Vi­o­lent past not easy to for­get

Ottawa Citizen - - You - EL­LIE TESHER Ad­vice

Q My fi­ancée and I have been to­gether for five years. My prob­lem is that when­ever we face chal­lenges, she brings up is­sues from our past. I was vi­o­lent, about which I’m not proud. It hurts me a lot be­cause I hate what I did to her and she knows how sorry I am. The other thing is that she’s not ac­tive like she used to be in our sex­ual re­la­tion­ship, which I feel bad about. Please help.

Past is Over

A Vi­o­lence isn’t easy to for­get. Af­ter the pain is long gone, fear and hu­mil­i­a­tion linger, even for years. She’s stayed with you. And you’ve ap­par­ently gained some con­trol over what­ever caused you to lash out vi­o­lently. Now, like all cou­ples, you face some chal­lenges. And that’s likely when she re­mem­bers what you did to her.

She’s fright­ened that these dif­fi­cult times and/or strong dis­agree­ments will arouse an ex­plo­sion of your anger against her, potentiall­y in­clud­ing phys­i­cal abuse. She needs you to un­der­stand that she car­ries that trauma deep within. It af­fects her re­ac­tions when there’s ten­sion be­tween you, and it’s un­doubt­edly af­fect­ing her abil­ity to re­lax dur­ing sex.

If you didn’t get coun­selling in the past — in­di­vid­u­ally and to­gether — now is the time for it. You need help to re­solve the past, not just for­get it.

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