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If you're still a social misfit when you're a grown up

(210 Posts)
diggitydog Sat 11-Nov-17 21:41:18

Anyone out there not outgrown the painful teenage social misfit stage? Past the age of hiding behind being into cool bands or alternative clothing but still dreadfully lost and confused by the rules?

And how do you make sure your kids grow up with more confidence than you?

Smeaton Sat 11-Nov-17 21:44:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Reluctant2ndtimer Sat 11-Nov-17 21:45:24

Sadly I have become a social misfit as an adult and it’s bloody painful at times. I had loads of friends and loads of fun as a teenager and in my 20s but now in my 40s I’m hopeless. I feel a huge sense of achievement if I manage a normal, non cringeworthy conversation on the school run. I have no idea what the fuck happened to me but I feel your pain.

Reluctant2ndtimer Sat 11-Nov-17 21:48:09

I meant to add, ds seems the same as me already but there’s always other social misfits for him to be friends with, it just takes him a little bit longer sometimes to make friends. We were on holiday over half term and dd had new best friends within about 5 minutes but I took ds until the next day.

diggitydog Sat 11-Nov-17 21:55:00

Reluctant - yes it seems to be worse now. I got away with a lot as a youngun because we were sort of all stupid and finding our way but everyone seems so self assured now. I find the school gate hell on earth, it's a cliquey pit of doom.

NormHonal Sat 11-Nov-17 21:57:36

I’ve become a big believer in “fake it till you make it” and just smile and say hello to everyone, if I know them or not.

Five years on and everyone knows me. I’m the crazy-Smiley-lady grin —some of them stop and chat now—

diggitydog Sat 11-Nov-17 21:58:03

Smeaton. How do you seek out anti social types though?
I don't think I've made a new friend in over 20 years.

diggitydog Sat 11-Nov-17 22:02:08

I was waiting for someone to say fake it til you make it normhonal!
Seriously, I've been faking it for 3 decades! I hold down a professional job, I'm known in the local community but I just don't connect with people.
I desperately don't want my kids to grow up faking it.

dantdmistedious Sat 11-Nov-17 22:02:59

For my children’s benefit I pretend, totally pretend. I find it all so awkward.

Swirlingasong Sat 11-Nov-17 22:09:31

I find it difficult too and tend to end up mortified by every conversation I have. You just got me thinking though. I have a child who, though still little, seems ever so slightly out of step with her peers. Is it a good thing that I pretend? Is it better to let our children know it is hard. Are they less likely to beat themselves up with the feeling that everyone else is so good at this stuff?

TheCatsPaws Sat 11-Nov-17 22:12:12

Me. I’m the eternal rebellious teenager who doesn’t quite get humans.

I don’t have confidence issues so much as I just dislike most people. I take my son to things he enjoys. If he grows up to be more sociable than me, great, but if not, that’s fine.

diggitydog Sat 11-Nov-17 22:12:55

I sometimes wonder what would happen if we all just told the truth.
Several of my family members suffer with depression but we never discuss our emotions.
I have tried to protect my son a bit from the expectation that you have to be a certain way but at the same time it makes me sad that he will start to stand out as different when he gets to school.

TheCatsPaws Sat 11-Nov-17 22:13:45

I seriously considered homeschooling my son to avoid the societal bullshit at school. Alas, I’m too poor.

Offred Sat 11-Nov-17 22:14:07

Once I stopped caring what other people think of me I found more people liked me TBH even though most people still see me as weird.

I still am not really fussed about most people and i’m often surprised if people enjoy my company, but I’ve been so much happier just liking me and not needing anyone else too for years!

diggitydog Sat 11-Nov-17 22:14:34

That's nice the cats paws. Have you always had confidence or did you just one day think 'f**k it, I am who I am'?

illuminousopptomist Sat 11-Nov-17 22:16:18

Yep. I feel exactly the same. It definitely gets harder with every year that goes by.

