Amanda - The darkness in the day
  • phfa

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Hey, my name's Ali and I just joined. I figured it was about time I asked for help from some people going through the same thing.

My best friend was abused, physically and sexually by her step father until he died when she was ten. She doesn't remember when it started. She doesn't remember a lot of things- it was only three months ago that she began remembering anything to do with the sexual abuse at all. She's almost twenty-one now, so she's been repressing a lot for a long time, and I'm the one she talks to. She says that I'm the only reason she's still alive right now, she's considered suicide a few times. For the first couple of months since she started remembering her panic attacks/flashbacks were so bad she was clawing herself till she bled without knowing she was doing it, she couldn't hear me and she flinched when I tried to touch her. One day I came home and she was curled in the kitchen holding a butchers knife, convinced that he was about to come through the door.

The panic attacks are less these days but they're still there. She says she still fears he's alive sometimes and she gets so scared sometimes that she won't leave the house. Last week she started on antidepressents and she's in her fourth week of counsilling. The panic attacks I think I can handle- I just talk to her telling her she's going to be okay till she come back to herself, and try to take her mind off the memory unless she wants to talk about it. But the depression is really hard to take. When she's down she's really, really down and nothing matters, and I don't know how to pull her out of them. The last few times I've just ended up crying helplessly with her, both of us hiding in her closet.

Last week while I was at work- I shelve at the local library for a few hours a day- I had to leave early and go home, I was so anxios about her. I don't know what brought it on but my hands were shaking I was so wirred that she was in trouble. She was fine, but I felt horrible for the rest of the day. She's joined the comminuty for survivors and pointed ths one out to me, and I thought maybe joining would help me. I've been in tears the last few days- for the last few months I've been pretty much okay but lately I just don't seem to be able to be strong enough. Last night she seemed like she was trying to claw at herself again and I just snapped and hissed at her to stop it- she whimpered and curled up under her covers. I've never had anyone so scared of me before- hey, I don't think anyone has ever been scared of me before. I grovelled and we're totally fine now but I don't like the thought that I'm near breaking point.

She can't work because she works in a cafe and there are too many people around and she's too scared, too shakey, I've been paying her rent and mine for four weeks and I'm only earning enough to support myself- thank god for student overdrafts- and she can't go on the benefit because she hasn't lived her for two years. I'm still looking into other things for her though.

With all this, and my second year university exams starting on Monday, I really need a place to vent and ask for advice. There's just so much stress and reason to flail at the moment. Little help?
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