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CPTSD and Others => Our Relationships with Others => Friends => Topic started by: Boatsetsailrose on November 15, 2016, 08:32:42 PM

Title: Help please !
Post by: Boatsetsailrose on November 15, 2016, 08:32:42 PM
The problem ... not enough friends
The want ... more friends
I think ... there is something wrong with me
The frustration .. there is something wrong with me, but what is it ?

Hi, me again with my continuing 'how do I make more friends saga '
Lately I'm thinking 'is it my trust problems, problems letting people 'in' letting people know me
I can socialise and people do seem to like me .. it's just how to get beyond that ...
am I just being unrealistic - wanting too much ? Needy ?
Oh I don't know it's all so confusing ...??
Historically I've always just had a hand full of close friends .. now I'm in my 40's this is a bit less - I have 3 close friends in the whole country
What draws people to human beings ??
Do we need to 'sell ourselves ' like a shop window ? Is self confidence a real factor in making friends ?
What qualities do I have ? Am I too aloof - emotionally resistive to letting people in ??
How do I change ? What do I even need to change ?

Apologies lots of questions they are ones I'm asking myself as I write -
I don't expect answers
But people's experience on this subject is very welcome !

My old therapist said relationships are the area that cptsd people find the hardest area ...
I wish I'd asked her how we go about healing this .. the relational stuff

People have described me as open and friendly and funny so what the * is missing in me ...
I'd like more attachments - more invites out -- one of those 'popular people '
Or do I subject myself to the fact I'm just not :( and can't be
I've been in Aa 7yrs and I don't have the close network that some others have .. I know a lot of people but not in a closer way

Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Boatsetsailrose on November 15, 2016, 08:36:19 PM
I know I have some co dependent issues .. too nice maybe ? too care taking
I can ask too many questions , be too interested in others ( probably puts them off
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Boatsetsailrose on November 15, 2016, 08:40:27 PM
I also go through periods when I'm 'working at it ' i.e. Inviting people to things all be it in group texts maybe I could call people individually ?
Trying new things to connect with people in the hope of making friends and then I shut off as it's not working out as I want and I say 'Fxxx it ... I'm not bothering anymore I'll just be on my own

Thing is I know I have grown because I don't want to be / do things on my own anymore
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Boatsetsailrose on November 15, 2016, 08:40:56 PM
Friendship is a 2 way thing right ?
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Three Roses on November 15, 2016, 11:28:08 PM
Most definitely, friendship is a 2 way thing! Neither person can always be the one giving, or receiving - that's not healthy. You must have your needs meet, but ironically so must they. So it is a give and take situation.

I read the book, "How to Win Friends & Influence People" when I was in grade school; although it's about salesmanship, the argument could be made that if you're in the market for friends, you do kind of need to sell yourself. If we are truly ourselves, completely relaxed and filters off, on meeting someone for the first time, you do have a chance of making friends; but your chances increase if you're mindful of social etiquette. So, not having a family that could teach me about how to make friends, this book was vital to me.
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: woodsgnome on November 16, 2016, 04:35:15 PM
I'm rather torn about the 'how' of this topic.

I've felt, so often, that I've reached out; and just as often, like you Boatsetsailrose, feel burned, rejected, all that and more. Then I suspect the rejection is more a trick of imagination, as I do seem to get good feedback.

So the flip of that is yes, I've been my own worst enemy. There have been times but they all seem so long ago now--when I did have all sorts of chances for friendship. But it's more elusive than ever these days--I'm retired and live in a remote area with beautiful surroundings (I know; count my blessings, eh?) but few people, and those that are here...well, okay, not what appeals; thanks, Outer Critic.

Then again, it circles back and around. In the past I haven't gotten back to people who were interested in me. It circles round--seeming openness, opportunity, not feeling worthwhile (they'll find something they won't like, I'm not good enough, etc., don't believe in myself). But now I don't even run into new people at all, and the circle is just a bigger portion of loneliness.

Being who you are--well, yeah, that seems logical. People up and down this side and up the other have told me how personable I am (pretty cool for a hermit :bigwink:), how interesting they find me. So, according to that, a lot of what people look for in friendship. What they don't see, I suppose--and this scares me--I do have the back-off symptoms, the people fears so representative of deep-seated cptsd.

Selling myself? Based on those nefarious 'others', I have a lot about myself that must appeal, but it feels artificial to garner friends on the basis of a sell job. The idea of myself as just another product in a world increasingly addicted to 'all marketing, all the time'--while it's okay for some I can't go there without hating myself more. I suppose a big part is how I felt the big sell of religion as a kid and how all the religious people were so awful. So marketing oneself fell off my radar.

It's all circles to no where these days. There used to be some cycles--had friends (closest ones died), then--but now seems so achingly hard. Frustrating and then some. I concur that the best is just be one's self...but, but, but...and but. I was really bad last night, found an online self-compassion test, super low score; worse than I thought. More work on self...but, but,'s all so tiring. Deep down, I feel and know I'm okay, know that loneliness is just a state of mind...know so much, feel so little or...?

