Ok, so there’s this article on abcnews.com: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/dirty-minds-kayt-sukel-learns-orgasm-mri-machine/story?id=15334378
It’s about orgasm and the brain. What they saw in MRI’s and some other scientific stuff about sex and the brain. That’s not the part that caught my interest.
It was weird reading but when I got to the second page of the article, they started talking about what happens to the brain when the genitals are stimulated. There were some details about what parts of the brain are involved that immediately made me think about sexual abuse, stimulation during abuse, and various kinds of memory. I’m going to paste the part I’m talking about here:
Stimulation of the genitals triggers a cluster of nerve activity that moves to the sensory cortex in the brain, and then on to various parts of the limbic system. Most immediately activated are the amygdala, which controls emotion and heart rate; the hippocampus, which controls memory and fantasy; and the cerebellum, which controls deep muscle tension.
Next, the frontal cortex, which controls executive function, is activated, and then the hypothalamus, releasing oxytocin, and some other areas before “everything cools down,” he said.
Powerful endorphins are also activated that raise a person’s pain threshold. In both men and women, orgasm works roughly the same way, said Komisaruk.
I found this interesting in terms of sexual abuse. Isn’t a lot of what we deal with related to emotions, physical responses, memory, fantasy, muscle reactions, pain etc?
If being stimulated while being abused would have caused physiological responses that got stored in memory, then doesn’t that make any feeling memories, or flashbacks or other responses a validation of what happened to us? Does this mean that we don’t have to rely solely on exact visual memory and we can put stock in these other feelings as well?
I’m curious about any thoughts you guys might have about this.