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Why is it so difficult to connect?

Does one have to be more aggressive and assertive to avoid social complacency?

By Vipyr827
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15 comments

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0

I would like to extend a thank you for those who responded.

My only regular outlet these days is Facebook. No one really ever seems to be accessible or available. I’ll admit. I’ve become envious of how happy and normal everyone else’s lives has become. I barely even can sustain a roof over my head.

My life has become defined by the distractions I create for myself. I used to take joy doing recreational activities, but not much anymore.

When I stop working or do chores, despite having as many available distractions at my disposal, it just hits me like a ton of bricks how much I haven’t done in my life or whatever I have done hasn’t mattered to others at all like all I am staving myself off from is homelessness and starvation.

That’s not living, it’s propping up a shaky foundation with twigs and mud.

I felt like I’ve done every single possible thing I can do as an introvert qnd I’ve become numb. Anything I tried to exert myself socially hasn’t resulted in any quality connections whatsoever. I already bombarded those bother hearing it to exhaustion and those think it’s some switch I need to snap myself out of.

I find those who suggest the idea of God, the worst absentee father figure in existence, is someone I should seek when supposedly he/she sees all is laughable at best when most of my life with every investment whether if it’s people, Masters eductation that’s no better than toilet paper, careers have essentially felt like one let down after another. The summary of my life has been as big a mess as that last run-on sentence.

Vipyr82 Level 7 Mar 11, 2018

Vipyr you know the grass is not always greener ,we all have demons ,and when you look at people on facebook living what you think is a great life a lot of it is simply people saying look at me I'm great it's bullshit.... I can only suggest one thing that may help you,get a dog, they just want to love you ....

@Wolfbat I have a dog. Guess there’s some satisfaction that comes as long as your pet becomes fed. Maybe the kind of nourishment I want is likely intellectual at an intimate level and conversations with non-humanoids tend to just be one-sided as much as we can teach certain simians sign language.

@Vipyr82 Ok, I tried. My dog helps me to escape from the rat race, My life can be too hectic and I struggle to turn off , so a walk in the woods with my trusty friend brings me peace, then my phone goes off, Hhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaa.

@Wolfbat he’s a great best friend.

1

If you can find a support group, in addition to online groups, that might really help with the depression and feelings of isolation. I hope this place helps. Hang in there. Life changes.

Rudy1962 Level 9 Mar 11, 2018
1

I agree you may be depressed, Vipyr. That said, I also agree it IS difficult to connect when you don't come by those skills naturally or weren't given opportunity to develop your social skills. You CAN learn (what I'd call) social resilience at ANY age.
Depression is common, social isolation and alienation are common, in the US and around the world. These things are discussed daily in the news. hahaha the people who blow off your comments as being 'not my problem' or 'get over it' lack compassion. That said, you owe it to yourself to self-eval. Ask yourself: am I doing everything I can to change my situation? Am I asking too much of others? Do actively take control of your therapy and recovery: try all options and find things that work for you. It takes work to learn to connect as an adult but it's worth it. Hope you'll post your progress. smile001.gif

When asking for the time of day and feeling like hanging out like once in a blue moon feels like some obligation, I dunno. Maybe he/she has a legit excuse. Maybe I’m just not worth the time, because of whatever vibe he/she decided to bestow upon me that I never knew about. I learned to just move on.

I have a psychiatrist and even went to therapy once. I tried to arrange a follow up with my therapist but even afte I left a voicemail and my psychiatrist emailed him, doesn’t seem like my therapist is understanding the idea of a follow up I been wanting.

But okay, I’m the last person whoever feels like an inconvenience to another and flexible, but nope.

I must strike that cord and if I try to ask Weekly or biweekly, I might be too pushy. If not, I just chalk it up to I’m not an interesting enough person, but I am still FB-friends worthy of him/her.....how kind...

It feels like to me more and more that anything I ever have to ask of anyone, is something really out of the way if they to do it and somehow my company is at best something to only be tolerated. Maybe i’m Just a real bad judge of character or somehow all I bleed out is passive-aggressive.

@Vipyr82 find another therapist. As far as I can tell, we all get one shot at this existence. I hope you will put your effort and energy into making your time on earth resoundingly pleasurable with episodes of tolerable.
Please continue to post and ESPECIALLY post the steps (lots of options from any one of the great recommendations throughout this discussion) you are taking to develop your self-esteem and slow/stop negative self-talk. With effort comes reward. smile001.gif If you will help yourself, I think you will find a lot of friends/support in this online community. Hugs

3

I think you may be depressed. While we are in the midst of a depressive episode, we see things narrowly and in a negative light.

