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Friendless And In Need Of Help

Discussion in 'General' started by Grama-Herc, Apr 29, 2007.

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  1. Grama-Herc

    Grama-Herc I'm a VIP

    Prior to being diagnosised I could never understand why I had no friends. I have been lonely my whole life and now I am completely and totally friendless. I have no outside contact with people at all. I don't think I have ANY social skills. Any time a person gets too close to me or finds out too much about my private life I turn into a bitch and push the person away from me.
    When eliminating someone who gets to close I am not very nice. I can be extremely cruel. The meaner I am the quicker the person goes away.
    I know that this is not normal, but it is all I know. If someone comes to see me (which is rare) I can't even sit down let alone invite the person to sit down. I can not handle visitors into my space. I get so panicky and uncomfortable when another person is in my home that I simply avoid people, and never invite people to come see me.
    If not for the phone and the internet I don't know what my mental state would be.
    So now to my orginal question! How does this friend thing work?
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  3. batgirl

    batgirl I'm a VIP

    Herc, I'm not in the best place myself right now due to recent events in my family, but I did want to say that I totally relate to what you're describing. I had friends before having PTSD, but since I have found it very difficult, I also push people away and can be cruel about it. I'm not sure what the solution is, just keep working on yourself, pushing yourself in small ways, and working on your trauma especially. That is what I have been doing and things are beginning to fall into place for me. The more I work on myself, the more attractive I seem to be to other people, if that makes sense.
  4. becvan

    becvan Queen of the Blunt! Premium Member

    Hi Herc.

    Yep, I know that feeling! It's funny that you mention not liking people in your home. I'm very obsessive about it. This is my sanctuary and I hate having people invading it. I try to have coffee with people outside on my deck. I'm a lot more comfortable with that (not that it happens that often.) I don't really have any suggestions for the friendship issues, as I struggle with it too. I have a hard time trying to relate or connect to other people so it can be frustrating when I try.

    Just wanted to say, I so get ya!


    Ohh, I wanted to add that when I do have someone in my house (usually family) we stay in my kitchen. You walk in the door and your in my kitchen and that is where people stay. My dog won't even allow most people to walk through the house to use the washroom. The kitchen has become the "coffee" zone and I find it helpful that visiting stays in that one room. It's kind of like a buffer to the rest of my safety zone.
  5. WarHippy1%

    WarHippy1% Active Member

    WOW!! It looks as if I'm the first male to add anything here, the things you are describing Herc, describe my life exactly. If I wasn't raising my daughter(13 years old), and interacting with her life, I would be just a blank sitting here. I miss female companionship the most, but I don't even have the motivation to pursue that. I think I tell myself that if I do find someone, then I'll have to be presentable on a daily basis, and I don't know if I can.
    Sorry if this was a female moment, just wanted to add a mans point of view, in case somebody wondered how men felt......
    zoe likes this.
  6. Grama-Herc

    Grama-Herc I'm a VIP

    Hey Warhippy, I am in dire need of the male side of all this mess we are experiencing. Your input, opiona and views of the stuff we are all going thru is so important---at least to me it is. I can relate to the other person "giving" you a life. Mine is my mother. Without her I would NEVER leave the house. My therapist is concerned that I have no life, no companionship,etc in my life---but I can not han dle it nor do I want to. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt. Every time I think it would be nice to have a sweetie I just get another cat. Relationships are just to difficult for us to manage when we can barely manage ourselves. Anytime you want to talk, I welcome the privates messages. I don't work and spend my AM's on line Sometimes in the evening too. I am female, 59, single, got a 37 year old daughter and no military experience other than being married to a drill sgt when I was very young. Thanx for your input HERC
  7. Monarch

    Monarch I'm a VIP Premium Member

    Well, I find that since I have been diagnosed some of my best friends are people that are very understand of my problems. People who's jobs are social worker, therapist, psycologist, Pastor. I think it is also finding the right people that can be supportive when you need them and understand why you are acting a certain way. I don't have problems meeting and inviting people over though, I like having people around. I get a little crazy preparing and I beat myself up if all doesn't go according to plan but it always ends up fine. Most of my friends are pretty patient with me and if they aren't then we aren't friends for very long, that is just the way it works. to tell the truth, I have found most of my really good friends at Church.
    zoe likes this.
  8. zoe

    zoe Well-Known Member

    I don't understand the "friend thing" either. I like people and can listen to them endlessly but I go blank when it comes to sharing stuff about myself. I think if they truly knew me they wouldn't like me or if I shared things with them they would think I was to strange. Sometimes I've even "acted" like I had friends so I didn't seem so abnormal. The truth is the only true friend I have is my husband. I would like some day to have a couple of good friends.

  9. wildcritter44

    wildcritter44 Active Member

    Not sure how I ended up with a super friend.

    I am not sure how to go about "making friends," tho I consider myself extremely lucky that I have several. My husband, my daughter, my "friend" Chris, my "friend" Julie. I met Chris in 1980 and Julie in 1981. My hubby I met in 1998. My daughter was born in 1984. I guess the hubby and daughter are easiest explanations -- they are family! As to the others -- well I met them many years ago had a few things in common and just believed in them. Today was a very difficult day-- I went to a funeral for my friend Chris's sister. Her sister died of cancer. It was expected, large family and very close. It was difficult just seeing her pain and her family's pain. I love my friend like a sister. (I have two older brothers:biggrin: both Nam vets!) We mostly talk on the phone these days. Occasionally we get together at her house. She's a very busy working person and has a large family, so she never has a dull moment. Yet I know, if I really needed her help, or just to talk she would be there. I went to the service in support of her and her family. Letting them know if they need or want to talk, I am a phone call away, to listen. I gave them supporting hugs. There was NOTHING I could do to take away their pain or change anything. I know there will be good times again in the future. Maybe it will be a month or so, when the pain lessens some.
    I know we will be once again laughing about a book we have read or something one of her kids or my daughter did that was funny. We will have a drink and a sandwich and look at her view of the ocean from her deck. (The view is very beautiful of the California coast line north of San Francisco)
    I don't know if reading this makes any senses at all. I don't know why or how we ended up being friends.. We JUST are.
    I can only hope that something I have said / in some way will help someone.
    Tho I do think it would hurt less not to have a friend, I consider my friend well worth the pain I feel for her loss.

