Note: Please bear in mind that whilst this topic does canvass opinions, it is not a fight club. You may disagree with other posters but we do ask you please to stick to our Talk Guidelines and to be civil. We don't allow personal attacks or troll-hunting. Do please report any. Thanks, MNHQ.

To think I will never ever fit in or make friends?

(120 Posts)
Dineatmydiner Mon 14-Jan-13 14:58:22

Is it possible that you can never ever learn social skills or fit in with people?

I've not had friends all through school. College was going to be my chance! Nope messed up again. Then university. And work. No friends.

I don't do anything wrong in the sense of being mean or horrible or raving on about boring stuff. Maybe I am boring though just by being? People talk over me as if I'm invisible or don't exist. Even my ex boyfriend used to do it.

There's another conundrum. I've had relationships but i guess looking back I was targeted by abusive men who probably saw how desperate for interaction I was. It certainly made me put up with a lot from them.

I just don't know what to do anymore. I'm alone all the time. I don't work (health stuff) but even if I did I doubt I would make friends. I manage to get spoken to but if anyone more interesting enters the room I will get cut off and talked over.

I should emphasise again, I'm not the kind of person who chats on when the other person is sending "I'm bored" signals. I'm very cautious of this due to worrying if that's why I had no friends.

I've been asked before by someone if I was sure I hadn't been missed for a diagnosis of aspergers but I've read into that and while a lot of it fits me, there's still some that doesn't so that rules that out.

Am I being unreasonable to think that I'm just someone people don't want as a friend and ill never fit in? I wouldn't want to be friends with me I guess!

Heavywheezing Mon 14-Jan-13 15:00:38

Are you an only child?

You sound similar to me. Friends are hard work though. All those platitudes.

Could you really be bothered with that?

ResolutelyCheeky Mon 14-Jan-13 15:04:13

It sounds a little like low self esteem really. Maybe a chat with your GP?
If there is anything you are really interested in then maybe yolu could join in with some activities with 'like minded' people and then you would all have something in common?
I have low self-esteem but not in the same way as you. Don't forget you always have your MN friends smile
Sorry to not be more help. Someone will be along any minute.

manicinsomniac Mon 14-Jan-13 15:04:33

Gosh, I don't know, what a horrible situation to be in. I suppose there are people who never fit in or make friends but there is usually a reason, either of their own making or not, and you don't seem to have a reason.

One reason I'd say that you can make friends is that you've had relationships. Even if they weren't ideal you are obviously capable of connection in that way. Personally, I find it hard to grasp that people can have relationships but not friends as I'm the total opposite (very sociable and make/keep friends very quickly and easily but have never ever held down a romantic relationsip)

If you feel like you don't want to be friends with yourself that that is perhaps not helping you - you might come across as unfriendly or uninteresting purely because that is how you perceive yourself, not because that is how you are.

Have you tried meetup.com. I think there might actually be groups specifically for people who find interation difficult. What about the parents of your children's friends - any luck there?

WorraLiberty Mon 14-Jan-13 15:05:17

I think there's someone out there for everyone...the trouble is where to find them.

But luckily we have the internet and that might be the best place for you to start. Do you have any specific interests or hobbies that you can find a cyber group for?

Your typing makes you come across as articulate and intelligent and it's very easy to read so that goes massively in your favour.

Who knows, you could well make friends that way and end up meeting them in RL.

OP you don't sound boring at all, you have a lively writing style, don't worry about that. It's probably just that you have a quiet voice or something like that.

I don't have the problem that people don't notice me, never have and sometimes I'd have loved to be invisible, but the fitting in thing is just not going away, and I always thought it would, but it's seeming less likely......

I think very few people have need of NO friends though. I like having people around me quite some of the time, even though they drain me! Please keep trying......what about that site, meetup.co.uk or something like that, you could try that/

I have plenty of friends who could happily fit an Aspie diagnosis. It's all about having things on common. Why not take up some hobbies that other people who find interaction difficult enjoy? Role playing games spring to mind. DO things that are fun to you and a bit nerdy. You'll meet people. I don't know if you carry any weight but I did and Weightwatchers was great for meeting friends. We have a running joke that we won't lose the last 5 pounds because we love it so much!

Dineatmydiner Mon 14-Jan-13 19:19:19

Thanks for the replies everybody smile

I'm not an only child, one of four. Sometimes I wonder if that's why I struggle because I always had them to fall back on when I was younger.

I would love to try going to a hobby group or baby group but I am scared of the same pattern repeating itself and feeling worse than I do now. I just can't bear that feeling when I'm treated like I'm non existent. The worst one was in a seminar at uni, in groups, we were trying to come up with ways we could do the experiment we had been given. Everyone did a suggestion and then I started saying mine. I had started speaking (so it wasn't a case of them not hearing me) and was explaining my idea like the others had when one of the girls just went "lets go get the equipment then" and they all got up. It was mortifying. For the rest of the experiment it was like I wasn't there. We had to use a microscope and take turns but when it was my turn, they just had another look instead. It sounds so childish but I felt so sad. Like I was a ghost. I know it sounds silly written down like that though.

