Definition of a serious dating relationship
Relationships where one or both parties have experienced childhood sexual abuse or sexual assault are no different.They benefit from partners talking, sharing interests and working together to address difficulties as they arise.You probably already have most of the tools you need.Partners and men who have been sexually abused have identified a number of themes that can appear in their relationships. The closeness-distance dynamic is one of the common relationship challenges following sexual abuse, in which you might experience a see-sawing in your relationship.
While the language in this article often refers to couple relationships, this information can apply to any form of relationship or loved one — a son, brother, father, relative, or friend.
Your partner might at times seek out re-assurance and assistance, and at other times distance himself, wanting to work it out on his own.
Some men try to manage feeling moody, withdrawn, uncertain and uncommunicative by taking himself off and keeping himself to himself.
Sometimes, it is only when things aren’t playing out the way that you hoped for that you identify what you most value and appreciate about relationships and what you want from a partner.
This then provides an opportunity to talk and confirm there is a shared vision that you can both work towards. I always thought that if he loved me enough he would stop doing those things – now I can see that it was his way of switching off and although I still don’t like it and want him to change, at least I can see it for what it is” A man’s, and possibly even your own, sense of shame around what happened, the effects, and fear of other people’s reactions or judgments.
They can become unmanageable, unwelcome for the man and for you.