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Old 11-20-2021, 06:07 PM   #1
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Default Processing Through My Loneliness

I am so lonely. I am so sad.


I don't have many friends right now. Close friends, I have 0.


I have taken steps to nurture the friendships I already have and to get closer to them. They are not interested. And if I am being honest with myself, we don't resonate on a close friendship level anyway.


However, I still feel rejected by these people. Two of them. Because it's two, and not just one, I think "man, what is wrong with me that people don't want closeness with me.


Deep down, I don't think it's that there's something wrong with me. At least, no more than anyone else. I do wonder if my thoughts are a byproduct of feeling so lonely, starving for connection, (as well as starving for touch).


I do think that I am in a place of mourning, mentally. I'm also feeling a bit like I am back in middle school. I was so alone and lonely in middle school, during the summer. I literally sat in my room just being sad. It was awful and not good for my development I am sure.


Back to the present, I do think...its just a case of not being a good fit for close friendship...so one of these friends...has her own life. She's super busy. A boyfriend, a job (3 jobs), lots of friends. She hung out with me a lot during the pandemic, but it's almost like, I was her pandemic buddy. And as much as I like her, there are some ways we don't click, and ever since I've been applying for, getting, and quitting jobs (two), she's kind of pulled away and I wonder if she doesn't get what's going on for me, and if she is judging me / frustrated with me / disappointed in me. She's very...into the whole..."be normal" facade, it seems to me. At the same time, she's always held me at an arms distance. There have been times she has told me later things like "I almost moved across the country for a job last month," or just other really personal things that I would have thought she would have told me, but didn't. I honestly think now, now that the pandemic has changed, things have "gone back to normal", we are on 2 different levels of friendship. I honestly don't think she was ever a close friend though. It's empowering to admit that. Doesn't make her a bad person. I don't hate her. But I need to be realistic. Realistic about what her capabilities are as my friend. Realistic about the reality of the situation.


My other friend...we have been friends since a job we both worked 11 years ago. The thing with her too, is that I really...I have always found her niceness so fake. I just want to say to her sometimes, "Be real!" It's just a bit over the top, showy, and it just doesn't resonate with me. That being said...she dropped out of my life for about 3 of those years when she was working a new job. It hurt, a lot, at the time. Again, I'd felt I'd done something wrong. She has always said "no," though, and that it was her. Anywho she has been very flakey lately, not that we hang out a lot, but I try to keep in touch and she cancelled our last get-together. Talking about her / this, makes me sad. But she has a job, and...she is much older than me, like by 25-30 years. Maybe we just aren't on the same page. Maybe it's again, one of those things that's like, what the person can give.


I think I'm also starving. Starving for genuine connection. (As well as starving for touch, which I'm working on remedying through things like massage, weighted blanket, exercise). I bring up where I'm at in all this, because I just wonder......maybe *I* have unrealistic expectations of these two people. I'm starving and I'm subconsciously putting it all on them. And, they can't give me what I need.


I know that...finding true friendships can take work and consistency in showing up. I also think...I need to look for a job. I think / wonder, if I were working, would I even have time to worry about this stuff?

A few things I think...I'm going to keep these two gals as friends, but loose friends. I won't expect anything from them, except decency and respect of course. I think...it's okay to be sad. I have an unmet need. And I am starving for it, and...it's okay to be sad about that. Sometimes, I will crawl under a blanket and face plant on the couch about it. Other times I'll be more proactive. I think distracting myself with positive things like a good book and cleaning are good things to do too.


A link I found really helpful: You'''re not uncool. Making friends as an adult is just hard | Here & Now


Thank you for listening / reading. It really helped to write this out.
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Old 11-20-2021, 06:47 PM   #2
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Default Re: Processing Through My Loneliness

Hi WG, Thank you for opening up and telling readers how you feel, and sharing some of your experiences. I'm inspired by the actions you are taking to heal yourself.


I guess I feel kind-of blessed because I have friends that I went all the way through school with. We still stay in touch and get together once in a blue moon. I'm 58 and making new friends...I guess I don't feel like I really want new friends. Yet, I am lonely and would like to go somewhere and do something fun. But then, if I go to a movie I prefer to go alone, or with my daughter when she still lived close to me years ago.

So I'm hardly one to give advice on how to make new friends. But I do feel what you're going through.
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Old 11-20-2021, 09:21 PM   #3
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Default Re: Processing Through My Loneliness

Hi @WovenGalaxy

What you've written here really resonates.

I think certain friendships are 'of a time'. People come and go and sometimes they are only in our lives for a limited period, but they were what we needed then.

I don't know if this is making sense, sorry I'm having some cognitive difficulties at the moment.

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Old 11-20-2021, 09:31 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by East17 View Post
Hi @WovenGalaxy

What you've written here really resonates.

