Reverting to childhood/ never becoming an adult? Anyone else experience this? - Social Anxiety Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 08:28 PM Thread Starter
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Reverting to childhood/ never becoming an adult? Anyone else experience this?


First off there might be possible triggers in this post...

I had a rough childhood.. I have abandonment issues from my mother leaving me, I was abused sexually and emotionally/verbally, I was bullied, etc. I had a very hard time coping. I self-harmed, engaged in reckless behaviors. I formed relationships with older men when I was a teen because I wanted a father figure. I know it sounds wrong but I really wanted a replacement father who would take care of me and be there for me. Even today I date older men and have issues with relationships. Especially sexually because I didnt really get over the sexual abuse. Im in my 20s now by the way.


I never really got help for my problems, I just tried to cope with it on my own. Recently I went to a pyschiatrist where i was diagnosed with social and generalized anxiety and major depressive disorder.

I have this problem where I don't really want to grow up/ can't seem to grow up, or if I'm experiencing stress/anxiety I tend to revert back to childhood behaviors.

For examples. I don't really know how to dress like an adult. I don't drive. I can't seem to handle adult responsibilities. I have a hard time regulating my emotions. I fantasize/ day dream too much. I'm impulsive.

Recently I fell into a period of intense depression where I started to really revert back to childhood. I started watching "kid" movies, coloring, and even bought stuffed animals. This is quite out of character for me but I couldn't seem to stop myself from doing these things, even though I felt embarassed and thought that it was weird for me. (Im not saying that its wrong to do any of these things as an adult... its just the fact that it was out of character, episodic and I couldnt seem to stop myself).

I found this article today https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog...ts-being-adult

It was really helpful and really described this problem. The more I read into it the more I realized that my refusal to grow up is actually doing me a lot more harm than good. I really need to grow up if I want to be able to have more healthy relationships and be more self-sufficient. I am tired of feeling like a child in a relationship.

Has anyone else here experienced this sort of thing? I am going to take steps to fix this, and discuss it with my counsellor, but I also wanted to see if anyone here has some input.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-13-2015, 08:25 AM
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You're definitely not alone!

I also struggle with not wanting to grow up slash not knowing how to grow up.

Like you, I had a rough childhood. My father left when I was 3 and I had lived in three different places by the time I was 10. I was also bullied. Relationship wise.. I've only been in one serious relationship, moving country to be with this person. It lasted a couple of years before I had to move back home.

Now.. I'm almost 28, live with my mother, also don't drive and am not currently working because the pressure of holding down a job gets to me. I spend my time playing video games, watching movies, learning about things that interest me, listening to audiobooks and.. coloring. (Seriously though, coloring books for 'adults' are amazing!)

It's an interesting predicament really. I generally rationalize it as doing things that I like, regardless of the stereotypes of what it means to be an adult.. But I know there comes a point where I should be acting my age. I was more of an adult at 19 than I am now! :/

Just.. Ugh. The struggle is real.

Thanks for sharing that article!
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-13-2015, 08:40 AM
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I think your concern now means that you are starting to want to grow up; that's healthy. Keep questioning yourself and you will find answers.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-13-2015, 11:34 AM
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I still play video games and I even have a bubble making gun! I can name many other things. Adult things are just overrated and my one friend agrees and I get along with her very well.

Things like:
Smoking
Drinking
Not having fun lol
Gambling
Dating
Living with a significant other
Working until I die sometimes 60 hour weeks (you HAVE TO do this - thank God I work in a warehouse away from the public)
Paying all those ridiculous taxes all levels of government place on us.
Dressing formally - uhh I just hate this. I want to be myself
Getting married and having kids etc. : well I was never that great looking anyway but that's for another topic
Talking about sports: like even high schoolers do this, but adult people do it more

I still consider myself on the kids side. I cringe when I see a parent tell a kid they can't have or do something. Let them be.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-14-2015, 07:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeviiStar View Post
You're definitely not alone!

I also struggle with not wanting to grow up slash not knowing how to grow up.

Like you, I had a rough childhood. My father left when I was 3 and I had lived in three different places by the time I was 10. I was also bullied. Relationship wise.. I've only been in one serious relationship, moving country to be with this person. It lasted a couple of years before I had to move back home.

Now.. I'm almost 28, live with my mother, also don't drive and am not currently working because the pressure of holding down a job gets to me. I spend my time playing video games, watching movies, learning about things that interest me, listening to audiobooks and.. coloring. (Seriously though, coloring books for 'adults' are amazing!)

It's an interesting predicament really. I generally rationalize it as doing things that I like, regardless of the stereotypes of what it means to be an adult.. But I know there comes a point where I should be acting my age. I was more of an adult at 19 than I am now! :/

Just.. Ugh. The struggle is real.

Thanks for sharing that article!
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There's coloring books for adults! where do you buy these? I need one in my life and yes, I too suffer from the Peter Pan syndrome.... I wish I could get my shxt together.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-14-2015, 08:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeviiStar View Post
You're definitely not alone!

