I'm lost... am I worth it?


#1

I’m 23. a traditional catholic girl who always believed I would save myself for marraige. But I screwed up big time. Between my parent’s divorce and my oldest brother (who meant the world to me) eloping and never having anything to do with us since; I was crushed, abandoned and broken. My father plainly told me he didn’t want me in his life if I wouldn’t get over all the hurt he’d caused, and love him blindly again. I can’t do that, not when he continues to hurt us. I’ve never dated, never had a boy friend, never had mutual feelings. when I was a young teen a family friend starting getting too forward affectionately, and it freaked me out and traumatized me. two years later I was sexually abused by my brother twice, and didn’t know how to stop him without him knowing that I knew. Although we’ve never spoken about it, We’ve forgiven each other and it is no longer an issue. in the middle of all this I started the evil habit of masturbating before I even knew what it was or that it was wrong. once I found out it was, it was too late the habit was ingrained, and I still struggle with it to this day. I’ve fallen into porn to get some feeling in my life, since I’m so alone. Last february I allowed myself to be touched sexually by a lesbian. Last november I lost my virginity to a complete stranger. I couldn’t believe what I had done. I hated myself so much. Then in February I got drunk at a friends house, and i had sex with him that night, and again a couple of weeks later. I dislike him already, but I wanted to be wanted so much. Of course I got no pleasure out of it, and felt more empty than before. I then got drunk again elsewhere and slept with another man. I honestly thought that I could get something out of this. But I feel broken and empty. I didn’t even want to do it half the time, but I didn’t know how to say no. I didn’t want to offend them.

Like I said I’ve screwed up royally. I am still begging God for forgiveness and the grace to forgive myself. I’m slowly working on it, but it will take a while for all of this to heal.

My trust and dislike of men is very strong, from everything that’s happened with my dad and my brothers. But the only thing I want in this whole world is to marry a good man and start a family. I’ve managed to close my heart because I’m so afraid of being hurt. I don’t think I could handle any more.

I’ve just met a nice guy online, and we’ve started chatting. normally online dating doesn’t work, so I’ll be surprised if it goes anywhere. I like this guy and it would be amazing to get to know him.

However the kind of guys that I’m attracted to are really good, and holy. This guy has put on his profile that he wants a woman who is pure.
I’ve fallen. I’m far from that. If we get serious should I tell him? I dont’ want him to use it against me in the future. Would any man still want me after what I’ve done? Should I tell my mother?


#2

You need to address the abuse you've suffered in the past. Please seek professional counseling. That abuse has set you up for dysfunctional relationships. Go to confession and after being absolved you will have a clean slate. I would avoid men who are looking for "pure" women. That usually means they only value virginity and not the person you can become through repentance. There is another thread about that. Remember, you are not damaged goods. You are person deserving of dignity and respect.


#3

I am so sorry for all you went through. Yes, you are worth it ! God loves you


#4

First advice - see a doctor. Get tested for venereal diseases, for your own protection (some like syphillis will drive you insane over time if untreated, then of course there's AIDS, which we're all familiar with).

Second piece of advice - go to confession for those times you forgot yourself. Once confessed, aside from penance as reparation, God sees you as pure, because you are as far as he is concerned. Anyone who suggests otherwise smacks too much of Jansenism. Of course in future you ought to avoid situations where you might be tempted to have premarital sex.

Thirdly, as for the abuse, speak to your priest (out of confession, of course - he is still bound by the laws of the State against disclosure) or a Catholic counsellor (ditto). Tell him about the abuse and the downward spiral. Then they can help you pull up from the dive.

Fourthly, the only people who need to know of your sexual past are your confessor, your physician, and your fiance, if and when you become engaged. If he won't marry you because of a sin you have in your past and have long confessed, and you are not suffering from a contagious disease because of it, then that's not a man you or any self-respecting woman would want to marry.

In conclusion, of COURSE YOU ARE WORTH IT.


