anxiety · life · ramblings · social anxiety

Tired of Talking

Today’s topic is yet another issue plaguing my psyche. I have so many mental frays that I wonder how is it that I’ve made it this far without turning into a lunatic. By all appearances, I look normal. I’ve been told by others who know I have social anxiety that they wouldn’t have been able to guess, by just seeing me on the street, that I have it. I suppose I have the evolution of mankind to thank for my ability to endure mental hardships. Some of the coping mechanisms I have had stayed with me since I was very young. I wonder if, had I grown up in a more primitive era, could the sheer necessity of focusing on my survival only have allowed these mechanisms to not blossom into such profound problems in my adult life? Thinking of my life now, I have all the time in the world to sit around, tucked away in the safety of a house, and contemplate this and that. Had I lived a life where every second meant life or death, where the choice was to kill or be killed, I wouldn’t have the luxury of frequently being stuck thinking about my anxiety and would instead be forced to act to stay alive.

This issue relates to my post on being verbally withdrawn in some situations. Another layer of this conundrum is the fact when I’m in a bad mood because I’m thinking very hard about something that is bothering me, my irritation at the situation can bleed into my interactions with other people. In these situations, I speak as little as possible and only manage to bite out a few words if someone asks me a question. I know this is a terrible mentality. I’m consciously aware that when I get like this, it’s my mind’s way of protecting myself from outside forces, although I can’t say it’s very effective.

The tipping point of this where things get out of control is when I become so fixated on staying in my zone of not wanting to talk. And if the people around me attempt to start a conversation with me, I feel compelled to answer because I don’t want to be rude. It could be as simple as my dad asking me if I want a side dish with my oatmeal, but being in the state I am in of wanting not to be bothered, I will feel slight irritation that I can’t just be left alone in my own silence. I’ll answer him and try my best not to sound annoyed. Then if he tries to interact with me again, depending on what he says, my mind takes in what he said and flips it around, whispering negative feedback at me. I believe this happens as a result of my mind fighting against having my bubble of isolation popped and resisting the breach.

This is what the negative feedback is like in my mind. I take what my dad says, something mundane like one of his quips about how I need to eat more; a comment of his that usually doesn’t bother me because it’s such a dad thing for him to say. However, when I’m in this mood and I am being talked to, my agitation increases as I feel an obligation to respond when I really don’t want to. I start feeling attacked by my own body, but I barely register this and instead cope with the rush of discomfort by blaming it on my dad, or whoever is currently talking to me at this point. I think, What the fuck is his problem? I don’t need him telling me how to eat. He doesn’t own me. I trick myself into believing that he is out to get me, that somehow he is saying what he is saying on purpose to rile me up and make me feel even more shitty than I already am.

I must sound like an unhinged madwoman by now if you (the reader) is still reading this. I’m aware there is something deeply broken in me if I’m dealing with feeling anxious by trying to isolate myself and then internally lashing out at others if I don’t get my way by being isolated. It’s taken me a long time to really work out what is going on in my mind when I have one of these episodes. The instinct of going from feeling anxious to suddenly pissed off is so impetuously fast that many times I didn’t have time to process my feelings. In past incidents, I would’ve blamed my attitude on not enough sleep or being too tired to talk. Or be so deluded in shielding myself from anxiety over the broken isolation bubble that I would believe the other person is the one with the problem, not me.

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8 thoughts on “Tired of Talking

  1. Am I you? I also speak little when I’m in a bad mood, feel verbally attacked much more easily over normal conversation when I’m in that state, and respond out of politeness. Often times looking back at them in retrospect because I ruminate a lot :(, I “feel bad for feeling bad” because I feel like I don’t have a good reason to be upset, which starts a cycle of feeling even worse. You’re definitely not a madwoman, it’s the anxiety that makes us feel our fears to the extreme.

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    1. I feel bad for feeling bad too! I am aware it is wrong for me to take things out on people when I feel like crap, which is the main reason why I work so hard to appear to be “fine” while upset, but this takes a lot out of my mind and is like mental torture. A couple of times when I was younger, I did lash out and was often labeled rude or someone with an attitude problem. I felt seriously misunderstood bc people around me just assumed I was having a temper tantrum and/or being a bitch.

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  2. Do you allow other bloggers to reblog your posts? I noticed that I don’t see a reblog button. I can completely relate to this post, I’ve suffered from social anxiety for several years now. It has made my fuse super short; I often wish I was invisible so that no one would talk or bother me. I would like my followers to read your post so they know that others suffer from this also.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I’m totally fine with people reblogging my posts. I was going to check to see if I accidentally disabled the feature, but I see you’ve since been able to reblog the post.

      I’m glad to hear you found similarities with my experiences and yours. I’m aware my way of withdrawing or not wanting to speak with people is not really healthy, but this developed over my whole life of learning to cope with social anxiety with the only way I knew how to. It’s can also be hard on days when the social anxiety is there, in addition to whatever else is going on in my head that I feel anxious about. That combined with having to keep up appearances to whoever I am around (usually family) can put me in a state of just wanting to be left alone.

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  3. Third paragraph happens to me constantly. I’m much more aware of it happening now though. Just two nights ago, I was happy in silence (well the tv ran in the background and my family was moving to and fro). I decided to get up and do my hair, but then my grandma asked me what I was doing. A complete flip to how I was feeling just seconds before, it annoyed me, but I replied. I was thinking at the time 1) its quite obvious and 2) why do you need to know. Several minutes later my mom asked the same thing! To me it was like my paradise was invaded.
    I’ve also noticed that I clean the house (top to bottom) more frequently and cook dinner for myself when no one is around and won’t be for days. Most likely because I like my silence and don’t want to be seen because that leads to questions.

    Thanks for the post. You have articulated some things that I have not been able to. Forcing me to omit that part of my life from a blog post with When Your Brain Hurts by mrs_alp. I couldn’t find a way for it to make sense and all… so yeah. Thanks again.

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    1. I’m sorry to hear you also go through the same thing as what I experience. I feel the exact frustration when I’m getting ready to go out or I come home and one of my parents attempts to chat me up about where I’m going. It really gets on my nerves. I too feel more at ease when no one is home and actually feel better if I wake up to an empty house so I don’t have my parents lingering around. Sometimes, like today, it’s not even what they ask me during times I just want silence. It’s their presence in the house that ticks me off. Like this morning when I got up and heard my dad‘s phone chiming from the kitchen. Or the mornings where I can hear him talking on speakerphone. The noise level annoys me. That and the idea of that I can’t just eat my breakfast and pretend like he’s not there sitting across from me. Even worse are the rare nights my brother comes home and I so obviously show no interest in being interruptr yet he keeps prompting me with questions. Leave me alone! 😩

      Like you, I know being this way is not healthy. But I can’t help it. 😕

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