Loneliness is killing me

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Loneliness is killing me

Post by Camelot on Fri Dec 26, 2014 6:27 pm

Hi everyone at The Big Black Dog chat room.  I am new here, I just joined up yesterday, this was after experiencing a very lonely and mentally painful Christmas day. My primary contact with a real person was with Emergency Psychiatric Services who in terms of them offering support to someone who was in severe mental distress felt like to me that they are the psychiatric front-line equivalent to the old comedy TV program "Dad's Army" in regards to how incompetent a couple of people that I spoke to were with me.
First a bit about myself.  I am 48 years of age male who lives in Dunedin. I suffer from social phobia-anxiety / depression / and some aspects of Borderline Personality Disorder.  Not a great introductory selling point to who I am - I know.  But it is me just being real.  The reason that I have come onto this chat-room website is that I am looking for, and also wanting to make connections to other people, like yourselves, who are authentically REAL about how they really are.
Please don't let my 'diagnosis' scare you off, because beyond the label of my diagnosis is a real person who is very much hurting, and who is in a lot of pain just now, just as many of you out their have been also.  I have therefore written a more accurate account of who I really am so that you may be able to understand the person behind the diagnosis much better which I have titled "My Everyday Glass Bubble Reality"

My Everyday Glass Bubble Reality

Dear Recipient, (to whoever wishes to take any notice)

Imagine if you will for a moment that socially your life right up to the present-day existed within a solid glass bubble.  The role and function of this solid glass bubble was to provide you with a measurable degree of protection.  This protection was necessary since there was no benevolent Father figure to protect you, or even an emotionally available Mother to nurture you. In effect, you were left to your own limited resources of self-protection by erecting barriers against the outside world that was very capable of inflicting harm onto you.  This is basically how I could fend for myself.  However, a tradeoff for this defense mechanism involved making a deal in which your life was to be lived within the safe confines of a self-imposed exile, what this means is that you must sacrifice your life as a Social Being, and to suffer the consequences of pervasive emotional starvation.

The consequences of this sacrifice at first, are not immediately apparent, as it does operate successfully to relieve short-term suffering, but then, as one lost experience after another accumulates a life pattern begins to develop as you;

Forgo the warm, comforting feeling of a simple human touch.
Forgo receiving support and encouragement when you need it most.
Forgo meeting strangers who may become your life-long friends.
Forgo the many fun-filled, care-free, happy summertime experiences with these friends, as these will one day become a rich treasure trove of fond memories in which you are able to share with others.
Forgo the special intimacy of being loved by that special person in your life.
Forgo being involved in all those special moments of raising your own off-spring, as this natural instinct will be driven out of you.
Forgo sharing the Autumn years of your life surrounded by an extended family who loves and cares for you right through to the end.

A condition of existence within the glass bubble is that you may observe other people interacting within the social sphere.  But you are not allowed to have to much direct participatory involvement, in terms of having shared interaction, or experiences with others.  Normal social reality is only allocated to, and reserved for other people to have, and to enjoy.  Therefore you may watch life, but forget about having experiences as you will not be able to contribute anything new to the life's of others, because they already have obtained what's most important to them from other people, who are already in their lives anyway.

Due to this extent of inaccessibility to one's social dimension, how could one's persona not manifest into powerful, angry, and bitter emotional undercurrents that drags one under?  Especially since from the inside of this cocoon you have tried tapping away to gain someone's, anyone's attention, but no-one even notices your existence within this private self-contained hell.  This is when you realize that potentially one day you may just find yourself slipping away unnoticed, as you may either quietly wither away and die, or alternatively, violently erupt before exploding.  This is due to the daily, then yearly, and then even decades of pent-up compounding torturous feelings of loss and grief that ultimately accumulates to become just too much to bear anymore, even for yet another single day.  Yet this is not the type of grief that eases over time - OO-no quite the opposite, it intensifies as you mourn for the lost possibilities of each passing day.  At this point you find yourself seriously considering the question; Why did I come into this life in the first place, if I am not wanted or needed, anywhere, by anyone?  As an orphan off life itself, I am left alone to contemplate the cold harsh reality of the trade-off that I had made so long ago, that has now resulted in my own meaningless and tragic fate of 'human life redundancy.'  What if this was your own life experience?  Because it is mine.