#5

I have gone to confession, am avoiding all near occasions and the like, and I have been seeing a therapist, but he is not Catholic. there isn't one in my area that I can afford. So he doesn't understand completely the Catholic principles behind pre-marital intimacy.


#6

Yes, you are worth it. I think you should try and find counselling to get yourself back on track before you try courtship. The abuse you suffered can affect your mind and cause you to do things you don't want to do. (As you've probably already figured out.) Get yourself healed first, and pray for the person who God intends for y


#7

First of all, the man you are in contact with, in this day and age may struggle with his ideal, and if in your estimation you cannot measure up to his ideal, then don’t set yourself up to fail. Get to know him as a friend if you wish, if he is a good and holy man and if a relationship develops, say you fall in love, if he loves you then he should love you for who you are. You are no more a sinner than I am. When God looks at you and me or anyone else it is with love, compassion and mercy. He knows everything about you, the bad, but more importantly the good. He wants you to come to him in trust, talk to your priest and think about the sacrament of reconciliation, and remember there is nothing that you have done that will shock him, or God.


#8

[quote="thessa2013, post:5, topic:328900"]
I have gone to confession, am avoiding all near occasions and the like, and I have been seeing a therapist, but he is not Catholic. there isn't one in my area that I can afford. So he doesn't understand completely the Catholic principles behind pre-marital intimacy.

[/quote]

You might get a lot of good out of a half an hour with your pastor. Make an appointment.

To be honest, I am more concerned with your abuse of alcohol and your feelings of self-loathing and distrust of men than your sexual sins. Get those treated first. You aren't going to conquer the sexual sins fully until you return to a high regard for yourself and others and have mastery over alcohol, whether that is by choosing not to drink so much or admitting that you are powerless to stop unless you avoid alcohol altogether. Alcohol is a depressant, and it invites temptations to have victories over you. Both are very bad for you. I'd avoid it for awhile, at least. Success at that will teach you a lot.

Be the designated driver. If you find that no one could enjoy your circle of friends without the help of intoxicants, that ought to tell you something. In that case, you don't need to join in. Until they amend their own relationship with alcohol, you need different friends.

Do find some ways to socialize with healthy people, though, and particularly look for ways to give of yourself with others like that. The foundation for good sexual relationships is the ability to find solace, support, and a sense of purpose in your non-sexual relationships. Figure that out before seeking intimacy with men.

Hang in there!! :thumbsup:


#9

[quote="Rose74, post:2, topic:328900"]
I would avoid men who are looking for "pure" women. That usually means they only value virginity and not the person you can become through repentance.

[/quote]

That is not a charitable thing to say. It is also an unfair and sweeping generalization. You have made a few others like that on threads such as this one. If you have an axe to grind, please just keep it to yourself instead of dispensing with unChristian advice. Thank you.

+Sebastian


#10

[quote="thessa2013, post:5, topic:328900"]
I have gone to confession, am avoiding all near occasions and the like, and I have been seeing a therapist, but he is not Catholic. there isn't one in my area that I can afford. So he doesn't understand completely the Catholic principles behind pre-marital intimacy.

[/quote]

See your priest anyway outside of confession. Can't hurt to ask for healing in spirit as well as in mind.

And I agree you should replace bad company with good company. If the only way your friends can have a good time is if they are pissed as a newt, they're not good people to be around. Do something else, like a book club. If there is a nearby university there are sure to be lectures on sundry topics given by professors for the community at large. Sign up for those that interest you. You'll meet interesting people there, not all of whom need a drink for a good time.


#11

However the kind of guys that I'm attracted to are really good, and holy. This guy has put on his profile that he wants a woman who is pure.
I've fallen. I'm far from that. If we get serious should I tell him? I dont' want him to use it against me in the future. Would any man still want me after what I've done? Should I tell my mother?

