thoughts of strength and endurance to make it through it all.

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