Dealing with subtle rudeness - Social Anxiety Forum
 
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 02-04-2015, 01:38 PM Thread Starter
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Dealing with subtle rudeness


Hi everyone my name is Jason. Im brand new on these forums and im here to get some advise if I can and talk about some things that bother me and that im learning about my social anxiety.

Im 27 years old and have been dealing with a lot of social anxiety since a very young age. Now that Im older for the obvious reasons of trying to be a functioning adult im trying to work out some of the reasons why I feel lots of social anxiety even around my friends.

Today I noticed something new that seems to have been part of many of my experiences talking to people. Im finding that sometimes my anxiety is triggered by outside influences and inside influences. One of the major outside influences I noticed today is subtle rudeness. I was hanging out with my friends today for example watching a show and I made a comment about how i like the music in the show. My friend made dismissive noises two words into my sentence like he was already bored with half of my comment then proceeded to turn up the volume of the show.

Now whats happening to me is that im internalizing all that and taking it as I shouldnt even speak because what I say is boring. Now, there are either two things happening. My friend is doing all this unconsciously, or, my friend doesnt think im perceptive or intelligent enough to pick up on him doing this.

When I think back its not the only time its happened and its not the only time its made me feel like ****.

The rub is, he isnt the only one. Others do this also but it obviously doesn't hurt my feelings the same way as if a friend were doing it. Im betting its subconscious and I feel like if I said it was bothering me it would hurt his feelings because I know he cares and wants to be my friend (and im a bit boring too)

I feel like my anxiety comes from me not being able to deal with the stack of little things that happen in an interaction and maybe a little paranoia about how someone feels about me and my thoughts. This makes it hard to be social. Not just that but sometimes even when things are good it drives me away from even going to make friends. The sad part is all I really want is to be around neat people but sometimes I get so offended by things that I feel im the only one perceiving and it screws me up so badly...
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 02-04-2015, 07:23 PM
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 08-13-2019, 06:38 PM
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I'm new to this forum and realize this content was published long ago (2015) but I'd like to thank you for your candor on this matter. I found this post when doing a search on "subtle rudeness".

I find many people constantly use subtle rudeness and my conclusion is that they think they are particularly clever in being able to downgrade/dismiss others in public in subtle ways.

Maybe its just my perception. I grew up in a house with two sisters and a mother. My father was in Europe working most of my adolescent years and my mother and sisters reveled (and still do) with subtle , and not so subtle, downgrades.

Without going into details on the numerous occurrences that I can remember in my family, I am already sensitive and been trained over a lifetime to look for sideways comments. I notice it perhaps much more than some people. Its hard to say because the art of their science is to sow doubt surreptitiously so they can never be questioned with the content. Their method is to throw a non-addressable conversational sucker punch to which you cannot reply.

When I was young it started with passive-aggressive teasing. When I got older and addressed that 'teasing' is not a fun way to express yourself it only exacerbated the problem because then the 'teasing' went underground into public surreptitious rudeness.

Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of people who exist peacefully with each other without trying to build themselves up by downgrading others. Usually, my attempt in my personal life is to distance myself from the people who can't build their own self worth without degrading others. This can be difficult because I don't usually find out that the person is that way until becoming socially intimate with them over a period of time because many do not show this face in public. The ones who do are easy to weed out early to avoid future issues with that behavior.

I guess I cannot confirm whether this is normal behavior. When I have attempted to discuss this with many they act as though I am overly sensitive (both in and out of a family setting). I usually casually blow it off when it comes up occasionally as an issue. It is somewhat human nature to compliment yourself relative to another. But when it comes out as downgrading others constantly (usually accompanying gossip, where you can not only downgrade a factual personal attribute, you can extrapolate from particles of truthful attributes and create a seeming justified alternative narrative that can resonate as a story) I really prefer to minimize those relationships when possible.
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