Remove the part of " if we get serious " from the equation, do not let what ever the relationship is, develop to the point of being " serious " until you have addressed what ever it is you need to address in your own personal life first.. Nothing wrong with having a FRIEND on the internet...
You also mentioned you are having difficulty finding an affordable therapist, the awesome thing about a priest, is they do not charge you to talk to them, all you have to do is pick up the phone an set up an appointment to talk, and if anything he may be able to refer to someone you can afford. Therapists the good ones are hard to find, then factor in one you can afford and are comfortable with, it almost seems impossible, but it isn't . An also you have to look around for a priest you are comfortable talking to if you don't already.

I have some similar mirroring issues regarding women that you do with men, and looking at my own life and not feeling as if i am worthy to have a woman in my life with all the mistakes and problems i have.... but i am on a different road in life and have accepted who i am on some things and not as much on others.... The truth is if I had more self esteem and confidence in myself I could probably have a wonderful woman in my life right now....
Are you worth it to a guy, i had to roll my eyes to myself, of course you are ! But the real question is, is the guy you pursue or pursues you is He worthy of you. ?

Relationships are a two way street.

It does not hurt to with hold your problems/ status relating sexual relationships in life etc until one has a great amount of trust built with someone. No need to announce everything first and then risk being abused / or hurt from being honest upfront.

and remember how real Christ is in our lives, specificly in your life, He treats us as individuals and interacts with us individually as well, we are not treated as a one size fits all response to our problems. Christ will never reject you, or reduce you to your problems alone.

Also if you are looking for a good group to join, try finding a School of Community and Liberation in your area.


#12

the OP wrote: However the kind of guys that I’m attracted to are really good, and holy. This guy has put on his profile that he wants a woman who is pure.

that guy sounds psychotic to me.


#13

[quote="57thDimension, post:9, topic:328900"]
That is not a charitable thing to say. It is also an unfair and sweeping generalization. You have made a few others like that on threads such as this one. If you have an axe to grind, please just keep it to yourself instead of dispensing with unChristian advice. Thank you.

+Sebastian

[/quote]

Those using the term "pure" in these forums usually have a single meaning; virgin. They, usually men, seem to believe that they have some proprietary interest in a woman's virginity. Referring to a woman as nothing but her sexual status relegates her to the status of a piece of meat.

Further, this "licked cupcake" style of chastity ignores what the CCC says about chastity. It is the whole integration of a person's sexuality. A virgin can be unchaste and a non-virgin can be chaste. The idea that a woman must be "ritually pure" is not a Catholic idea. Sex belongs in marriage. I can attest to the fact that marital sex is fuller, better than pre-marital sex. It just is. Can't we be pro-marital sex without treating non-virgins as damaged goods?


#14

[quote="Fairwinds, post:12, topic:328900"]
that guy sounds psychotic to me.

[/quote]

Good grief. He may just mean that he wants to be with a woman who helps him in his struggles to be chaste, rather than making it harder for him. Or he may be a bit of a jerk, who knows, but psychotic is going way far.

To the OP: YOU ARE WORTH IT!!! :D

I have found that the rosary is really helpful for getting your head (more) right. That is in addition to the great suggestions others have had, not instead of them. :)

And no, your history is not the guy on the internet's business now or any time soon. As another poster said, when you get engaged is soon enough, since you have repented and confessed.

--Jen


#15

Those using the term “pure” in these forums usually have a single meaning; virgin.

Okay, perhaps they do. What’s wrong with that?

They, usually men, seem to believe that they have some proprietary interest in a woman’s virginity.

This is not charitable.

Referring to a woman as nothing but her sexual status relegates her to the status of a piece of meat.

Yes, we agree on this.

Further, this “licked cupcake” style of chastity ignores what the CCC says about chastity. It is the whole integration of a person’s sexuality.

This is also not charitable. How do you know they feel that way?

A virgin can be unchaste and a non-virgin can be chaste.

Yes, this is true. Are you absolutely sure when they say “pure” they aren’t including chastity?

The idea that a woman must be “ritually pure” is not a Catholic idea.

Are they saying that she must be? If they are themselves, is it wrong to want that in a spouse? You ignore men in this equation - do you extend the above quote to them, too?

Sex belongs in marriage. I can attest to the fact that marital sex is fuller, better than pre-marital sex. It just is.

