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  #1  
Old 16th September 2019, 18:46
Marie8 Marie8 is offline
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Default I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

I'm just so fed up of this! It makes me feel so crap! I can't even think of things to talk about with my own parents and I get SA with them too. I can't think of anything to say to them and I get so stressed about it. Like sitting in a cafe with people all around us chatting away and we just sit there in silence it's so awkward! It's only like that when it's just me, when my sister is with us there are never awkward silences. I feel like no one is ever interested in me due to my depressing mood, lack of social skills and ability to speak in sentences. She is clever and has a good job and an interesting person with friends so no wonder people walk to talk to her and show an interest. It just gets me down when I struggle to speak to my own family just don't know what to doooo
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  #2  
Old 16th September 2019, 19:01
Tom1985 Tom1985 is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Feel for you Marie. I am always thinking the same. Other people can rabbit on and on and on for hours without even pausing to think what to say. It's not just your responsibility to
fill all the silences though. I suppose the only advice is to be observant, talk about the things around you, how your day went, current affairs, what you want to buy, you can talk about anything you think of, there are no rules. I think a lot of us overthink too much and don't just say what's on our mind. We will have thoughts but not share them aloud, whereas others seem to have no filter. Hope you can try and be not so hard on yourself.
We seem to have the short straw when it comes to socialising, through no fault of our own. I know how hard and demoralising it feels. Best wishes
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  #3  
Old 16th September 2019, 19:06
Utopia Utopia is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Yeah, this is still a problem for me also, because I'm so consumed by all my problems and am so introverted that it's hard to form a connection with someone or find something to talk about, because mental health is a bit of a taboo subject, despite a good chunk of people having some experience of some form of mental illness.

I think you can just ask them about themselves, or find some common ground, I know it's difficult.
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Old 16th September 2019, 19:43
Bluebear Bluebear is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

I also think that being quiet doesn't make you any less of a person x
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  #5  
Old 16th September 2019, 19:56
db838 db838 is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

It was one of the things that forced me to go to the doctor and try and sort myself out. One thing I found useful was to almost prepare a kind of 'script' if I had some sort of social thing to do like going for a coffee or pint that I knew about in advance, just a few subjects like what was on TV or whatever. A lot of the time if I asked a question, the other person is more than happy to make up 90% of the conversation if you sit there and are happy to listen to them! Like others have said, nothing wrong with being quiet but I know how frustrating it can be when you're struggling even with your family. It can improve over time, the braver you are and the harder you work, the easier it becomes next time.
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  #6  
Old 16th September 2019, 22:08
Mr. Nobody Mr. Nobody is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marie8
no one is interested in me due to my depressing mood, lack of social skills and ability to speak in sentences
I think you're getting frustrated due to expectations that you feel are on you from others,...but what if you felt totally accepted in those situations and there were no expectations, how do you think you would behave then?

I think it's maybe catch22, the perceived expectations that you will be chatty outgoing and gregarious are compounding things for you,

You mentioned that you feel depressed, so it could be that this too is putting a restriction on your behaviour and not allowing you to relax and take situations lightly and easily,
It's worth exploring why you are so depressed and possibly trying to tackle that, as I think one thing is just compounding another and leading to this situation of frustration and apparent lack of conversation.

I know by experience that if you feel a certain way [depressed, frustrated] this will act on and have a negative effect on your ability to chat and make pleasant conversation,
I think if we are relaxed and in a good place the conversation will naturally flow,.. and I think it's this knowledge that could be hurting too,
We know that conversation is simple, so it's all the more galling and frustrating when it's not forthcoming.
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  #7  
Old 16th September 2019, 22:30
3stacks 3stacks is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

I honestly kinda thought I was alone with this problem especially not even being able to have conversations with family (or anyone). I just don't have anything to say.
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  #8  
Old 17th September 2019, 11:20
limey123 limey123 is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Read books like Quiet and you'll realise we've been fed this image (mainly or at least partly originating from America) that we should all be outgoing and outspoken and "selling" ourselves all the time. The How to Make Friends and Influence People type of mentality.
This puts a tremendous strain on people who are naturally introverted and "quiet". But such people are every bit as valid as the more outgoing, talkative folks. Sadly, quieter people are often judged as being "rude" or "stuck up" or "up themselves" (this happens to me) whereas they are simply just quiet or don't feel the need to verbalise everything they think like some people do. Some of the more extroverted people in the world can actually get pretty stressed, annoyed even, if you're not talking all the time as they feel invalidated and uncomfortable.
The world currently seems to revolve around, and rewards, extroversion, sadly. We are constantly told we must be selling ourselves.
All we can do is continue to do our best and be ourselves, and let the others think what they want. If they think badly of us, it's them with the issue, not us
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  #9  
Old 18th September 2019, 19:14
Marie8 Marie8 is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Thanks for your replies everyone. I honestly feel like an empty shell at times, in that my mind is always so consumed with anxiety stress and worry and constantly focused on myself and how I feel, I feel I have no real opinions on anything or any personality, no real thoughts apart from negative ones. I find it so difficult to take in new things and my memory is awful. I often lack motivation to do things so don't do a lot on my days off work or experience many new things so hardly ever have anything new to talk about. I usually just repeat the same old stuff over and over. Since I feel low I am often moody with my fanily because I am so stressed out all the time ( I don't mean to be as I am a very caring person really) but my family find me to be a moody and miserable person. So I am sure I come across as rude to other people.

