I was bullied for a long time, from the ages of 7 until I was 15 and I left school.
I'll sum it up for you:
- Name calling - pathetic, useless, ugly, fat, whore, bitch etc etc
- Physical violence - Hitting, being pinned against walls, having things thrown at me like scissors, one time I was pushed down some concrete stairs and another when I was 7 someone picked me up and threw me onto the concrete playground.
And then there was this, I don't know how to class this so I'll hide it incase its triggering.
The following content has been hidden - Reason : Possible sexual abuse trigger?
A couple of the boys would try and stick their hands up my shirt or down my
trousers, they would come up behind me and slap my ass and just generally try
and touch me up even when I was trying to push them away. I've never told anyone
As a result I'm pretty scared of groups of people, I have to sit at the back of a classroom because I can't deal with not knowing what the people behind me are doing (I'm very paranoid). I just cannot trust people more. I've just moved into university for my first year and I feel like I'm suffocating. There are people everywhere, new people in my halls, new students in my classes and I just don't know how to deal with this.
Anyone else like me?
Any advice on how to cope?
I have managed to register with the uni counsellor, after wimping out of sending the form numerous times.
First of all, well done for registering with the counsellor that was very brave of you.
Your paranoia is understandable and only time and (sorry to say this) exposure will decrease it.
When i was in first year, i too was very very paranoid and very anxious.
do you have any methods that you normally use to cope with anxiety?
do you have an ipod or music player of some kind? i found if i lost myself in my music whilst walking through the corridors that used to help. and sitting at the edge of the rows in class (maybe at the back) used to (and still does) help.
Thank you :) Hopefully it'll be 6th counsellor lucky...
I just avoid situations that I know will make me nervous, I did try and be social by visiting the flat downstairs at the start of the year but I was only there for about 10 minutes before I started to cry and I had to leave :(
If I go anywhere I have to take my iPod now to drown out the noise and it distracts me, I don't know what I will do if anything happens to it! I do try and sit on the end of rows or right at the back...one of my classes has 289 people in, although mostly that group is split into smaller sections but still :( I was sat on the end of a row today and I'll try and sit by a door so I have an 'escape route' if I need it.
After abusive experiences it's normal to be paranoid - you have been through trauma, and your mind and body are trying to prevent it from happening again. I'm exactly the same, especially with the iPod thing and the escape route (I panic unbelievably if I don't think I can get out of anywhere) and it's not easy to deal with, but it's understandable under these circumstances.
It will get easier. Your mind and body are in crisis mode right now, but the longer you go being around people who aren't going to abuse you like the others did, the more you will relax. Before my relapse I had made fantastic strides in dealing with my paranoia and hypervigilance, so it is possible.
I hope things get easier for you soon, please PM me if you ever want to talk.
Ask me mistakes I have made
Ask me whether what I have done is my life
Others have come, in their slow way -
And some have come to help, or to hurt -
Ask me what difference
Their strongest love or hate has made.
Im sorry you are struggling right now, i dont really have much advice other than keep up with the techniques you are using atm (ipod seating close to an exit etc) Hopefully the counsellor will help. Im sure you are not the only one feeling the same way right now, Uni can be a scarey place especially for someone liek you who has already suffered so much. I wish i could say something a little more useful, :/ I do think that what the above posters have said is right though. As you get used to it yopu may start to trust again and when you feel ready, (by no means am i saying do this now) you could try moving a little further away from the exit for example even if its just for part of the class then move back, just to get used to it. Do you know anyone in your class? Idk if it would help if you had a friend in classes you could get to know and trust, so you dont feel quite so isolated in class. :)
If none of this is any use for you i totally understand.
Hope you feel better soon. *hugs*
Everyone in my class is new, so we're all just getting to know each other right now but I find it hard to go out to pubs etc because of all the people. In a way its quite good that my normal classes only have about 13 people in, so in time we'll all get to know each other more. I'm stuck with them for the next 4 years anyway....
I was much better at college (college before uni in the UK if you're confused) as it was a small class of 8 students and we spent all our time together, because once I got to know them I was much more confident. But now I have to start this all over again but with more people
I'll definately try moving away from the door slowly as times goes on though and I'm trying so hard to appear 'normal' so that people want to get to know me because no one wants to know the scared kid who just won't talk to anyone. I've become good at appearing to be fine when actually I'm not.
I'm really struggling right now. It's like I've regressed again, I'm trying so, so hard to make conversation with people in my group but they are all quite confident people and I tend to get left out. Plus they all like going out to parties and I'm not able to do that. (I can't deal with groups of people...)
I dread being asked to answer a question in class even if I know the answer because I panic and freeze.
My lecturers are aware of the situation, my counsellor is trying to help me, but it's hard. I'm tired of faking being happy and okay.
I'm so annoyed at myself right now...I thought I was okay
Hi IBelievedAgain, I'm very sorry that you're having a hard time. I quite understand how you are feeling. It's good that you are seeing a counsellor as I'm sure that's going to be very helpful indeed. Sometimes with these things, as in life generally, there are ups and downs. That you are struggling right now perhaps doesnt surprise me. It may seem like you are regressing but it's all a journey for you. What's good is that you have been able to face up to something unpleasant. Just taking that step means you are on the way to changing things and improvement. It can be so hard making conversation with people but if you keep plugging away, gradually you will get there. In my case, when I have felt like I've regressed, what I have realised is that actually althought it feels like that, when I reflect on my situation as a whole, I realise that a situation I'm in created the feelings. But actually the things I had learned were still in place. I was reacting to a life situation rather than going back to square one. It can feel hard when surrounded by confident people but if you are able to tolerate a quick convrsation or comment here or there, maybe you can build it up. Just one step at a time. Actually I feel you are being courageous, and while it's natural to feel angry with yourself, you can be proud that you are facing your troubles head on. That is very creditable.