Feeling isolated and invisible

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Feeling isolated and invisible Empty Feeling isolated and invisible

Post by dustyteal on Tue Mar 24, 2015 12:28 am

I don't really have friends. Everyone I know who I contact doesn't respond to me, even if they asked me to contact them. For example, I ran into an old high school friend a couple of months ago. She said, "I've been thinking about you. I hope you're well. Please give me a call," and gave me her number, but I left her a message and never heard back. This keeps happening over and over again with different people.

On a similar vein, people always seem to forget about plans with me. Like a few months ago, when I had plans to meet a friend for coffee and he didn't turn up. He later apologized profusely, saying it slipped his mind because he had to stay late at work, but he too eventually stopped responding to my texts. In high school there were a few times I had plans with friends, one-on-one, that they didn't show up to. One apologized and rescheduled and another apologized saying she got caught up in a conversation. It was very rare that anyone showed up at my birthday parties growing up. And since high school, I've even had *boyfriends* who failed to show up to dates because 'my parents were being assholes,' 'I lost track of time' etc.

I have a boyfriend, but since his depression can be kind of tough to handle sometimes and one person wouldn't be enough social contact for me anyway, I need other people besides him. I am (was?) friendly with a couple of our mutual friends, but I want friends made on my own merits, and I'm not even sure about them anymore because I sent them messages online that included specific questions to keep the conversation going and never heard back.

I tried writing another woman on Okcupid (bf doesn't care if I use it for social stuff) and she wrote back a dry, clipped response asking no questions in return, which felt just as bad as getting no response at all. I tried posting a platonic ad on Craigslist, but I couldn't complete it because it requires a phone verification, which I can't do thanks to the asshole who stole my phone and I can't afford to replace it.

I'm limited in what I can do to meet people/make friends because I have very little money and no income to come in when it's gone, can't walk very far or drive and am far away from public transportation, which makes it hard to go places but I don't have my own place so I can invite people over, and don't have a phone. Since I don't have contact with family due to family/abuse issues, it's even more important to me to have people in my life, but it never seems to work out. Between the horrid logistics and the plain old wall that always seems to be between me and other people, sometimes I wonder if I just have to throw in the towel on having a social life and just be grateful to have my boyfriend.

If anyone has any advice or insight or can at least relate at all I would be grateful for anything. This is emotionally crippling me and I can't deal with it on top of everything else. I do have a therapist, but there isn't much opportunity to talk to her about something like this because she's also my social worker and our time together is mostly taken up by practical stuff like getting through the process of applying for disability. Thanks so much for your time.

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Post by The Wisp on Tue Mar 24, 2015 12:46 am

I'm so sorry you're going through all this, dustyteal. It seems really hard Sad

I know how hard social isolation can be: I haven't had any real friends since middle school and have never dated. I also know what it is like to have nobody seeming to want to spend time with you and feeling like you can't make friends on your own.

Do you have any interests through which you can try connecting with people over the internet? An online video game or a forum revolving around a hobby? It may take some time, but developing internet friendships can be helpful in your situation.

I'm sending internet hugs your way!
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Post by dustyteal on Tue Mar 24, 2015 1:06 am

I'm sorry you've been going through this, too, The Wisp. Oh I hadn't thought about that. Come to think of it, I do like art/writing, so I could try Deviant Art and/or a writing forum. Thanks for the tip. Internet hugs back!

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Post by Enail on Tue Mar 24, 2015 11:55 am

Dustyteal, this sounds really tough. Would it be possible to get your social worker to refer you to a separate therapist? It sounds like you could use both, so having to balance between therapy and pragmatics in the one person's meeting time is not ideal.

It sounds like it might work better for you to try developing social connections in a more gradual, low key way if you can find a way to do it, something where you show up regularly and get to know people over time rather than trying to form immediate friendships from total strangers, which is always pretty tough.

That's obviously difficult given your logistical problems, but if there's anything that is within walking distance for you, it might be a good idea to take an inventory of what's actually around and see if there might be anywhere with social opportunities you hadn't thought of, things like book clubs or game nights, volunteering, language exchanges, potlucks, free classes, choirs...

Offhand, some places that might be worth checking, depending on your interesst/ability: libraries (libraries are gold!), public parks or rec centres, bookstores, game stores, seniors' homes, homeless shelters, new age stores, newcomer or immigrant service centres, community gardens (though if walking is limited, I'm guessing gardening might also be a problem), churches and other religious centres. Also, if there are any coffee shops or central squares where there's a bulletin board or people put up flyers, check those, they often advertise free events, volunteer opportunities and interest groups.
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Post by jcorozza on Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:24 pm

I don't know where you live, dustyteal, but if you like art/writing, you may be able to find a nice, chill meetup for one of those in your area. Where I live, there are a ton for writers, and most of them are pretty low-key - coffee shop (not too expensive), work on writing, occasionally chat in between. It's nice because, if you feel awkward, you have your notebook/laptop to distract you!
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