Untitled Freewrite About My Lack of Social Skills

98D36F00-8727-465A-92A8-86218F82EF5F.jpeg

Today I woke up like the women in movies; in full makeup.

I had plans in the city but my sleep is so fucked up at the time that I had a nap between 2-4am, and another nap from 9-11am, so I got ready in between.

The makeup I wear, the nice hair and well put together outfit is my safety blanket for social life.

7F15E522-045D-4FEC-A9A0-AC1F23DA4167.jpeg

Today I did something that is very scary to me and makes me super anxious; attending a small event where I don’t know anyone. If it was a bar and nighttime I’d be fine but daylight hours and an intimate event, terrifying. Even if you’ve met me you might not know that I’m actually very shy because sometimes I can fake it, especially if it’s dark and there is music and alcohol.

I’m jealous of my mom’s talent and zero anxiety when it comes to meeting new people and talking to them. She can be anywhere and just start talking to the person next to her. Once we were iceskating on a 10 kilometre natural ice track and she legit just skated next to some random man and started to talk his ear off. Me and bff laughed so hard, and felt a little sorry for the man.

I’m the opposite, I’m terrible at small talk and I find it extremely hard go open up a conversation. Having random small talk sparks joy in me but the people need to come to me first. Sadly I am not warm and welcoming to look at, frankly I give off a bitch vibe but I swear I’m mostly nice. Well put together, fairly attractive and shy/anxious women easily get the bitch-stamp because people read the shyness as contemp and think these women just look down on everyone else and don’t want to be associated with anyone they deem to be below them somehow. With all the ”yass queen! girlpower girl boss queens polish other queens crowns” bullshit you see in social media, the reality is that a lot of women have little to no friends and support system.

Anyways, I was determined to attend this open knitting meetup I heard about. I’ve never been to one and I thought if I’m ever going to meet any new people on my own accord, this is the least scariest way, bars excluded because that’s not the kind of company I need anymore.

At noon I walked into a backroom of a yarn store and was met with about 20 knitters already hard at work and chatting away. I took a folding chair off to the side (of course fumbling to get it open), next to the coffee table and only said ”hi!” to the owner of the shop, and the woman next to me. Then I was sitting in silence and knitting for quite a bit, absolutely sweating and feeling very uncomfortable.

OPEN YOUR MOUTH AND SPEAK! What if they think I shouldn’t be here? Do they think I’m a bitch because I don’t go up to people? Seems like everyone here knows each other well and I’m the odd one out. I know I look and dress very different to most of these women so they probably think I’m some stuck up bitch who just took up a new hobby. JUST TALK TO SOMEONE! Do they notice my cardigan is hand knitted? Damn I should have worn wool socks and not shiny white sneakers. Why are my hands shaking I look like I’ve never held needles in my hand even though I have 20 years of experience and I’m really fucking good. ASK WHAT SHE IS KNITTING! IT’S NOT THAT HARD!

Jesus christ why am I so awkward!? I’m a very intelligent grown ass woman yet I’m absolutely terrified of starting a conversation with a stranger. This is the bane of my fucking excistance.



Slowly as people were getting coffee, some stopped to talk to me briefly and I started to relax. Maybe after an hour I was having long talks with the woman next to me and it was very nice. Before long I talked to several other people and even approached some without them prompting me. The conversations were fruitful and while I got introduced to a new technique I need to learn, I also gave some tips to the woman next to me. She was pretty new to knitting and I love teaching so we had a very nice chat. I didn’t get anyone’s name and nobody asked mine, and no social media info was exchanges so this was kind of a one off. Though there is one more meetup like this next month so I’ll probably go again and maybe it won’t be as hard.

E86C31CA-5CF5-4142-9062-5C898799CFE7.jpeg

At the end of the meetup I of course bought some yarn as a reward for surviving socialising. Some people go to war, I go to a social gathering, the former would be easier for sure!

P.S. I do not want advise from normies who haven’t delt with severe social anxiety their whole fucking life. Okay? Thanks.



0
0
0.000
25 comments
avatar

As someone with severe anxiety, this entire post resonated with me. I commend you for actually going to the knitting meetup and gaining more confidence as you went along — hopefully next time will be a lot easier. 🙂

0
0
0.000
avatar

It would be nice to go on like bi-weekly or something to get comfortable with it but sadly there is probably only one more meetup, after that the place where it’s been held is closing down and there is no plans to relocate.

