Why can't I connect?
posted by anonymous to human relations (15 answers total) 32 users marked this as a favorite
I seem to have a hard time making connections with people. I really don't even know how I feel about it anymore, other than it I know it bothers me on a very deep level but I'm almost feeling numb to it.
I've had some terrible betrayals in the past, & a long history of being by myself that has really hurt my soul. When I was younger I was pretty selfish, & although I didn't have a ton of friends the ones I did have were pretty judgmental, & kinda self absorbed. Also a bit narcissistic. They ended up turning out to not be very good friends in the end. Glad for this I wouldn't want someone like that in my life (my upbringing was riddled with physical & emotional abuse, have a father who is completely emotional vacant & unavailable, a extremely overprotective mother & siblings who were typically beyond cruel to me- could give stories to all the above but this was a long time ago, but still has residual hurt if I think about it too much. One sibling has recently said very cruel things to me & said I no longer exist to them. This hurts but they are very toxic as a relationship & I'm better off without them in my life, I have boundaries that I won't let someone treat my poorly & have no consequences for their actions).
Which comes to present moment. I have fought with depression & feelings of self worth most of my life, but in recent years have come to except myself for who I am & know that I'm worthy of love. I have felt so much better about myself! Really I think I am a good person, & really try to be a good friend, when I do care I care very deeply. I could understand probably why I didn't have many people in my life as I was younger due to low self worth & general unhappiness that I outwardly showed. But I have changed completely & haven't been that person for so long. I am not shy, I go up & talk to anybody, people tell me how funny I am. I do generally really like interactions with people. Although I've been hurt in the past I definitely don't keep people at arms length, I keep initiating contact with people I do like & tell them often how I care for them & want to spend time with them. The problem is I don't have very many people in my life. I've been through a lot of therapy, & still don't know why this is. I just don't seem to be the type that people say hey I'm doing X why don't I invite anonymous to go? And yes, I do tell other people hey why don't we do something together, I'm not waiting for them to initiate.
It's been so long that things have been this way, that I can't really feel anything anymore. I've always had issues with connecting with people, I never have really cared about that many people. It's very rare where I meet someone that I feel a connection with. It sucks. I don't want to be that way. But even if that wasn't an underlying issue, I still don't have any luck keeping people around. There is someone who I really care about & really love, but is flaky at best even though they say the sweetest things to me & offhandedly how much they care & what an influence I've had over them. I contacted them & they said they wanted to get together & would let me know within the week, but never did (usually they do). This after telling me how much they love me. There are past examples of this person being emotionally unavailable that I haven't stated which I'm basing my feelings on- but had been a lot better as of late because of effort I've seen, & my feelings of not trying to judge situations negatively, which has helped me a lot. I'm not smothering, I'm not needy in relationships, I show how much I care with little things & say it too. It feels really good to feel that someone cares about me, it makes such an unbelievable difference, especially when it does come from one of the few people I really do care about.
I don't really feel like going out & trying, cause I've been getting these kind of results for so long. It feels like no matter what I try & when I do feel someone I have a connection with, I end up back in this position. It really feels like what's the point. I don't want to feel that way, but I do. I don't like feeling that way, it hurts. It's a feeling of abandonment that hurts. I want to mean something to someone, but for the most part I can't find anyone that I care about more than a surface feeling. Does anyone else feel like this?? Feeling needed or really wanted is one thing I haven't been able to feel most of my life, & I want to have meaningful emotional connections to people. I wonder if my past is why I seem to be stuck in this situation, as the common denominator seems to be me. I've had therapy, read books on connecting (which of most the things they say I already do, & do genuinely). I go out & volunteer, & am genuinely interested in people. I just wish I felt more of a connection with people. It really hurts when I feel like I've made progress but end up in the same place, especially when it's with someone I do care about. Feels like a nightmare that I just want to change. I have been on meds for depression in the past (though I don't really feel depressed now in the same way I have been before) & currently take a low dose anxiety med, but this seems like it's more situational than any negative talk inside of me. When people do care it really helps, I just would like to feel connected & normal, as that means to me- loved, people to spend time with, share life experiences. I wish I had more people who actively try to spend time with me (like I said I do initiate), it's hard to feel that you mean anything when you don't seem to mean anything to anyone. Though I have a sense of self worth, this point seems to come up with me. Being human just naturally makes you want to connect to other people. It hurts when you don't, but I don't know how to fix it.
Thoughts, comments? I could sure use it :)
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