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Question About Social Interaction

J

JustinS1998

Active member
Joined
Jun 8, 2020
Messages
29
Location
Pennsylvania
Hello all,

I am new to this website and forum-posting in general, so I am not sure if I am even in the right place or if anyone will even see this, but I might as well give this a try. To give a small bit of background, I am 21 years old, and I have Asperger's (however I was not diagnosed until I was 17, almost 18). Since I wasn't diagnosed as a kid, I wasn't put into any special autism-related classes or anything like that, and being social with the normal kids was actually surprisingly not that hard. I had friends throughout my childhood, but almost none of them were girls, and to that point I have not touched a girl nor been on a date my whole life (and obviously have never had a girlfriend either). To this day I don't really know what to make of that, but I try not to let it bother me (and no I am not gay, I have always wanted a girlfriend, to have sex, etc.). After I turned 18 and graduated high school, I had the worst year of my life as a freshman in college at RPI (hopefully none of you know that trash school). Every single day I stayed in my room almost the entire day and did not interact with a single other human being besides the lunch ladies (unless I was calling my parents). It was so bad that I ended up withdrawing my second semester and leaving early. After that, I came back home and lived with my parents, which is where I have been to this day. Between the ages of 18 and 20 I tried to explore a variety of options to help me out, including counseling, therapy, church groups, calling myself into a hospital, and more that I cannot remember at this current moment. I tried to be a normal, sociable human being, but I am just not sure what went wrong, maybe it was just too difficult? Nevertheless, I ended up realizing when I was 20 that nobody in this world has an obligation to talk to me and be my friend, I am really on my own in this world. I then adopted the mentality that I would just not put forth effort or worry about being social whatsoever, after having tried it for the past 2 years. I then started to learn how to make music, and for the past year and a half that is what I have been doing. I have no friends, I don't go outside the house, I don't text or speak to anybody, I just grind music all day every day while sometimes working as a tutor for math. On one hand, I can see the progress I am making with my music, but on the other hand, life just seems dull and numb without any interaction every single day. I wanted to pose the question: Is it better to keep trying to fit in and be social no matter how many times you fail, or is it better to just not worry about social settings and just put effort into a certain career/hobby/project (music for me)? After having done both things and nothing having really changed, I am just not quite sure what the better route is, so I was wondering what anyone else thought. English was one of my worst subjects in school, so I apologize if this is terribly written. Also, thank you to anyone who takes the time to actually read all of this, it would surprise me if that happened and would mean a lot to me, more than you could know.

P.S. In real life I am a lot more blatant and harsh, and I would use a lot more curse words and such to get my points across, but I am not sure how this would fare in forum settings, so I tried to refrain from that as best I could.
 
Brownangel

Brownangel

Active member
Joined
Jun 6, 2020
Messages
35
Location
london
Hello all,

I am new to this website and forum-posting in general, so I am not sure if I am even in the right place or if anyone will even see this, but I might as well give this a try. To give a small bit of background, I am 21 years old, and I have Asperger's (however I was not diagnosed until I was 17, almost 18). Since I wasn't diagnosed as a kid, I wasn't put into any special autism-related classes or anything like that, and being social with the normal kids was actually surprisingly not that hard. I had friends throughout my childhood, but almost none of them were girls, and to that point I have not touched a girl nor been on a date my whole life (and obviously have never had a girlfriend either). To this day I don't really know what to make of that, but I try not to let it bother me (and no I am not gay, I have always wanted a girlfriend, to have sex, etc.). After I turned 18 and graduated high school, I had the worst year of my life as a freshman in college at RPI (hopefully none of you know that trash school). Every single day I stayed in my room almost the entire day and did not interact with a single other human being besides the lunch ladies (unless I was calling my parents). It was so bad that I ended up withdrawing my second semester and leaving early. After that, I came back home and lived with my parents, which is where I have been to this day. Between the ages of 18 and 20 I tried to explore a variety of options to help me out, including counseling, therapy, church groups, calling myself into a hospital, and more that I cannot remember at this current moment. I tried to be a normal, sociable human being, but I am just not sure what went wrong, maybe it was just too difficult? Nevertheless, I ended up realizing when I was 20 that nobody in this world has an obligation to talk to me and be my friend, I am really on my own in this world. I then adopted the mentality that I would just not put forth effort or worry about being social whatsoever, after having tried it for the past 2 years. I then started to learn how to make music, and for the past year and a half that is what I have been doing. I have no friends, I don't go outside the house, I don't text or speak to anybody, I just grind music all day every day while sometimes working as a tutor for math. On one hand, I can see the progress I am making with my music, but on the other hand, life just seems dull and numb without any interaction every single day. I wanted to pose the question: Is it better to keep trying to fit in and be social no matter how many times you fail, or is it better to just not worry about social settings and just put effort into a certain career/hobby/project (music for me)? After having done both things and nothing having really changed, I am just not quite sure what the better route is, so I was wondering what anyone else thought. English was one of my worst subjects in school, so I apologize if this is terribly written. Also, thank you to anyone who takes the time to actually read all of this, it would surprise me if that happened and would mean a lot to me, more than you could know.

