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    "Worrying is like a rocking chair: It gives you something to do, but it doesn't get you anywhere."
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Impunity Jane

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May 18, 2005
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I wonder whether anyone can advise me - I don't find it easy to bond with other people. I make acquaintances easily and I would say people like me, but I don't have close relationships. There is some sort of threshold that people don't cross.

I used to think this was because I am too reserved about my inner life, and I have been working on opening up and sharing myself, but people remain at the level of acquaintances that I happen to run into, rather than people who become part of my personal life. And I realize that people with partners and lots of friends often don't share their inner life with any of these people. That is why I've been thinking its something to do with attachment.

I'm very independent and interested in my own thoughts and have developed an ability to be alone. But I know that isn't very healthy.

Any suggestions/resources? Is this something I can work on my own or do I need to try therapy?
 

ThatLady

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You're independent and aren't particularly bothered by being alone, from what I read in your post. That brings up a question for me:

Are you really unhappy with the state of things in your life, or are you seeking to "bond" with others because it's said to be the healthy way to live? In other words, are you unhappy the way you are?
 

Impunity Jane

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Thanks for replying.

I have resisted that social pressure (especially from my mother!).

But I feel something is missing and it preoccupies me. I'm bothered that I can't connect with a man, when there seems to be a mutual attraction. But I also would like to have a close female friend. I've tried to get those friendships off the ground, but after a while I guess I give up, it feels like too much work, I don't feel a bond.

I had a best friend when I was a teenager, and boyfriends in university. But I wasn't independent then, or self-aware. And they just sort of happened without my even trying.

Maybe I now appear not to need anyone?
 

fancy792

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I don't know if this will help you but often people will try to hard and then it doesn't seem to be natural and it feels like hard work. Lots of time when it not natural the others feels that stress or pressure. I work with all kind of people and also lots that aren't from here and they have to socialize and they aren't capable of....more like they try to hard.

One thing is for sure your reaching out on here and you have something’s in common.

When you go out or meet people the first thing is a smile that usually attracts someone else. I've rarely saw someone not smiling back on the street or mall. The second one is to get out of your comfort zone and you will see it hard but after you do it again it easier.

When you’re out and about find places that you have some interest in. Let yourself feel relax and things will turn around and be easy.

I compare this to a job interview if you can find lots of helpful tips. If you can't find anything then I will send you a few links if you’re interested.

Best of luck and I'm happy if you would like to chat!
 

Impunity Jane

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Hi Fancy, thanks for your thoughts.

But this is why I think it is a bonding issue, it's not actually social awkwardness, I can charm the pants off people if I want to (though it's an act) and make a group of people laugh and chat people up in the grocery store. I have no trouble smiling at men, we smile at each other like crazy, and have superficial conversations, but it never develops into anything closer than that. Other people seem to find it just happens naturally, but for me it doesn't.

I'm frustrated.
 

David Baxter

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Are you protecting yourself from a possible recurrence of some previous pain or loss in your life, Jane?
 

Impunity Jane

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Well, I'd say in my mid-20s I felt that many relationships - my own and others -seemed to be just way too destructive. To ourselves and to the other person. So I did want out at that point. I've tried to learn from self-help books about how to handle things so they don't cause so much chaos. So I guess now I'd like to start practicing.

For example, I made friends with a woman last winter and we did some outings together, but now our phone calls are lapsing, I don't feel a need to keep in touch. I have thoughts like 'well she was kind of flaky when she did such and such.' I need to be remembering that I enjoyed myself.

Maybe I'm just too focussed on the negative and have to think positive thoughts about where the interaction will lead? Can I train myself in that?

It is helpful to have this feedback.
 

David Baxter

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Impunity Jane said:
Maybe I'm just too focussed on the negative and have to think positive thoughts about where the interaction will lead? Can I train myself in that?
Yes... start by exploring some of the "insight" exercises in this thread: http://www.psychlinks.ca/phpbb/viewforum.php?f=66 and have a look at the Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) threads (Tiested Thinking, etc.) and David Burns Handbook... see the link in that forum.
 

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