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AIBU to ask if anyone else hates social engagements and wishes everyone would leave them alone?

(112 Posts)
messalina Sun 16-Aug-15 14:37:01

Just that really. To the outside world, I come across as sociable, entertaining (well, I like to think so) and friendly. Inside, with about ninety per cent of social engagements I am just thinking "When is this going to be over?" or "How can I wriggle out of a return match?". I have a very demanding job, a beautiful DD and a lovely husband I want to spend time with, a hobby I absolutely adore (running on my OWN). There are some social engagements I genuinely look forward to so I am not a complete sociopath but I am getting particularly fed up with certain categories esp mothers of DD's friends who want to befriend me and I have NO TIME! They are lovely, but I would rather be on my OWN or with my FAMILY! I also get bored of socialising after about 2-3 hours. I have had it by then and just want to go home and unwind.

Is it normal to see socialising as a form of duty rather than a form of fun?? Or are you all social butterflies? Most days I do just want everyone to F* off and stop asking me out for dinner/coffee/lunch/walks. Am I a total cow for feeling this way? Everyone is lovely but I crave time alone.

Aeroflotgirl Sun 16-Aug-15 14:40:44

YANBU at all, dh feels exactly the way you are. He dislikes socialising and social occassions, and would rather spend his time at home. He has lost his friends as he never contacts them or goes out with them. He said he is happy the way he is. His 40th is coming up in a couple of months, I jokingly said that I will organise a surprise party,he looked at me as though I had just slapped his face. I asked him what he would like to do instead,and he told me that he would much rather spend it at home with us and doing gaming.

Micah Sun 16-Aug-15 14:47:07

Google introvert.

I'm exactly the same smile

My family were always of the opinion that I was just shy, and if they forced me to socialise I'd enjoy it.

Never did, and I'm now old enough that I realise I don't actually have to do anything I don't want to. I'm much happier in my own small circle, without all the stress of socialising.

hiddenhome Sun 16-Aug-15 14:47:32

Perhaps you're an introvert.

I've now 'come out' as an introvert and quite comfortably decline social engagements by explaining that I just don't socialise. One of my colleagues in particular keeps suggesting I come out, but it just ain't gonna happen grin

messalina Sun 16-Aug-15 14:54:34

Yes, definitely am an introvert but one with good people skills. Annoys me when people assume introverts are just failed extroverts. Trouble is how do I get out of neverending cycle of social engagements? I have a few strategies for managing things e.g if I get invited out or if DD gets invited out I am very quick to initiate the return match....for several weeks or months time! I kick it into the long grass. I also avoid talking to the other mothers at school except in large groups where nobody can get too friendly and invite DD over without all the others overhearing. She has loads of school friends already and managing her social life as well as mine is a bind but one I have to do. I also sometimes lie outright and say we are busy. I am good at organising groups of people together so I can see several at the same time. In fact I quite like group socialising, it's having to sustain a conversation at an intense level for several hours I cannot be arsed with unless it's a really good friend.

Does anyone have any good strategies for wriggling out of things?

Skiptonlass Sun 16-Aug-15 14:54:59

I'm the same. I can do it in small doses but knowing I have a social thing coming up just wrecks my week/month.

im not shy, by the way, or socially awkward. People are genuinely surprised when I tell them how I feel.

I just need a lot of time to myself. It's my biggest worry actually, with my impending firstborn... Will the lack of alone time break me?

messalina Sun 16-Aug-15 14:57:12

Think part of issue is that I spend nearly the whole day at work INTERACTING with people at quite an intense level. Lots of meetings, listening, having to have ideas. And my colleagues satisfy all my desire for socialising as they are so lovely. I just don't really want to see anyone else after that. If I had a different job I might feel differently but my job is very people focused.

DorothyGherkins Sun 16-Aug-15 15:01:14

I hate small talk and socialising, the whole time I m being pleasant to others, I m really thinking, what a waste of time, I could be reading a good book/watching a dvd/doing the ironing/defrosting the fridge - after the first ten minutes I m bored rigid with not doing anything purposeful when I know if left to my own devices I d be doing something useful with a decent outcome - it always feels like dead time I ll never get back! I ve learnt to say No a lot now.

AnyFucker Sun 16-Aug-15 15:01:54

yep, introvert with good people skills here

I actually get bored and restless when socialising. It's no reflection on my companions but after a couple of hours I want to disappear to my bed with a book

I do resent lots of demands on my time that I don't have control other words I will give of it freely when it feels under my own steam, but keep me captive at a wedding reception or at some pub listening to other's life stories and you will get a grumpy response from me

messalina Sun 16-Aug-15 15:02:33

Skiptonlass (incidentally I know Skipton really well but am based in South-East), I found when I was on maternity leave that actually I did want to get out and see people but that is probably because my maternal instinct at the baby stage was even smaller than my socialising instinct. I did find the conversations quite boring though but I did make two very good friends whom I now really value. I also quite like meeting strangers as it's only 20-30 minutes chat and then you can scoot home. What I cannot stand is not knowing when a social event is going to end. So having house guests or dinner guests is stressful for me as I just want them to go to bed or go home. Instead DH will stay up talking to them for hours on end drinking more wine. I am just thinking this has been nice but now it is time to STOP talking.