I have been going out more recently to cafes on my own and observing people etc. I have even smiled at a few people in thw street and the other day helped a lady pick up her shopping which she dropped on the floor. But still I find it so hard to say anything to people. I am usually anxious in public worrying that everyone is looking at me and laughing at my appearance (a big part of my anxiety). I usually wear hats and sunglasses to hide away. But even when I don't feel anxious I still can't think of anything to say to people.. I search my brain so hard I end up with a headache and feeling ill and tired and just want to sleep. I think the only way to have more to talk about is to do more and experience more but I just don't know how when I am in this cycle where the thought of doing anything makes me feel stressed out. Sometimes I'll watch a film but don't take it in and don't know what happened. Sorry I'm too negative and hard on myself. It's true I overthink everything and put too much pressure on myself. My mind is racing and I'm talking crap really but it's just how I keep feeling. Thoughts like this spin round and round 24/7 and just wish I could shut them up! This post probably makes no sense but just trying to get it out my system.
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  #10  
Old 18th September 2019, 21:07
Tom1985 Tom1985 is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

I know exactly how you feel. I don't know if experiencing lots of new things is the answer.
Often I'll listen to a conversation or be in a group having a conversation and they aren't talking about interesting things. Can be "he said" "she said" gossip. conversation that is actually really tedious to be part of. Jokes/banter that I find immature and unfunny etc
The problem for me is, I think genuinely I want a calm stress-free life. I don't want to be part of drama..gossip etc. I don't want my phone pinging all the time with messages I don't really care for. It's just that I feel i've gone too far the other way.
Most of life is repetitive and mundane, it just seems that most people squeeze out anything that is in their minds, or that has happened to them, or they have noticed into conversation. Whereas others (like myself) think what's the point of talking about such dull rubbish. But I suppose the less you join in, the further you remove yourself until you become isolated. I am not a people person. Never have been,never will be. I'm picky about which people I value and like. It's just the fact that if you don't play the game and join in with the masses you can become alienated.
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  #11  
Old 21st September 2019, 16:35
Harry Mason Harry Mason is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Marie, I was interested in your post and relationship with your family. I also feel empty and rarely communicate with people, including my family, but it is different with them in a way, that they seem not to judge me. For example, my mum; we are not really close, our relationship is average. But I do not feel tensed with her when I'm quiet or any other time. She also doesn't care, it's very obvious. Sometimes she speaks a lot to me and I barely say few words, but she doesn't care, her mood never changes because of how quite I am.

While reading your post, it sounded to me like you are more strangers to each other, than a family, I just thought of that, because I have only few friends and people rarely accept me, except my family, even though I am quiet with them.
I wanted to ask you: Are you sure your family judge you and don't like you that much, because you don't have much to say? Maybe they speak to your sister a lot, because sister is speaking to them a lot, so it's just usual conversation, but they don't speak to you not because they think you are empty and boring?

By the way, my brother is very talkative as well, and yes, he speaks with my mother more, but just when I am with my mum, I see that she is not tensed, that she is just there and doesn't mind her son not talking that much.

I bet your parents love you and I'm still interested if it is all how you see it?
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  #12  
Old 21st September 2019, 18:17
MoonBear MoonBear is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Mason
Marie, I was interested in your post and relationship with your family. I also feel empty and rarely communicate with people, including my family, but it is different with them in a way, that they seem not to judge me. For example, my mum; we are not really close, our relationship is average. But I do not feel tensed with her when I'm quiet or any other time. She also doesn't care, it's very obvious. Sometimes she speaks a lot to me and I barely say few words, but she doesn't care, her mood never changes because of how quite I am.

While reading your post, it sounded to me like you are more strangers to each other, than a family, I just thought of that, because I have only few friends and people rarely accept me, except my family, even though I am quiet with them.
I wanted to ask you: Are you sure your family judge you and don't like you that much, because you don't have much to say? Maybe they speak to your sister a lot, because sister is speaking to them a lot, so it's just usual conversation, but they don't speak to you not because they think you are empty and boring?

By the way, my brother is very talkative as well, and yes, he speaks with my mother more, but just when I am with my mum, I see that she is not tensed, that she is just there and doesn't mind her son not talking that much.

