On days like today things are hard the silence is unbearable. I feel like i just need someone to talk to but am scared to reach out bc i make people uncomfortable. I am missing my friend a ton today and just don’t know how to open up to him about it i worry that anything that comes out of my mouth will make him uncomfortable. Sometimes I feel like a horrible friend bc I haven’t been able to help him like he has me. I am often letting him know how much i care about him and letting him know that he is loved and missed but alot of times i don’t feel like its enough or i feel it’s too much. I feel like ik everything that’s not appropriate but don’t know what is appropriate. How do i know when im being too much? How do ik when im not being enough? How do ik what enough is? It almost seems like anything i do anymore is upsetting to someone. Whether I am just expressing a negative emotion or i hide everything. Im almost always ending up pushing someone away. I just want someone who really truly cares about me to be friends with and i want to be able to maintain that friendship once i do find that person again… rn im just really feeling alone
Thank you for reaching out to us, I hope that writing this post helped relieve some of the fear. One way to lessen the fear of making friends uncomfortable is to directly ask them if I can tell them about things I’m going through. Often, they are fine with/want to hear what I have to say; however, if they are out of capacity, they can let me know that as well.
You may not feel that you are helping your friend very much, but telling him he is loved does a lot for him. He will appreciate hearing that his friend cares about him and is there for him. I’m pretty sure anyone would appreciate that.
The way to know if you’re being in the acceptable range for sharing your feelings and telling your friend that you care is to ask him, everyone has different needs and different thresholds for everything. You seem to have a good friend who helps you when you need it, that’s what friends do, even without expecting anything in return.
Here for you
One of the few things that you can rely on is that people want to be missed when they’re absent. I think it’s safe to tell your friend that you miss him. It’s also okay to ask if telling him that makes him feel uncomfortable.
If you are around each other long enough, you will end up taking turns helping each other. Consider also that when he helps you, he is also greatly benefiting from the experience.
It can be helpful to observe how others communicate such feelings. I think the only time it becomes “too much” is when the person who is receiving attention feels as though the things they are being told are intended to create expectations, obligations or burdensome emotional entanglements. Sometimes, due to previous bad experience, a person assumes that the kindness they are receiving is attached to an agenda or attempted manipulation. It may help to say something to the effect “I just want you to know how I feel, that’s all.”
Honesty, thoughtfully expressed is appropriate when the person you are talking to has an open mind and heart and expresses willingness to listen. When people are preoccupied with their own problems, they usually aren’t very willing to listen. In my experience, those who are preoccupied are far more common than those who are willing to listen. You can become a valuable asset to others simply by becoming a good listener.
Do you know that to be true, or is it based more on how you feel? It is true, if you are looking for a good listener and open up to someone who is preoccupied with their own problems, it will certainly appear that you are pushing them away. It becomes a matter of learning by trial and error who does or does not care enough to listen.
Truly, the only way to learn how much is “too much,” is through experience. Realize also that anything is “too much” for a person who is totally wrapped up in their own problems.
I have a suspicion that you are blaming yourself for other people’s self absorption.
If you are a chronic complainer, moaning and groaning all the time, then it could be said that you are pushing people away because you are hard to be around. Also, if you are in a lot of emotional pain, many who you thought to be your friends may avoid you. It doesn’t mean they are not your friends. It means they are not capable of being the kind of friends you need during such painful times. In that case, it’s not your fault that you are in need of support they are not prepared to give.
It’s possible that anxiety related to how you communicate with others is interfering with your natural instincts in knowing what is or isn’t appropriate. In other words, maybe your worry about your “people skills” is actually interfering with them.
You aren’t alone. You are among friends here. The issues you are talking about are very common. I believe most of us here have felt that way at one time or another.
Try trusting your instincts for a day or two and see how it works out.
I just wanted to check in with you, Andy. I just wanted to say what a great friend you are for being so caring and loving. Sometimes it’s okay to just ask someone how they want to be supported. It helps them feel seen and heard.
Those words you share of telling them how loved and valued they are are worth so much. Even if people don’t always respond with much, it can still mean so much.
Much love to you