P.S. In real life I am a lot more blatant and harsh, and I would use a lot more curse words and such to get my points across, but I am not sure how this would fare in forum settings, so I tried to refrain from that as best I could.
Hey, you are never alone especially here there are many people who will support you. And regarding the question I think it is important you realise that sometimes you need people in your life to support you and so you can talk to them. I do not think however you should give up your music, and don't ever change yourself to fit into society, there is someone out there who will accept you. Of course, you may need to practice having a conversation if this is difficult for you. So I'm here if you want to talk xx

Ps I normally curse a lot more too :)
 
J

JustinS1998

Active member
Joined
Jun 8, 2020
Messages
29
Location
Pennsylvania
Hey, you are never alone especially here there are many people who will support you. And regarding the question I think it is important you realise that sometimes you need people in your life to support you and so you can talk to them. I do not think however you should give up your music, and don't ever change yourself to fit into society, there is someone out there who will accept you. Of course, you may need to practice having a conversation if this is difficult for you. So I'm here if you want to talk xx

Ps I normally curse a lot more too :)
Haha, yeah it seems like that is not the move so I'm trying not to do it lol. I appreciate your response, it just seems like ever since becoming an adult I'm just alone all of a sudden, with no place that I belong ... It could just be the case that I haven't met the right people yet, but that just seems so hard to believe for some reason. Thank you for the reply tho.
 
Brownangel

Brownangel

Active member
Joined
Jun 6, 2020
Messages
35
Location
london
Haha, yeah it seems like that is not the move so I'm trying not to do it lol. I appreciate your response, it just seems like ever since becoming an adult I'm just alone all of a sudden, with no place that I belong ... It could just be the case that I haven't met the right people yet, but that just seems so hard to believe for some reason. Thank you for the reply tho.
I understand how you feel when I turned 18 I felt so much more alone. But i am telling you there are people who will accept you. Send me a message if you want to chat more xx
 
PerpetuallyStuck

PerpetuallyStuck

ACCOUNT CLOSED
Joined
May 20, 2020
Messages
546
Location
England
it just seems like ever since becoming an adult I'm just alone all of a sudden, with no place that I belong ...
Yeah, it's kind of like someone switching off the power and everything goes dark. I think it is because being in school etc there was always a lot of people around and we had to be there and put up with it all. There were so many people, it was difficult not to get to know people and have people to hang out with. Once you get past 18, it seems as if the weight of the world of responsibility is put on us. Everyone seemed to find it easy to learn how to drive, to go out to places on their own, go to nightclubs and holidays on their own, or with large groups of friends. I have always had such a fear of the unknown. It is difficult to know what I want to do in life, who would be the right person to be a friend, what job would be suitable. The list goes on and on. If only things could fall in place and there was nothing to worry about.
 
J

JustinS1998

Active member
Joined
Jun 8, 2020
Messages
29
Location
Pennsylvania
Yeah, it's kind of like someone switching off the power and everything goes dark. I think it is because being in school etc there was always a lot of people around and we had to be there and put up with it all. There were so many people, it was difficult not to get to know people and have people to hang out with. Once you get past 18, it seems as if the weight of the world of responsibility is put on us. Everyone seemed to find it easy to learn how to drive, to go out to places on their own, go to nightclubs and holidays on their own, or with large groups of friends. I have always had such a fear of the unknown. It is difficult to know what I want to do in life, who would be the right person to be a friend, what job would be suitable. The list goes on and on. If only things could fall in place and there was nothing to worry about.
Hey, thanks for the reply, I basically echo the sentiments that you mentioned in your post. Things just don't fall into place, and even when I try it just doesn't work out. I'm just wondering when its ok to give up ... after 2 years? 5? 10? I'm just not sure how much longer I can keep trying this.
 
