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FlyOnTheWall

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May 1, 2005
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Hello,

I've been registered on this board for a while now but I believe this is my first post (it may not be but frankly I'm too lazy to check). This is a little weird for me given I hardly ever discuss my feelings but I've felt a growing anxiety in my life that has bothered me to the point of making this post. All though I hardly expect anyone to truly care about the problem of some random stranger on the Internet, at least this will help me get some things off my chest.

I am a twenty year old male from Canada who has just started college three months ago. I have an interest in "alive" martial arts (see Matt Thornton's articles to understand what alive is if you are so inclined) and anything related to computers and electronics.

As mentioned over the past few months I've had a growing sensation of anxiety, sadness and futileness come over me. I used to believe that these were things that could be shaken off if you really tried but I'm not so steadfast in that assumption anymore. I feel weak admitting that as it seems anyone who isn't perky 24/7 these days fall under the stigma of 'emo-ism.' Depression is now a vice to be mocked and laughed at, it seems.

Whenever I'm alone like this the feeling of a weight in my chest is at its worse. I've spent the majority of my time even since a young age alone like this so it's odd that it's bothering me now. It's just that any attempt for me to make a friend at my age seems to be thwarted by something. All my old colleagues are into social drinking, marijuana smoking and some even cocaine so I try to avoid them; it's just not my scene. The problem lies in the fact that I'm a twenty year old guy who has never had a girl friend in his life, and the feeling of the futility of even trying is overwhelming. Five years ago I was a pretty decent looking guy and I couldn't score a girl friend then so why could I now, five years older and getting uglier/fatter each year hope to find one? And provided that girls might be interested in me, how can I find one when I no longer understand the drinking scene (I drunk socially for a few months but I never had a good experience in that area) and hate any kind of drug taken for recreational use? It seems EVERYONE these days drinks and does drugs, no one is like me.

I'm so frustrated right now because I can't even express this feeling of mine. It's so debilitating, and the cause isn't just because I can't find a girl friend. There are deeper issues. School is such a chore, despite being related to a topic I used to love, and the only time I really feel alive is when I'm grappling with someone else in my submission wrestling class. Unfortunately school always gets in the way of that.

I just don't know what to do. I don't want to tell anyone I'm depressed because I know how much it would bother my parents. I can't afford the "professional help" and I'm not even sure if I believe that would help me.

I just have no support in any of my ambitions, it seems everyone wants me to fail. People laugh at my interests in martial arts when they find out and many would love to see me fail in college. There's just no one I can turn to. It seems like everyone else is an emotional rock, but some days I think it's all a front and people do actually emotionally support one another. But I might be crazy.

I started out trying to structure this post but it has degenerated into a rant. Oh well.

Nothing ever seems to work out the way I plan. My biggest plans were to move from province A to province B for school, roughly an eighteen hour drive away. I slaved away at a ****ty job for a year to afford this, arrived, and nothing changed. My condition only got worse. I'm sick of people giving me a face of friendliness but never really letting me connect with them. I've been home for Christmas for three weeks and not one of my old friends have tried to contact me to visit me. They all know I'm here, ****ing assholes. I got here and my immediate family welcomes me well but the rest of my family doesn't really seem to care that I am home. I think I'm regarded as the foolish one or something. They seem to look down on me for my interests, and the fact that I don't have ten girlfriends or something. I feel like such a loser around people.

The only time people are friendly to me is when they need my help with a computer problem. I get peoples mind numbing computer jobs all the time despite my interests being in programming and electronics. I'd like to think I'm beyond installing drivers for peoples mp3 players, getting their e-mail working, etc. but that's the only thing people seem to appreciate. They seem to think I'm some kind of whiz because I can do that but I find it really embarrassing. I want to be an engineer, not a technician. If I wanted to be a technician I'd write a few certifications and be done with it. And no, I don't know the settings of every ****ing interface and electronics device known to man and not knowing exactly how to change a setting on the satellite dish you paid too much for doesn't mean I don't know anything about technology. And no, the guy who owns the same satellite who has used that setting more isn't a whiz because he found the setting before I did. Yet people only seem to approach me when they have these retarded problems. And whenever I don't feel like fixing them I'M THE BAD GUY. Hell, I dare you to ask a professional carpenter to come over and build a shelf for you or something for free, just cause.

God, I can't explain this feeling, I don't know what to do, I'm not gonna be an attention whore and say I'm suicidal but I can't get rid of this ****ing feeling of depression. It's causing me to stay away from people, be shy, write badly, etc.