I also struggle with not wanting to grow up slash not knowing how to grow up.

Like you, I had a rough childhood. My father left when I was 3 and I had lived in three different places by the time I was 10. I was also bullied. Relationship wise.. I've only been in one serious relationship, moving country to be with this person. It lasted a couple of years before I had to move back home.

Now.. I'm almost 28, live with my mother, also don't drive and am not currently working because the pressure of holding down a job gets to me. I spend my time playing video games, watching movies, learning about things that interest me, listening to audiobooks and.. coloring. (Seriously though, coloring books for 'adults' are amazing!)

It's an interesting predicament really. I generally rationalize it as doing things that I like, regardless of the stereotypes of what it means to be an adult.. But I know there comes a point where I should be acting my age. I was more of an adult at 19 than I am now! :/

Just.. Ugh. The struggle is real.


Thanks for sharing that article!
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Yes I can relate ! Im abt to be 24 still at home..and not working ...
I wonder when I'll actually grow the elle up

🎵I wake up everyday celebrating sh(I)t why? BC I just dodged a bullet from a crazy b(I)tch🎵 I realized I cant fix broken people...i tried.. I cant help someone who wont take accountability.for where they went wrong...but its okay..bc I'll always be fine. No sleep will be lost, ....the video below is me, basically.

Always thank someone for showing their true colors.. Now you see them for who them are and can cut them off
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-14-2015, 08:18 PM
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I had a pretty good relationship with my parents yet I'm in my 30s and I still have a desire to watch anime and play video games. I generally don't do either, but the desire is there. After work I tend to want to be alone with my thoughts. Socializing isn't interesting to me very often.


The supreme function of reason is to show that some things are beyond reason.

-Blaise Pascal

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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-16-2015, 11:49 PM
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I think i have a fear/phobia of growing up and living an adult life. I am not able to work and have no interest in marriage, kids, career ect. All i do is play video games and read.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-16-2015, 11:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oursong View Post
First off there might be possible triggers in this post...

I had a rough childhood.. I have abandonment issues from my mother leaving me, I was abused sexually and emotionally/verbally, I was bullied, etc. I had a very hard time coping. I self-harmed, engaged in reckless behaviors. I formed relationships with older men when I was a teen because I wanted a father figure. I know it sounds wrong but I really wanted a replacement father who would take care of me and be there for me. Even today I date older men and have issues with relationships. Especially sexually because I didnt really get over the sexual abuse. Im in my 20s now by the way.


I never really got help for my problems, I just tried to cope with it on my own. Recently I went to a pyschiatrist where i was diagnosed with social and generalized anxiety and major depressive disorder.

I have this problem where I don't really want to grow up/ can't seem to grow up, or if I'm experiencing stress/anxiety I tend to revert back to childhood behaviors.

For examples. I don't really know how to dress like an adult. I don't drive. I can't seem to handle adult responsibilities. I have a hard time regulating my emotions. I fantasize/ day dream too much. I'm impulsive.

Recently I fell into a period of intense depression where I started to really revert back to childhood. I started watching "kid" movies, coloring, and even bought stuffed animals. This is quite out of character for me but I couldn't seem to stop myself from doing these things, even though I felt embarassed and thought that it was weird for me. (Im not saying that its wrong to do any of these things as an adult... its just the fact that it was out of character, episodic and I couldnt seem to stop myself).

I found this article today https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog...ts-being-adult

It was really helpful and really described this problem. The more I read into it the more I realized that my refusal to grow up is actually doing me a lot more harm than good. I really need to grow up if I want to be able to have more healthy relationships and be more self-sufficient. I am tired of feeling like a child in a relationship.

Has anyone else here experienced this sort of thing? I am going to take steps to fix this, and discuss it with my counsellor, but I also wanted to see if anyone here has some input.
I can understand wanting to be more self-sufficient, but I don't think it's necessarily bad that you don't "dress as an adult" or watch some kid movies. I always like to wear t-shirts and have no interest in wearing formal wear when I can avoid it. I don't consider that childish -- I think I just have different tastes than what society dictates is acceptable. If you think you feel too much like a child because of your interests, supplement it with some more "adult stuff." A lot of people consider video games kids stuff, and I play things ranging from games rated for everyone to ones rated for adults. Some people will think that's childish, but **** 'em.

As for driving, it can be helpful, but you don't necessarily need that to be an adult either. If you really want to be able to do so, though, see if you have a friend or relative that can help.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-18-2015, 03:31 AM
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Hm, although my childhood was fine I do feel I can sort of relate to this.

I don't think I ever got the memo to "grow up and become an adult"

I don't feel particularly grown up in any sense, my age freaks out me because I feel the same as when I was 15/16. I think I always did things as a form of avoidance, Grow up and get a job? no screw that I'll go do a degree to put it off for another 3 years, learn to drive? no its fine I'll just take the bus it drops me off outside uni at the time anyway, dont need it!