I had another child in later years and am finding the school interaction almost unbearable now. I feel almost like an imposter and feel a very disconnected. I am lucky to have an old school friend close by and she is the only one who really gets me now after DH.

TheCatsPaws Sat 11-Nov-17 22:17:13

Bit of both really. My mum was/is very liberal (she’s a bit hippy/woo) so I grew up a bit quirky but didn’t really think anything of it. I was always encouraged to ask questions and be myself. Lost my confidence a bit at school due to bullying but I never really wanted to fit in, I just wanted to be left alone to get on with my interests.

counterpoint Sat 11-Nov-17 22:26:49

People get drawn to me because I look safe and mumsy walking my dog. We have a few weeks of exchanging social pleasantries and that's more than enough for me. Then they try and take it on to the next level, wanting to meet up for pre-arranged dog walks. Having exhausted my patience with inanities I then scare them off by revealing my true self; the one with opinions.
People want to remain superficial.

Jayfee Sat 11-Nov-17 22:35:09

I just don't get a lot of the rules. Chose not to go to the funeral of a violent abusive relative..still viewed badly because of it. I hate hypocrisy and group bullies

AndhowcouldIeverrefuse Sat 11-Nov-17 22:35:14

Like TheCatsPaws I just don't want to fit in. I am quite relaxed about it - everyone is different and this is who I am and to be honest I am quite happy with it.

Other people are generally nice but I'm just not interested in forming close relationships with them. I do a lot (a lot for me, probably the bare minimum for others) strictly for my children's sake - organise parties, school run chat, playdates, Facebook, etc. I find it exhausting, unpleasant and sometimes excruciating but I want my children to have a choice to be social or not.

Bombardier25966 Sat 11-Nov-17 22:40:50

Never thought of it in misfit terms but yes, totally. I know how to do pleasantries because I do what other people do, but anything beyond that and I'm lost.

Made a complete arse of myself today. Avoid busy places but had to nip to the supermarket, I'd got my list and my headphones in and was on a mission to get out as quickly as possible. Tunnel vision head on, I'd missed that it was 11am and that everyone else was still. I walked through the guide/ scout line up at the store entrance (although I was polite and said excuse me please).

I realised what I'd done when people started moving again. Crap.

Tonight the local Tesco have posted pics of the event on FB. I'm there walking through the sodding line up. No one has noticed. Yet.

TheCatsPaws Sat 11-Nov-17 22:44:21

Other people are generally nice but I'm just not interested in forming close relationships with them.

This is what I’m like too. I love friends but I find maintaining them quite exhausting. I also don’t find most people very interesting. I have unique hobbies and most people prefer not to talk at length about quantum theory or dungeons and dragons! grin

I won’t be doing the school play date mom thing either, because I genuinely think I’d hinder DS. They’d know him mom is a weirdo instead of just thinking I’m busy!

illuminousopptomist Sat 11-Nov-17 22:51:22

Love D&D CatsPaws my older brother and I used to play it for hours/days/months on end!

I go through phases of getting into a group going along with all their activities and quite liking them and then realising this is exhausting because I actually find it all a bit dull. I then retreat and the pattern starts again.

Swirlingasong Sat 11-Nov-17 22:52:00

I also take a very long time to make real friends I.e. want to do more than superficial socialising and believe they might want to see me. I am sure I have lost friends because of it - for example, after knowing someone a couple of years I am still thinking of them as and acquaintance I am getting to know whereas they probably find me stand offish. I am mystified by mums at school who I know only met a few months ago but are suddenly at the nights out and babysitting favour stage.

diggitydog Sat 11-Nov-17 22:54:24

I love that the cats but it's a completely different thing for me.
Deep down I want to be loved and accepted (whilst also being a complete misanthrope) so eventually I always get dragged back into attempting to make a friendship to keep up appearances which usually goes wrong and leaves me feeling wretched.

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