I bet your parents love you and I'm still interested if it is all how you see it?
Hi Marie,

I always enjoying reading your contributions to the forum!

As an introvert and someone with SA I have realised I quite often over analyse social situations, assuming things based on an opinion influenced by the symptoms of SA. I am very quiet, awkward and sometimes just rude when I see my mum (don't even see my dad anymore), but I know she still loves me all the same.

Just saying Harry raises a good point.

Btw, nice name Harry Mason
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  #13  
Old 21st September 2019, 18:30
firemonkey firemonkey is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

I very much don't know what to say to start a conversation, beyond something like "How are you ?" After that's answered I need someone to say something that I can reply to .
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  #14  
Old 21st September 2019, 19:56
Catsmother Catsmother is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

I feel awkward in social settings and always get tongue tied.
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Old 21st September 2019, 22:42
Marie8 Marie8 is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Thanks again for the replies.

Melangell - I have always compared myself to my sister, even now I'm 30 and she's 27. She was always the prettier and intelligent one, who was very popular at school. I was the quiet awkward one and always being told by the few friends I did have at school how pretty my sister was, they never complimented me, more like pointed out my flaws. So I found this hard to deal with and developed anxiety over my appearance. I resented her for it and it's the main reason we grew apart. It's a shame really because we were very close when we were small, but by high school I distanced myself from her, which is when my low self esteem really began. Even family members commented on how pretty she was. They didn't call me ugly, but I felt like I was ugly because they never complimented me in the same way. It's like she's always the centre of attention, and still is.

I've not been close to her for many years now and try my best to avoid her (we live in different towns). I get really stressed and uncomfortable when she visits so usually make excuses or pretend I'm ill or work an extra shift so I don't have to spend as much time with her. I wish I could feel that way, that we are just different, I try to but end up comparing myself to her again. I find it hard to be around her because people are so drawn to her and it makes me feel so awkward. People notice her and then only notice how much of a nobody I am. So I do feel that she is better than me. She has a good job, just bought a house, has lots of friends, a really attractive person and fashionable. I feel like the younger sibling (much younger). I still live at home and she makes comments about this and the fact I don't have a full time job. I feel like I have to explain myself to her. She doesn't understand my social anxiety, low self esteem. I've tried to tell her about how hard I find working, being around people etc. but she doesn't get it, she probably thinks I will one day grow out of it. In the past she has made negative comments about my appearance and about the way I dress (I don't feel in a nasty way, more trying to help me). I just feel she wishes she had a pretty older sister who she could be close to. I feel I've let her and my family down. Feel like a disappointment to them even now.


That's great about your kids, Melangell. I had a happy childhood with my parents, they were always fun and very supportive. I just feel that now I'm in my 30s I should be a proper grown up, be independent and not as dependent on them. My mum is always telling me to have more confidence, to snap out of it and stop being silly etc. I know she cares but just doesn't understand that it's more than just shyness. My mum was always a fairly quiet person and still is, but around more extroverted people she is sociable, which is why she's like that with my sister. My Dad was always very outgoing, but is a lot quieter now he's older. I feel most comfortable around him and get on wall with him, but do find it hard to speak. But still enjoy his company even when we don't speak.

I often get angry at myself and it really affects my mood and I take it out on my Mum especially. For instance she will say something to me and I'll mumble a response, or even snap at her, not in a very nice way. I am often very moody and not very nice. inside I am screaming to myself to show them how much I care, be my proper self, but I just find it so difficult, like this force is holding me back. This probably doesn't make a lot of sense. But I have this anger inside that prevents me from being my true self with them. So when we are in public having lunch I just sit there and am just miserable. I am also aware of my surroundings and think everyone is listening and whatever I say will be stupid, so it's best to just stay quiet. When I do try and speak it is always quite boring. I start getting anxious because I can't think of anything to say. And I know my mum finds it hard, but I feel like I've pushed her away by being a moody, miserable person for so many years. I want to feel like her friend, not just her daughter. My mum and my sister are friends, they get on so well, so naturally. But it's me I'm holding myself back and I don't know how to stop it.
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Old 21st September 2019, 23:28
Marie8 Marie8 is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Harry Mason - Thanks for your reply. I know my parents do love me, but I often feel like a let down and like I've pushed them away. My mum and sister are a lot closer and also friends as well as family, but I don't really feel like their friend. I can't talk naturally with them and have distanced myself and become this awkward person, who I'm sure makes them feel awkward to be around. It wasn't always like this, I was very close to my parents and sister as a child. But gradually my anxiety, low mood and self esteem had affected my personality. I am often very moody and snappy with my family, I don't mean to be, I don't want to be, but it feels easier to be that way instead of being nice because I feel sh**ty on the inside. When I feel that way I struggle to be nice and happy and positive, because it feels fake and forced and unnatural. I do try but often feel like I'm speaking through gritted teeth and have to force my words out, such as 'how has your morning been', even simple questions like that I find hard to say, because I feel so miserable.

