I'm very lonely and have no RL friends

  1. Simfish

    Simfish 827
    Gold Member

    So I've been to social anxiety forums, Aspie forums, and depression forums. But I can't find anyone to relate to on them, since many people on these forums are over 22 and the ones who aren't tend not to be very academic.

    The trick with finding friends as an aspiring astrophysicist is that they have to understand that you often don't have much time because you need to put intense amounts of hours into studying. So it's probably better if they share many of your interests or tendencies. I have a very high degree of respect for behavioral genetics, neuroscience, and computer science as well, so I can definitely be close to people in those fields.

    I'm a college student right now but I don't like most clubs. In clubs, most people end up talking to their friends anyways, and I end up having no one to talk to. And beyond that, I'm just not a big fan of the way clubs are structured/organized (I have ADD so I zone out very quickly whenever there are lectures that don't follow written text). I know that some of you will be quick to accuse me of having a self-fulfilling prophecy, but ADD is one of the hardest conditions to control (I've done a much better job with controlling Asperger's - to the point that I don't even need to identify with that label anymore)

    That, and there's a friendship problem anyways. It's extremely hard to find someone that you can "click" with. Lower-level friendships are okay too. But I'm incompatible with most of the people I meet (even for lower-level friendships) - it's incredibly hard to talk to anything with them (I can think about many possible topics but it takes a mind that's very "intuitive" on myers-briggs to actually have a real conversation with me). And then I just give up since I'm better off refocusing the effort towards preparing for grad school. I actually open myself up extremely quickly (especially on facebook) just in hopes that i could reduce the timesink from talking to new people (which usually doesn't work out).

    The vast majority of my contacts come from the Internet. There, it's far easier to talk to people since they open up more quickly and since they're also not around their friends. Plus, they can stalk me on the Internet so that they could get more information about me before deciding to talk to me. And I might have found friends if only my school had a forum. But it doesn't have one and its IRC is dead

    Normal people could potentially work but it's hard unless they're extremely thoughtful+curious+non-judgmental too (and very few of them are)
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2010
  2. jcsd
  3. turbo

    turbo 7,366
    Gold Member

    Do you have any friends or casual acquaintances that you might be able to say "hi" to every couple of days or so?
     
  4. Simfish

    Simfish 827
    Gold Member

    No. None of them share any classes with me.

    I could approach people in my classes (and I've done so before) but it's impossible to go beyond working on homework with them since they're usually too different from me.

    A lot of it has to do with the issue that most people aren't especially interested in talking about the things I like talking about (they pretend to be for a long time though). Even if they're mildly interested in them, they might not really enjoy them. And as for me? I try to be a good listener, but it usually isn't enough to sustain conversations for very long (unless it's with other people as lonely as I am - which is rare). Most people end up cutting off contact.

    Shared activities might work too but the issue is that I prefer talking to most activities.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2010
  5. If you want it badly enough, you'll reach out for it. I don't really have any IRL friends (just a long distance relationship that I talk to daily), but you can get a lot out of online communications imo. :)
     
  6. cronxeh

    cronxeh 1,232
    Gold Member

    Maybe you just don't deserve any of these friends. You have this notion that only people with your interests are worthy of being interested in, which is essentially you reinforcing your own beliefs. I used to know a person just like you. Self-absorbed in the delusional notion that the world operated a certain way, without anyone to challenge that person.

    To put it bluntly, you are narrow-minded and anti-social. You should work on your people skills and stop being so conceited. Other people's ideas are just as valuable as yours, and if you haven't had the opportunity to compare and contrast, perhaps even more valuable.
     
  7. Simfish

    Simfish 827
    Gold Member

    I'm sorry if I came off that way. Because I *do* realize that other people have interesting ideas - and I am quite willing to listen to them.

    The thing is - and this is key - I have inattentive ADD. That's a *major* barrier to social interaction. And also a barrier to getting interested in other people's interests. Yes, there are *many* interesting things about the ideas of others. And in fact, I've often tried to ask questions about them. But many people are just not willing to discuss them fully (countless emails of mine have gone without reply, or with minimal+unenthusiastic replies). And it's hard for me to discuss things verbally (which is the preferred mode of communication for most). That's why I often have to use email. But many people will simply not respond to them.

    To be short, there are lots of people I could potentially talk to, but most of them are very cold to initial emails. Yes, it takes time to "warm up" to people, that I understand. But the problem is that some people will never warm up to you, period. Only a few of them will (they also care about only having someone to "click" with, and most of them are probably already satisfied with the number of friends they have anyways, so they have no need for me). And there's almost no way of telling which one is which (unless someone is very open about one's loneliness, which few people are). And because of this, I've mostly given up because I need the time to study.

    And yes, with activities, it's the inattentive ADD that also inhibits my inability to participate in most of them. Except computer games. That's why I prefer talking to other activities. Yes I know I can open out, and I have opened myself out on some fronts. Except, that those are interests and not activities. With activities, again, one of the main issues is that it might take time to know whether or not I'll really enjoy them, and those cut into time that i really need for studying too.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2010
  8. Pengwuino

    Pengwuino 7,118
    Gold Member

    I'm not interested in a damn thing most of my friends are interested in. Why do you care so much about them being interested in stuff you're interested in or them being interested in stuff you're interested in? Most friends and most of friendships are just about sharing experiences and going out and having lunch and talking about those experiences and telling eachother how much you hate/think someone else you both know is an idiot.
     
