Yes, I too have lived through some agonizing and debilitating times and lessons.
As a four year old I experienced sexual abuse from a male family friend, plus regular inappropriate sexual touch from my aunt.
Growing up into my teenage years and young adult, I found it impossible to allow myself to open up into intimacy and experience pleasure. It felt safer to stay in a zone of perceived control. I was raised to not say 'No!', that was deemed to be impolite and improper behaviour.
I was raised to not give voice to what I desired or what I was afraid of. I wound up in relationships with men who were emotionally and otherwise unavailable to me (that started with my own father who was virtually physically absent, and certainly not emotionally available).
I became a loner who wore the mask of an extrovert very well. Those who proclaimed to love me, I ran from ... how could I trust them or not being emotionally played with, teasing me with something I wanted dearly and then get it taken from me.
I craved for love, genuine heartfelt affections, and intimacy, but did not understand what that was and where to find it. I had major trust and boundaries issues except with animals and pets.
In my early twenties I became a captive hostage by an Indonesian man in the Netherlands who repeatedly raped me and threatened to kill me. When I managed to escape to the UK, three months pregnant form the rapes and sexual abuse, he threatened to kill me and the baby.
My parents resorted to getting me protected by Interpol. I lived in abject terror of somehow being found by him, and could not face getting anywhere near the Dutch border.
Following that traumatic experience, I wound up in a sexless and emotionally unavailable marriage, often crying myself asleep for lack of even the smallest bit of emotional and physical affection. I felt like existing in a silent tomb, nobody knew of the hidden agony I went through. After the marriage ended, I craved for powerful protectors to lean on, who again abused me emotionally and sexually.
Suffering in silence became normal, who would understand, after all I seemed such a happy and OK person behind the façade of my clearly up-beat, bubbly, fun and outgoing personality ... The shame of being blamed of having not had the courage to say no and fight off my abuser ... surely it was my fault that it happened ... surely I should have seen it coming ... but then there was the fear, the intimidation, the threats, I stayed frozen, battling with depression and helplessness ... Again and again I wanted to put all those events behind me and move on.
But there is hope ... and you're not alone!