By Camelot (first written 24/2/2014)

Camelot

Number of posts : 5
Age : 50
Location : Dunedin
Registration date : 2014-12-26

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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by zin on Fri Dec 26, 2014 9:55 pm

Hi Camelot,

Welcome to the forum. Sounds like life is pretty rough for you dear, so many many hugs for ya.

Zin
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zin

Number of posts : 92
Location : Waikato
Registration date : 2010-09-22

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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Camelot on Sat Dec 27, 2014 3:11 am

Hi Zin - thank you for the welcome.  I really appreciate your understanding, along with your kind thoughts of hugs, which is what I really need at the moment just to get back to feeling like I am human again.

Camelot

Camelot

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Location : Dunedin
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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Junkball 28 on Sat Dec 27, 2014 3:29 am

Hi Camelot

Good to hear from you. I'm new to the forum too. Thanks for sharing insight into your life and difficulties surrounding it.

I think people (me included) develop strategies early in life to protect themselves, only to have them come back and haunt you later in life. Not only are these strategies not useful anymore, but (certainly in my case) can be detrimental to everyday life.

I hope you find what you need on this forum.

Take care
Junkball
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Junkball 28

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Age : 46
Location : Whangarei
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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Camelot on Sat Dec 27, 2014 6:24 am

Hi Junkball

Really glad that you have been able to find your way to this forum - welcome to you as well.

Yes - I believe that our brains are largely a social organ that develops and adapts to be generally primed towards the environment that we are born into. Everyone's brain is like a unique finger print.  Yet - some of us develop to adapt to survive (in contrast to thrive) eg. social anxiety - if you have experienced hurt from others in the past it was a very adaptive response then, for your own survival, to become fearful.  

Despite this there is hope that different experiences are able to help the brain relearn.  Certainly the kindness expressed from both Yourself, and Zin, and any other future posts will all really help heaps for me to be able to relearn that the world is more of a safe and friendly place than what my brain has previously been trained for, which is the rapid Flight response to actual, or perceived social threats.

Thank you Junkball for your kind thoughts. Take care, and I hope you have things to look forward to as we move towards the New Year!

Camelot

Camelot

Number of posts : 5
Age : 50
Location : Dunedin
Registration date : 2014-12-26

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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Junkball 28 on Sat Dec 27, 2014 7:51 am

Hi Camelot

The social side of life I feel can be quite difficult. I used to flippantly say, 'the world's ok until you put people on it'. Unfortunately it's not as simple as that, to a lesser or greater extent we still have to be social to some degree in everyday life. Lots of things we see on TV, read in papers, hear on the radio and internet (e.g. facebook) is confirming that the more socially active you are the better. This can put pressure on people to engage more socially than they're comfortable with. Some people choose not be as social as others and some just struggle generally in social settings. I would imagine there is a big chunk of people who are a bit of both, I know I am.

I quite often choose not be in certain social settings, because it's not good for my mental wellbeing or sometimes I know it's just not my thing. My formal mental health diagnoses are dysthymia with major depressive episodes, with a good helping of anxiety. Anxiety is usually due to social situations, such as; if they're last minute arrangements, big groups, loud environments etc, this then feeds back into the depression. I've felt this way as far back as I can remember. I do also thrive in certain social situations too. For example I used to teach fitness classes, I managed a baseball team, so for me each scenario is very different. This tolerence in certain situations though has been built up and nurtured over years and depends on my knowledge of the situation (e.g. teaching) and the trust of the people in the group (e.g. my baseball team).

So as you say, hopefully exposure to more positive scenarios hopefully will help you.

Obviously what I've said is from my personal experiences and may not bear any resemblance to your life. Smile

Take care
Junkball
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Junkball 28

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Age : 46
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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Camelot on Sat Dec 27, 2014 7:24 pm

Hi Junkball

Really good to hear back again from you! I also had a very similar saying to you also that says "the world would be a better place if there were no people in it" in which there is an interesting rational to.  I mean even after watching the 6.00pm news some nights about the state of the world, it can really hurt seeing all the harm, damage, and pain that people can inflict on one another.  It's a really hard road to still remain an emotionally caring person, without becoming bitter and angry.  