I think certain friendships are 'of a time'. People come and go and sometimes they are only in our lives for a limited period, but they were what we needed then.

I don't know if this is making sense, sorry I'm having some cognitive difficulties at the moment.

Sent from my SM-A526B using Tapatalk

It makes so much sense, what you said. Thank you for your input, and for reminding me that there can be "seasons" for certain friends and friendships can go through transformations, but that it doesn't diminish what you had.
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Old 11-21-2021, 01:25 AM   #5
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Default Re: Processing Through My Loneliness

I have never had a friend that could relate and the older I get i find i Don't have friends, I have a very short list of people I respect because of their quality. No family and nobody that cares about me more than my ability to make the life easier...not sure what life is supposed to be about.
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Old 11-21-2021, 08:06 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by BethRags View Post
Hi WG, Thank you for opening up and telling readers how you feel, and sharing some of your experiences. I'm inspired by the actions you are taking to heal yourself.

So I'm hardly one to give advice on how to make new friends. But I do feel what you're going through.

Thank you BethRags
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Old 11-21-2021, 10:02 AM   #7
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@WovenGalaxy:

Thanks for your post. You're really trying hard and that's the only way to succeed. It's inspiring! The link was very enlightening too. I've certainly been guilty of showing up but being checked-out. I used to attend a club where i'd play a game with others but between games when everyone would chat i'd go into the hallway and pace by myself. I used to go to a mental health drop-in but knit and ignore everyone. I can sure see that i've been "covertly" avoiding socializing.

I'm trying to create the circumstances for "regular unplanned interaction" by volunteering. They're not recruiting right now because of COVID but at least i've applied and am on their files for when they start again.

This Summer i started really trying with people. I started attending a women's social hour here in my condo building and i go even when i don't feel like it. Sometimes the talk is not too elevated but then i just study the women's clothes. I've been going for about six months now, longer than ever before. I'm proud that i'm sticking with this activity tho it's only twice a month so it's not that regular, only 24 times a year, but it's SOMETHING at least!

Some of the women are very impressive, it's just: i tend to really like people at first, then when i get to know them, not so much. Like this one woman i liked so much i asked to meet her privately and confided in her a romantic fiasco i was having at the time. She turned out to be a misandrous (man-hating) conspiracy theorist and i am very sorry i shared my intimate details with her. People are weird!

There was another woman i met with privately. She is lonely and disabled like me but very talkative and can be quite negative and overbearing. The first time we met i had a great time, i was just thrilled with her. But the next time we met she totally monopolized the conversation and barely drew breath. I just felt smaller and smaller and declined to meet with her again. At first i tried to negotiate the relationship, asking her to read up on active listening, but then i just bailed and decided if i have to instruct someone on how to be civil to me they're not a suitable friend.

It's too bad because some of our life circumstances are similar as we both have disabilities and have the condo in common and appreciate art and graphic design and are lonely. But i had my doubts about her before i met with her and i was proven right -- she's not a suitable friend.

So, like you, i am still trying hard too, i tried an online relationship with someone i met here but they turned out to be a handsome man (!) and my thoughts turned to romance quickly and i'm not sure he felt the same way and it got waaaaaaaaaaaaay too intense and we broke up. Not sure if we were ever "together" tho!!! Haha! Not looking for men friends anyways, want women friends only.

Anyways, just to tell you i am in the good fight with you and as long as we keep trying we will find fun, supportive friends!
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Old 11-21-2021, 12:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WovenGalaxy View Post
I am so lonely. I am so sad.

I don't have many friends right now. Close friends, I have 0

I have taken steps to nurture the friendships I already have and to get closer to them. They are not interested. And if I am being honest with myself, we don't resonate on a close friendship level anyway.

However, I still feel rejected by these people. Two of them. Because it's two, and not just one, I think "man, what is wrong with me that people don't want closeness with me.

Deep down, I don't think it's that there's something wrong with me. At least, no more than anyone else. I do wonder if my thoughts are a byproduct of feeling so lonely, starving for connection, (as well as starving for touch).

Back to the present, I do think...its just a case of not being a good fit for close friendship...so one of these friends...has her own life. She's super busy. We are on 2 different levels of friendship. I honestly don't think she was ever a close friend though. It's empowering to admit that. Doesn't make her a bad person. I don't hate her. But I need to be realistic. Realistic about what her capabilities are as my friend. Realistic about the reality of the situation.

My other friend...we have been friends since a job we both worked 11 years ago. The thing with her too, is that I really...I have always found her niceness so fake.

I think I'm also starving. Starving for genuine connection. (As well as starving for touch, which I'm working on remedying through things like massage, weighted blanket, exercise). I bring up where I'm at in all this, because I just wonder......maybe *I* have unrealistic expectations of these two people. I'm starving and I'm subconsciously putting it all on them. And, they can't give me what I need.

