Books

Louise Alexandra Erskine embraces the art of self discovery, the good the bad and the ugly parts too, and leads the reader on a journey unearthing true identity through the many highs, lows and romantic ideals we each face in life. Reminding readers along the way to first fill their own buckets with love, joy, compassion and gentleness. Screw Prince Charming confronts the pressures, stereotypes and gender roles faced by both men and women in modern society and encourages the reader to find the beauty in their perceived defects so they can show up authentically and unashamedly as their glorious messy selves in this beautiful messy world.


The demons don’t chase you 

because you’re weak

they chase you because

nothing scares them more

than an angel

that can still rise with broken wings.

~ Louise Alexandra Erskine / Screw Prince Charming


 

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Dating with CPTSD

Dating with trauma is complicated there’s no one size fits all option for how to deal with life. Sometimes you can meet someone that aligns with you in ways you daren’t have imagined possible that fits you like a glove, and sometimes that still isn’t enough because you aren’t both in the same space when it comes to overcoming triggers or because you are or because you just aren’t brave enough to let each other in far enough to see past it.

Dating with trauma is I guess something I underestimated – we could easily have gone on for months without a bump in the road and maybe then we could have faced one together when it came, but timing being what it is that wasn’t our story here. We both hit triggers incredibly early on which I maybe we should have expected but we didn’t and we were both blindsided by it and it broke my heart at a stage I probably shouldn’t have even been that invested but rightly or wrongly I found someone that I could see myself falling for and more importantly building something with, and that’s hard because in a lot of ways it’s no one’s fault it didn’t work out that way nobody is to blame, there’s nobody to be mad at and I felt powerless so I did the only thing I could and gave God a good telling off he didn’t deserve, secure in the knowledge he could handle it and I wouldn’t break him.

I’m sure if I wanted to I could blame myself or I could manufacture some reasons to blame him or blame my ex or his ex for causing the trauma we couldn’t see each other past, but that wouldn’t change anything or fix anything and at the end of the day I know the thing that broke me also built me and I don’t regret the journey that led me to become who I am today.

The woman I’ve become is incredible and I love her but I’m also under no illusion that she has a long way to go and needs a lot of grace to get there. 

I made the mistake of interpreting my present through the lens of my past and so did he and that hurt us both. We dragged pain and resentment and insecurity into a situation it didn’t belong in. So while what we had was incredibly good and should have been something we were celebrating we fought all the wrong battles on all the wrong levels and pushed each other away.

All I can do now is attempt to understand my part in it all and how and why I reacted to things the way I did in the hope that I won’t ever make these mistakes again, but allowing for the fact I probably will and if not these then new ones and I have to remember to be gentle with myself and with others and remember that tough love doesn’t work on hurting people including me.

I understand a little better now that when you’ve never been allowed to need anything there’s a complicated bag of emotions involved in admitting that you do – it’s hard to ask for something you’ve never been allowed, it’s harder still to figure out how to do that without treating the person your asking for it from like they’re the same one that intentionally deprived you of it not just someone that doesn’t understand you yet. It’s hard to know if you’re allowed to call or text, and when you have to fight a huge battle inside yourself to reach out to someone first and they don’t reply it can feel like an unbearable rejection even though it isn’t.

I understand now what a giant chasm there is between knowing your own worth and trusting someone else to see it and trusting that they don’t need convincing of it and that not everything has to be fought for. When conflict is all you’ve known and you’ve only been told that you’re worth nothing and shown that you mean nothing it’s hard to let go of feeling like you have to prove that you are – so that’s what I did I fought a fight that didn’t exist and broke the thing I was so desperate to protect.

I didn’t just break it either I pushed it past breaking point, I needed a reaction to feel like I mattered I lived too long on a rollercoaster where being hurt meant the same as being loved and I needed to be yelled at or punished somehow to feel like I mattered. So when I wasn’t and someone else’s pain wasn’t being thrown at me I felt like there wasn’t any there because he didn’t care. And it felt that way even though I knew it wasn’t true and even though he explained that he needed time to process and was sorry he shut down.

Trauma bonding is no different than any other addiction so even though I’ve been a long time out of that situation my body still doesn’t quite know how to not need it and I guess maybe it’s true that addiction never goes away you just learn how to control it and that scares me because I so deeply want this part of me gone. Inadvertently in the end I didn’t mean to but I I guess I was testing him or testing God because I wanted to be fought for, but the painful truth is I shouldn’t have needed to be. 

For a little while I thought I found someone that could see past all of that in me, that somehow because so much of my story is out here for everyone to see that he would somehow have enough insight to be ready and understand what he was getting into, he didn’t and that wasn’t his fault it was mine. I know I needed to learn all of this but I wish beyond everything else there had been a way for me to learn it without hurting him. Not just because I have to carry the weight of that with me now but because I know he does to.

Now I have to live with knowing I broke something so good and hurt someone incredible that didn’t deserve it because I couldn’t just give it time and not pick it apart, in the space of the uncertainty all the voices from my past resounded like clashing symbols inside my head – relentlessly all day every day until I drove myself out of my mind and in the end it hurt so much and it felt like no one cared that it hurt or wanted to understand why it did so I killed it on purpose because I talked myself into believing it would be easier. I ran away foolishly hoping that somehow he would see through it and ask me to stay. It isn’t. He didn’t. I was wrong and now it’s so much worse.