I've..got a little better, I have a job and I learnt to drive (about 18 months ago)..but I feel kind of..fake? like everyone else there is a perfectly functioning adult who drives to work and does their job, then goes off and lives their life or whatever. Me? it feels fake, like I'm not really one of them, I'm like a child who somehow has this vehicle and has to go and pretend to be one of them everyday.

I just don't feel like anyone else, I feel like I'm acting every time I'm doing something people my age or younger are doing. I freak out at way too much and avoid situations I'm uncomfortable with..

When I'm not going through one of my depressive states (like now) I'm usually found hiding at home playing video games/watching tv/wasting time on eBay or Amazon (I mean for christ sake I was seconds away from buying some lego yesterday...), I lack friends, I live with my parents, I don't seem to have any sort of hobbies..or desire to go do something, I'm suppose to be free? I have a vehicle I can go do anything..but I don't want to. I dress like a student but I'm fine with that, I have the relationship experience of a 15 year old, don't really see the point of trying however much it hurts, dating sites are full of normal folk whereas yet again I'd just feel like I'm acting and don't belong there..

I literally have no idea how I got to 29, I feel like a 16 year old whos been thrown in an adults body and I'm having to act and pretend my way through life..slowly..I'm not sure I'll ever be an actual "adult"
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-08-2018, 04:56 PM
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I know this is 3 years old but I’ve been scouring the internet trying to describe what I feel inside.
When I am depressed or low I tend to go back to my kid like self. I go and watch tv shows I liked as a kid and end up looking buying/selling sites for toys from my childhood..I go crazy and stressed thinking about a game or toy I used to have and can’t remember and stress until maybe I remember it. In fact I want the exact bananas and pyjamas stuffed toy I had and even a bedspread I’d like. This show made me happy as a kid.
I recently got a game Boy Color I wanted bad as a kid and bought Care Bears and even got the zoombinis game off steam because I had the pc game and loved it as a kid but can’t play it anymore. I even squealed inside when I discovered the name of a game I had as a kid today. I even was looking for a tamagotchi as I had several as a kid but people are bidding big bucks on them which is hella annoying. In fact I want a whole room full of 90’s and early 00’s toys. But inside I’m so miserable and upset and it isn’t making me happy.

I didn’t have a good childhood. I describe it as lonely, miserable and empty. Maybe some traumatic memories too. I never felt I lived my true childhood. I felt like something was always missing. I was lonely, had no friends and felt dissociated and spacey at times. My mother raised me as totally dependent and sheltered me and we were on the poor side. I always remember mum sad and unhappy.
I found “friends” in my stuffed animals and never felt true love from my mother. She was emotionally dead to me a lot and I recently discovered she is a narcissist. My nan hated me and my father hated me and never wanted a thing to do with me. Every other family was not interested or dead. Toys were my friends.

When I was 15 I felt like “me” went. My childhood ended. Obviously a 15 yr old isn’t a kid. But I feel like I’ve been stuck in the young teen mindset ever since, this wasover 10 yrs ago. I never felt I grew up or matured. I can’t drive, cook or nothing.
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-08-2018, 08:28 PM
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Same op, same. Re bump

weve moved on now
but if Im honest
I am still
a little bit
in love
with all the ways
we were.
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-08-2018, 09:11 PM
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It's called arrested development (just like the TV show).

I'm guessing it happens because life was just easier then and we try to cling to it even though it isn't possible.

But one thing I will say, there is NOTHING wrong with playing video games. That is just propaganda from the older generation. Gaming has become just another past time and they still view it as stuff for kids or people on the Big Bang Theory.
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-09-2018, 01:42 AM
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Sorry to hear about your childhood you're not alone though, i'm sure a lot of people out there in the world can relate. I can also relate in a sense, i was homeschooled all my life and never really got to grow up, so i spend a lot of my time just dreaming of being a child in a kindergarten or something lol.
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-09-2018, 05:12 AM
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All I know is that I don't want to go back to work, and feel like I can't anyway.

I'd had enough by the time high school had ended ffs, and felt done with doing **** I didn't want to do by then, and never enjoyed a single job I've had. I can't do the adult thing of fending for myself.

Being trapped in a 9-5 fills me with dread and I have no interest in having kids, mortgage etc. It's all just a trap. I'm trapped now, but it's the lesser of two evils. I'm not happy at all but the alternative of trying to be "normal" and pretend I'm happy, day in, day out, is worse.
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post #16 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-17-2018, 07:17 PM
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I grew up in an abusive home. I'm 31 but mentally I still feel like I am 12. I still live with my mom and have trouble doing many things on my own. I don't feel like I will ever grow up and it is frustrating. Many people I went to high school with are married and have kids. I have never been in a relationship.
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