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Is 'freindship' hard for you, too??


DahliMOMMA
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I'm sure there are other areas this post could go but since GreenEyes post got me thinking, and I didn't want to 'hijack' her post :) I thought I'd start a parallel one.

So here's the question(s) to the group:

Are friendships hard for you?? Making them...maintaining them?? Does your 'issue' (ie. mood/personality disorder, history of abuse, other mental illness etc.) complicate them or deter you from trying to form them??

My answer: Oh, yeah. One of the hardest things.

At age 5, I had an emotionally abusive experience over a school year with a teacher who left me so fragile and rattled I had A LOT of emotional baggage about friendships, since part of her abuse was standing me in front of class and openly ridiculing me and telling friends and classmates not to be like me or be around me. ( I was ADHD, which they knew little or nothing about then) and this set off my mood disorder and major self-image issues)

Once I worked through this baggage (took probably over a decade) I still had the Bipolar and ADHD to battle, being in a small town where everyone had known me since birth. I had more opportunities for friendship in teen and twenties:especially away at college, but I also added blackout binge drinking and a long stint of (hypo)mania.

Ugg. So, log story short...I am currently trying to get a handle on this bipolar thing. I have most of the emotional 'baggage' out of the way, have the hindsight of all the friendship related mistakes and misconceptions I have had the last 35 years...but I haven't the first clue on how to just go out and make friends. Especially when the people I would befriend already have friends, co-workers, etc filling their lives...Also, I live now in large metro area where I know no one but my husband and kids and people I run into briefly, casually at kids school and activities.

I am really lonely in this department, I am also 'gun-shy' having had a few bad experiences in recent years. And doing so with the mood swings is scary, but what if I never get bipolar swings managed, do I lie and say I'm content with living just with Husband and kids the rest of my life...No real life friends?? I know I need that, how to get it feels beyond me some days. Right now I have my family and one or two casual acquaintance I like from my daughters class but I am not ready to really have friends at the moment either. I kinda want to have myself a little more together before I really let someone new into my life.

Sorry, (got off track there for a moment)...I would like to know more about you guys.:)

Edited by DahliMOMMA
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Hi DahliMOMMA :) ,

I´m glad you made a thread about this. I´m so sad to hear your experiences at school, that can leave scars, I know. I had no friends at school either, I guess because no one wanted to be with me as my family was dysfunctional or I was someone who wasn´t worth being with. I didn´t get teased verbally that much, but they never let me in, I was always alone. I sat my whole childhood including teenage years alone in my room. And I experiences traumatic things at very early age.

So I am like you kinda struggling with not knowing do I feel able enough to have so many friends, I feel still I need time alone to get myself together, heal, I get easily mentally tired (sometimes, it depends what situation it is ) or have to back off from a crowd for example. But I know that having a few friends more would do me good too. Because I am alone all the time, I have no relations/family. And I have no husband no children, loneliness kills me sometimes. And I have my anxiety and depression. So I do worry how will I handle new friendships, I am a very liked person ( I hear), so I guess my biggest fear is how to trust someone and how to get it going and maintaining these new friends. Even I hear I´m well liked by the people I have met through others ( not friends), I still worry about not being liked by those I don´t know. But I don´t know why. I guess it is rooted from school in childhood. I live in a middle large city, but I find it difficult to meet new people. And I don´t work so that makes it even more difficult. As mentioned, I think my biggest fear is the trust of another person , then specially males of course. But in general it is hard to get new friends. I didn´t grow up here were I live so I have no network, I have one friend but she got a baby and are always busy.

Sadgreeneyes

Edited by sadgreeneyes
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Well, I guess there is something to be said for having other "friendship-phobic" people to relate to & befriend, huh?? Good practice for 'the real world'!:) I wonder how this translates with all the various issues that bring people to the boards?? Pitch in with your experiences!

Edited by DahliMOMMA
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Same prob here. I am working on my social life. And after all the selfblame and avoidancy..i came to this conclusion some ppl r dramatic and some r laughing and twinkly eyesh(this is me)others r bitches and bastards. Snobs opportunists and users. I dnt trust anyone exept my hub. Anyhow type seeks type and r comfertable when they meet. Romanticly though its all mixed up, it depends on how flexible and accepting u can b. And so btw...im a teacher for sec schl kids and that teacher is an a$0l! Ive got a adhd gr12 in the class and he is thriving. Im ignoring his jumpiness and distractebility and praising his speedy work.

