[If applicable] Why do you find eye contact difficult?

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Why is eye contact hard for you
It's unimportant to me; I can make a close connection without it 12%  12%  [ 8 ]
There's too much emotion in peoples' eyes; I get overwhelmed 16%  16%  [ 11 ]
It makes me feel inferior to the other person 6%  6%  [ 4 ]
I get a headache/other physical symptoms 4%  4%  [ 3 ]
It's extremely intimate, on the level of being clothesless 17%  17%  [ 12 ]
I don't trust other people 7%  7%  [ 5 ]
I simply get anxious/panicky. No idea why. 16%  16%  [ 11 ]
I don't give a hang about other people! Why should I make eye contact? 3%  3%  [ 2 ]
Other (please tell us) 19%  19%  [ 13 ]
Total votes : 69

Glflegolas
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14 Apr 2019, 7:00 am

Please see the title for the question I am asking. Yes it's probably been asked way too often on this forum.

Personally eye contact is something that may or may not be pleasant. For example, it's alright with most of the people I work with and some of my family members, regardless of whether or not I know them well, but with others I work with, along with some of my other family members, I find it makes me feel inferior to them (on the order of being tied to the ground with duct tape, begging them to release me), and eye contact is not an option.]

EDIT: I've noticed that a similar trend when watching YouTube videos. I can make eye contact with some, but with others... it's back to that same inferiority... even though I know they can't see me.

What's your experience?


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firemonkey
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14 Apr 2019, 7:16 am

With me it's the judging is it too little or too much? I know that in Western society the so called proper thing is to make eye contact , but I don't find it easy.


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Serpentine
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14 Apr 2019, 7:45 am

It's extremely uncomfortable for me to make eye contact with other humans. The best analogy that I can come up with is that it's like handing them the keys to my home and inviting them to come in and rummage through all my stuff. Sure, go through the drawers, the closet, diaries, computer... here's my phone too. Oh, yeah, and here are my bank statements and ATM card. You'll need the PIN number!

That may sound flippant but it truly is a sense of being "unlocked" and having my thoughts and emotions laid bare to someone whose intentions may or may not be good. When a person forces eye contact it's more like having them break in and outright steal them. It's a violation. It's even difficult to meet the eyes of people whom I trust.

I don't have this issue when the person in question can't see me or when I'm watching them on screen. In fact I study others' eyes with fascination. But in one-on-one interactions I find eye contact unbearable.

It's a real disadvantage in a society where people judge your trustworthiness by your willingness to make eye contact.


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AceofPens
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14 Apr 2019, 9:56 am

Half of the time I can't do it consistently because of sensory issues. Every time I meet someone's eyes, I feel like my own eyes are becoming "full" and I have to look away before they "overflow," which experience tells me will lead to a partial shutdown (loss of visual processing ability, in this case). The other half of the time I just forget or become distracted by other things in view. I tend to focus on people's mouths if I do look at them consistently, unless they're fidgety, in which case I'll look at their hands. And I never thought about it, but I don't make eye contact while watching Youtube videos, either. Perhaps it mostly comes down to visual attentiveness. The tests I took for my assessment judged my skills in that area to be very low.

I can't make eye contact with families members, though. In fact, the more comfortable I am around someone, the less eye contact I make because I feel like I don't have to. Eye contact require a conscious effort most of the time, although if someone engages my attention very well, it begins to feel natural and I do it without thinking.


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Ziemael
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14 Apr 2019, 11:56 am

Ok it completely depends. If they have Grey eyes it is always harder. If they are pretty it is much easier, if they look back then it is embarrassing and I get a flight response unless I know them well. If they are ugly it makes me sick and I get a fight response unless I know them well. In any case if they avoid my eyes I think they are lying or are really screwed up in the head and I don't trust them. I trust no one wearing sunglasses because I don't know what they are referring to when they communicate. Most times I default to them being perverse and hiding the obvious. Looking at people's arses, breast cleavage, etcetera. I have wanted to vomit from someone's eyes, I have been enchanted and stared for far to long like a crazy stalker. Yeah... usually not good. My wife has pretty eyes, thus married, me willing to tread through insane trepidations and uncomfort to please her. That is what love is I believe. I didn't believe in love before that. Thought it was just for stupid crazy people. Maybe I am stupid and crazy now eh?



Antrax
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14 Apr 2019, 12:11 pm

"Looking at a person's eyes is like looking at the sun. You don't stare at it. It's too risky. Ya get a sense of it and then you look away."
-Jerry Seinfeld

Obviously the original quote was something else and I changed the part in italics. It just feels too overpowering to me, and I have to look away.


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Last edited by Antrax on 14 Apr 2019, 12:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Marybird
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14 Apr 2019, 12:15 pm

Eye contact is painful, scary, strange, alien.
I get no information from looking at eyes.
People say I'm shy and timid.

I have read that one of the first things human infants do is to make eye contact with their mothers.
I wonder if it's a milestone that if you don't do it in infancy, you are never able to do it.



IsabellaLinton
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14 Apr 2019, 12:22 pm

I agree 100% with others, especially Serpentine

I find it physically uncomfortable and intimidating
I don't like people seeing me at all, or especially my eyes
I feel myself shrink and fold inward, like I'm trying to become invisible
I think people will judge me by what they see in my eyes
I like to wear dark sunglasses or cover my eyes in any way possible
It's like having my soul stolen



Marybird
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14 Apr 2019, 12:48 pm

I once tried doing eye contact while watching TV.
That night it gave me a nightmare.
I was sitting at a table across from a man and I looked up at him and his eyes were glowing red.
It scared me and I immediately woke up.

I have a memory of being a child and my mother was leaning over me because I wasn't feeling well. I looked up at her face and her eyes seemed to be bulging.
After that I was afraid to tell her whenever I was sick.



Edna3362
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14 Apr 2019, 10:06 pm

For various and contradicting range of reasons. Again me with being random. :|

From outright meaningless and pointless, then somewhat meaningful and useful depending on my mood and circumstance, to invasive and distracting.

All I'm certain is that, I don't feel pain from it, I don't fear it at all.
Yet I either sometimes felt something, or not, and there are occasions that something either draws me in or averts me to do it -- or neither.


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ASPartOfMe
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15 Apr 2019, 2:29 am

IWhile not painful it makes me physically uncomfortable. I have an increasing urge to look away.


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warrier120
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15 Apr 2019, 8:16 am

It depends on how much I trust the other person. I normally engage in eye contact on a day-to-day basis just for the sake of masking, but if I do it too much, it begins to feel awkward and uncomfortable, especially if that person has gray or blue eyes.


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Evil_Chuck
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15 Apr 2019, 12:25 pm

I don't have a problem with eye contact. It doesn't feel like I'm "letting them in" because I know the other person has virtually no hope of understanding what I'm thinking, and probably doesn't care. Compared to the herculean struggle of finding the right words, understanding what they say, and getting something positive out of the encounter, looking in their eyes is the easy part.


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Map84
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16 Apr 2019, 3:12 pm

I think it's a bit like holding someone's hand, kind of intimate.


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losingit1973
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16 Apr 2019, 3:24 pm

For me it is just plain uncomfortable and intimidating.


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