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Joined: 26 Mar 2011
Age: 42
Gender: Female
Posts: 3,112

11 Apr 2011, 8:02 am

This a cross post that I have also posted on a depression forum as well as I am trying to further understand it and am not sure of its origins or cause, but:

I am a very lonely person most of the time. This is not because I need people around me every minute of every day, in fact I have a somewhat lower need for socialisation than most people I meet. My loneliness stems from an inability to be able to connect with people.

I can, and have, formed bonds so I can love and care about people but even then there is a feeling of not being able to connect on some levels.

I can't walk into a room full of people, start talking to someone, find we have a common experience and connect with the person. I can connect with the experience and understand it through my own perspective but not with the person themselves. I think that I understand how they are feeling or what they are thinking but then it becomes apparent that myself and the person are having two completely different conversations because their experience of something was different to mine in terms of how they responded to it emotionally etc. So again the disconnect becomes painfully apparent to me and my loneliness increases.

To give an example I will often talk openly about my suffering from anxiety and depression and whilst I do have moments of self pity (if I am feeling hurt over something that has recently happened), in the most part when I talk about it I do not feel shame or self loathing because I suffer from these things. They are just a fact of my life right now. I can, when I am not recently hurt, talk about them without any emotion at all really. Its more of an analytical approach my brain is taking than an emotional one. Yet when I talk about these things people will attach a whole load of meaning to it that is not there...such as feeling sorry for me, assuming that I must be emotionally distressed, assuming that I must loathe myself or hate myself or feel shame...

If I continue to analyse my issues in order to be able to further understand them and how they work people will say that I am emotionally draining.

Firstly I do not understand why taking part in analysis is emotionally draining...I am not experiencing emotion at those times, I am analysing. So the emotion is being felt and generated by them, not by me. However, I assume that because I am not feeling emotional about my issues they will not be feeling emotional about my issues either. I seem to think they are analysing along with me lol.

Secondly I do not really understand why I should feel shame or self loathing? On an intellectual level yes in terms of society teaching people that that is how they should feel and in terms of society and the stigma associated with mental health issues (or so the theory goes), but on an emotional level no...I have never experienced the feeling of shame because I suffer from depression etc

That is just one example but it can be applied to other contexts as well. Regardless of how I try to word something or explain it, the disconnect is still there and leads to my feeling even more disconnected. Even when I think people understand me it seems they do not. People attach a whole host of meaning to things when to me that meaning is just not there!

I do find this frustrating as it causes me many problems socially.

I am also beginning to wonder if 'empathy' is really nothing more than an illusion created by people so that they can fool themselves into believing that they understand or know how someone else is feeling. Especially as the feelings they attach to me at times are of their own making and do not exist in my world at that moment in time lol.

Has anyone ever experienced anything similar?