It's like that with everything. I know it must be me because I'm the only common thing with each situation. I've thought it through and discussed it with family and can't pinpoint what it is. I don't smell, I don't have bad breath, I don't dress in an embarrassing way or in a way that makes me a target.

I desperately want to meet people but then if I meet them, it will be the same situation. That's why I spend my free time mainly on forums trying to talk to people on there. But even then I'm never one of the ones who makes actual friends from it if you see what I mean.

Sorry for the sob story I'm just stuck.

Is there anything I could be doing that makes people thing "oh no not her" that I'm not thinking of?

Thank you all for your replies, you've all given me a lot to think about.

fatfingers Mon 14-Jan-13 19:27:05

Are you a quiet person? You don't sound very assertive, which can lead to people walking all over you. Have you ever pulled anyone up when they've ignored you? In that example you gave, the other people behaved very rudely and you would have been right to say "oi, its my turn on the miscroscope".

Ebayaholic Mon 14-Jan-13 19:35:54

The only person I've ever known who had no friends was tight as a ducks arse. She had loads of money but would take a drink off everyone then leave when it was her round. Meanness is so ugly.

BabiesNeedInstructions Mon 14-Jan-13 19:35:59

Maybe you're targeting the wrong people. You don't sound like you often assert yourself, maybe for fear of rejection, but that makes you easy to ignore. And naturally sociable people sometimes can't be bothered to draw a quiet person out - It's easier just to interact with the noisy ones who put themselves forward.

What would have happened in your experiment example if you had said "hang on guys, I want a turn on the microscope too you know!" with a grin on your face? They might have responded positively.

But if you don't feel comfortable being assertive in that way perhaps you should seek out others in a similar situation. The woman sat on her own at the baby group, or someone else failing to be heard. Chances are if you make the first approach they'll be just as pleased as you would be in that situation.

The only thing that I can think of it if you're miserable and show it, and don't ask people questions. But it's obvious you have a sense of humour and you don't sound more self centred than other people...........to be honest OP it's not like anyone could pinpoint anything wrong about you from this thread. Are you really sure you don't smell?

KatyPeril Mon 14-Jan-13 20:41:58

I found a facebook group for local Mums helped me get out and about and meet people.

Lonelybunny Mon 14-Jan-13 20:46:30

I am the same , I'm on maternity leave and was in tears last night as I was dreading being at home alone again. I' don't go to baby groups yet as the ones I went to years back were clicky and I was just sat there like a lemon as usual sad all well I call them friends playground women talk over me and sometimes I don't even think they hear me ! So I just give up and walk out just me and my baby and go home alone again !

Zappo Mon 14-Jan-13 20:54:23

I'm interested as to what your family, particularly siblings think, after all they must know you better than anyone else.

For what it's worth you sound the sort of person I would have gravitated to at school and university but that's because I'm basically a loner at heart who is usually attracted to other loners or those who seem to be on the outside looking in for one reason or another.

I don't really have many friends now. I've shared houses with people and see them from time to time, I have a mum friend who lives nearby (friends because our DC play together but not really friends who would go out for a drink together) but I don't have a best friend or confidante at the moment.

I'm lucky in that i don't really feel the need to change things at the moment (too busy with young DC and like my own company too much in the evenings) but I do feel for you as I find other people's loneliness upsetting.

rainbow2000 Mon 14-Jan-13 22:04:56

Im the exact same im an only child and it goes back to my mother being overbearing.
I wasnt allowed to do anything and i think ive missed some steps.I find it very hard to make friends or if i do manage it for them to stick around,.

PariahHairy Mon 14-Jan-13 22:15:14

I totally relate. I did have friends at school, but once I left sixth form that was it.

I am not attractive and fat, but I do see other people in the same predicament with/making friends so that can't be it.

I don't know, it just never seems to happen.

For me I have just seemed to get more and more introverted as time goes on, as I have lost all hope of having a nice and normal life I have spent more and more time alone, so lose even the rudimentary social skills I once had.

I actually get mega anxious when I have to interact with my own siblings now. Le sigh.

Dineatmydiner Mon 14-Jan-13 22:43:06

I used to be good at making a joke of it and pointing it out like that until I was living abroad and a girl there was awful to me. I'd point out what she's done in a jokey way and we'd laugh about it while she apologised also jokily and then she would do it again anyway. It was horrible. Definitely destroyed my ability to make a joke out of stuff when it happens because its worse when they do it again when they must know they are if you see what I mean.

100% certain I do not smell lol. I have forced family to sniff check me and they would tell me. They also say they don't get why I don't make friends but on that they could just be being nice. Although me and my mum have sat down to try and figure it out before and I know she would tell me if I was doing something blatantly wrong because she knows how much its hurting.