A few things I think...I'm going to keep these two gals as friends, but loose friends. I won't expect anything from them, except decency and respect of course.

Thank you for listening / reading. It really helped to write this out.
Wow, so much of that resonated with me. I've been on this site since 2008 and can usually find a thread or post that validates that it's not just me.

I don't have any close friends, except for one that I've known for 15 years now. I don't know if it's because we used to date or in spite of it, but he's the only person I feel safe confiding in. I can tell him anything without fear of judgement or repercussions. If only I had more people in my life like that. He's 1000 miles away yet "feels" much closer than people who live locally.

People have come and gone in my life many, many times. I never had anyone I've known since childhood stick around, where we reach adulthood together and grow old together.

There are two women in my life who have turned out to be such a disappointment. One I've known since 2017 yet there's no close connection. I've decided not to confide in her anymore, as she's full of that "toxic positivity" in our culture and judgy, plus eager to give advice even when I've told her I'm not looking for it. Overbearing and bossy, I keep her at arm's length now. Never accepted what I told her, I'd hear stuff like "You shouldn't feel that way." WTF? With her large close family and many friends, she's so lacking in empathy.

Other woman I thought had potential, but if I have to goad her into calling ME once in awhile instead of my doing the calling all the time to keep things going, she's not the "friend" I thought she was.

There's a third woman I've given up on. She won't interact me unless I contact her first. I have to constantly ask her questions to keep the interaction going or GET it going in the first place. It's exhausting; I feel like I'm interviewing her or interrogating her. Why can't she tell me stuff or ask me stuff, without my prodding her? I've tried to talk to her about it but she said it's the way it's going to be.

An acquaintance used to call me a lot in 2020, claiming she worries about me cause I'm alone. Then she called less and less. I've tried to call her but she doesn't pick up.

I've read it's easier to make friends when we're in school due to common circumstances. You're in the same class or have the same teacher, stuff like that.


And it's not that I haven't made the effort. I've tried and tried, and they blow me off at some point. I've asked people in a grief group I went to once about keeping in touch. They say sure then don't reply to my messages.

I like your expression loose friends. I'm now thinking of them as casual friends or just low quality friends. This has helped since they are not capable of giving me what I need/want/deserve. Since it's about connections, I've even used the analogy of a poor cell signal: Poor network conditions. I get a weak signal.

I also want a real connection, and I know since I was raised by distant parents, I'm looking for connections the rest of my life. It's a risk every time and I get hurt every time. Last year was especially brutal due to lockdowns, etc. I needed real connections more than ever yet these people didn't seem to need it like I did/do.

I've never believed in mixing business with pleasure, yet made an exception once when I thought I became friends with a former co-worker. She later stabbed me in the back.


Quote:
Originally Posted by BethRags View Post


I guess I feel kind-of blessed because I have friends that I went all the way through school with. We still stay in touch and get together once in a blue moon. I'm 58 and making new friends...I guess I don't feel like I really want new friends. Yet, I am lonely and would like to go somewhere and do something fun. But then, if I go to a movie I prefer to go alone, or with my daughter when she still lived close to me years ago.

So I'm hardly one to give advice on how to make new friends. But I do feel what you're going through.
Boy do I envy you. I'm 60 and haven't made any new "real" friends, just the superficial ones mentioned above. I know there's different levels of friendships and all, but as humans we are hard wired to need connections. I'm not cutting these women out but I no longer expect anything from them. I don't miss talking to them. It's okay if I talk to them (albeit about stupid superficial things) and okay if I don't, since there's nothing there anyway.

I go everywhere alone, and I hate it in this city. I don't feel safe. My neighbors are not friendly. There's no sense of community, even during these times.
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Processing Through My Loneliness

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Old 11-21-2021, 01:01 PM   #9
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And yet even though all 3 of them KNOW I live alone, have no family, no pets, no nice neighbors, they still say stuff like "Have a happy holiday" or "Happy this and that."

"Enjoy the holiday weekend." With whom? Certainly not with them. Never got an invite to their house, pre-COVID. If it were the other way around, I'd extend the invitation to THEM. I'd think "My FRIEND is alone. She doesn't have to be."

It's bad enough that the media keeps telling us "hope you're enjoying the holidays with your family and friends", I don't need it from them too.

Forgot to say that, but as I realized the dreaded holidays are just days away, I realized there's no "family and friends." Why does American culture have to be so toxic for people who don't have these romanticized versions of "families"??? I wonder if other countries do this but I don't know, as I've never been anywhere.
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Hmmm....looks like some good tips in here.


Processing Through My Loneliness

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Old 11-21-2021, 04:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by East17 View Post
Hi @WovenGalaxy

What you've written here really resonates.

