For as long as I can remember, I've had a social anxiety . I never truly came out of my shell until I was sixteen years old. Don't get me wrong, I've tried having friends, I have a big family but I still feel alone. When I had friends, I never quite knew how much of myself to share with them and in the end, I got betrayed by them. I have eleven siblings and feel alone with them. It's like they're all grouped up with another sibling are off living their own life – I'm one of those siblings off doing her own thing.
I don't know, maybe I wasn't the best friend I could be. Like I said, I probably shared too much about me and not enough about them. After all, looking back at my life, examining my life, and questioning the decisions I made, I have gotten a few of the answers I needed. My husband and I were discussing why I am the way I am (with this social anxiety) and he gave me the definition of what it is to be a friend.
When he said this, it was the wisest thing I've ever heard. He said, "You know how you can tell if a friend is a real friend? A real friend is someone who listens to you, asks questions, and cares about what you're going through. When you're finish, they begin to talk about themselves. An acquaintance is someone who talks about themselves and make everything about themselves. These people don't bother to ask you about yourself or your day." I used to be an acquaintance to other people and hardly realized it. That reminds me of an instance when I was in 6th grade and a boy I had a crush on, who I desperately wanted to get close to (rather it be a friendship or a relationship with) kept saying I was his associate rather than his friend. That was his way of keeping me at a distance which made me feel bad. Now, I guess, there is more I understand.
I have eleven siblings, I'm not close to any of them except for my brother (who is one year younger than me) but somehow I feel like a stranger to him and he feels like a stranger to me. I have always found it strange to be around my family because they all seemed to be on their own island or in a world of their own. It always seemed to me that they were self-absorbed people. Either they were grouped up with another sibling or minding their own business. I guess, I never got along with my other older siblings because there was always something I couldn't stand about them and they were trying to dodge being bothered by me, maybe a little too much. I just brushed that off and started living my own life.
As a pre-teen and teenager, I was grouped up with my brother until our younger brother got a little older and until I began having an interest in boys. Now, as an adult, I am off with my husband living my life while my siblings are in New Orleans and I am in Houston. Now, everyone seems interested in me and what I've been up to since I haven't heard from or visited them in three years. Since I've followed in their footsteps and started my own life, I guess, I'm to blame for that as well. I could have been more involved in their life and knowing more of what & how they transpired into who they are today. I'll find out because I just need to know.
When I met and began dating my husband in 2004, we were very talkative amongst one another. I was glad to be myself around him since he was my main interest. As soon as I met his daddy and his step-mama, I began to tense up, becoming very shy and withdrawn. I didn't converse amongst them or anything, I just answered questions and the responses were basically one-worded. I became worse as I met his brother and sister -in-law. Here we are five years later and it's the exact same thing, I just feel like an outcast like I don't know how to communicate what I want to.
Because of these very reasons and these very people, I feel anti-social. When I was thirteen, I'd given up on any real friendships and didn't realize just how lonely I was until early 2007 when I was twenty years old. I found solace online. I've joined over a hundred online social network communities as a result. By late January of 2007, I was on Yahoo! Answers when I met a 40-yr-old woman who was in the same predicament as I was in. I answered her question and developed a friendship with her. We're still friends till this day. We help each other out with problems, offer each other everything, and it's just a great friendship.
In February of this year, I was searching for online confessions when I came across this site and it was just what I was searching for. I was joining so many sites in search of something just like this. Somewhere I can find experiences, discuss them, and share my story. Here I am and am proud of it. My social life in real life hasn't gotten any better, though. It's the same thing even years later.
Is something wrong with me? What can I do to change? Will it ever get better? Will I always feel like an outcast? *sigh*