Not sure how to start this entry. Had our weekly Counselling course last night. It falls into two parts – the first where we are taught various aspects of listening, reflecting and other aspects of counselling, the second where we form an experiential group, led by M an experienced counsellor. The format is the same week by week. There are also three Saturday sessions as well over the course year. In last night’s experiential group I opened up great deal. Not sure how to put it into words here. So below is an email I sent earlier today to all the people in the group:
Hope you don’t mind me emailing everyone today? There is at least one persons email address missing – P’s? Does anyone have it available?
Anyway, about last night 🙂 Just want to express my appreciation for you having to listen to me dump my past on you all. I guess this is only the beginning for me. I had all this stuff in my head that I wanted to tell you all, but it seems to not be there right now. So forgive me if I ramble and type for a bit – it may all flow eventually?
A question for G – did you know what was coming – or at least wonder? I ask you that as after I had unloaded you mentioned having a similar experience at a younger age to me. And a couple of times while Ian was talking and answering questions you raised the question a couple of times in general but related to me, about “things that happened 36 years ago”. It felt almost like an invite to me not give up but to go ahead and reveal whatever it was that had happened. Up to that point in the evening I’d not really let on what the experience was, but as you’d had a similar expedience I just wonder if you had at the back of your mind an idea of what might have occurred and having been through something like it felt able to encourage it out of me? Or am I reading much into your words? Either way I’m glad to have got things out.
H, at the end of the evening you came up and gave me a big hug – that was really appreciated. We were both in tears but you seemed to be crying more so than me? Maybe I’m not quite there yet. I’m sure there is more to come out. Whilst driving to work this morning tears began to fill up in my eyes, but they never actually fell? Are there more to be let out? Time will tell on that. I think there must be more to come.
“I”, thanks for walking round the block with me last night. Guess we both got home late again 🙂 It was good to be able to just talk a bit more. So far each week we’ve spent from 30 minutes to an hour talking!
I hope last night didn’t cause anyone any “damage”?
I will take up the advice Michelle gave me personal counselling. Just need to find one :>
Took a while to get to sleep last night. Wasn’t awake worrying or even really going over things in my mind. Sleep just did not come as readily as usual. Spent some time talking to D (my wife) about the experiential group. That was good to do.
If anyone is wondering why I haven’t mentioned the actual experience I was talking about last night, it’s just that I know some spam filters and other email filters would probably block this email if certain words were used :0 I’m not trying to avoid the specifics!
Last night was the first time in 37 years I’ve had any real emotion about the experience, well ever really as there was no emotion when it all happened. And then last night only a few tears were shed. I keep saying this but there must be more to come? Anyway I’ve rambled enough for now.
There is a sense of relief at a journey begun…
I’m not really expecting a reply, just felt like writing some of this down.
Thanks again for you all being there last night. I may have only mentioned a few of us by name, but you all contributed last night a tremendous amount to me.
So what was it all about? At the age of 12 on a boys camp run by a local church (not the one I now attend) I was abused by one of the adult leaders. For many years after I wondered about my sexuality. As I had not put up any resistance at the time, did it mean I was gay? Throughout my teenage years had continual confusion regarding this. It was not until my very late teens that I felt this finally resolved.
Questions remain as to why did I not discuss this with anyone? My parents never knew – the only person I ever discussed this with was my wife, prior to our marriage. I had the notion of no secrets, that we should not have any hidden past between us. Still have the same thoughts on that. We discussed it then, but not much since. Indeed, no thoughts about the event were really entertained until the past few years. What triggered this? Not 100% sure, but whenever a case of abuse was on the news or elsewhere in the media it made we wonder about what had occurred in my past. Two main thoughts kept coming up, should I just ignore what happened, as I had done over the past years? Or should I confront the situation – talk to a counsellor and even get the man prosecuted so he could not continue any further abuse? I do still remember his name, which I will not post here.
I kn0w that bringing it up last evening has begun the confrontation. The few tears shed are also a beginning. But how far will this go? Will this enable me to get more in touch with my overall feelings and emotions? Will breaking down this wall free other parts? And why did I bring it up? Over the past few weeks have been considering doing so, but was not quite sure if the experiential group was the appropriate place. During the early part of the group (both last night and on previous occasions) kept asking the question as to what the purpose of the group was. It had been told us that it was not a therapy group – M reiterated that – but it was though a place to bring out anything that might affect us as a counsellor now or in the future, which would include past events.