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Did my (ex?)boyfriend step over the line sexually?


deardeer

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I was sexually abused as a child. I am in therapy, and am generally a healthy and happy person, but obviously still live with lasting trauma. I have not had many relationships or sexual partners because I have a hard time getting close to people, but the few I have had were all caring, respectful men and I feel like I have had a normal and healthy sex life.

 

About six months ago I started dating a new man, and we have great sexual chemistry. We had discussions about sexual preferences and boundaries, and I told him I was not into anal sex and that it was not something I had any interest in trying. I did NOT tell him about my childhood abuse, because it is not something I talk about until I know someone really, really, really, well.

 

About two weeks ago we went to a wedding, and both of us got very drunk. Afterward, we began sexually messing around. He began using his fingers on me "back there" and it actually felt pretty good. In my drunken state I went along with it, until he started having anal sex with me. I had a flashback to my child hood abuse and totally shut down. I felt like it was happening all over again, and began yelling "no" over and over. He immediately stopped and was very caring and considerate in helping me calm down. As he was confused by what had happened, I told him about my history of abuse.

 

Things seemed ok after this. I didn't tell him I never wanted to do that because I felt like it was obvious. About three days ago we went to a concert. We both had a bit to drink again. When we began messing around, he once again attempted to have anal sex with me. This time I was very, very angry. I got a cab home and haven't spoken to him since. I felt like knowing my past story, and having seen how upset I was at the prior incident he should have known better than to ever try that again. He has left me messages and sent emails apologizing and saying that since I had been into it at first during his initial attempt he thought it may be something I was up to try again. I feel like he took advantage of the fact that I'd been drinking to try to force me into something I didn't want to do.

 

Am I overreacting? Due to my history, I have a hard time being objective about this situation, but I feel like he seriously violated my trust and I can no longer be with him.

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I think the alcohol might have clouded his judgment, but rightly he should have asked you first before attempting something like this again, especially knowing the history behind it. With something traumatic in the past, especially when it affects sexual things, it's best to let the person who's been traumatized take the lead on it.

 

If you don't feel you can give him another chance, don't. If you do, make it very clear to him the only way anal sex will happen is by your prompting and encouragement, not from his end of things. He needs to understand that as far as things are concerned, anal sex just isn't going to happen if and until you're good and ready to deal with it, which will probably take longer (or not happen) because of him pushing it onto you this way, stirring up old memories.

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I can see both sides of it. From his side...he was drinking and may be a little fuzzy in the head and maybe he is focusing on you really liking it, until it all went south. So he thought that he'd try it again. I would honestly give him another shot and explain that you will not EVER be having anal sex and that to cross that boundary with or without alcohol is a dealbreaker for you.

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I think given him the benefit of the doubt was fine the first time....BUT..after seeing how you reacted to the first time, then having all the facts about your history of abuse, this guy stepped WAY over the line the second time....I would stay away.. He obviously cares only about his own needs. No one who cares about their partner would inflict that kind of emotional trauma on them a second time.

 

Drinking is not an excuse. He had the facts. Im sure he wasnt too drunk to forget your first reaction.

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I see a few issues here:

 

1) I'd agree with your overall feeling that he overstepped a boundary. You made it clear verbally that you were not okay with anal sex, and the one time he pressed it you reacted negatively. Really by that point he should have known not to try it again. It's baffling why he tried again. If you have any interest in pursuing the relationship further I would suggest sitting him down and being very explicit with him about this.

 

2) I get the impression by reading your post that you take it as a foregone conclusion that your childhood abuse is going to dictate how you react as an adult. Have you been through therapy? Ideally you should have a plan in place for overcoming such kneejerk emotions stemming from a past experience.

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I think given him the benefit of the doubt was fine the first time....BUT..after seeing how you reacted to the first time, then having all the facts about your history of abuse, this guy stepped WAY over the line the second time....I was stay away.. He obviously cares only about his own needs. No one who cares about their partner would inflict that kind of emotional trauma on them a second time.

 

On the other hand, he might have assumed reliving the memories happened as a freak occurrence, and she was feeling good at the start before, so maybe trying again wouldn't be so bad.

 

I'm not saying he approached this the right way, far from it. However, especially after drinking a bit I can see how he might have thought this approach reasonable, and I don't think he had bad intentions here.