I think certain friendships are 'of a time'. People come and go and sometimes they are only in our lives for a limited period, but they were what we needed then.

I don't know if this is making sense, sorry I'm having some cognitive difficulties at the moment.

Sent from my SM-A526B using Tapatalk

Makes perfect sense. "Friends...A season, A reason, or A lifetime."
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Old 11-21-2021, 04:58 PM   #11
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And yet even though all 3 of them KNOW I live alone, have no family, no pets, no nice neighbors, they still say stuff like "Have a happy holiday" or "Happy this and that."

"Enjoy the holiday weekend." With whom? Certainly not with them. Never got an invite to their house, pre-COVID. If it were the other way around, I'd extend the invitation to THEM. I'd think "My FRIEND is alone. She doesn't have to be."

It's bad enough that the media keeps telling us "hope you're enjoying the holidays with your family and friends", I don't need it from them too.

Forgot to say that, but as I realized the dreaded holidays are just days away, I realized there's no "family and friends." Why does American culture have to be so toxic for people who don't have these romanticized versions of "families"??? I wonder if other countries do this but I don't know, as I've never been anywhere.

It's been my experience that non-Americans are more realistic. Let's face it- this country was formed on imagination and dreams. By the time Hollywood came along we were so superficial and romantisized that we couldn't help but implode eventually. June Cleaver vacuuming in her pearls and high heels started looking mighty weird. I do believe we're experiencing a major shift now in the U.S.
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Old 11-21-2021, 07:08 PM   #12
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Thank you so much @whatever2013 ! Thank you for your encouragement. I am inspired by you going to the women's group, even when you don't feel like it because that's an awesome feat. I struggle with being consistent with social stuff. Especially when I'm not in the mood. You've really inspired me. Thank you and congrats.
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Old 11-21-2021, 07:22 PM   #13
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Nonightowl, I'm glad my post made you feel less alone. you mentioned toxic / romanticized versions of family. Can you say more about what you mean by that? I can probably relate, since I don't see being single as bad, and have never wanted marriage for myself, or kids.
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Old 11-21-2021, 07:27 PM   #14
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BethRags, you Are lucky! I have no good friends from high school. I have stayed in touch just a tiny bit with just a few people from H.S. I have 1 friend from college who I stay in touch with. He lives far away and he's a he. I've always thought he might like like me. I don't feel the same. We bond over music and are both shy / anxious - see him as a friend n that's that.
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Old 11-21-2021, 08:56 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BethRags View Post

It's been my experience that non-Americans are more realistic. Let's face it- this country was formed on imagination and dreams. By the time Hollywood came along we were so superficial and romantisized that we couldn't help but implode eventually. June Cleaver vacuuming in her pearls and high heels started looking mighty weird. I do believe we're experiencing a major shift now in the U.S.
Yeah, I've seen reruns of that show. It was funny in the sense that it made me laugh, and funny in the weird sense, like who LIKES housework and dresses like that while doing it?


Quote:
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Nonightowl, I'm glad my post made you feel less alone. you mentioned toxic / romanticized versions of family. Can you say more about what you mean by that? I can probably relate, since I don't see being single as bad, and have never wanted marriage for myself, or kids.
"Romanticized" is a word I've heard from therapists. In a nutshell, family relationships are or are supposed to be like what we see in the movies or Hallmark commmercials: Family is everything, blood is thicker than water, families should be close and warm/fuzzy, etc. You do stuff for family, sacrifice for family, etc. And estrangement always works out if one is just honest and open with a family member or members. They "come around" eventually because they are family. Death of a family member brings everyone together, closer. But in the real world, it doesn't work that way for a lot of people.

And we are bombarded with images of happy, smiling families esp. last year during lockdown. They showed people HAPPY to be locked up together because it gives them "bonding" time. Not everybody HAS that kind of family or is able to/wants to bond. Of course they didn't show people at home suffering from spousal abuse or child abuse.

They never showed or interviewed people who live alone, no family, no tech to "connect" (mainly referring to 2020), etc. It's like everybody in the U.S. is in a happy committed relationship and/or part of a close, warm family.

And the family thing won't let up. Even the government keeps talking about families and child care and child tax credit. But if you don't have kids or you're single where's the tax credit for US?

And there's always giveaways or prizes in PAIRS: Tickets for two, dinner for two, trip for two. Like everyone is part of a couple. Couples/family oriented culture. Now that Thanksgiving is upon us, I'm hearing "enjoy your holidays with family and friends."

That's the best I can do in explaining it.

If the media was more balanced and less biased, it wouldn't feel so toxic to those of us who don't have families like that and never did. Can't cry so I let this emoji do it for me:

And see quoted post from BethRags above. From what I read about toxic positivity (insisting everything, no matter how bad, is positive) is an American thing.
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