'The more I know you the less I feel I know about you'
I've been looking at this forum for a long time now and for some reason, felt that it was time for me to have a go at discuss my feelings of social awkwardness with you here.
First of, a bit about me, I'm a 28y.o male currently living in London, UK.
For quite a long time now, I think I've been struggling with some form of social awkwardness or uneasiness in certain contexts without really knowing that it was 'a thing'.
For as far as I can remember , it's never been very hard for me to make friends. I've always quite easily connected with people who had a kind of easy going / nice / honest / intelligent vibe about them and I still have people around me I know I can count on. I'm absolutely not extrovert, I'm not that guy who makes everybody laughs. I think most of the time I'm that guy that people describe as 'ah him, he's nice' or a bit quiet. Generally, I'm very comfortable with debate, interesting convos on hot topic issues, might struggle a bit with small talk, but learnt to fake it overtime (The weather is so nice today don't you think ?)
My problem has always been, and still is to some extent, to keep most people interested in me , or rather to carry on showing interest in people in a way that feels natural and honest.
As far as I can remember, I always had this problem. When I was at school, in practice and very simple terms it would go just like this : I start hanging out with a person / friend ..it lasts until I suddenly I fear that this person might not like me anymore. And then I become as cold and distant as possible to avoid rejection at all costs.
I've read messages in a topic about 'getting too attached to people'. I feel like some of the experiences narrated there are similar to mine. The only difference being that I never even dare showing interest which creates some very awkward situations with people I interact a lot with (coleagues..) but don't have a close relationship with.
To put it simply, I struggle to create simple 'aquaintance' type of relationship even if deep insinde I'd really like to be that guy who's always nice with everybody and that everybody seem to like without knowing anything about him. Basically, my urge inside me is always to either reject people and not interact with them at all or become best friends.
I manage to control this, but it takes me lots of energy and I find often myself in situations when I absolutely don't know how to act - and what to say because I always feel I have o be very careful about not being TOO nice - to not risk rejection but being nice enough.
I've started a new job recently and I fear that some of the situations I put myself in in my past job could happen again.
In my previous job, the work environment was quite poisonous and not very friendly. However, most of my colleagues managed to bond on a 'professional level'. To be fair, I made one good friend that I still see, but towards he end I had alienated quite a few people because seen as suddenly being cold, distant, unwilling to share, and unfriendly, as reported to me by closest colleague who was more 'in the know' than me. The situation was so tensed that 3 of my colleagues did not say goodbye to me on the last day. There was 2 complete morons that didn't deserve any kind of attention (*****ing all the time, downright disrespectful) But again, I feel like all this stemmed from my fear of not being accepted.
With my friends, I've always felt like I had to prove them that I had other friends that counted a lot to me. Its like I'm too proud to show affection.
I alienated my closest friend one day because she confessed to me I was the only person she could really count on and I replied that I didn't believe in having a best friend and that it would probably not last. Our relationship has changed a lot since.
In my sentimental relationships, I always end up being the one who doesn't answer to text, the one who doesn't show or speak about his feelings. I found that this attracts people at first, because I seem 'mysterious' as I've been told many times. But it's never sustainable, and here I am again single.
Reading everything I wrote, I realise that this might look messy and not very clear. I don't have a question to ask per se. I just wanted to get this off my chest, demonstrate to other who might feel the same way that they are not alone, and find out if anyone recognizes themselves in a little, some or a lot in what I wrote.
Thank you for reading me