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hmm I think it may be miscommunication here. especially since he did immediately stop both times when you made it known you were unhappy. perhaps he didn't take your story the same way you meant it; maybe he thought "oh now that she knows there's no logical reason to be afraid of ME doing anal, she'd like to get over it". they aren't mindreaders. it may seem obvious to you, but to him, he may have just missed the point.

 

while he was a bit thick here I don't think it's something to dump him over, unless you verbally told him you do NOT want to have anal. plus you were both drunk, not just you. maybe he wasn't thinking clearly either.

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I see a few issues here:

 

1) I'd agree with your overall feeling that he overstepped a boundary. You made it clear verbally that you were not okay with anal sex, and the one time he pressed it you reacted negatively. Really by that point he should have known not to try it again. It's baffling why he tried again. If you have any interest in pursuing the relationship further I would suggest sitting him down and being very explicit with him about this.

 

2) I get the impression by reading your post that you take it as a foregone conclusion that your childhood abuse is going to dictate how you react as an adult. Have you been through therapy? Ideally you should have a plan in place for overcoming such kneejerk emotions stemming from a past experience.

 

I am still in therapy. I don't let my abuse dictate my life by any means, but unfortunately these things can leave a lasting imprint on one's brain and I will have to live with that for the rest of my life.

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On the other hand, he might have assumed reliving the memories happened as a freak occurrence, and she was feeling good at the start before, so maybe trying again wouldn't be so bad.

 

I'm not saying he approached this the right way, far from it. However, especially after drinking a bit I can see how he might have thought this approach reasonable, and I don't think he had bad intentions here.

 

Thats quite a dangerous assumption to play on her emotions........

 

Maybe its me but, if a girl freaks out because I started penetrating her anally, and then explained to me it was because she had been sexually abused as a child, I think I would remove my need for anal sex off the table.

 

If he needs and I repeat NEEDS (because this appears to be more about his needs) anal so bad, he should have discussed it with her.

 

If I stuck a gun in your face as a joke, and you freaked out because you had been held at gun point once before, I would make a point not to stick a gun back in your face.

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Maybe its me but, if a girl freaks out because I started penetrating her anally, and then explained to me it was because she had been sexually abused as a child, I think I would remove my need for anal sex off the table.

 

If he needs and I repeat NEEDS (because this appears to be more about his needs) anal so bad, he should have discussed it with her.

 

If I stuck a gun in your face as a joke, and you freaked out because you had been held at gun point once before, I would make a point not to stick a gun back in your face.

 

This is my other issue. After our first discussion, he claimed that it was not something he "needed" to do, but his actions seem to indicate otherwise. It seems like he is really into that type of sex, and I just don't see myself being willing or able to do that anytime in the near future, if ever.

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I agree with Taikero. Yes, he shouldn't have tried to have anal sex again knowing what happened to the OP as a child.

 

But - the Op says herself she enjoyed it the first time until things went a little too far. He may well have been assuming that because she got some pleasure from it at first, if they were both a little drunk and relaxed she'd be okay with it. The chances all, he was probably expecting at the most a rebuke again if it wasn't okay.

 

I think for people who haven't been abused, it can be hard to understand how something initially 'nice' can instantly become something 'bad' because of a flashback or association that suddenly asserts itself. He might well understand that the OP had a bad experience, but not that she's not just nervous about anal, she's completely 100% never ever going to come round to it. Take this line:

 

I didn't tell him I never wanted to do that because I felt like it was obvious.

 

Obvious to the OP, yes, who is the abused party and is the one feeling hurt. Obviously not clear to her boyfriend though.

 

OP, I guess this depends on how you now feel about this man. We can say all we want about how he made a mistake a lot of men would probably have made, and another chance wouldn't be a bad decision, but at the end of the day you have to decide whether you're still comfortable with him. If you're not then that's not something anyone would blame you for. This is all linked to a traumatic event after all.

 

But if you do decide to at least talk to him, you have to state the obvious this time, on the assumption that since he's not a mind reader, nor can he feel exactly what you feel, you need to have everything out there in black and white so he doesn't overstep a line again, thinking he's just toeing it.