  9. Simfish

    Simfish 827
    Gold Member

    lol those are really good points. agreed. though very difficult in many environments.
     
  10. Pengwuino

    Pengwuino 7,118
    Gold Member

    Not at all. What you do on a daily basis and who you are around is your environment which create your experiences. You just need to live life with the people around you.
     
  11. Simfish

    Simfish 827
    Gold Member

    You have a very good point there. Unfortunately, my physics major here doesn't really allow for it. Most people don't really know each other (it's a huge major). And then many of my other classes are grad lvl courses in all sorts of other departments.
     
  12. Pengwuino

    Pengwuino 7,118
    Gold Member

    Excuses. Excuses. A big department just means there are more people to get to know. Let's face it, there's no chance that 1 minute before class starts, physics majors converge out of thin our upon the courses you take and once the lecture is over, vanish just as quickly. MOST people either a) want to know the people in their classes are b) aren't against knowing people in their classes. You just have to go out and start talking to people.
     
  13. Simfish

    Simfish 827
    Gold Member

    I've worked on problem sets with many of them. But it's hard to talk to them about things like "how much you hate/think someone else you both know is an idiot.". Hell, I enjoy gossip as much as anyone else does, if not even more. But they don't appreciate any gossip I give them.

    Sharing experiences - yes - that would definitely work if I was on the same track with them. But my track is a lot more convoluted than most. Most of the students here aren't even going onto grad school. Okay now that I've thought of it more though, alternative tracks can just be as interesting.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2010

  14. I've never been one for the bar scene myself either. I'm really so much more the "barbecue scene." :biggrin:

    My friends used to feel bad for me, sitting in the Physics department all by myself all day; so they used to invite me out--which I appreciated. Thing of it is though: college students in general seem to like bars and clubs; and frankly, I knew that just wasn't me. Still I went along.

    We went to this place in Greenwich Village once--it was "Club 80's," or something like that. And they had this huge bouncer, that I pretty much must have looked like I was a much shorter imitation of the whole evening (with my arms folded, holding up the wall, minding my own business). :redface:

    I don't drink or smoke at all either; so there's pretty much no way to look cool holding up the wall like that, not dancing). Not that I could dance though, short of pulling an "Elaine" from Seinfeld.

    It's funny to watch people when they're drunk though. The dance floor was packed so tight, you could barely move. So inevitably what happens, is that some guy elbows some other guy (and they've both had too much); so then they start going at it.

    Enter the bouncer. He literally gets one of the two in a headlock, loses balance, and barrels into me, head first into my sternum (which even sounds lame to talk about :biggrin:).

    I sooo didn't belong there. Exit Francis.
     
  15. cronxeh

    cronxeh 1,232
    Gold Member

    Ohh boo hoo. A mosh pit is the best way to get awesome scars. You push around, break a few beer bottles over people's head, by the end of the night you have a nice scar and a few bruises to add to your portfolio :biggrin:
     
  16. BobG

    BobG 2,368
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Getting in a bar fight was one of the highlights of my life.

    The guy was pretty big and I was (am) pretty skinny, so he was able to lift me over the table by my hair with one arm. That was an interesting experience.

    I did the only thing I could do in that situation. I threw my face into his chest so I wouldn't take too many blows to the face and threw a couple punches into his stomach before bouncers pulled us apart. Fortunately, they concentrated on the other guy first and he never did throw a punch (I just don't think taking many punches from him would have turned out well.)

    The good news was that getting in a bar fight made me very popular with the women in the bar. The bad news was that getting in a bar fight meant the bouncers had to kick me out of the bar as soon as the guys I got in a fight with left the area and, unfortunately, my popularity hadn't risen to the point where any of those women were willing to leave the bar.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2010
  17. whats your facebook?
     
  18. turbo

    turbo 7,366
    Gold Member

    Oh, bar-fights are not good. I often had very expensive vintage musical gear on stage. Luckily, I had played a lot of biker-bashes, so a lot of fans were pretty big scary-looking guys. Pussycats, mostly, but willing to mix it up. The national enforcer for a particularly tough outlaw biker outfit often sat at a front table. Big blues fan.
     
  19. You gotta' be interested more in other people and let the conversation flow back and forth some things yours, some thing theirs: you like football, huntin' and fishin', maybe I like math, astronomy and biology. But I like a whole bunch of other things too. Relationships, family, marriage? I'm here huh? And more to talk about to others. How about golf, home building, home life, cars, rebuilding a 404, politics, music, ice skating? Lots of other stuff. Hiking in the mountains? Anyway, try other things in your life to be interested in and then have lots of different things to talk about and be interested in what others talk about.
     
  20. Everyone should have a bar fight in their life :P I
     
  21. I can understand where Simfish is coming from. I think some of those feelings can come from a general sense of not belonging in the world at all. What I mean by that is just that I think wanting a clear purpose in life is a pretty normal, healthy ambition. When you face challenges that in some way inhibit that sense of placement, you can hyper-focus your efforts into finding a true niche for yourself. One of the things that can make you feel the best is finding someone who intellectually is in the same place that you are. I think some of you are being kind of harsh, because I think this is a reasonable way to feel. Probably not a long-term solution, but it's a fair thing to feel, and I'm not sure how many people feel this way at some point. Maybe I'm way off, but I can empathize with you either way.
     
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