Sorry, Boatsetsailrose...not exactly the upbeat story you'd like to have heard. All I can do is join you in lamenting one of the worst predicaments...knowing you're a good person, trying always to understand yourself, even reaching out while just being yourself, and it doesn't seem good enough, and... :hug:   

Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Boatsetsailrose on November 17, 2016, 01:11:00 PM
Thank you woodsgnome .. exactly the post I wanted to read today ...someone who experiences such similar to me and alerted me to 'it's a state of mind' not necessarily the truth ...but it is 'our ' experience
It is exhausting..
I have been going through a big flashback the past few days, the emotional tiredness that comes, the shame ( that I forget is shame ) . All culminating this morning into laying in bed, covers over head and having repetitive thoughts of 'I hate my life, I hate me'. Then flashes of experience of my teenage yrs and the abandonment the horrific experiences and the 'I can't tell anyone because it feeds into 'I'm just being over dramatic and wanting attention '
The coming 2 days I have opportunity to be with friends ... and all the loneliness I have felt the past wk and wanting to be with others has now turned into 'I just want to stay in bed and be with myself '
Maybe the flashback is moving through now ... I feel more present for myself at this moment in time ... a good thing of course .
I agree

Quote 'the 'back off 'symptoms, the people fears so representive of deep seated cptsd'
Thank you for saying it like this woodsgnome' yes !! This is the problem the wall that puts people on the other side
I'm getting so bored of it now .. and it's time to make more progress ..
I realised it's not I need to 'sell myself ' what is helpful is to be able to assert myself, Pete w chapter 7 is very enlightening ' recovering from trauma based co dependency '
I know when I am in my 'passionate, expressive times, generally when I am enthused by something in life and I speak about 'my experiences, thoughts feelings in a manner where I am not looking for validation from another or feedback. These are the times I am most healthy and I gain others attention and I guess in a way 'yes I am selling myself ' healthy ground of relating .. self assured, happy and confident ... talking about me without inner critic or any inner bad management going on ... so freeing i.e. 'Normal '

I see more clearly I need a therapist in the future if I am to progress with this stuff 'or do I ??
Pete w book - peter gerlech website and lesson course and besse v 'the body keeps the score ' and all that I get of course from our forum ... help me if I can only be consistent and apply this learning ( working a job exhausts me ' energy for recovery 12 steps and what that entails a bit of social time and bang I'm done
Anti depressant keeps me ' managing '
Gee it's a tiring life
Enjoy the earth woodsgnome its healing is so wonderful I wish many a day I lived more rural - but I know the healing is people based as well and I can't get away from that if I am to grow

Thank you so much for your post it has been so helpful to me and I thank god for this forum
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: meursault on November 17, 2016, 02:55:57 PM
I have that going on with me all the time too.  What's wrong with me?  People tell me I'm open, honest, caring, intelligent, funny, interesting, fit, handsome.  I think I'm hilarious.  I have all sorts of skills, am financially stable, like people and am interested in them, yet I never seem to find women romantically interested in me.  And my friendships have been hit or miss over the years.

It always comes down to "What's wrong with me?"  I wish I had an answer.  My therapist and a couple of close friends tell me there's nothing wrong with me, except I think there's something wrong with me, but I guess I don't believe them.  When someone else thinks that way, it seems so obvious that there's nothing wrong with them, though.

I don't know.  Just thought I'd mention how I feel the same.

Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Boatsetsailrose on November 17, 2016, 07:07:47 PM
Hi meursault
It's so frustrating isn't it, believing something that isn't real unyet it is real for us ...
it's the 'shame' part of cptsd yet I forget it is
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: bee on November 17, 2016, 07:08:12 PM
Boatsetsailrose, I have this problem too.

At this point my husband is my only close friend. If you count relatives, then my two siblings as well, but as I continue healing, and they don't, the relationship is less close.

I struggle with trusting anyone, so I most likely give off big "go away" signals.

Something I've wondered about. People with cluster b PDs often lure their victims with charm. The beginning of the relationship is all about making the victim feel needed and wanted, pouring out good feelings on the victim. Having experienced this charm from people with cluster b PDs, I wonder how much that affects how I view more normal relationships. Do I subconsciously expect a friendship to be like that? I know it is not healthy or sustainable, but honestly? normal relationships are so calm in comparison that it is hard to tell if the person likes me.

This is an analogy. I was raised under huge bright floodlights. Now those are turned off, and everything in comparison is dark. And as a result of how I was raised my vision is impaired. So everyone around me can see fine, and can't fathom what my problem is. I've tried to navigate the world, but kept hurting myself by running into things, stepping on things, falling off things, ect. Now I pretty much stand still, or move very very slowly. If you translate light levels to emotional interaction levels in this analogy this is what my world feels like.

Sorry Boatsetsailrose, this doesn't answer how to fix the problem. I wish I knew.
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Boatsetsailrose on November 17, 2016, 07:12:01 PM
For me it is a sinking depressing feeling inside of me ... a head down sense ...
What am I ashamed of ?
Being me
I'm different ... I was damaged and that damage still feels inside
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Boatsetsailrose on November 17, 2016, 07:17:11 PM
Thank you bee and yes I relate
My ex was my best friend and now we are not together .. I like having one person close it feels more comfortable
I have a friend at the moment she asked me to go on holiday and we went , she has asked me for Christmas yet because we haven't been in touch for 2 wks I now have 'she doesn't really care '
Yeh I understand that when the lights are low it just isn't clear
Title: Re: Help please !
Post by: Joeybird on December 27, 2016, 02:41:55 AM
Friends -- what happened to them? i used to have a lot of friends that I trusted. However, being open about CPTSD has made quite a few of them distance themselves from me.

I also learned that a lot of my friends were toxic.

The new friends that I've made are people I can be honest with, and people who don't judge.