When I was younger, I didn’t make very good choices when it came to men and sex -I knew that the guys I was dating didn’t care about me or my feelings. But, I learned early on that if I just gave them what they wanted, they would stop complaining about me never being in the mood- so I would just lay there with my eyes shut and my jaw clenched until they were done. I use to be completely checked out mentally. This was the standard operating procedure for the entirety of my teenage and young adult life. I’m now in love with this caring and supportive man who actually wants to look me in the eyes and kiss my face while we’re in bed and I can’t handle it. We’ve been together for a long time, and I’ve made some progress with this intimacy thing over the past few years- now, I am mentally present the entire time, but I feel extremely uncomfortable and anxious. I don’t like being touched in certain places. I can barely open my eyes when we’re in bed together. It’s not that I don’t want to- I just can’t do it without feeling like the floor is falling out beneath me. It’s like I traded one shitty response for another. So what do I do? Just so you have a little background: I was raised in an alcoholic home- my dad is an alcoholic/drug addict (sober for 9 years now) and mom was and still is an enabler. Both of them also come from alcoholic homes. That’s not to say I had a bad childhood, but it surely wasn’t easy. However, I do believe they did the best they could with what they had at the time. I developed an eating disorder at 12 years old- I’ve managed that fairly well for the past 4 years. But, as anyone with an ED can attest, each day is its own battle. My first sexual experience was at 13. All I’ll say is that it was absolutely horrible but also my own fault for placing myself in that situation to begin with. Now, I’m fairly sure that these 3 factors account for my issues with intimacy. It doesn’t take a genius to figure that out. The problem is, I don’t know HOW to get past this intimacy road block. I’ve been trying to do it on my own, but I feel I’ve hit my limit. I have no health insurance and I can’t afford to get it -and my school doesn’t have a counselor. I have also called every psychologist’s office in my area, but I have yet to find one that offers a sliding fee scale. I don’t know what other options I have at this point. Of course my SO and I have talked about this many many times. He’s patient and understanding but it makes me so sad to know that I can’t offer him the same genuine connection he gives to me. I don’t know what to do at this point. I know there’s not much of a solution to be offered here- I just didn’t know if someone else has experienced this same kind of thing and could offer any advice. I know a lot of you read a lot of self help books too and maybe you knew of a book or two I could pick up.… any advice is welcome. J I’m more than willing to answer any questions and I’m sorry this is so damn long. ** CLIFFS ** Sex and intimacy scares the shit out of me and I need to figure out how to shut up and soldier on.