0
0
0.000
avatar
(Edited)

You're still having trouble sleeping? That's shit. I've had several bad nights in a row now myself, we suffer from the same thing. I'll not be heading to any social events soon though, so I'm all good.

Might I suggest a small thing for next time...

When you walk into that knitting thing next time, just as you get in the door, throw your hands in the air, tilt your head right, kick your left him out to the left and yell out, WHAT THE FUCK'S UP Y'ALL! You'll make new friends in no time, I promise.

0
0
0.000
avatar

Yes, sleep is beyond messed up at this point, but I’ll get over it.

Hmm, do I yell it in English or Finnish?

0
0
0.000
avatar

Hmm, good point. Clearly they would understand better if you yelled out in Finnish, it would have a stronger sense of craziness friendliness.

0
0
0.000
avatar

Try having this face.

0
0
0.000
avatar

The hockey mask is a little scary.

0
0
0.000
avatar
(Edited)

When I was young, I had that same problem, really bad. It prevented me from achievements easily within my reach. School; hated going because of it.

In my late teen years, maybe 18, I had a really bad trip on mushrooms. It created so much fear and anxiety within me to the point I was convinced I would die. For several hours I was stuck within my mind, scared. I survived, of course. After a few days I started noticing any amount of fear and anxiety I'd experience naturally didn't feel nearly as bad, because I had that bad trip to compare it to; the natural stuff didn't even come close. Does that make sense?

It's like I needed to know what truly intense fear really feels like so the basic social anxiety stuff couldn't make much of an impact on how I think.

Now I'm the one that freaks people out when they're all shelled up. But I don't mean to. Just trying to be friendly.

Not sure which one is better.

0
0
0.000
avatar

Maybe it’s a little pathetic but I’m definitely not doing things I want because of my anxiety. Sometimes I dip my toe in and regret it because I then play some stupid little conversation or mishap in my head for the next 20 years. 🙃

So your advice is to take mushrooms? Haha. I’m afraid (pun intented) I have enough nightmares as is, no need to add to it.

I much prefer people who are more forward and approach introverts to help us out. Keep at it.

0
0
0.000
avatar

I don't see it as pathetic. And of course I still experience it from time to time.

Those haunting thoughts, I know well. Was writing about that a bit in this post and they still mess with me, really bad. I've experienced some intense things. And some of them aren't intense, I simply regret it, more than I really need to, but it's out of my control.

I don't actually recommend taking those mushrooms if that's not your thing, and it's probably illegal to own them. That discovery was an accident and I'll still use them as a medicine to treat that issue, but I can't say it would work for everyone.

Here's something to think about: Can you predict the future? For most people the answer is no. What is worry? Just a fancy way we trick ourselves into thinking we can predict the future, but you can't predict the future, so don't worry.

I thought of that one day and it mellows out my worries when I think of it.

Another thing I started doing years ago, and love doing it now, is walking with my head up. Looking at everyone. None of them see me. It's kind of fun. I want to say most people are in that shell, and it's quite normal. Thinking it's wrong but knowing it's not really helps as well.

0
0
0.000
avatar

You've described exactly the same situation I'm in, but as a man. Small tip that might help to engage a conversation: for example, ask someone about a knit thing (even if you already know it). It may start something great.

0
0
0.000
avatar

I can understand that at least when it comes to dating, men can have it even worse.

Hihi, I am not good at pretending to be dumb 😝

0
0
0.000
avatar

Don't worry, they won't take you for some dumb lady ;) Instead, they'll know you're really interested.

0
0
0.000
avatar

Congratulations @eveuncovered! You have completed the following achievement on the Hive blockchain and have been rewarded with new badge(s):

You received more than 400000 upvotes.
Your next target is to reach 410000 upvotes.

You can view your badges on your board and compare yourself to others in the Ranking
If you no longer want to receive notifications, reply to this comment with the word STOP

Support the HiveBuzz project. Vote for our proposal!
0
0
0.000
avatar

I can look fairly extrovert in nature but I can actually be quite quiet and in daylight sans alcohol can offer suffer the same.

OPEN YOUR MOUTH AND SPEAK! What if they think I shouldn’t be here? Do they think I’m a bitch because I don’t go up to people? Seems like everyone here knows each other well and I’m the odd one out

I could seriously have written this about myself! Lol

0
0
0.000
avatar

I do have the rare social buttefly mode but I can’t access it on will, I wish I could.

