Fear of People/Young adult

I am 19 and in college. I am not sure if I was abused as a child, but every now and than I have this one dream of being molested. like whenever I watch a movie, rape is really interesting. When I was younger in church I have a fuzzy image of a man chasing me around, and later in life a group of guys chased me. I just have a fear of men. Now as I am older I stay in my room a lot and my mom worries and says I'm antisocial. All the friends I have live where I use to live, which is with my dad. I lived in an upscale neighborhood, but now I live with my mom in a very bad area and I am afraid to walk to the corner by myself. I am afraid to go anywhere by myself, but I have to force myself to go. I don't know why I like staying in my room. I just feel safe there. I had to protect myself when I was younger from physical abuse, but I think I have gotten over that. But due to the abuse I don't trust my parents or my brothers. I don't know. My family thinks I am anti-social. But I really don't trust any of them. I have no new friends where I live now and I just wish I could make some.

Ben's Answer:
Given the fact that an estimated 25% of girls experience some form of sexual abuse, your mistrust of men, the dreams of molestation and memories of being chased by men - I'd say there is a fairly good chance that this may have occurred. But it's not for anyone else to say. Only you can know whether anything happened to you. You mentioned that you'd had some physical abuse in the past. It seems possible that that could also account for some of this fear and mistrust of men.

If you're scared, and staying in your room because you feel safer there, you certainly are NOT anti-social. An antisocial person is someone who has no empathy for anyone else, and no genuine need to have real friendships. In your case, you sound lonely and scared.

Seeing a therapist could probably help a lot. Just having someone to talk to about all these fears.

Meridian Tapping/EFT is an excellent way to treat past traumas and PTSD.

Another way to overcome your fears would be to take a self-defense class. They have classes that are especially made for women (where you get to beat the crap out of a guy in a padded suit). It can be extremely empowering and help you gain your confidence.

Here's a great video about women's self defense:

Take Care - and Empower yourself!

Ben Schwarcz, MFT
Santa Rosa Psychotherapist

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