I feel like I've pushed them away and so I'm sure it makes it difficult for them to speak to me now, as usually they get their head bitten off, or one word answers if they're lucky and this has been going on for a few years now. Sometimes I feel like I'm better off without friends. I am a nice and caring person underneath it all, but I don't come across that way. I guess until I address this I shouldn't really try making friends with people. Who wants a moody and miserable person like me for a friend. I having CBT for SA but maybe I need to address my low self esteem and depression first. My mum is aware of my anxiety but not the full extent of it, and she doesn't quite understand it. I am quite a closed person and find it hard to talk to others about my feelings.
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Old 22nd September 2019, 00:10
MoonBear MoonBear is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

You know Marie from all you have told us about your sister, she sounds like a pretty average person, as in someone who doesn't have mental health issues and has a relatively normal life. Yet, you seem to think she is someone amazing to emulate, nothing wrong with having admiration though. You shouldn't get so hung up on things that happened in school, that's so far in the past. I've never dwelt on any negativity I experienced in school, because we were just kids back then. Your SA is obviously affecting your self image, I get how it would be annoying for you to hear people tell you how your sister is pretty, sibling rivalry is pretty normal. How do you know people haven't told her, or anyone else in the past that they think you're pretty?

I understand what you're saying about about not being able to express your true self around your Mum, it makes perfect sense in terms of SA. If you feel guilt and sadness about how you treat her why not just try making a nice gesture, like randomly buy her some flowers, or even just order them online so you don't have to give them to her?

Have you ever had your own place, I don't know what rental prices are like in your area, but maybe that should be something to aim for?
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Old 22nd September 2019, 00:41
Marie8 Marie8 is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Thanks MoonBear, I really appreciate your advice and will buy my mum some flowers or chocolates very soon. Sometimes my head is just blank and just having one of those moments where I can't think of how to reply properly! It usually takes me a while to gather my thoughts and this is another reason I struggle in social situations. Anyway, I want to stop worrying so much about everything and stop living in the past and not think about all the negative stuff. I do plan to move out, I think the space will do me some good and maybe help me feel a bit more grown up.
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Old 22nd September 2019, 14:31
scarlettgirl scarlettgirl is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom1985
Most of life is repetitive and mundane, it just seems that most people squeeze out anything that is in their minds, or that has happened to them, or they have noticed into conversation. Whereas others (like myself) think what's the point of talking about such dull rubbish. But I suppose the less you join in, the further you remove yourself until you become isolated. I am not a people person. Never have been,never will be. I'm picky about which people I value and like. It's just the fact that if you don't play the game and join in with the masses you can become alienated.
Just agreeing with this. I have the same attitude, I can't be bothered with all the drama. It feels like such a waste of time. I guess some people with the opposite view would label me boring for that, and have been called that, but for a drama-free less petty life I can deal with it.

Other than that, I totally feel for you, Marie. I have the same problems communicating with family. I feel guilty in ways because my parents are pretty lovely overall, there's no reason to feel awkward, but I guess there's a disconnect between interests at times. I don't know what to advise but to continue on as you do, baby steps are the best way sometimes. Keep going out and smiling at people etc. You may feel like you're being moody etc but don't be hard on yourself. Depression will take things out of your control sometimes, and we are all entitled to these moody days anyway
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Old 22nd September 2019, 15:45
Harry Mason Harry Mason is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

Marie, I'm sorry if I missed it - but do you live with your parents? I know you live in different town away from your sister, but not sure about the parents.

I can completely relate to being snappy and moody with your family - this is how I used to be with my mum. Still, I didn't feel uncomfortable being silent with her and she usually spoke normally to me.

I've asked about you living with your parents, because of a fact (maybe very sad and not really appropriate fact), that distance does change relationships. Like I said, I was grumpy and often annoyed by my mum, but then I moved out and time passed and our relationship has changed. I'm still often quiet with her, but not angry anymore, not moody. I like to call her and she speaks to me a lot and always sad that I do not call her more often.

Maybe that's not how things must be - change of relationships when you are away from person only, but this is an option. I wonder if you live with them and if there is a possibility to move out someday? Maybe you feel too dependant on them and that's why you feel that they expect more from you.
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  #21  
Old 22nd September 2019, 15:59
MoonBear MoonBear is offline
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Default Re: I don't know what to say to anyone, including my family

I definitely get on with my Mum better since I have moved out and put some distance between us. I think it is a combination of having more control over social situations such as being able to avoid them if you're not in the mood and also growing up and wanting independence and your own space.
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