K

karl7

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
488
im out of the loop myself too.....havent had freinds in years, nor have i ahd a girlfriend, but i try not to get hung up on that
 
Y

YogiLife

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 14, 2018
Messages
58
Hello all,

I am new to this website and forum-posting in general, so I am not sure if I am even in the right place or if anyone will even see this, but I might as well give this a try. To give a small bit of background, I am 21 years old, and I have Asperger's (however I was not diagnosed until I was 17, almost 18). Since I wasn't diagnosed as a kid, I wasn't put into any special autism-related classes or anything like that, and being social with the normal kids was actually surprisingly not that hard. I had friends throughout my childhood, but almost none of them were girls, and to that point I have not touched a girl nor been on a date my whole life (and obviously have never had a girlfriend either). To this day I don't really know what to make of that, but I try not to let it bother me (and no I am not gay, I have always wanted a girlfriend, to have sex, etc.). After I turned 18 and graduated high school, I had the worst year of my life as a freshman in college at RPI (hopefully none of you know that trash school). Every single day I stayed in my room almost the entire day and did not interact with a single other human being besides the lunch ladies (unless I was calling my parents). It was so bad that I ended up withdrawing my second semester and leaving early. After that, I came back home and lived with my parents, which is where I have been to this day. Between the ages of 18 and 20 I tried to explore a variety of options to help me out, including counseling, therapy, church groups, calling myself into a hospital, and more that I cannot remember at this current moment. I tried to be a normal, sociable human being, but I am just not sure what went wrong, maybe it was just too difficult? Nevertheless, I ended up realizing when I was 20 that nobody in this world has an obligation to talk to me and be my friend, I am really on my own in this world. I then adopted the mentality that I would just not put forth effort or worry about being social whatsoever, after having tried it for the past 2 years. I then started to learn how to make music, and for the past year and a half that is what I have been doing. I have no friends, I don't go outside the house, I don't text or speak to anybody, I just grind music all day every day while sometimes working as a tutor for math. On one hand, I can see the progress I am making with my music, but on the other hand, life just seems dull and numb without any interaction every single day. I wanted to pose the question: Is it better to keep trying to fit in and be social no matter how many times you fail, or is it better to just not worry about social settings and just put effort into a certain career/hobby/project (music for me)? After having done both things and nothing having really changed, I am just not quite sure what the better route is, so I was wondering what anyone else thought. English was one of my worst subjects in school, so I apologize if this is terribly written. Also, thank you to anyone who takes the time to actually read all of this, it would surprise me if that happened and would mean a lot to me, more than you could know.

P.S. In real life I am a lot more blatant and harsh, and I would use a lot more curse words and such to get my points across, but I am not sure how this would fare in forum settings, so I tried to refrain from that as best I could.
You articulate yourself really well, I'm glad you found an outlet for this!

I can relate to a lot of what you experience- when you struggle so much with socialising, it does make you question if there's any point in trying to engage in it. However, no matter what our background or what mental health problems we may or may not have, we are ultimately social beings and research has shown that the core of our quality of life is rooted in our relationships with people. It's less about what happens to us, and more about the support network we have and the interactions that we have in processing everything that happens to us etc.

I would never be a proponent of shut yourself away and give up on doing anything social, because it's completely unnatural, even for people like us that find it so hard. Ive struggled to make friends for years, and whenever I do make it to an organised social of some kind, I desparately struggle through and I just find it really hard to connect with people or enjoy it, and then the low mood kicks in. But we can only keep trying- the interaction aspect is good for us and our growth, even if we don't enjoy it.
 
J

JustinS1998

Active member
Joined
Jun 8, 2020
Messages
29
Location
Pennsylvania
im out of the loop myself too.....havent had freinds in years, nor have i ahd a girlfriend, but i try not to get hung up on that
Yeah it sucks ... but I don't really know what else I can do except try to push it to the back of my mind.
 
J

JustinS1998

Active member
Joined
Jun 8, 2020
Messages
29
Location
Pennsylvania
You articulate yourself really well, I'm glad you found an outlet for this!

I can relate to a lot of what you experience- when you struggle so much with socialising, it does make you question if there's any point in trying to engage in it. However, no matter what our background or what mental health problems we may or may not have, we are ultimately social beings and research has shown that the core of our quality of life is rooted in our relationships with people. It's less about what happens to us, and more about the support network we have and the interactions that we have in processing everything that happens to us etc.

I would never be a proponent of shut yourself away and give up on doing anything social, because it's completely unnatural, even for people like us that find it so hard. Ive struggled to make friends for years, and whenever I do make it to an organised social of some kind, I desparately struggle through and I just find it really hard to connect with people or enjoy it, and then the low mood kicks in. But we can only keep trying- the interaction aspect is good for us and our growth, even if we don't enjoy it.
Thank you, I appreciate your response. I get that it is natural for humans to interact, but the thing is there are always at least two parties to consider when interacting: me and the other person. Nobody in this world seems to want to take the initiative to talk to me or interact with me, so I have to put forth all of the effort myself. On top of that, my Asperger's makes it so that this is an extraordinary amount of effort, far more than the average person would need. I forget what exactly the correct term for this is, but I have a sort of defeatist mentality, where it is very easy for me to give up on something if it does not go as planned one or two times. After exerting so much effort just to see failure after failure, the level of disappointment and depression that I feel afterwards is just too much to handle, and I give up, because I do not want to experience that pain again. It just seems like a hopeless lose-lose situation for me, probably because it is, but I just don't know what to do about it.
 
