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shigarakidecayme's avatar

I can't walk in front of others without having an anxiety attack because my dad used to slap my ass. Am I overreacting?

Asked by shigarakidecayme (13points) June 12th, 2021
13 responses
“Great Question” (2points)

My dad used to smack my ass whenever I passed him ever since I was about 6 or 7, maybe even 5. He would never leave me alone. Even when I was in a position which did not expose my backside (like lying on my back instead of my stomach) he would try to get to my ass as much as possible and would instead slap my thigh if he could not access it. I had told him many times to stop because it made me uncomfortable, however he continued doing it insisting it was out of “love”. Soon my mother joined in too but she stopped after the 3rd time I told her it made me uncomfortable. Everyone in my family knew about what my father did as he would do it whenever I was there regardless of where we were. He only recently stopped as I made sure to avoid him whenever he was in the house, however I still cannot get over it. I experience extreme difficulty when walking in front of people whether they’re strangers or family members as I cannot get past them without having an anxiety attack. Am I overreacting?

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Mimishu1995's avatar

No, you are not overreacting. Your dad is a creep and what he did to you was traumatizing. You could benefit greatly from therapy.

tedibear's avatar

What @Mimishu1995 said.

Patty_Melt's avatar

You are overreacting, but understandably so. There is solid reason for you to feel the creeps, but people are not likely to smack you, or touch you just because you have your back turned.
Counseling can help, but it is not a fast fix. You have to find someone who is a good fit. It is a good start that you know the cause of your discomfort, but the main thing you need is to find what solution fits your personality.
Your dad was wrong for pressing his habit against your feelings. Your mother should have been a better advocate for you. You did nothing wrong. Now you just need to find a way to make your day have a more normal feeling for you.

By the way, do you still see your father?

Some areas have classes for dealing with aggressive, or other unwanted behavior. You might find that helpful. A counselor could be helpful too, it just seems like people have as much trouble sometimes with finding the right one as with finding the right partner. Don’t let that stop you from looking, if you think it is your best choice. I just want you to look over your options. I think daddy is the one who needs a counselor most. Something kept him from respecting your objections.

Whatever you decide, I hope you can find it possible to relax around people.
I’m sorry he made things tough for you.

smudges's avatar

Awww, I’m sorry that happened to you. Yes, it’s an overreaction in that most people don’t feel that way, but, you have a reason for it. I, too, have overreactions to some things, but I’ve seen therapists and that has helped. My overreactions have become more like normal reactions, and they don’t happen nearly as often. @Patty_Melt especially gave you some good advice. It would be good to see someone soon, while these memories and feelings are relatively fresh. The longer you wait to address it the more difficult it may be and the more ingrained these feelings will be. Welcome to fluther; glad you came and felt ok to ask your question!

KNOWITALL's avatar

Yes to therapy.

I don’t think you’re overreacting, it’s definately creepy.

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Dutchess_III's avatar

No you’re not over reacting.

How bizarre.

si3tech's avatar

@shigarakidecayme No overreacting. That was child abuse.

Cupcake's avatar

This is sexual assault. He did not respect your boundaries and touched your body without your consent, actually despite you demanding he stop. Please seek help.

Don’t worry if you are overreacting. You are having the reaction you are having, which seems to stem entirely from the experiences with your father. Try not to judge yourself so harshly. Your reaction is a normal one. You didn’t do anything wrong.

Until you can get comfortable in therapy, perhaps think of a mantra to repeat to yourself. “I am safe.” “I am OK.” “I am in control of my body.” Something that is neutral or positive and can allow you to relax (i.e., not “No one will hurt me” or “I am not in danger”). Your constant vigilance and stress can cause long-term damage and increase your risk for autoimmune diseases, pain, and other chronic conditions. I say this in no way to blame you, but to encourage you to get help sooner than later.

LostInParadise's avatar

You understand that you have a problem and you know the cause. Whether or not you are overreacting is a moot point.

I am no therapist, but I was wondering if desensitization might work. Do your friends or family know about this? If they do, then you could start by walking in front of people you know well and trust and maybe young children.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@LostInParadise I also wonder if confronting her abuser would help her get past it.
Sounds like he needs his hand broken as a reminder not to touch others inappropriately.

Cupcake's avatar

@KNOWITALL I get your point about confronting him, but a parent who would touch his daughter with her dissent may not respond well to a confrontation. I would plan this with a therapist and not confront on my own. Sounds like a scenario ripe for abuse, manipulation and gaslighting, in my opinion.

Not saying not to confront the dad, just advocating for involving an advocate/professional.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Cupcake Sure, you’re being rational, I get that. I’m not very rational when it comes to child abuse.

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