Do something different today. Go to the park, a walk, a bike ride etc.

Lucy_Fehr Level 8 Mar 11, 2018
4

There's a certain amount of fear. do I want to show you my heart? can I make you laugh? Will you be kind to me? you can only do that so many times before it becomes difficult, scary. im really a great person. will someone see the real me.

Sweetsari Level 4 Mar 11, 2018

maybe women who choose so few times to love someone fear a developing pattern of failure in relationships ? As for some of us men, we've been chosen so many many times that the pattern is not feared but all too familiar so we keep asking to be chosen by an Atheist sane sensible healthy woman instead of the unpredictable believers who choose us for any number of bizarre "reasons" destined to fail

2

Yes, it would appear so. I think the whole "ignorance is bliss thing" does us a disservice in the relationships department. our awareness can make it harder to find and converse with likeminded individuals. The ignorant are over there all blissful in their relationships while we are over here struggling just to say hello sometimes. I think personality types play into that dynamic greatly though. I'm not naturally outgoing and social, but I can play it when necessary as a means to an end. We might have trepidation because of past experiences or natural anxiety or undersocialiation, etc.. I know my reasons. I also know that many people tend to latch on too hard, seeing an intimate bond immediately when there in fact isn't one, which does a disservice both for the new friend and for excessively bonded one. We have to objectively determine what our unique reasons and THEN we can try reaching out with more success.

Srianna Level 3 Mar 10, 2018
4

Vipyr82, you seem depressed. I am sorry. That certainly does not help you feel you can connect. I wonder what you consider qualifies as connection.

Rest assured, connection is inherently subjective, involves at least two separate people's subjective perception of connection, and if you are depressed, it is difficult to feel that any one else can relate to what you are going through. I meet people with some frequency who are surrounded by people in their lives to care for them, and yet those individuals can feel lonely. It is to some significant extent the depressed, lonely person's own perceptions that keep them from experiencing a feeling of connection.

As for behavioral factors, there is a classic bit of advice that goes "Be the kind of friend that you want to attract."

3

Come on people. This guy is struggling with some stuff. Which we ALL do. Why are you bullying him?

Blindbird, I admire your compassion and the way you advocate for vyper. Hope you see it for the compliment it is: I'm going to follow your posts, girlfriend! You are the change I want to see in this world. You are so totally humane. Hugs.

@crazycurlz thank you

4

The connection, or permanence most seek from connections are unnatural.. Temporary connections are the prehistoric human norm. Deeper connections can be formed when young, as both grow toward similar goals, but with those goals accomplished, interests differ…

With the unlikelihood of an everlasting relationship, youth appear justifiably reluctant to commit. And when such commitments include legal, if not parental ties, ‘connections’ are fraught with doubt, debt and near endless responsibility… Some of us were/ are bold enough to make such commitments ..perhaps the smarter one’s aren’t…

Varn Level 8 Mar 10, 2018
1

Yes..being confident, friendly and outgoing signals people your social status and mental health. Also, if you are wanting to meet women for dating, boldness can indicate higher levels of testosterone. If you act weak and passive, you might get assertive, male-trait women coming after you, though.

1

Its difficult cuz we have this sense of "deserving" instead of understanding what realtionships are really like. u only deserve what u work for and strive to make. u hear it all the time, "u deserve a blah blah blah" when really u don't deserve it, if u want it, u have to work for it. aggressive and assertive is what makes your life what u want, if u keep waiting for it to come to u then u will die waiting.

jorj Level 8 Mar 10, 2018

i don't usually get many to agree with me on much. i fit in to a strange group that has a hard time finding others that agree. hard to be an anti-feminist, anti-democrat, anti-identity politics, anti-politically correct, anti-safe space, free speech loving lefty that is almost a socialist but i realize socialism don't work in practice. it is a good idea system and should be looked at for ideas but socialism alone is a recipe for failure.

5

This is a question I often find myself wrestling with as I seem to struggle greatly in social scenarios. If I stay quiet people often view me as being stuck up when I'm really just trying to avoid saying anything that may make others dislike me. If I speak up, I don't seem to be charismatic enough to ever really be heard.

