To Go or Not to Go: The Dreaded Social Gathering

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Habiba
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04 Dec 2014, 12:13 am

I've been wondering if I should just accept that I will never enjoy parties/social gatherings and stop trying to go. I'll start obsessing the morning of if I should not go because I have such bad anxiety. I honestly would rather have extensive dental work done then go to any large social gatherings. It has gotten so bad at times I'll actually get physically ill. In large part because I keep arguing with myself. I wonder if there is something wrong with me or I'll miss out out on important social connections or I'll be ostracized. I feel so much pressure to make acquaintances at school and work. But they just seem like such meaningless relationships. I'm also worried I won't be successful or find a good job if I don't 'network'. I'm a college student and ALL my professor obsess over 'networking'. It's not that I'm completely anti-social. I have a very small group of friends who I see regularly, and I've been with my partner for several years. I've gotten better I couldn't even go to the grocery store without a 'meltdown' before I was diagnosed! But is this it? I'm tired of fighting this, feeling guilty/weird, and tired of trying to be someone that I'm not!



hurtloam
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04 Dec 2014, 10:02 am

I relate. I think that I make it more stressful for myself because I think that I will miss out if I don't go and then that makes the social thing more important, which makes me feel more stressed, so I go, but I'm stressed and I feel a lot of pressure to make this work because i don't go out very often and this is one of my only rare opportunities to make connections with people or to meet a guy that might like me and who I could date.

I think that we view social things as functional whereas others just go for fun and enjoy meeting new people. The fact that they make connections out of it and meet new friends is just a nice by product for them, whereas for me it's the goal of going out.


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AspergersActor8693
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04 Dec 2014, 10:15 am

I kind of feel the same way. I get uncomfortable in social situations like parties, especially if most of the people there I don't know. If it consists entirely of people I know and am comfortable with then I am fine. I suggest going with people you know and are comfortable with so that you have a security blanket of sorts. You don't have to go to every party that arises, but I do feel that it is an important thing to socialize in some way because consistent isolation in the long run can be harmful.



zer0netgain
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05 Dec 2014, 3:51 am

I often opt to go on the hope that something positive comes out of it....if only the opportunity to get practice at dealing with social situations.

It helps to have a legitimate "excuse" to leave early if you find it's not going well or you just have your fill of socializing for the day.



slenkar
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05 Dec 2014, 9:26 am

I have been to parties and gatherings, meals at restaurants.
I have never enjoyed or been successful at any of them.

I just stopped going, after satisfying myself that I would never get better at socialising.



bimini3
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05 Dec 2014, 2:50 pm

Try social gatherings that revolve around something that interests you personally (a sport, hobby, job, cards, etc.). I I find it easier to talk if there is a purpose for talking or there is a true common interest. The distraction of the event also helps to take the pressure off of keeping a conversation going when you are at a standstill or need a time-out.