What are the reasons that I have few friends ?

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chris1989
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14 Apr 2023, 2:14 pm

Is it because I'm too nice or kind ? Is it because I come across as ''weird'' to other people who are neurotypical ? Is it because I nearly always keep to myself in one end of the room ? Is it because if I wasn't being very social then they won't be social with me ?

I remember seeing class mates from school who were the same as me and became friends with NT friends in the mainstream school. So how come I didn't get the same friendships with people they had achieved. I this thing I went through when I first joined social media and think that the people with 500 friends were very popular whereas someone who had 30 friends was boring and uninteresting to talk to. I only ever had 30 or 35 friends on my social media list and used to make a bit of a fuss that someone had far more friends than me whereas now don't care about the numbers anymore. I still get quite upset when I still have hardly anyone talking to me. I used to also make a fuss or get quite upset because photos I used to post received few comments or likes from people and everyone else had lots of likes and comments. I used to get jealous because I wasn't coming across as popular as my ''friends'' were as I wasn't posting any selfies, drunken nights out at parties, and things like that.

In the end I nearly always went on social media posting or messaging people I didn't really know and vent my frustration or bad moods I was in and trying get people to talk to me even though I knew doing was not really the right thing to do and will come across as attention-seeking and lots of people tried to talk me out of doing it. Is it also the reason why people have stopped messaging me because I've disillusioned them or frustrated them because they may have given me advice and think I've thrown it back in their faces and not always realising that other people too have problems of their own to deal with ? I remember someone telling me I wasn't showing much empathy and then I became defensive and argued that I am not a psychopath who shows no empathy whatsoever. But she didn't say well no of course you are not a psychopath she did sort of say well someone with little empathy can still be on that spectrum and then ended up blocking me and that really got me quite upset.



Fnord
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14 Apr 2023, 8:02 pm

I extracted this from Dale Carnegie's book, "How To Win Friends & Influence People".  Enjoy!

Six Ways to Make People Like You

1) Become genuinely interested in other people.  "You can make more friends in two months by being interested in them, than in two years by making them interested in you."  The only way to make quality, lasting friendships is to learn to be genuinely interested in them and their interests.

2) Smile.  Happiness does not depend on outside circumstances, but rather on inward attitudes.  Smiles are free to give and have an amazing ability to make others feel wonderful.  Smile in everything that you do.

3) Remember that a person's name is, to that person, the sweetest and most important sound in any language.  "The average person is more interested in their own name than in all the other names in the world put together."  People love their names so much that they will often donate large amounts of money just to have a building named after themselves.  We can make people feel extremely valued and important by remembering their name.

4) Be a good listener.  Encourage others to talk about themselves.  The easiest way to become a good conversationalist is to become a good listener.  To be a good listener, we must actually care about what people have to say.  Many times people do not want an entertaining conversation partner; they just want someone who will listen to them.

5) Talk in terms of the other person's interest.  The royal road to a person's heart is to talk about the things he or she treasures most.  If we talk to people about what they are interested in, they will feel valued and value us in return.

6) Make the other person feel important -- and do it sincerely.  The golden rule is to treat other people how we would like to be treated.  We love to feel important and so does everyone else.  People will talk to us for hours if we allow them to talk about themselves.  If we can make people feel important in a sincere and appreciative way, then we will win all the friends we could ever dream of.


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Amanda52
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27 Apr 2023, 4:57 am

I know now that the reason I have only one friend is: smiling doesn't feel natural to me. I pretty much only smile when I'm amused. Doesn't mean I'm angry, just that I don't smile.
I usually only talk about my thoughts or issues, I'm not that great at engaging others about themselves. I get bored in conversations where the talk is about things not relevant to me. I dislike crowds and noise. I prefer to be alone. If I'm around a lot of people in a social setting I am anxious and ill at ease. I don't really know what to talk about or how to relax and talk to a lot of people. I usually can't wait to leave and be alone and in my comfort zone again (my home). I get frustration and agitated about things, then talk about these feelings too much to others. I only now realise (that I know I have Aspergers) the reason that I could never understand why others don't want to talk about other people's faults that make me angry is because neurotypical people don't want to talk about that .. but I do. What I mean is if someone has been rude to me, I want to talk about what happened and gain the other person's thoughts on this person. Neurotypical people dont seem to like this.

I can't talk to people I dont like, so many people would think I'm a rude ignorant person and people talk about me .. so others avoid me. I'm a stickler for rules, and follow rigid routines - I'm not fun and spontaneous.

I don't hug. I know that other's think I'm peculiar.