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Well, I have traditionally been someone with a fair number of friends, or perhaps close acquaintainces. I was always very involved in community type things, volunteerings, spiritual community, all that stuff that gets you out there, meeting people. But then I got more and more withdrawn because my X was not a social type, and because he did not really like social events and eventually got out of the habit. I also had a few burnouts and felt I needed to pull back in order to decide just what I wanted to do. But then the pulling back became a long amount of time, like 5 years, and now I have very few friends and my X is gone :(

I too have issues of trust now which makes it more difficult. I have also noticed that people don't invite each other to each other's house like we used to. I used to invite people over for an evening, or supper, all the time, and so did the people around me, even as acquaintances. Now it happens very little, but I can't determine if it's me or if people have just become more and more private, and perhaps even more leery of others.

Anyway, making friends is about letting yourself be open with others I think. I find when I am very guarded I have a hard time getting closer to people - which is my problem now I think. I used to be much more open, trusting, I went with the flow and I sometimes forced myself to invite people, even when I was not sure they would accept. Someone on another thread said that every new relationship is a risk, and that's very true. I have lived some hurts that make me less open to risk now, and I think that's why I have not made new friends in awhile ... except you guys of course :)

Edited by Symora
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friendship , to me is a 4 letter word. I have major trust isuues with others and do not have any true friends. I have been screwed over just about everyone in my life ..... How could I have friends? I do talk to people though , generally on a superficial level. But, I realize that is not true friendship.

I have routines , that help me function . My 2 dogs , and a handicapped child to worry about. that to me is a full plate . I am not a bad person , just very gaurded . I am pleasant enough around aquaintences , but I really need to be honest and say I do not have any close friends.

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I see there is lot of reasons why it is hard to find new friends, it´s sad because we all need some good friends to hang out with. I believe too that type finds type and it´s comfortable. Even how nice people are it´s not always we get along with them, we may feel they are on another level and then it gets hard to follow or even wanting to follow, simply because it´s not you.

I guess I have to try to be a little bit more out there somehow. But yes be careful who you trust because there are a lot of people out there who are not who they say they are.

I think I will change my name to GreenEyes, sadgreeneyes is sad and since I am in recover now and things seems a bit brighter it is time to change:)

GreenEyes

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  • 4 months later...

I have always been a loner. I dont know if that was a choice made by me or if it just happened. I don't find it hard to make friends, but I do find it hard to keep them, not because of anything I do, rather because of things I don't do, like not keeping in touch. I've never had a 'best friend', one I trust enough to share everything with. So I guess most of my friendships are of the 'superficial' kind. I know it's my own fault, as I won't let anyone get too close to me. I have a wall that I built around my feelings to prevent me from getting hurt.

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I have made a couple of 'Friends' in the last couple of years.

The first one shit on me from a great height, which 'triggered' stuff inside me and I ended up in hospital.

The second one I made while I was IN the hospital.

We were very close for a few months and I thought we were solid.

He is back in the hospital at the moment (schitzophrenia) and will NOT talk to me.

I sent him a birthday present last week and he didn't even open it.

I just get the feeling that he doesn't want to know any more and my heart is breaking. It is also triggering the same sort of feelings as the other guy did - I have issues with Abandonment and Rejection, as well as Bi-polar, Anxiety disorder, Severe Depression and Borderline Personality Disorder.

Everyone has told me to leave it until he comes out of hospital. Well, OK, I will. But I doubt it will be any good.

I give so much to these people and I just get kicked in the teeth. I am sick of fighting to keep these people around. I am just about to give up.

I am feeling pretty suicidal at the moment. I know there will be people that would be upset by me doing it, (like my Mum and my Tutor, 'cos he reckons I'm talented) but I don't want to live my life without friends. And as somebody said earlier, the superficial thing is not what I am interested in.

If this one decides that he's not into knowing me any more, then I think it will probably be the Proverbial straw.

I know exactly how I would do it, as I have researched the subject thoroughly. And I will do it where I know for sure, that he will be the first person to find me.

Evil thinking, I know, but What the Hell?! Might as well have the pleasure of anticipating his reaction to it. Maybe he will go even more nutty.

He might not care either, but it won't matter anyway, because I will be gone by then.

No, I am not doing myself in 'over him'. I am doing it because I hate what my life has become, and I cannot change it, in any of the ways I want to.

I have been battling these conditions for years.

Any other project, I would have given up as a Bad Job ages ago!

Just giving this up as a Bad Job too.

Sick of Fighting.

Edited by PommyGirl
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I have 2 best friends that I have had for 10+ years but I do not tell them everything. Both are well adjusted and have not had the issues I have in my life. They do both know quite a bit about me and my family but I think they get annoyed with me because things are so hard for me. I feel lucky that they have even stuck around and I fear that one day they won't be here at all anymore. I met them before socializing became so difficult, when I had a reasonable amount of self esteem. I think it boils down to self confidence for most of us.

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