This ended up being way longer than I thought it would be. My apologies for that. This is my first post on the forums. I found it while trying to find if there was a name for my rocking behavior, and was actually a bit happy to see that there are other people like me around.
I don't remember when I first started having anxiety. I was raped the first time at age 9, then molested by two different male family members from ages 9-14 and 12-16 respectively. I was the victim of rape at their hands numerous times, as well as some of my "friends" when I was a teenager. I had issues with depression following the first rape, and it didn't help that when I told my mother about it, and she witnessed my torn clothing and such.... she accused me of doing it to myself for attention. When I told my step-mother about the molestation by my brother-in-law from 9-14, I was told that I was only getting what I deserved, and to shut up about it. At age 13, my two step sisters closest in age to myself filed rape charges against my dad. I vehemently denied that he had ever touched me inappropriately. (Absolutely true, he never had) I hated both of them for causing me to have to go live with my mother, instead of my beloved father.
When I was 18, I got engaged. I was married at 19. He was physically abusive, and liked to pass me around to his friends on the weekends. I called the police on him several times, and each time I was told that if I would "just be a proper wife, he wouldn't have to do that." (I lived in a small town, with a very good-ole-boy system at work) We had 2 sons together. He raped me the first time 3 hours after I delivered our first son, right in the hospital. Two weeks later, I was pregnant again. With my first pregnancy, the beatings stopped while I was pregnant. Not so much with the second. They weren't as severe, but they still happened. Each time I would try to escape from him, which I didn't manage to successfully do until 2005, I would get pictures in my email of the bruises my children were wearing because I couldn't take them with me. Each time I would go back, to keep him from abusing them. When I was finally able to get a divorce, I got custody of my sons.
I started dating someone new, and had a son and a daughter with him. Each delivery involved more blood loss than the previous one. My OB attributed it to the beatings from my ex. I finally was able to get a tubal done after my daughters birth, with the specter of possibly not surviving another birth hanging over my head. I was working 45-50 hours a week, graveyard shift, and trying to raise 4 kids. I was still suffering from depression, and it spiraled out of control. Eventually, the state was called, because there was no way I could be taking care of my kids properly, working that kind of schedule, with no baby sitter during the day. This was true enough. I was overwhelmed and I knew it, though I didn't want to admit it at the time. My two oldest went to stay with their grandmother, and my two youngest went to stay with their aunt, while I tried to get a grip on things. I saw my oldest two often, but not the youngest two. She stopped answering the door, and stopped answering our calls. She would leave the store if she saw us come in and she had the kids with her. We had absolutely no contact with them. We still haven't. That was in 2009. She filed for adoption in 2010, on grounds of abandonment. She changed their last names, after we were forced into signing the papers.
I need to back up a bit here, though. With all 4 kids staying elsewhere, my depression got bad enough that I ended up getting fired from work. My fiance, the father of my youngest two, followed in about a month. He had also fallen into a downward spiral of depression. We were both hit with child support papers, at this time, also. Over the course of the next few months, the back support charges just kept increasing, as each month we couldn't make the payments, since we couldn't find work. Our gas was shut off. Then our electric. Then our house was foreclosed on. Finally, we lost our vehicles as well. He moved in with his mother, and I moved in with my dad and step mom.
That winter, I lived in a room with no electricity, heat, or ceiling. The roof leaked. I had to staple trash bags to the rafters to channel the water away from my bed. Half of the room was filled with.... stuff. My step mother bordered on being a hoarder, and that room was where she did most of it. When my older step sister moved out, I moved into another bedroom, and never looked back at that one. I was arrested that summer, for missing a court date I didn't know about. I spent 26 days in jail; my social anxiety reached it's peak at this point. We had 10 women staying in one pod. That pod had 2 toilets, 4 beds, 2 sinks, and no windows. We were allowed to shower twice a week. It was a little slice of hell. After that, I could barely even go outside without freaking out and having a panic attack. Having more than 1 or 2 people around me was enough to send me into a full on panic attack.
My step mom had a heart attack, and went to live with my step sister in another state, leaving me at home with just my dad. He started hinting that he could use some..... sexual favors... and since no one else was around, I should perform them. He admitted that all those years ago, he had been guilty of what my two younger step sisters accused him of. That he HAD done it, and that he had shared them with my brother in law. The same one that had been molesting me that entire time as well. Finding this out kinda tipped my world onto it's ear. I had spent my entire life with my dad being my hero, and now to find out that he was a pedophile, the thing I hated most in the world.... It was horrible and horrifying. I moved through a couple of relationships after that, mostly of a 6-8 month duration. The one I'm in now, my boyfriend is incredibly supportive, but having never been through anything like this, he doesn't really understand.
My dad had a stroke last week, and it seems to have dredged up everything I thought I had put behind me. I'm now having full color, full surround sound flashbacks of the sexual abuses from my childhood. I'm on Zoloft and Ativan for my GAD and as an emergency stop-gap medicine for when it gets really bad. I'm at least able to go to the store now, sort of, but that's about the extent of it. I can still only handle going about once a month or so. I don't leave the yard more than once a month, in fact, and I leave the house daily to check the mail, but that's about as far as I can get. I have to force myself to go to the store, rather than just letting my boyfriend do it and be done with it.
I rock or swing my leg all the time. I pick at my skin constantly. Loud noises, or even running into my boyfriend unexpectedly will result in a panic attack. Because of my nightmares, we no longer even sleep in the same room. I can't sleep in the dark anymore. I either sleep during the day, or I have to have a light on. I'm currently using a small lamp beside the bed. I can't put my back to a door or a window. People walking or standing behind me freaks me out. Having to deal with an official of any sort (even someone like a bank teller or a store manager) sends me into panic attacks with crying fits. I haven't found anyone that can figure out precisely what's wrong with me, other than a traumatic childhood and a dysfunctional family. GAD and depression is all I've been officially diagnosed of. I have several other physical problems, swelling and joint stiffness, swelling in my back along my spinal cord that comes and goes, and other things of that nature. So far, we're going with Psoriatic Arthritis for the joints, but other than putting cream on the rash, I'm not on any medication for it as yet.