1. I have been asked out to dinner by someone I've know for about five years now.
  2. He's a nice guy. He asked out both Gus, service dog in training and I.
    Which I found incredibly sweet. I do know him from our kennel club so Gus is no issue. Also for those who care - he has a boxer.
  3. Here's the deal:
  4. I haven't been out on anything remotely resembling a date since breaking things off with my abusive boyfriend 7 years ago.
  5. And actually I've never even been on a date with anyone except with abusive ex.
    From here on let's refer to him as jack. As in Jackass.
  6. My only experience with dating in anyway is extremely warped because Jack was not normal. And even my first date with Jack was not normal.
    The abuse and trauma started that very first night.
  7. Soooo....here I am having been asked out on a date and having accepted and feeling so many things at once that I have no idea how to sort them out.
  8. I mean I know this guy isn't like Jack. I've known him longer than four days and have seen his character.
  9. And the info that I have tells me that I couldn't be returning to dating with anyone safer. New guy is a big teddy bear. That's the best way to explain him.
    Very shy. Very respectful of women. Listens to my opinions and respects them. He's liked at the club by all the members and dogs like him.
  10. All of that is the exact opposite of Jack.
  11. No data tells me anything bad will happen.
  12. But my PTSD is telling me other things.
  13. It keeps reminding me how Jack fooled me. How he manipulated and confused me so I didn't know left from right.
  14. What happens if this happens again and I don't know it's occurring?
  15. What happens if things get out of control and I don't like where we're headed? What do I do? A guy has never listened to me before. So would I freeze and not even be able to say the words?
  16. What happens if the flashbacks start?
  17. Do I mention Jack?
    I mean if I jump everytime he comes near me like he's going to hurt me he's going to wonder why.
  18. What if I dissociate?
  19. How the hell do I do this?
  20. How do I do something that the one time I experienced it before it led to a year and a half of things I can't even speak about?
  21. I want to go on this date. I do. I really do.
  22. I don't want to let the PTSD win. I don't want to let him win.
  23. But I'm so scared I'm going to become that 18 year old girl who was scared to death and had no idea that what was happening to her wasn't ok.
  24. Help?