AnyFucker Sun 16-Aug-15 15:03:20

same here job involves being "on" all day long

my free time I like to be free of it

TenForward82 Sun 16-Aug-15 15:06:30

I'm asocial. Currently on MN because I've wriggled out of a family-in-law meet this afternoon. Normally I'd go but feeling a bit pregnancy-fragile so my DH kindly suggested I stay home. Win.

messalina Sun 16-Aug-15 15:06:53

Idea for another thread (apologies if that sounded like the sort of thing Alan Partridge would say...if you are a fan you will get the reference): surprising things we would rather be doing than socialising.

1. hanging out the laundry
2. doing the supermarket shop
3. running hard intervals
4. sitting in meetings
5. even, having sex

messalina Sun 16-Aug-15 15:10:07

And does anyone else find Christmas stressful because of having to talk to people ad nauseam? I pray for the moment when some schmaltzy Christmas special comes on (can be as crap as you like even Downton) as it does at least shut everyone up.

AnyFucker Sun 16-Aug-15 15:50:19

I hate Xmas, full stop

StampyMum Sun 16-Aug-15 16:06:36

I'm probably the opposite to you, OP, but I envy your contentment with your family life. I like inviting people over to ours, partly cos I like chatting, partly cos I feel my small family is too small. And my DH drives me nuts. I wish I were as happy as you...

JeanSeberg Sun 16-Aug-15 16:25:01

As soon as I arrive at a social event I'm wondering how soon I can leave. And I also would prefer to just disappear without all the goodbye nonsense.

elQuintoConyo Sun 16-Aug-15 16:25:07

I had a dinner to go to with some friends, we are a small group and although we catch up with each other regularly, it isn't often we do so as a group. One of the group had a friend from abroad visiting, can she come too? Not a problem.

But.... then it turned into: "ok, come to my house at 6 to sing with my friend X on the keyboard, then dinner in Y place at 9".

Eh? confused no way was I joining in an arse-achingly boring singalong - oh, and we were to correct her Irish pronunciation, too (none of us have Irish accents).

I can't remember how I got out of it, but I'm glad i did. Dinner at 9, last bus home at 12, I knew exactly where I stood.

I quite often feel like a spare prick at a wedding at social events, much rather be putting up some shelves or tackling bathroom tile mould.

elQuintoConyo Sun 16-Aug-15 16:28:26

Oh, and as much fun as an MN meetup sounds, i'd rather cheese grate my own elbows and dip them in lemon juice.

MARTIN1 Sun 16-Aug-15 16:43:21

I've now 'come out' as an introvert That is a beautiful phrase, does it qualify as an oxymoron?

LeftMyRidingCropInTheMortuary Sun 16-Aug-15 16:46:48

I could have written most of these posts myself.
I have to be "on" all day at work with noise and demanding people.
To me, parties/socialising is just another type of work.
I have crowds etc - shop online whenever I can.
I CANNOT understand people who work all week then socialise all weekend. WHEN do they sit on their own sofa and pick their toenails? When do they sit and make lists. OR WHEN WHEN WHEN do they clean & potter?!

LeftMyRidingCropInTheMortuary Sun 16-Aug-15 16:48:22

Calls for a Big Bang Theory quote:

Sheldon: You guys wait til the second I'm out of town and then throw a Christmas party?
Amy: Yes
Sheldon: You guys are the best.

LeftMyRidingCropInTheMortuary Sun 16-Aug-15 16:51:37

Even back in the days when i was a big drinker, I'd stay teetotal at parties I couldn't get out of JUST so I could drive myself home the millisecond I could get away with it.

YY to the pp who said now they're grown up they've accepted themselves this way.

And YY to the pp who says they dread social engagements for ages in advance - something on a Friday night means I can't look forward to the weekend properly cos I've got to do THAT first.

fourtothedozen Sun 16-Aug-15 16:54:03


I hate social engagements. I don't have a great need for social activity outside my family. I find most people boring and draining.

Strangely though I have a background in high level technical sales, and work freelance marketing, with lots of chatting/talking to people.
Most people see me as a friendly gregarious person.
I'm really not.

My OH is exactly the same.

MsDragons Sun 16-Aug-15 17:09:42

I find socialising excruciating. I have good people skills, I give a good impression of enjoying myself on a night out, but I always have a reason to leave earlier than people expect. Dd2 is a fantastic excuse to limit the number of nights out I go on "can't get a babysitter" or I take dd2 along to occasions with my family and then I use "she needs to get home for dinner/bedtime" I don't think I'll get away with it much longer though because she's 5 now and can last longer in the evenings.

Even at my own wedding ( last week) we only invited immediate family and I spent a lot of my time supervising the children outside rather than socialising with parents/siblings. We were home by 8pm and both dh and I said "I'm glad that's over", not because we don't like our family, but because an afternoon with them is long enough.

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