I went to see my trauma therapist yesterday, and now it feels like I can breathe again. As much as I can talk to my other therapist, she doesn't understand the dissociation, although she has learned a lot since seeing me. When I talk about the rape I can see the pain in her eyes, and it is hard for me to see pain in others. My trauma therapist is more matter of fact, and he helps me to understand that what I'm going through is normal for people with a trauma history. I always wonder if it is also normal that all of this hit me so late in life. He told me a story about a 17 yr. old girl who had been referred to him after being raped. He had to explain to her parents after seeing her, that she was not ready to deal with what had happened to her. It is self preservation. When I was raped, I didn't even understand the word rape, so how could I explain it to someone else. I knew I had been hurt, but the perpetrators said things to make me believe I had asked for it. It is a relief to speak...to have my voice heard, and to be validated. I only wish that I could open up to my husband more because I know that it hurts him, and he doesn't understand. It creates a distance that I don't want to be there. I know that I just have to be ready.