    Sorry this was so long....

    Hugs to you all...


  10. Marlene

    Marlene I'm a VIP Premium Member


    I've always had trouble making friends. Real friends...not just surface friends/aquaintances. I've always felt (even when I was very young) that if people knew the 'real' me, they'd run as fast as they could in the opposite direction. After reading an article posted here about how when the trauma happens in young children that it's very usual that making friends becomes difficult, I understood the why of it. Doesn't make the making of friends any easier, though.

    Since my symptoms started, several people I considered real friends are no longer friends because they just 'couldn't handle' what was going on in my life. Other than my family, I have one friend that I've known for more than 20 years.

    Also, I'm one of those people that have never liked having anyone other than family (and not even some of them!) in my home. It's always been my sanctuary and safe place. I can talk to my neighbors...as long as we're both outside. I feel very uncomfortable if someone comes into my house. If they're there for my husband, I usually just leave the room. Funny...I thought I was the only one who felt that way.
  11. WarHippy1%

    WarHippy1% Active Member

    WOW!! Maybe I should join a Ladies therapy group, cuz I can relate to your comment also, jump. I'm a Vietnam Vet(2 tours). Things were so crazy for years after I came home, you know, I guess the term "going postal" is the most famous. When I'd hear that on the news, about a Vietnam vet going off the deep end and taking out the rest of his co-workers at the local post office, even though my trade was machinist, I'd walk around at work feeling guilty, and thinking all the guys and especially the boss, were watching me, secretely, wondering if I was gonna be the next to lose it. It severely affected almost all my relations with people because I started feeling like a monster, even though I never lost it, just by association. I hid all my combat medals and war photos in the closet for over twenty years, and if you didn't already know I was a combat veteran, you sure weren't gonna find out from me. I never talked to ANYONE about what I went through over there, especially my wife, because I wouldn't have been able to handle it if she would have started thinking of me as a monster, too. I went to Vietnam, a patriot, at that time I believed in my government, and backing their moves. I returned home like a broken toy, and all during that 20 years, I thought this was just how I was supposed to feel. Now, they debrief you after severe trauma. Even though I like myself today(no, not Love), and wouldn't change any of my life because that would change me and who I've become, sometimes I wonder what life would have been like if I could have lived it NORMALLY. Today, I have one of my jungle fatigue shirts mounted on the wall of the front room as you enter my home, and I have all my battle ribbons displayed on it, I have a tattoo on my arm that says it, and I always have a bumper sticker in the rear window of my truck that says, "PROUD VIETNAM VETERAN", and nobody will ever take that pride away again.
    WHEW!! didn't know I was still stuffing that. Thanks for allowing me to share. See what you Ladies do for me??
  12. Grama-Herc

    Grama-Herc I'm a VIP

    Hey hippy, Herc here. My heart goes out to you because you felt you had to hide something you were a big part of that should have been celebrated. The way our country treated you and the other guys will always be a black mark in the history of this country. I am a boomer and saw it all, the good and the ugly, and it is something, as an american, I am not nor will I ever be proud of. I am, however, extremely proud of you for "coming out" shall we say and proudly displaying your history. You should be proud of yourself also.
    Oh yea, and by the way, the ladies have got it together Ya Know! We are as bad as you think Love ya and hang in there HERC
  13. Audrey_Hepburn

    Audrey_Hepburn New Member

    I can relate


    It was difficult to read your thread because it's also one of the problems I have. I used to be very social before I was gang raped. After that, I retreated into myself and had difficulty dealing with people.

    I also am very private and protective of my personal physical space, including my home. I figured out that, at least in my case, physical space is a manifestation of my mental, emotional and spiritual space. The fact that they were so ruthlessly violated means that I try to protect my emotional and mental boundaries by controlling my physical boundaries. If I can control who can enter my home then I have a better chance of being able to control what I couldn't control when I was gang raped. And yes, I can get very defensive if people try to cross those boundaries and no, I don't care if they don't understand why I do what I do. For example, a neighbour was getting too familiar and I decided not to have any contact with her. As it turned out, she began to gossip about me because I suddenly withdrew my 'friendship' (it wasn't a friendship, she read too much into it, we were only neightbours) and badmouthed me to other neighbours. I still don't care, if she crosses the boundaries I need to have in order to protect myself, I don't apologise for doing whatever it takes to ensure they stay intact. I'm never deliberatly rude, I was raised to be polite but I have (finally) figured out how to be kind to myself for once.

    It might be that your case is similar to mine -- all you're doing is protecting the boundaries that were crossed when the event that caused PTSD occurred

    As for friends, you need to heal before you can maintain friendships -- they take up a lot of emotional effort and unless they also suffer from PTSD or know someone who does, they're not likely to understand when you have 'special' needs, eg when you just don't feel up to going out when they want to

    Good luck, I hope this helped
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