How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Rafael M.T.Therapist Your Own Question

Rafael M.T.Therapist
Rafael M.T.Therapist, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 3189
Experience:  MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach
65591635
Type Your Mental Health Question Here...
Rafael M.T.Therapist is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Im really worried something is wrong with me. I am a 19 year

Resolved Question:

I'm really worried something is wrong with me. I am a 19 year old female who has never had a boyfriend or never kissed anyone - basically I have never had any sort of intimate contact. At first I thought perhaps it was just because I haven't found the person I am looking for. But I feel uncomfortable just thinking about even friends I know having sex in their relationships, as if it disturbs me. I'm worried that this isn't normal and it is affecting how I tackle my own relationships. I have never been on a date with anyone. People have asked me out before and confessed that they do like me but I know in myself that I have no feelings toward them so I never bother leading them on or even trying. I'm just worried that my behaviour and thoughts towards dealing with relationships, particularly intimate ones, is abnormal, and that it is stopping me from developing my own intimate relationship.

I have low body image perceptions of myself as, like many, I was bullied and ridiculed in primary and secondary school for my appearance. I went to the same school during my whole schooling education, so I was always reminded of what I went through and people's belittling of me as I was constantly stuck with those students due to our small class size. I know that this experience has affected how I view myself. I was heavily overweight up until Grade 10 when my weight started to go. It was only til the higher grades that I began to hear compliments from people. I have changed dramatically in relation to the way I look since then, and people will compliment me every now and then but I cannot accept nor believe what they say because I don't believe it myself. Having grown up with the first 16/17 years of your life without not one single person telling you that you were beautiful or pretty made my self-esteem practically non-existent. Since then I know that my self-esteem has grown, however it is still not at a point that is healthy. I'm worried that all of this is having an impact on how I deal with my relationships as well and my inability to let someone love me.
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Rafael M.T.Therapist replied 12 months ago.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am very sorry to know about this very frustrating situation.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

If you want to talk about it please feel free to join the chat

Customer:

Thank you for your help. Do you have any thoughts on the situation I explained?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Thank you for joining the chat

Customer:

No worries

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Everything you say makes perfect sense, and unhappily this is not an uncommon scenario, abuse and neglect , specially when happening during early stages of life-development so shape the way we think, feel, cope and experience life in every area.

Customer:

Yeah unfortunately I know that going through such a situation has affected many things in my life. Do you think that what I initially spoke about in relation to relationships is in some way related to the latter? Also, is my feelings towards intimate relationships abnormal? It is not that I am purely disgusted by intimate relationships, I think that it is just that I am scared I suppose and I find that because I haven't gone through such an experience yet I am slightly disturbed by the thoughts of people I know going through such things.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

You underwent verbal and emotional abuse for too long at school, and it seems you suffered of serious emotional neglect at home, since you said you never received a compliment from anybody about you, and that's overwhelmingly sad and concerning, showing how poor was your life at the emotional level during all those years

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

This is a direct consequence of your past for sure.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I think your fears make sense because of your past expereinces and the lack of guidance, healthy modeling and support around these areas.

Customer:

It has affected my relationships as a whole, even with my parents. I feel unable to show my mum and dad any emotional connection as I'd feel too weak and vulnerable. I never hug them and I never say "I Love You" to them - but they don't say it to me either anymore. I definitely love them and appreciate them, however I am incapable of actually showing my feelings to them.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am sorry to know that

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

How did they raise you? Did they offered warm love, open affection and communication, did they praise you and said how much they love you and care about you, motivating you at every level, helping you understand yourself, others and life?

Customer:

Like many other children, I did witness domestic violence as a child growing up all the way through to my teenage years. It wasn't anything full on. But at times my parents would yell at each other which really scared me as a child. My dad would fight with mum. He would sometimes throw plates and push mum around. He never hit her, at least not to my knowledge, but it was difficult growing up with this at times. It wasn't a regular occurence. But there were times in my life when this did happen, and I couldn't stand listening to them fight. I remember one time as a child mum would lock herself in a room just to escape. Don't get me wrong, my Dad is really nice but at times he can lose his temper. He doesn't hit mum. But yeah, it was difficult.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then all these long term serious issues around domestic violence, neglect and abuse, lack of emotional nurturing, guidance and support, could easily create all the issues you have described. Since at school you also suffered of chronic abuse, things could not have got worse. You got nobody to protect you, since those who were supposed to play that role, from parents to teachers were dysfunctional, unable and/or did not know how to do it.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

We all come with genetic predisposition to develop in certain ways, but it is through every life experience, specially those core ones young infancy, childhood and adolescence that we get literally shaped in our personalities, minds and hearts, and that could easily explian why you feel the way you do.