Okay, how does this relate to the rest of what you’re saying?

Can’t we be pro-marital sex without treating non-virgins as damaged goods?

Yes, we can. But wanting to marry only a virgin is not to suggest that a non-virgin is “damaged goods.” That accusation is really old and tired now. It’s along the same lines of yelling “racist” - it is overused. I don’t understand why people take the criteria of others as insults. So what someone wants to marry a tall person? That doesn’t mean short people are bad, they’re just not right for that person. People who only want to marry non-virgins don’t invite the same kind of criticism - why is that?

The overwrought nature of discourse on this subject is not good.

+Sebastian


#16

My thougt is that you should avoid relationships with men until you have dealt with your issues. I recommend that besides counceling which may or may not be ther right move. Use the time that you would otherwise spend on dates to develop your special gifts. If you are an artist, take lessons to develop that gift. If you are musically inclined take voice or intrument lessons. If you could use a little more poise see if you could take acting lessons or speakers lessons. If you are good at sports take lessons to improve whatever talent you have. Become a better you by becoming known for more than your experiences in the past. And yes you are worth it. Jesus died for you.

Annie


#17

[quote="revert_jen, post:14, topic:328900"]
Good grief. He may just mean that he wants to be with a woman who helps him in his struggles to be chaste, rather than making it harder for him. Or he may be a bit of a jerk, who knows, but psychotic is going way far....

[/quote]

I'll give you that. but consider, the guy didn't say anything about no tax dodgers or check forgers need apply. why pick out that particular sin as go-no go?


#18

Who said he didn’t?

+Sebastian


#19

[quote="57thDimension, post:18, topic:328900"]
Who said he didn't?

+Sebastian

[/quote]

we don't, but I'll lay* 50-1 odds that the guy in the OP doesn't refer to check forgers or tax cheats. its a particular mindset.

notice how you didn't include check forgers and tax cheats as falling within the ambit of "pure"? now, I'll give that guy the benefit of the doubt that "pure" didn't mean pure in a racial sense, but there's no a lot of doubt that he's talking about sex.

  • this is not a pun.

#20

A young woman who has experienced physical and emotional abandonment by her biological father is at serious risk of looking for "love in all the wrong places for all the wrong reasons." Been there. Done that.

You are far from "spoiled goods". In fact, your actions speak of loneliness, the desperate need for validation, a confusion between love and sex, and a poor self image. You most likely have some form of PTSD from the encounters with your brother. These things all mean that you require therapy. Whether or not your therapist is Catholic means nothing if he is a GOOD therapist. There is nothing you've experienced that an experienced therapist has not heard before (quite unfortunately). YOU can, YOU will, overcome the problems you have acquired from a seriously dysfunctional childhood. I DID. It took years of errors and self examination and therapy, this is hard work.

Meanwhile: I suggest you abstain from any romantic relationships for a while until you have a handle on what's going on in your mind, and emotionally. FORGET THE ONLINE GUY. I was an AOL chat host for years and I can tell you that such people can be extremely dangerous and that very, very few such 'relationships' result in anything but heartache, at best, and horror, at worst. DON'T DO IT.

You are greatly loved by God. You are so greatly loved that His Spirit is prompting you to attempt to correct the problems that plague you. You must learn to love yourself. Remember what Jesus said: "love others AS YOU LOVE YOURSELF"....many forget that. Hold yourself to as high a standard as possible. Sex isn't disgusting and it doesn't make you a pariah. It's intended for intimate (emotionally and socially) relationship, essentially in a committed relationship. Biologically, women are hormonally "programmed" to form emotional attachments to the men with whom they have sex. There's a God given reason for this. Unhappily, because so many women engage in sex so casually (and trust me, in my 20s I was far from a saint), they "fall in love" with all the wrong guys for all the wrong reasons.

Continue in therapy. If you are able to find a very special priest, one who is sensitive, strong in faith, non-judgmental, and willing to support you, ask him to be your spiritual adviser.


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