Struggling with Socialization

So it’s been a minute since I’ve posted on here… I just feel like my issues are being a burden on people again. My question is… How do I overcome it? Bc it’s hard to when ur seeing things that were once signs of rejection bfor…

All I want to do is socialize and have a friend that wants to hang out with me that wants to have me around and more importantly one that will stand up for me and take my side when others start talking smack… It’s been hard to deal with lately… it’s like idk anymore I’m getting mixed messages. What do I do how do I overcome this fear of being rejected? How do I keep a stable healthy friendship? How do I keep people wanting to be around me and having me around?

I just remember a time when my friend actually wanted to hang with me. Got excited to see me. I’ve just noticed I don’t see much of that anymore… I am either doing too much or I am not doing enough… Why are friendships so hard to maintain anymore? If only I knew…

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Everyone has issues. Your friends have issues. Friends share burdens. Really young friends might have a problem with that because they have yet to develop really deep sustaining friendships. The unfortunate thing about looking for signs of rejection is that you’ll see them, even if there’s no rejection taking place. It’s like when you’re in a sensitive mood, it’ll feel as though people are giving you judgmental looks, but if you’re in a good mood, you’re more likely to view those expressions as only neutral, or maybe even a bit pleasant.

I think fear of rejection diminishes over time, simply because eventually you just get tired of being afraid of it. Sadly, it takes many people at least half a lifetime to reach that point. Fear of rejection can change “micro expressions,” and body language, as well as perception of others. So, fear of rejection can attract rejection. Others often interpret fear of rejection as distrust.

One way to overcome it is to change focus from yourself to those you’re with. Express interest in their issues. Consider how to be supportive of them. Perhaps focus on having fun, or sharing humor when it’s appropriate. In other words, if you’re looking outward towards them, your mind isn’t occupied with your own insecurity. People usually respond well when they see that someone genuinely cares about them.

People are attracted to good listeners. Say things - true things, that help others gain confidence, and your opinion will be held in high regard.

It’s more common for others to just get quiet and back away when a friend is being badmouthed. They usually have no idea how to respond, don’t want to get involved, or they decide the issue should be settled between the smack talker and the smack talkee.

Do what you feel is the right amount. If you go beyond that, you’re into the realm of trying to “buy” friendship. If you overextend yourself, you could end up resenting the person you did it for.

In weird way, I was lucky when I was the class fat kid who was poor and wore embarrassing clothes. I was so rejected I got used to it, hence stopped fearing it.

I’ll check back later. Take care, Wings

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From: ManekiNeko

I’m also one who doesn’t thrive in social situations and sometimes I need to remind myself to take the leap to reach out to people. Sometimes a message saying “hey haven’t heard from you in a while, how’re you?” Sometimes I get a response that a lot has been going on with them, or sometimes my friends just don’t talk for a period of time and then we talk for a while and then don’t talk again.

sometimes it also depends on the social community we are in. I find my online community is always there and always chatting when my real life friends are busy or going through their own hard periods of life. Try not to put all the pressure on yourself because it’s probably not you personally. Sometimes friends come and go and that’s okay too, but holding all the responsibility tends to lead down the rabbit hole of “what’s wrong with me?!”. You as a person are valued and loved. I hope this community can always remind you of that!

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From: eloquentpetrichor

Hello again, Andy! It’s good to hear from you again :hrtlegolove: I’m sorry you are feeling rejected right now.

Healthy and stable friendships are out there but sometimes they can be hard to maintain and nurture because it can take effort from both sides and sometimes especially if you are both struggling it can be hard to maintain the contact needed to keep the friendship strong. Are you reaching out as well or are you waiting for them to make plans? Sometimes it can feel like rejection when other people are just having a bit of a hard time themselves and cannot interact.

I hope that things between you and your friend become better again soon. And I hope that you find some more healthy and lasting friendships to nurture. You are an awesome person and you deserve plenty of friends in your life. Stay strong, friend :hrtlegolove:

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From: Rohini_868

Hi Andy!

I’m so glad that you shared this here.

I know it’s hard to fight against the feeling of rejection, and fearing rejection, but maybe you can try this strategy. Get a large peice of paper (or computer equivalent lol, i’m old school ) and write up all the reasons you can think of for why your friend may not be responding to you as much as before, or might be taking a while to respond.

The first instinct may be to blame yourself and blame yourself for thing you MAY have done. But I want you to limit that to one column, or just group them up. And then put all the other reasons - they’re busy at work, lost internet, computer crashed, they’re on vacation, famly emergency, out with family for dinner, etc. All the ‘possible’ reasons. I’m hoping that this type of visual reminder can help you remember that your friend cares about you, but may be genuinely tied up with something and can’t reply to you right away, or they can’t hang out with you in person.

Healthy friendships require boundaries as well, and communication, as well as fair expectations of each other. Those can be created with your friend and then you both have a shared understanding of the behaviour you expect in the friendship.

Also, we tend to see hthat which we’re looking for (confirmation bias). So if we think people are mad at us for something we’ve done, we can start to interpret innocent remarks or behaviour as showing us this. So ask questions to clarify if you need to, be open and honest, but also mindful of the other person’s need.

Not sure if you’re seeing a therapist right now, but maybe this is something you can consider to help you as well to understand your fears. Glad you’re here with us <:hrtLegoLove:390927785717137409>

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