Customer:

I'm just unsure what to do. I don't want these past experiences affecting such key areas in my life. Don't get me wrong - realistically I have turned out quite good as a whole, or at least I think I have. I am a very positive person and I am quite outgoing at times. I love meeting new people, and I'm usually the initiator, and socialising and I am a very hardworker when it comes to my studies. However that is how everyone sees me. They don't realise the whole other side to me that I go through. Unfortunately I have a big problem when it comes to people's perceptions of me. I care way too much about what people think about me and how people view me which does affect how I am in life. I am also very self-conscious around people as a whole. I find myself feeling uncomfortable just lining up to hop on public transport or walking around university, as if people are constantly watching me or judging me.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I understand, but only you know how it feels. Your sense of self-worthiness has not developed in healthy ways, and from there your self-esteem, self-confidence, coping and social skills, and the way you develop relationships unfold.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

It is obvious you do not want this to happen or affect you the way it does, but unhappily ,wanting it to stop would not make things work, you have actually to truly commit to work on yourself to make changes and improvements at those core levels, and the best way to support yourself in this process would be through psychotherapy.

Customer:

What is psychotherapy?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Through psychotherapy you would work on exploring yourself, identifying core issues, venting feelings and understanding what and why your experiences have been affecting you the way they do, learning better coping sills, improving your sense of self-worthiness, confronting dysfunctional beliefs and eradicating unhealthy defenses and behavioral patterns you have developed around relationships and more.

Customer:

And you believe that this will be the most effective way to tackle my situation?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Psychotherapy is the therapeutic or healing use of psychology, to treat and support people co better cope with life issues, rehabilitate from mental health disorders, work on their self-development and more.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Absolutely.

Customer:

Okay. Where would I go to seek this sort of help?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

This would work on the core of it, while other means would mostly make up your ego, without allowing and supporting real changes-improvements.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Just get you local phone book and look for psychotherapists, or ask your primary care physician for a referral, or directly go to a local mental health clinic or hospital and request psychological services.

Customer:

Okay. Can I just ask, in relation to my initial question/statement I sent, I was wondering where you thought my feelings and attitude towards intimate relationships has come from?

Customer:

At first I thought that perhaps it was just because I couldn't find someone I was attracted to enough to let myself go. But I'm beginning to think there is much more to it.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I think they come from your very sense of self-worthiness, the lack of healthy modeling , sharing and education around healthy intimate relationships, from your very parents and because of the neglect and trauma, abuse and dysfunction you underwent and witnessed for so long.

Customer:

Oh okay. I find that most of the time I choose to ignore the impact of my past on my present life and try to pretend like it isn't affecting me. But every so often there will come a time when I am fully aware of what it is doing to me. Is it possible that I will eventually overcome this myself? Is the likelihood of that slim and that my best plan of attack would be to seek psychotherapy/

Customer:

Or is *

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I do never suggest the use of denial, avoidance or repression as ways of coping,, since they are all unhealthy, destructive and not only delay but worsen the issues and their consequences. Leaving issues unresolved, equals adding further fuel for them to get worse and undermine our lives even more, making it harder to rehabilitate from them. You are very young and this gives you wonderful chances for changes, growth and even total transformation of anything unhealthy within you, then please do not delay this necessary process.

Customer:

Okay thank you so much for your advice. This has been incredibly helpful to me. I've been wanting to seek a professionals opinion of my situation for a long time but was just never sure how to go about it. One last thing, is there a particular terminology that would summarise or identify what I am going through?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

You're very welcome. I am very glad to know it has been this helpful. There are literally hundreds of ways to label similar issues, many times coming from similar or different roots. What I could say that could help you is that you have developed a very poor and distorted sense of self-worthiness, and from there your self-image-esteem-confidence and ways of coping have developed limited too. You could suffer of codependency due to the emotional neglect, abuse and dysfunction, the traumatic events you experiences and witnessed around domestic violence and chronically at school, that these could have impacted your own personality getting even deeper because of not having been addressing them but repressing them through denial and avoidance. This is why psychotherapeutic support is so important.