Disappointment hurts and so does hope all I can do now is own my mistakes, learn from them and take the time to heal again. If I’m being honest after I’ve done that I don’t want to try this all again with someone new, I don’t want someone else to make me feel any of the things I felt with him I want to save them and protect them because they’re all I have to show for the heartache, but in time I suppose that will change and until then I refuse to live life afraid of leaning into the storm when it comes. 

Somewhere out there is someone that will be ready to face all of this with me and for now I am grateful to have learnt a little bit more about who I can be, I’m grateful I learned I could enjoy affection and that I could feel safe with someone and that just for a moment I could rest my face in their neck and breathe them in and they could feel like home. I’m grateful I learned how much courage I have even if I don’t always show it in the right way and I’m grateful all of it happened even if it was too short and hurt like hell because I’d rather drown walking on water than not get out of the boat. 

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Latest from the Blog


From the Sky down

How did the world get so full of information  every minute of every day reality tv and 24 hour news and who thought it would be a good idea  to fit it all right here in the back pocket of my jeans all the information and the miss information  and all the truth is out …

when the beginning isn't at the start

When the beginning isn’t at the start

My dad on the other hand had a big kind heart you’d have to be made of stone not to fall for but he too had his demons and tried to escape them in a bottle that ended the day as empty as he felt.

The Space to Receive

Yung Pueblo once wrote that being able to receive love is as important as being able to give love, the trouble with that is that I’ve never been any good at receiving. I didn’t grow up with the tools to know how and life taught me there was always an ulterior motive and that the sooner I figure it out the better chance I have of surviving it.



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  • From the Sky down
    How did the world get so full of information  every minute of every day reality tv and 24 hour news and who thought it would be a good idea  to fit it all right here in the back pocket of my jeans all the information and the miss information  and all the truth is out …
  • When the beginning isn’t at the start
    My dad on the other hand had a big kind heart you’d have to be made of stone not to fall for but he too had his demons and tried to escape them in a bottle that ended the day as empty as he felt.
  • The Space to Receive
    Yung Pueblo once wrote that being able to receive love is as important as being able to give love, the trouble with that is that I’ve never been any good at receiving. I didn’t grow up with the tools to know how and life taught me there was always an ulterior motive and that the sooner I figure it out the better chance I have of surviving it.
  • Dating with CPTSD
    Dating with trauma is complicated there’s no one size fits all option for how to deal with life. Sometimes you can meet someone that aligns with you in ways you daren’t have imagined possible that fits you like a glove, and sometimes that still isn’t enough because you aren’t both in the same space when it comes to overcoming triggers or because you are or because you just aren’t brave enough to let each other in far enough to see past it.
  • I didn’t leave because he was hurting me…
    After my second child (my first in my second marriage) my husband began studying for his degree, as well as working full time. This led to a level of stress with which he simply could not cope, no time for his family and a lot of resentment towards me (everything was always my fault), and …
  • My Husband’s a Rapist
    Somebody referred to my (now ex) husband as a rapist recently and it shook me. It might seem crazy more than three years after I left but I had only considered my experience living with an abusive partner, you’d be surprised how big the leap feels between knowing you’ve been raped and considering your husband …
  • The Losing Game
    Wow, you’re sexy for an older reader! Catch what I did there? I ran game on you.  I made you feel good about yourself by undermining you. Depending what I went on to discuss you may have gone away still thinking – I AM pretty sexy for my age, and where’s the harm in that? …

Poetry

Here’s to the men


Here’s to the men that cry

to the ones that admit they’re failing

because they know they’re also growing 

and that limits are only in their minds

here’s to the men that take their time


Here’s to the men that wash dishes and stitch dresses

to the fathers who let their sons play with dolls 

the ones that change nappies and kiss bruises

the ones that keep on fighting 

when it’s easier to walk away.


Here’s to the men that understand our value

to the ones that don’t objectify us or degrade 

those that don’t call rape culture our problem

here’s to the men that can hear no

wish us well and walk away.


Here’s to the men that don’t think loyalty’s embarrassing

to the ones who still love us 

when their friends are watching

here’s to the men who know that needing someone

doesn’t make them weak.


Here’s to the men that don’t use the word girl as an insult 

that don’t use negging to get laid

the ones that found the courage to be who they are

here’s to the men who know what leaves them feeling empty 

and don’t just chase it anyway.


Here’s to the men that have integrity 

even when were not around

the ones that allow themselves to fall in love with our minds

not just notch us on their bedposts

and pretend that it’s enough.


Here’s to the men that buy themselves flowers

name their houseplants

and sing to help them grow

here’s to the men dancing in kitchens by themselves

thinking they’ll always be alone.


Here’s to the men that call for help when they hurt

and aren’t afraid to be seen

the ones that are courageous enough 

to understand bravery is only an option 

when you know how it feels to be scared.


Here’s to the men that love powerful women

and aren’t intimidated by success 

to the ones that want to build this thing together 

because that’s how we make it

strong enough to stand.


Here’s to the men that recognise their battles are fought and won 

not in the final showdown 

against an enemy unknown

but in the thousand small decisions 

that led them to the fight.


Here’s to the men that don’t let history define them

no matter what is said

the ones reaching forward

knowing that though their story shapes them

they alone get to write the end.


Here’s to the men that were told they weren’t enough

but found a way to rise above

the ones who see the beauty in their defects

find their weaknesses and work on them

and instead of hiding who they are step up.


Here’s to the men that will change the world.

they are the true rebels

the mavericks the renegades the titans

here’s to those that will gently break the chains

and challenge the wrongs with love.


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