As distractions to the chaos in the world I use to go tramping a lot, or to even take in a really good movie and that really did help to get myself away from it all.

Especially when I am tramping I feel like I have gone back in time before human settlement in New Zealand within a much healthier and pristine environment, which still to this very day (so far) still exists in some places.  It does do me good to experience my nomadic qualities that have a timeless quality to them.  

I have to close off for now due to time.  However I will continue where I left off again soon with the second part of your message.
I would really like to thank you for sharing the very REAL person behind your own diagnosis as well, and I would like to give it the thoughtful response that it fully deserves.  I'll be in touch soon.

Kind thoughts

Camalot

Camelot

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Age : 50
Location : Dunedin
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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Camelot on Sun Dec 28, 2014 6:50 pm

Hi Junkball

I can certainly relate really strongly to both your diagnosis destination, and to many of your own social anxieties as well.

To reach this common destination point, we have probably both had some very unique journeys along the way, which is what does make us all so really interesting to one another.  Different pathways, but to very similar destination points.

A big social anxiety for me is seeing, all around me, that people are connected together.  It all appears to me - that others are feasting together and celebrating the banquet of life, while I remain starving, and all the time being unsure of myself as to whether I am even invited, or not.

I really liked what you said about how we can also be very accomplished in certain situations as well. Which we can do very well.  In particular, with your own knowledge, skills, and talents that you use for teaching fitness classes. Alongside this, the trust that you been able to develop in the people that are around you, for example, as you manage the baseball team.  Both are essential ingredients that lead to greater self-confidence in one's own abilities, and also fosters stronger connections to others.

Yes - I do think you are spot-on with you closing point that the more positive social scenario's and encounters that play-out for me with others - like with yourself, and other people, is what I instinctively know is what I do need most.  

Much appreciate the contact!

Kind thoughts

Camelot

Camelot

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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Junkball 28 on Mon Dec 29, 2014 10:50 am

Hi Camelot

Good to hear from you.

I look around and people appear to be 'doing' the social thing quite well, so easliy and effortlessly. Unfortunately I feel I have to work really quite hard in most social situations and second guess myself just about at every turn; did I say too much/not enough, was I too boisterous or too quiet etc etc. This makes many social situations quite tiring and generally not worth the internal aftermath (depression). The thing is, I know, however, this is my perception and the reality is many people find some of these things just as difficult as I do, but are not prepared to admit it.

I generally choose quite carefully what social settings I engage in, however, there are many occassions where we may not get the choice, and many apsects such as; work, courses, lectures etc can be very challenging to say the least. For me I try to remember when the thought of an encounter wasn't as bad as the reality, I try to write this down or play it through my head, each time this particular scenario generally gets a little easier to handle. On the flip side if I use my 'tried and trusted' technique of avoidance, this generally exacerbates the perceived problem and becomes infinitely more difficult to tackle the situation in the future. The problem is I still have a huge tendancy to use avoidance quite often.

I hope all is well in your world.

Take care

Junkball
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Junkball 28

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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Junkball 28 on Fri Jan 02, 2015 6:03 am

Hope all is well Camelot!

Take care

Chris
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Junkball 28

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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Apricot on Thu Jan 08, 2015 12:03 am

Hi guys,
That lonlieness is so hard isnt it. For me, I can feel that even with others. I am always at my happiest in the great outdoors, I have just never fitted the whole social thing... I just fail at it. That is the reason I left school, not fitting what so ever. was purgatory I loved the learning... but the people part, I just couldnt grasp what so ever. Still dont get it. so much superficiality in society, and I dont do that either, Im deep. ... its hard.
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Re: Loneliness is killing me

Post by Junkball 28 on Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:56 am

Hi

I think you can be alone but not lonely, conversely you can surrounded by people and feel very lonely. I have travelled large chunks of the earth on my own and found it quite liberating, because when you do make contact with people, it is you that is generally making the choice.

Sadly society is getting increasingly more superficial and banal.  As time goes on I am learning to dip in and out of social situations as it suits me and I feel less compelled just to fit in for the sake of it.  It's not always as easy as it sounds, but it's certainly healthier.

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Junkball 28

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