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He DEFINITELY crossed the line. There is no excuse for what he did whatsoever. I can't believe that some posters can see "his side". He was told not to do it and he was told about the abuse history...if he still really needed to have anal sex, he should have talked with her about it before. Being drunk and being at the moment is no excuse.

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He DEFINITELY crossed the line. There is no excuse for what he did whatsoever. I can't believe that some posters can see "his side". He was told not to do it and he was told about the abuse history...if he still really needed to have anal sex, he should have talked with her about it before. Being drunk and being at the moment is no excuse.

 

Glad Im not the only one not giving him any benefit of doubt.

 

Her telling him what memories that tipped off should have been plenty of reason in his mind never to take her to that place again. Whether she told him not to do it again or not.

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I think his drunken state is a factor because he is not intending to do it while sober. I do think that you need to have a talk about boundaries with him if that is something that you are unwilling to do.

 

I think that he crossed the line but then again he was intoxicated.

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I think you should leave him. There, bold and unvarnished opinion. lol.

 

I don't necessarily think he is a creep. Though I do agree with the posters who said he crossed the line.

 

A few things. As someone who can relate to trauma and how it can be to live with it, and trying to negotiate within a relationship with some boundaries that to others may seem "negotiable" but to you may be "black and white", I think the element of trust is a huge one. You need a partner you can trust, above all else, and he has already broken it in a traumatic fashion for you. That association will be difficult for you to overcome, and that is just a fact. You will forever be remembering this while with this guy, and it'll have your guard up with him when it comes to sex and communication. So early in, when it should be with the trust deepening and you increasingly feeling secure, in my opinion it is not worth the effort to stick around to try and 'make it work' when so many obstacles are already there.

 

Second, you need someone you can be open with about your reactions and trauma. Clearly, you are having difficulty doing that with this man, and that is a barrier too. If you can't open up, you will forever be throwing new roadblocks in the way and it's be miscommunication or boundary violation upon each other, and both of you feeling you can't trust each other or understand each other.

 

Last, I think you need to look at your drinking. Drinking and sex for you quite early in a relationship - why are you doing that? Is that a recreation for you in itself, setting the stage and making yourself vulnerable for a reason you haven't admitted to yourself? Regardless, it doesn't seem healthy for you - at the stage you are in your life - to be drinking to excess so that you are not in full control of what you are doing sexually. You need to take the reigns actively when it comes to your sex life and relationship, not be letting slack and chaos enter with drinking.

 

Spontaneity after trauma often comes after security....at least, that is my feelings on it after long hard work. Just don't work against yourself and your healing. As it stands, you are still in repair and needing to be extra protective of yourself and that is ok.

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Nah, this was not cool and it would make me feel that I couldn't fully trust the man I was with. If someone freaks out because of an act I committed, you best believe I won't be committing that act again especially with sensitive circumstances as this. I can't think of any man I've dated that would have tried again like that.

 

To do so shows lack of awareness for you and your feelings. It seems he may be a bit clueless about boundaries. You have every right to be angry and it's only up to you if it's a dealbreaker or not.

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Thats quite a dangerous assumption to play on her emotions........

 

Maybe its me but, if a girl freaks out because I started penetrating her anally, and then explained to me it was because she had been sexually abused as a child, I think I would remove my need for anal sex off the table.

 

I personally wouldn't try again. Like I said, I don't believe he handled the situation correctly. Having said that, I can see where he may have been coming from.

 

If he needs and I repeat NEEDS (because this appears to be more about his needs) anal so bad, he should have discussed it with her.

 

Very much agreed. I think this all goes back to miscommunication. I don't think this is some guy out to make her hurt, or at least that's not how I have interpreted what happened.

 

If I stuck a gun in your face as a joke, and you freaked out because you had been held at gun point once before, I would make a point not to stick a gun back in your face.

 

It's a little different I think when she said she felt good at first, but then memories from the past came back to the surface. That's hard to read and very much a case of mixed signals. Like I said, he should have talked this over with her before them trying anything anally again, but I can see why this happened and when you're drunk it's possible to downplay concerns or rationalize things you might not otherwise. I've seen it too many times over the years for that not to be a factor. That doesn't make him right, it's just part of the explanation for why things may have gone this way.

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