talking with a friend about how we experience our triggers. they say, “it’s like someone is sitting on my chest.”

triggers happen a few ways for me. i either become too entrenched in my body or i dissociate entirely.

dissociation is scary because i’ll “come to” in the middle of something, a sex act, a conversation, a bike ride.

disorienting, suddenly i am floating above my body. my partner(s) in conversation are still talking or gazing at me questioningly, asking if they’re boring me. you’re not! or okay, maybe you are–but the likeliest thing is that i’m just “not all there,” so to speak.

noticed this happening a lot at a party i attended recently. i was in safe(r) (somewhat safer?) space, with friends i’d known for as long as ten years, but i still kept triggering out and coming to in the middle of something. staring off into space, listening to someone talk about their goings-on, etc. it was probably not helpful that it was the bon anniversaire of that craptastic series of events that have shaped far too much of my life for the last year.

(have said this before, but it bears repeating) it feels like i am in the middle of taking myself thru a sort of deep and powerful therapy. i have to both ask the hard questions and come up with the hard answers. i play pattern recognition with blocks of my past, journaling desperately while pushing everyone close to me away with a franticness i don’t quite understand. or i do, but i don’t know how to solve it, yet. i just recede to my safe(r) spaces.

and some of those spaces are dissociative in their own way, make no mistake.


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