Customer:

Yeah I understand. I was just looking at the rates of various psychotherapists in my area and I will not be able to afford approximately $100 per hour for a session. Is there any other way you know of to get this psychotherapeutic help that would cost less?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

If you'd like to consider counselling or psychotherapy online please feel free to contact me posting your request through the Relationship category, addressing your request to me and I'Il be able to offer these services online and via confidential interface, with much affordable costs.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Skype is a very good free interface allowing face-to-face online sessions, bypassing the limitations and problems distance, location and time restrains present. If you'd like to try, just let me know.

Customer:

Okay thank you I will definitely look into it. Where are you located? Also, so there is no organisation or anything else that would offer free support? (I didn't think there would be but I thought I would just check in case).

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Use Google to look for professional online counseling or psychotherapy. You will find many websites from online businesses to private practices offering these services. You could find some free websites but none offering free professional services.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Look for a local support group for codependency, that would help you a lot too and complement individual psychotherapy.

Customer:

Okay. Once again, thank you so much for your help. I really appreciate it. You have no idea how just a little conversation like this has really helped me and opened my eyes. It is my first step towards working on myself and I am truly grateful for your advice. Thank you so much.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Self-development groups are very helpful too, but nonce can replace effective psychotherapy provided by a competent, ethical and experiences professionals. Just be careful, since there are many bad professionals in this field.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

You're very welcome. Thank you for trusting me this much!

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Please take gentle care and consistent action!

Customer:

Yes I definitely will! You will probably be hearing from me in regards XXXXX XXXXX additional help. Many thanks and take care :)

Rafael M.T.Therapist, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 3189
Experience: MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach
Rafael M.T.Therapist and 4 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
< Last | Next >
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
  • I thank-you so much! It really helped to have this information and confirmation. We will watch her carefully and get her in for the examination and US right away if things do not improve. God bless you as well! Claudia Albuquerque, NM
  • Outstanding response time less than 6 minutes. Answered the question professionally and with a great deal of compassion. Kevin Beaverton, OR
  • Suggested diagnosis was what I hoped and will take this info to my doctor's appointment next week.
    I feel better already! Thank you.
    Elanor Tracy, CA
  • Thank you to the Physician who answered my question today. The answer was far more informative than what I got from the Physicians I saw in person for my problem. Julie Lockesburg, AR
  • You have been more help than you know. I seriously don't know what my sisters situation would be today if you had not gone above and beyond just answering my questions. John and Stefanie Tucson, AZ
  • I have been dealing with an extremely serious health crisis for over three years, and one your physicians asked me more questions, gave me more answers and encouragement than a dozen different doctors who have been treating me!! Janet V Phoenix, AZ
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Keane

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1262
    Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DR/Dr.Keane/2013-8-20_204325_drkeane.64x64.jpg Dr. Keane's Avatar

    Dr. Keane

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1262
    Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RE/resolutions66/2011-1-17_05728_IMG8202smilingeditedforJustAnswer.64x64.jpg Elliott, LPCC, NCC's Avatar

    Elliott, LPCC, NCC

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    5024
    35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/formybunch/2010-12-06_191055_img_0975.jpg Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC's Avatar

    Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    3733
    Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DR/DrAkiraOlsen/2012-2-20_746_AkiraADpicmain.64x64.jpg Dr. Olsen's Avatar

    Dr. Olsen

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2336
    PsyD Psychologist
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/norriem/2009-5-27_134249_nm.jpg Norman M.'s Avatar

    Norman M.

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2193
    UK trained in hypnotherapy, counselling and psychotherapy and have been in private practice. ADHP(NC), DEHP(NC), UKCP Registered and ECP.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PsychologyProf/2010-07-15_171248_logos060400409.jpg Dr. Michael's Avatar

    Dr. Michael

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2177
    Licensed Ph.D. Clinical Health Psychology with 30 years of experience in private practive and as a clinical psychology university professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KURTEMMERLING/2010-07-23_215531_just_ask_picture1.jpg Steven Olsen's Avatar

    Steven Olsen

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1727
    More than twenty years of expertise in counseling, psychological diagnosis and education