I can't even form a legible sentence.
 

FlyOnTheWall

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May 1, 2005
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The most awful thing about this is tommorow I may feel fine and ignore the fact that I ever wrote this, thus starting the cycle of the belief that this was just a fluke all over again.
 

ThatLady

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Nov 4, 2004
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Sounds like you're feeling abused, used, ignored and generally put upon, fly. While you might be depressed, those aren't feelings we all don't have once in awhile. The part that seems most worrisome is that you're not enjoying school anymore, even though it's subjects you once got pleasure from.

Let's look at what's going on in your life right now. You've come home (for the holidays, I presume) and none of your old friends contacted you. Did you contact them? It might be that because you went away to school, they're feeling that you might have moved on past them. It's not unusual for that to happen. If you don't call them when you get into town and let them know you're still interested in maintaining your friendship, they might feel you don't want to be around them. That way, it all becomes a vicious, self-defeating circle. :(

Not hanging around with heavy drinkers or drug users is a good thing! It's good that you have that much maturity! However, when you're in college it does make it more difficult to find others who think as you do. A lot of the time, there are organizations within the school in which you can find like-thinking people. A good study group, reading group, or a group with interests like yours might be good. They might even have a group for those interested in martial arts. I know you're not the only one who is as that's popular with a lot of people of all ages!

I really think it's important to remember that you're not the only one feeling lonely and sorta out-of-sorts. There are others at your school, and in your home town, who are feeling the same way. They, like you, are afraid to reach out to anyone for fear of feeling foolish. Yet, it's through reaching out that the problem is solved. Keeping it hidden keeps it alive.

When you return to school, you might look into what's available as far as counselling services go. You could probably benefit from talking to a counsellor about the way you're feeling, and the school normally has people available to help you for no (or low) cost. You don't sound like you're really seriously depressed, just sorta lost your direction a bit. A gentle nudge by a good professional might just put you right back on the road to everything you're looking for in life. :)
 

Halo

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Jul 19, 2005
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Hi Fly,

I just want to first of all say welcome to Psychlinks and I am glad that you were able to vent your feelings, frustrations and thoughts on here which is a safe place to do so.

Second, I think that ThatLady has made some really good points and specifically in her last paragraph where she says that you may want to check out what counselling services are available at your school when you go back. I think that talking to a professional will really help to sort out a few things for you and help you get back on track.

Good luck and take care :)
 
Joined
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flyonthewall, it's not easy finding like minded people sometimes. when i was in university all everyone seemed to care about was party and try to get into bars (underage the first year). that was not my thing and it bugged me people just wanted to drink. you are definitely not alone being in this category.

there are others out there like you, and the challenge is to find them. i think thatlady had a lot of good suggestions to try and find groups that fall within your interests on campus.

I can't afford the "professional help" and I'm not even sure if I believe that would help me.
you may not believe it, but it really can help you. i just completed therapy for depression and i am on top of the world again. i had my doubts too that i could ever be well but i was wrong, thankfully.

It seems like everyone else is an emotional rock, but some days I think it's all a front and people do actually emotionally support one another. But I might be crazy.
you would be surprised what goes behind all that seemingly confident behaviour :)

Nothing ever seems to work out the way I plan. My biggest plans were to move from province A to province B for school, roughly an eighteen hour drive away. I slaved away at a ****ty job for a year to afford this, arrived, and nothing changed. My condition only got worse.
when you are depressed you can change all kinds of external things, like start a new job, move to a new place, go back to school - but these things don't fix the depression. what will fix your depression is a combination of medication and therapy. the medication helps regulate things in your brain, gives you energy levels back, and gets your sleep back on track, but you're not out of the woods yet with just that. the therapy helps you address issues in your personal life, and also teaches you coping tools. over time
you learn to change your perspective on things, and you learn to think in healthier, more positive ways.

i would recommend you talk to on-campus counsellors; most students are poor after paying for tuition and books, so i am sure there must be ways for you to get help for minimal to no cost. i hope this helps. let us know how it turns out.
 

Daniel

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And provided that girls might be interested in me, how can I find one when I no longer understand the drinking scene (I drunk socially for a few months but I never had a good experience in that area) and hate any kind of drug taken for recreational use?

For better or worse, more and more college students use online dating services. As long as everyone meets in a public location, it's usually pretty safe. When I was in college, one of my friends met his future wife that way after unsuccessfully dating a bunch of people he met on campus.
 

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