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Hi, I wonder if any one out there could shed some light on some issues I'm experiencing. Perhaps you're in the same boat or able to advise. I'm 40 and for the first time am realising I am a bit odd / quirky around most types of people. It hasn't really hit me until the last few years and moving Country. The conversational style and speed that people speak here is very different from my own Country. I'm from Ireland and have moved to the US. I have tried to make friends but all in vain. I married an American and as we can't afford to move back to Ireland, I am stuck here, friendless. I'm not a complete oddball as I have a lot of friends back home who accept all kinds of people and do not discriminate against different personality types. My situation is getting so bad, i.e. social rejection, that I'm now taking anti anxiety medication. The problem with this is it makes me dull and drowsy so although my anxiety is alleviated, I almost can't be bothered to interact because I'm so tired! It seems that my behaviour is scaring people off. First of all, I don't connect very easily with most folk, I don't do well with small talk and mediocrity, my conversation flow doesn't do well; I get uptight if I'm not connecting despite my wanting to give the person a try; however, they drop me like a hot potato! On the other hand, if I meet someone I do connect with, i.e. share the ideas, values, interests; I am so happy that I become too enthusiastic which scares them off. All in all, I just can't seem to relax around people, even people I may know for ages. I don't know why I am so nervous and tense (I've been this way all my damn life but have never dealt with it). Others pick up on it and although my awesome buddies back home paid no notice and accepted me nonetheless (which helped me alot!) here, I'm rejected right away and get funny looks. My situation is compounded by the fact that I am living in a small town homogenous mindset, with social clicks everywhere, and if you aren't a family member or didn't go to high school with these people they don't want to know. I guess what I'm really wondering is how can I relax and not talk before I think due to nervousness with those who do give me the time of day? Why can't I feel comfortable around others? My doctor has been prescribing me these anti anxiety tablets but she's stopping them and wants me to have an evaluation with a psychiatrist - something we can't afford as we have a stupid high deductible on our health insurance and we have other more important money matters pending. I am trying my hardest to figure out what the heck is the matter with me but coming up against a wall all the time. Why am I so tense around people!

Help :)
 

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Welcome to the forum. Unfortunately, I have not had the same situation happen to me, but if you were to direct this topic to a more specific place (such as the Advice Center), I'm sure you'd find many with the same experience at some point in their life.
 

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Welcome to PC!

P.S I have similar anxiety issues, but no therapy or medication; it's taken only the work from reason, support and commitment in forming strategies to cope with SA.

NOTE; As Grey has mentioned, typing this sort of thing in the advice forum will be a better option.
 

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yea i am dealing with that too, i guess it's because i care too much about what people thinks of me instead of caring about my happiness and my welfare, maybe it's a part of my sensitive nature, i don't know!
 

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Hmm, all I can say is work on it, really. It's great you can manage enthusiasm, and it sounds like you're just in the wrong town to me. I'd also recommend coming off the medication, and learning to deal with it in your own way first, especially if so many side effects are appearing.

Pushing myself in the deep end - though still with a safety net to come back to was the way I dealt with it.

Out of curiosity, what made you decide to make the move?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Social anxiety feedback

Thank you all very much for your replies. I wasn't sure the best place to post my question initially; still navigating my way around!

Thanks again :)
 

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Thanks

Thanks for the further replies.

I moved to this place because my husband is from here. We met in Ireland but couldn't afford to set up a family home there. He has his own house here and his family are a little bit less insane than mine! Although I love my mother, she is not a healthy person to be around and so would not be good for her grandchildren if they were to see her on a regular basis. We have thought of moving more East, we are in the US Midwest, but have decided to stay because my husband's parents are here, and some of his relatives. It's a sacrifice but worth it for our little ones. Where we are is boring as heck if you're single but healthy, safe and great for children.

Haytham, you say that you are similar, and that you care too much about what people think of you rather than focusing on your own happiness, but I think ones happiness depends somewhat on positive social interaction. I've been thinking so hard about it the last couple of months and have come to the conclusion, if I can work on and try to conquer at least one annoying aspect in my conversation style than I may be on to something. Thank you again for all your replies. :happy:
 

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Sometimes I get real nervous when I don't have my homies with me. Afraid a white person will challenge me to a fair fight.
 

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MOTM July 2010
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Perhaps you can start with brings some home made cookies to your neighbours, or invite them to talks about the culture/tradition/habit of the people there that you need to know so you can "blend in" and won't look weird. Ask them to help you to learn about the social norms there that you should know. Also, ask them about the "do and don't" stuff.

I wish you a very good luck.
:happy:
 

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I think ones happiness depends somewhat on positive social interaction.
well, i didn't say that u should isolate urself or something but wat i meant is to focus more on doing the things that make u happy and comfortable like a hobby or something or dedicate ur life to some purpose and then u won't worry much about that communicating issue, and when u reach that point ,u ll find communicating with people won't be a target at itself but it is supposed to serve u to make u feel happy and fulfilled so at the end it will sound easier and more comfortable, i am n't sure if it's the best way to think, but actually it worked with me at a certain level, so it might wor with u, wish u the best of luk :)
 

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I have pretty bad social anxiety, but it stemmed from bullying in school (I'm 20). It's a sort of obsession with rejection and judgement. "What if I say the wrong thing? What if I forget what to say or draw a blank? What if they make fun of me? What if they just stare? I don't belong; they're all friends anyway, and if I burst in it'll seem like I'm trying too hard. They'll think I'm an idiot." Then the spiraling of such thoughts means the fear sucks you in and eventually you just avoid the situations altogether. And then there's the physical aspects of it, the sweating and shaking and fast heartbeat.

I've yet to take medicine or therapy for it, but part of that is insurance problems. I've gotten better, but I'm nowhere near "okay." I have a hard time approaching people, interjecting into a conversation, knowing when to say what. In fact, I think the fact that I've had some sort of social phobia for most of my life (it got worse in high school, but it's been there since third grade) means that I haven't learned proper social skills. As sad as it is, I haven't had "real life" friends since I was 14.... they're all online. Though, saying that, the online friends are the ones who are helping me learn how to cope in a few situations.

Okay, so I'm not being uplifting. On a brighter note, sometimes I have better days (like today in class :laughing:) and somehow I can wedge myself in a group as the "quiet one." So, you know, yay for sporadic social contact!
 

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Social Anxiety feedback

Hi Haythem:

Thanks for your advice; it's hard to have a hobby as I'm a full time mother to two little ones. I used to do voluntary work on top of my professional job back home before I got married and this was so fulfilling and rewarding. However, my 'new' job is the best job I've ever had! My children are the greatest gift but this job description does not include meeting other like minded people! Thanks again.

Paradigm:

You sound identical to my husband; he was bullied terribly in high school. He was given hell and it has left its scars to be sure. However, if I had been around then, I would have thought he was cool and swooned after him!! There ARE some good people out there who will 'lift you up' and accept you. I have tons of friends back in my home country who are just amazing in this way. Don't shut yourself away from the world! I know it's so hard when you get knocks in life and especially experiencing bullying in school but it's worth getting out there . I'm just having a string of bad luck at the moment. Good luck :happy:
 
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