I have not one, but two repair people coming to my home today. This gives me a lot of anxiety.
I think when people think of survivors of sexual assault, they think of people who have anxiety related to walking alone at night, going to nightclubs, excessive drinking at parties, and other situations the victim “shouldn’t have been in” which put her at risk and now cause anxiety. I can’t say that I feel comfortable walking alone at night because I don’t. I won’t walk my dogs at night, I don’t like coming home after dark from being out somewhere, and I don’t enjoy complete darkness in my house. I even have trouble exercising in my own neighborhood during the day when I’m alone because, at times, my mind starts to wonder about my safety. Thankfully, I am not completely controlled by my level of anxiety and I am still able to get myself to do many of the things which make me anxious. In addition, in my rental home and now my own home I feel completely comfortable even when I am alone. I LOVE that feeling because it gives me an enormous “marker” of how far I have come in my healing.
I think what people don’t think about in terms of survivors of sexual assault is that it can affect EVERY single area of life from then on for many survivors, not just those “risky” environments. I am one of those people.
Going to the regular doctor is horrible for me. Being “put under” at a doctor or dentist is just an awful feeling. On one such occasion, I had to reschedule because I just couldn’t manage to calm down enough to have the stupid procedure. Being on college campuses is not enjoyable for me. I have trouble in elevators sometimes. And being in my house alone when repair people have to come in is REALLY difficult for me.
With repair people, I think I felt a bit better when I was married. Which is strange because I was still alone in the house during the day when repair people would be there. The way I deal with it now is to make sure I ask a lot of questions about the person before they come out to do the work. I always expect to know the name of the person who is coming to my house, I do NOT accept a company telling me just the company name and an “I’m not sure who will come out.” And when that person arrives, they had better have some ID and some personality. I won’t be keeping you in my house to do whatever it is I’m supposed to pay you to do if you are super creepy.
Since buying my house, I have had to deal with a lot of different people for different house stuff. Most have been fine and I get through it ok the majority of the time. Lucky for me, the only guys who kind of gave me the creeps (so far) were here on a day when the best boyfriend in the world (mine) was here, and even though he was supposed to leave to get home for some appointments of his own, he stayed until they left. I didn’t even have to ask, he just gets me and could see my discomfort. He absolutely rocks.
The guys were creepy quiet. I hate that. If your job requires you to go into the homes of people every single day, please learn how to look at and talk to people so you are not creepy. One had shifty eyes too.
In any case, I am waiting for 2 separate repair folks to come today. I hope they aren’t creepy.