I am not surprised that the same kind of thought patterns happen for many Hive people. We are the odd one out, but together, if that makes sense.

0
0
0.000
avatar

I am in a similar (but obviously different) boat with respect to social anxiety.

Fortunately/unfortunately, work forces me into uncomfortable situations that force me out of that shell (temporarily)

I attend many conferences where I wander around, take notes, learn stuff etc, etc.

These conferences usually have Breakfast/lunch/dinner provided. I will start my day hiding in the corner of the breakfast area, hoping that no-one will sit at my table so I can eat and head to lectures. Later that day, I will present to a room of 200-300 people about something that's my area of expertise. Then, at dinner, folks will actively seek me out to sit with me at my table and discuss "stuff". Usually, that's when I need to go find a place to hide. I often skip the evening entertainment - both because my social battery is drained but also from the anxiety of knowing so many people now know who I am and will want to chat with me. (Alternatively, I get 3 or 4 drinks in me as a temporary fix - not ideal)

The funny thing is... when I get back to the office, my colleagues always think I'm lucky to go to these conferences at these nice places... Little do they know just how draining they are.


So, I empathize with you, but I don't have any words of wisdom for you. When your social battery is drained, exit stage right. When your social anxiety is high, choose fight or flight.

0
0
0.000
avatar

For someone with social anxiety, conferences, especially presenting in some sound like an absolute nightmare. The amount of masking needed to get through is surely very draining, good for you if you can manage it.

For myself as a night owl and a former restaurant worker it would be much easier to do the evening events and get to know people, it makes the next days daylight hour event more manageable.

0
0
0.000
avatar

No worries, social skills are overrated.
( Still, you have a virtual downvote for not attending the HiveFest :-P )

0
0
0.000
avatar

Didn’t skip because of social anxiety. I could have dealt with you nerds just fine after attending twice before 😝

0
0
0.000
avatar

That's why I was surprised! Start preparing for the next one then ;-)

0
0
0.000
avatar

So maybe that's what happens to the ladies in the movies, too? Terrible sleep schedule. Seems preferable to "some people just look like that".

I'm the same, though. I don't like small talk, at all. And when I do try to engage in it, I'm obsessed by the thought it's trite, stupid, and that the other person must think me an idiot. I don't know why, but I figure it's rooted somehow in self-esteem? I mean, otherwise I shouldn't be so quick to think others think I'm dumb, boring or a bitch (I think that, too!). So I'm trying to use facts to disprove these statements.

At the end of the day, something that works for me is remembering people really don't pay as much attention as we think they do. Largely because a lot of the time, they have these same internal monologues going in their heads, too. So they're not even looking at what an idiot you're being, 'cause they're worried they are.

I'd say I hope next time is easier, except I know it won't, and also read in the comments there prolly won't be many other meet-ups? Still, I hope you find some type of knitting get-together, as it sounds fun!

0
0
0.000
avatar

That is a good point, maybe they just skip the makeup part because it doesn’t serve the narrative and fit into the 120 minutes.

Self-esteem most definitely plays a part in social anxiety, it has and probably will get better with age though so there is hope.

The brain is stupid in a way that while I know for a fact that it’s all fine, people don’t hate me right off the bat and I’m smart and capable, it still doesn’t feel like it.

0
0
0.000
avatar

Seems like most of us here on Hive are just a bunch of quirky introverts and socially awkward weirdos, count me in too! :D I may actually not be that horrible in this aspect (feel quite comfortable even in bigger groups of people if most of them are my friends and when (a lot of) alcohol is involved, I actually turn into a real noisy social butterfly :D, just the next day I usually need to be alone to recharge the energy that being surrounded by all the people kind of sucked out of me) but I totally share your struggle with insomnia. Not right now (knocking on wood) but it was pretty bad in the past and I know it can strike again anytime. I know what it feels like to sleep no more than 3 hours per night for 7 consecutive days. Insomnia can be a true nightmare and I was wondering if you have any remedies / techniques / whatever that help you with that. I tried pretty much everything (herbs, meditation, self hypnosis, relaxing music, CBD, Melatonin supplements etc. etc.) and the only two things that worked for me were a lot of alcohol or some very potent sleeping pills. Neither of which can be used regularly of course...

@tipu curate

0
0
0.000