At least I know now why I'm like this, and that this isnt just me.



Joe90
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27 Apr 2023, 4:09 pm

Being too nice is probably the only reason I can think of why you have few friends.

I know most here haven't heard of it, but I watch the old TV drama Grange Hill a lot, and I've learnt a lot on there that it is healthy to have a balance in personality, as in you can be a nice person but still have flaws. Nice Vs bad is very complex.

If you're familiar with Grange Hill from the 80s (which the OP might be, being so he's British too), you'd know that Gripper is definitely not a nice person at all (the character, not the actual actor of course).
Jonah (Gordon Jones) isn't a bad person, he's quite nice and doesn't deliberately go around looking for people to bully, but he has mocked people like Roland before and he teased the girls. But he's still quite a lovable character and if his character was real I'd say he's nice. Nice doesn't mean perfect. Now, characters like Janet St Clair are way too nice, which causes a different set of problems. When she wants to help because she cares and is concerned, she's accused of being nosy and annoying, even though she's so nice and you kind of wish everyone was like her. But if everyone was really, really nice like her then this world would probably be pretty boring. Bitchiness is part of life and how we socialise. It's just knowing how to keep that balance so that you don't cross the line into being an unlikeable person.
Most people sit around the middle. It's the best place there.

So, TL;DR, don't try to be too nice for your own good. Let your hair down sometimes, because I've learnt that if you're too nice all the time it freaks people out. The best thing to do to not cross the line is to be emotionally involved in gossip. Talk about people, even if you don't like people talking about you. Nobody does, yet everybody does it. It doesn't make you a bad person to do that, but it means that you have a little bit of rebellion in you and that you're not trying to strive to be perfect.

That's how I'm getting along socially in the NT world. In the autistic world, not so much.


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jillsurf12
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23 Nov 2023, 6:32 am

I rather not know about it my whole life than to become one of these nasty hypocrite neurotypicals, screw them. They are the ones who make up all these problems it seems today, so they can make it out whenever they want to :roll:



Aspergers445
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27 Nov 2023, 10:32 am

I feel exactly the same way. I don’t have that many friends either. And when I see other people like me or NTs or just people I general getting more attention have being more successful or getting preferential treatment I get bitterly jealous because I feel left out. When I am with someone or like someone or who I call my friend, when I see her hanging around with other people or seems closer to someone else than me it upsets me.

It makes me question everything like is it because I am too good, is it because I am annoying or because I am just different. This is the reason autistic people tend to mask or camouflage their true colours basically just so they feel more included, less judged, less likely to get bullied. When I see friends on Facebook with more friends than me I think why can’t that be me. I have had friends unfriend me with no explanation questioning me what have I done to offend them?



yurguardianangel
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11 Dec 2023, 1:58 pm

Well I only have one real life friend currently.And he's a close friend too on the autistic spectrum.

I don't go out much from having multiple chronic physical illness.
Agoraphobia from past trauma,so I cannot leave the house on my own.
Social anxiety.
Having Asperger's Syndrome.
I'm quite introverted too.



BTDT
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06 Jan 2024, 7:46 am

Normal people wonder the same thing!

Guys especially have very few friends.

My dentist has some wealthy childhood friends.
He realized he'd have to work very hard and earn a lot of money to stay friends with them.



BillyTree
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06 Jan 2024, 11:05 am

I have only few friends. In my experience it has to do with that I am interested in other things that most people and that I have a different communication style. When people show interest in me or what I did on my holiday they usually ask (what I think is) irrelevant questions. And when I show interest in them the opposite thing happens. Some people like my "out of the box"-thinking and when I ask questions they didn't expect me to ask but most people seem to prefer a more middle-of-the road predictable way of thinking and conventional questions about themselves. I can play along with that at the cost of being bored.


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David1346
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09 Jan 2024, 10:16 pm

There are any number of reasons as to why so many of us struggle with friendship.

1) We talk too much and sometimes fail to show interest in what's going on in the lives of our friends.
2) We tend to be abrupt in ending a conversation. While we may have thought the conversation was over, the other person(s) may not have agreed.
3) We may be too negative. This seems to be particularly true if we're having a problem and then want to talk a friend's air off. While everyone has off days, you don't want a reputation as being someone who is consistently filled with doom and gloom.
4) Since many of us have limited interests, it's possible that others may look at us as being narcissistic.
5) Some of us may not be good judges of character. I myself have had too many "friends" who have taken advantage of me by using me as a source of "loans" that were never repaid, gifts, free meals, etc.