AnxiousE

AnxiousE

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2020
Messages
3,181
Location
USA
I'm not sure if I'll have the right things to say or say them right off the bat, but I'll give a quick response so you know you've been heard and I care.

While I can relate to social anxiety, particularly in person, as well as the fear of failing/rejection, I've been lucky enough to have enough successes to feel it is worthwhile to keep trying. That being said, most of my socializing these days is online, but with the right crowd, I can chat some in person too. Actually, I feel being on forums regularly has helped me better learn how to process my thoughts and other's thoughts to communicate better irl. Of course there are other things that make me anxious irl though and unfortunately that hasn't changed completely, but again, enough successes to keep trying. And I agree with the nature that we are social beings, some of us even more so! I actually require it for motivation and energy (an often unknown trait of extrovertism). But I do not LOOK like an extrovert because I am very self conscious. Anyway, hope you can find reason to keep trying and also find this forum to be helpful. :)
 
J

JustinS1998

Active member
Joined
Jun 8, 2020
Messages
29
Location
Pennsylvania
I'm not sure if I'll have the right things to say or say them right off the bat, but I'll give a quick response so you know you've been heard and I care.

While I can relate to social anxiety, particularly in person, as well as the fear of failing/rejection, I've been lucky enough to have enough successes to feel it is worthwhile to keep trying. That being said, most of my socializing these days is online, but with the right crowd, I can chat some in person too. Actually, I feel being on forums regularly has helped me better learn how to process my thoughts and other's thoughts to communicate better irl. Of course there are other things that make me anxious irl though and unfortunately that hasn't changed completely, but again, enough successes to keep trying. And I agree with the nature that we are social beings, some of us even more so! I actually require it for motivation and energy (an often unknown trait of extrovertism). But I do not LOOK like an extrovert because I am very self conscious. Anyway, hope you can find reason to keep trying and also find this forum to be helpful. :)
Thanks for the reply. I feel like it is kind of a luck game, unfortunately I just have not been lucky enough with being successful in the social world. It just seems like there is some unknown force at play, something supernatural or otherworldly, something that I have no control over, that says that I will just continue to get unlucky. This is not provable obviously, but it just seems like this is the way it is to me.
 
AnxiousE

AnxiousE

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2020
Messages
3,181
Location
USA
Thanks for the reply. I feel like it is kind of a luck game, unfortunately I just have not been lucky enough with being successful in the social world. It just seems like there is some unknown force at play, something supernatural or otherworldly, something that I have no control over, that says that I will just continue to get unlucky. This is not provable obviously, but it just seems like this is the way it is to me.
Oh I know. I've had things that seem impossible or a lost cause for me. :/
But I still would like to hope. I forgot. You reminded me of this singer/songwriter on one of the last season's of The Voice. He has Asbergers and music helped him to communicate better with others...Will Breman. Maybe you'll find that inspiring?!

Also, boy can I relate to the one who mentioned how it's so much harder after you leave school to meet people. I mean, unless you see someone everyday, it's difficult to get to know someone. And to even illustrate this more, I have regular dreams of school days and people there. While it was stressful times, I miss some things about it...and especially Uni. It really is unfortunate your experience because in my experience, college was when I actually first REALLY found people who shared my interests and could connect. I was a bit more outgoing then though as I regretted being so scared in high school and grade school.
 
J

JustinS1998

Active member
Joined
Jun 8, 2020
Messages
29
Location
Pennsylvania
Yeah it was a little different for me, college (or uni as you call it) was where I lost all of my previous friends and connections, as well as the ability to gain more. It was always described to me as how you described it; it was supposed to be "the best years of my life" instead it was the worst and only lasted about 10 months. I have never really recovered since then, and my social life and life in general has just spiraled downward ever since.
 
AnxiousE

AnxiousE

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2020
Messages
3,181
Location
USA
So sorry to hear it! And I mean i do call it college, but I like the non American way of saying Uni or University because I did technically go to a University. Lol Anyway, gosh! I really wish I could say something to make you feel better. Did you check out Will Brenan yet? Not sure how much info is online about him. I only know him from the show, but he did come up in a search. Well, sending good wishes at the very least! :)
 
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