Mea Level 7 Mar 10, 2018

@Mea

In my experience, I have no problem connecting when it comes to common social situations like school or work, it’s always silence or a passive silent “Have a nice life” after.

Even when I engage and get people to do things, nobody ever reciprocates. 99 our of 100 times it’s me initiating the social activity.

After spending more than half my life failing to be remembered or thought of, I just gave up. Clearly, I’ve done nothing in my life to ever matter to any of those people.

I don’t feel like I’m owed like some pity, because that’s the last thing I want. Naturally, I just keep it to myself while the depression festers while no one except my brother and his “attached” family bother.

Even I still have to initiate the great vast majority of the time as though if I never bothered him or anyone else for that matter again, it’s like “Eh” or “Pay no mind”.

I guess after all these years it is me, because you know maybe I am some creep or I give some vibe that I deserved to only be left alone and hanging out with me feels like some obligation.

I’ll be honest. Most are gonna interpret this as “cry me a river” but I really don’t give a shit at this point anymore.

Not like I haven’t thought about putting a bullet in my mouth to save everyone from my whining before.....

I know what you mean. I use to be the same way.
But at some point in my early 20s, I just stopped caring what other people thought of me.
I just showed who I was.
I've never went out of my way to be an asshole.

Working retail has been somewhat helpful for me to break that old cycle. I'm much more comfortable speaking up and contributing to conversation. The embarrassment still stings more than it should but significantly less than before. I feel like it's a "practice makes perfect" situation. If we actively engage, pushing through the anxiety, we learn and we retrain our brains. I think an interest in human psychology goes a long way too in cultivating better communication practices.

@Vipyr82
I'm sorry you feel that way.
To say the least, sometimes humans suck.
I also want to let you know that you're not alone in feeling as if people only ever seem interested in hanging out or talking when you're the one to go to the trouble of planning or initiating the hangout/conversation first.
You're human. You're allowed to have feelings and to vent. Nobody should shame you for expressing how you feel. You shouldn't be expected to always have good days or to always feel happy.
What's important is that you take care of yourself. Continue to reach out to others for help and to have these kinds of conversations, regardless of what any ignorant and unkind people may say, because you do matter.
Also @NeoXerops
I'm working on reaching a similar level. I've come a long way as far as no longer allowing people to walk all over me and treat me badly, but I still very much so, do take to heart the things people say--although, I know I shouldn't always.

@Srianna
I've also worked in customer service related positions, but I have unfortunately not found it to help all that much with my social anxiety; although I'm happy that it has aided you in your endeavors. (:
I struggle in more everyday/normal social situations because there isn't any one way to make friends; whereas when I'm working--it's just that--work. I know exactly what I need to ask the customer and how to help them. The lack of novelty makes it so much easier for me to interact successfully because I don't have to constantly worry over my every word and how they'll perceive me.

@Mea Thank you for the kind productive words. It’s good to know that I am not alone in these thoughts or have the idea that someone can actually care, means a lot. That goes for most people here too.

I tried to distract and other things, but motivation tends to be at a minimum. I am seeing a psichiatrist, but pulling me off doesn’t make these thoughts go away, but apparently I look better appearance-wise. It’s something I just take her word for.

2

Personally I feel it’s some uphill battle, always the outside looking in and a lot of “What the hell am I doing here?” Maybe a mix of social anxiety in there. Nothing ever seems natural. Giving up seems a lot more easier than trying with no direction.

Vipyr82 Level 7 Mar 10, 2018

Have you ever tried to discuss these things privately with a person that could be objective? That might be a therapist but other people could fit that bill. I have seen a couple other posts and you seem to be in a sensitive place. People on this board are not necessarily committed to consider your wellbeing.

@btroje Sad isn’t it? That I have to worry that i’m some negative buzzkill to be ostracized or disassociated, and asking complete strangers for help.

You just perfectly put into words the way I’ve beem feeling the last few months. I’ve yet to find a way to not feel this way. It’s frustrating and lonely. smile003.gif I’m seeing a therapist later this month to see if it helps.

@Vipyr82 it is more common than you think, just something to deal with

4

Assertive is good, aggressive gets people left out in teh cold in my (very small) circles.

Rugglesby Level 8 Mar 10, 2018
4

I think you've got to convince others of your sincerity.

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