PariahHairy, its funny you say that about your siblings because the longer this goes on for the harder it gets for me to talk to mine too. I stumble over my words sometimes with them and feel like they just want me to shut up like other people do. It's horrible sad

I do wonder sometimes if maybe I look unhappy and that's why people are put off. When I concentrate (so when at uni in lectures or meetings at work) my face goes blank when I'm thinking about stuff inside so maybe people assume that face is for them? So they could think I'm grumpy?

Its so frustrating and lonely and I worry so much that its going to rub off on my dd so she ends up a loser too. I couldn't bear to watch her be as lonely as I was as a child. That's why I want to fix it. For me too but a lot for her.

manicbmc Mon 14-Jan-13 22:50:25

Do you gravitate towards the talkers? I know I used to (having said that, I'm not overly blessed with friends but I'm not really that bothered).

There will be others (like you) at baby groups and other groups. Take a step back and see who is sat on their own or who seems to be struggle to find a voice and make for them.

narmada Mon 14-Jan-13 22:59:31

Oh poor you. I can see how upsetting this must be for you. YOu have a DD. Were you in a relationship with her father for a long time?

Who was it who suggested asperger's to you? Was it someone you trust? It's just that I heard something on the radio recently about how women in particular are often diagnosed very late in life and often do not meet the 'typical' criteria. What did you recognise in the diagnostic criteria as being accurate about yourself? Which traits did you think did not apply?

An aside... to the person who said "were you an only child?" - aaaaarghhh. I am one and I do get so fed up that this is wheeled out as a catch-all for any interpersonal difficulties...

ResolutelyCheeky Mon 14-Jan-13 23:23:23

Being an only child has nothing to do with it. I know many only's who are the centre of attention, they are used to having all the attention.
I think a drama group would be brill for you. Not only to gain confidence but to learn how to project (is that the right word? Maybe you speak quietly and timidly?
I bet loads of mn's would love to meet you for a coffee. There was a thread recently where everyone said where they lived and people were making plans. Anyone remember it?

TheSecondComing Mon 14-Jan-13 23:30:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Dineatmydiner Mon 14-Jan-13 23:50:16

I don't gravitate towards the talkers although I have noticed sometimes a certain type of person adopts me as a pet project. It's happened three times in my life where a louder girl/woman has sort of messed with my head. Like had girly chats with me and stuff so I think oh my god I've finally made a friend but they play me with the stuff I say. A good example (of all three actually) is to tell me a guy we work with or study with likes me, I say they don't, they push and push until I start to think wow maybe he does like me, and as soon as I say yeah he is pretty nice, a couple of days later she will have got with him. Or they will use me to feel better about themselves. When I was pregnant one of these ladies adopted me as a project and as soon as I said I was pregnant she told me how she'd never have a baby before being married (I wasn't married), she would never have a baby while she was overweight (I was overweight) and then told me there would be not enough midwives at the hospital so "good luck". That's the extent of my experience with "friends" :/

I wasn't with dd dad for that long really, a couple of years. It was intense so everything happened quite fast really and ended as fast lol :/

The aspergers thing has been mentioned to me by my mum and my exP. My mum has told me that at primary school (20 odd years ago now!) they did have concerns about me because of my lack of friends etc and I do remember having to go and do some booklets with the teacher who ran the sen room. My exP has a sibling with aspergers so I think maybe that's why he suggested it. The things I do think fit are the bits like not knowing when its my turn to speak (so maybe this contributes to how quiet I am), I struggle to get past "hi how are you" type stuff (with the above girls I was mostly silent and agreeable I think so that's probably why I was their pet for a while), I like routine and struggle a lot when there's a sudden change to plans like when someone is late or a bus is cancelled (I tend to plan out every journey like a walk to the shops in a time schedule), I hate being touched unless I know its going to happen and I hate busy places or noisy places especially if I'm in the middle of it all. But all that could just be me being a very picky person. And I can hide all that if I have too like at work or uni (although it does make me stressed afterwards) and I don't think I'd be able to keep it hidden like that if I had aspergers. Also, when I was little I used to have imaginitive play with Barbies and dolls and stuff and that's a big part of it isn't it, struggling with imagination in that sense? Reading that back it would sound like me being picky means I don't make friends but I do hide it well so I don't think it is that.

I hadn't thought of a drama group, that does sound like a fun idea. It might make me more confident too if I get practise and stuff at being louder.

Dineatmydiner Mon 14-Jan-13 23:52:22

Cross post with second coming. I don't talk about anything about myself at all really. I end up being the listener usually. Plus I wouldn't want anyone knowing stuff like that anyway. It's bad enough family knowing lol.

manicbmc Mon 14-Jan-13 23:55:53

You don't have to tick every box to be an Aspie.

I'm sure there are some nice people out there who won't treat you like that. Well, I hope so anyway. Like I say, I don't have a load of friends but it doesn't bother me. I am in no way outgoing and unless someone talks to me I will be found in a corner of the staffroom, reading a book.

There are some good community choirs about, if you have the inclination. I hope you find a decent person to be friends with soon.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now