Why I Shouldn’t Have Friends

Dear Reader,

I can’t have friends. I’m not ok and I can’t pretend I am ok with everyone in my life anymore and now it seems that the people who I can’t pretend in front of anymore, can’t take me anymore.

For a long time, I didn’t let people in. I didn’t tell people about my depression or my feelings and it’s probably really only in the last two years I have started being more open honest with people about my mental health with not only people that I am “close” to, but others.

I have a small group of friends, an even smaller group who know about my mental health. And even smaller group who understand my mental health… I say understand they understand some things. Some have experienced depression. But as most of us are aware, everyone has their own brand of depression. What affects some people does not affect others. 

I put myself down a lot. Or so I am told. Personally I feel I am just honest. I do feel aspects of my problems in life and my relationships are my fault. My friends disagree and that is where our problems begin. People tell me a lot that things that are beyond my control are not my fault. Unfortunately, I have some kind of complex when it comes to myself and I feel I am to blame for most things. 

Sometimes I think that Asperger’s is the root cause of these feelings, that my brain, which likes to think logically, sees something which needs to have a reason for being, it blames the common object: Me.

I was told today that if I was going to carry on talking this way I shouldn’t have let people in. I may have misinterpreted, I’m probably misquoting and I think it was said in frustration and fear of what I was going to do to myself when I got home more than anything.

I had spent the last hour moping around talking about how I didn’t feel like I wanted to be alive anymore, how I was a shit employee who made people’s lives difficult, how everything was my fault and how I was scared to go home and be alone in case I hurt myself. And I was being honest, with people I had began to feel comfortable with admitting my feelings to. I was being honest about the things that my brain constantly makes me feel. But, I can see where my friend was coming from. She and my other friend there are probably one of only 3 people I would vocally tell these feelings to. Of course anonymously I vocalise these thoughts frequently here.

But she was right and it made me remember that for a long time I didn’t let people in. I thought I was happier letting people in, telling people how I felt. But maybe I’m not. Because now I feel worse. I didn’t let people in because I knew how much my thoughts could upset them and I didn’t want to be the cause of more stress and upset in people’s lives. But somehow I lost track of that goal. I let people in and I found that it made me feel better to have people I could talk to. But I forgot about their feelings.

I know some of you will read this and think my friend was selfish to say what she did. But hear me out. Her words were not said out of malice but because she cares about me, and so does my other friend. She said those things because hearing me talk that way is heartbreaking for them. I am caught between the logical part of my brain that tells me to retreat from my friends and tell them I am ok again. Or to remember that people do care about me and that I sometimes I might be wrong about how I feel about myself.

Unfortunately, the fact that my brain autopilots on to blaming myself for everything means that what my friend has said has destroyed me. I feel terrible for hurting my friends. And that truly is my fault.

As Always,

The Elephant in the Room

And now I don’t know what to do.

Advertisements

19 thoughts on “Why I Shouldn’t Have Friends

  1. Hey there. I just had a couple comments.

    How I have to deal with blaming myself for things is that I have to remember that assigning blame is a conclusion. I’m beginning to develop a habit where I try to think about the evidence for and against why something may or may not be my fault. Sometimes I’m at fault for things, but rarely am I at fault for everything bad that goes on. So, what I’ve discovered is that I often tend to heap more blame on myself than the situation warrants.

    Another thing I wanted to ask is if you really are responsible for your friends being hurt. I know from your post that you care about them, so I know that you wouldn’t do anything that would attempt to hurt them. Ultimately, people are responsible for their own feelings. I know if I could actually control the feelings of others, I would want to have more happiness out there. The same thing goes for negative feelings.

    Above all else, I don’t think you did anything wrong by being honest. It hurts when you tell someone the truth and they get frightened. Ultimately they have to make the decision to see if they have the courage to be there with you. If not, there are about 7 billion other people to try honesty out on.

    I apologize if this comment sounds preachy. If any of what I said doesn’t help, feel free to ignore it, print and burn it, delete it, whatever you feel like. I just wanted to offer a different point of view that didn’t assign blame to anyone.

    I wish you the best, E.

    SB

    Liked by 2 people

      • having friends is really hard for me, too. I have a hard time knowing what my limits are and then when I mess up I blame myself. So, I have several acquaintances and two really good friends. That’s about all I can handle.

        Like

    • We ultimately are responsible for our own feelings, we need to own them. That is very true. As a person with AS, I know how the herd mentality can make me feel like I am nothing. It is scary as when you are vulnerable and can’t get by independently, and to know that. I feel as though I am in a minority of one just due to my sensory issues alone. Your comment is well put and compassionate.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I have a very similar thought process to you. Maybe it is the Asperger’s–my father had it and that is how I was raised so I might as well have it myself. I’ve been working on these things for several years and have evolved somewhat as a result.

    Learning about boundaries was a very big help to me. I grew up learning to be overly responsible for everyone in my life. Turns out nobody has that much power or insight, not even me! With great amounts of reading about it, and practice, recognizing and respecting boundaries has saved me a lot of trouble and work. Perhaps that might help in your situation.

    Practicing self-forgiveness is also very helpful. I had to learn how to forgive myself for my mistakes as frequently as I forgive others for theirs. Sometimes words or actions will break a relationship. But not always. If you can learn to recognize that actions or words have not broken a relationship, then you can forgive yourself and others and move on to the next moment.

    What helped me to be able to do this more is that I found a way to realize that I am “new” all the time. I can become the person I want to be little by little. The old me made a mistake and learned from it. The new me is doing better most of the time.

    Depression throws it all off but that’s because depression and anxiety are liars. With healing, that will become less of an issue.

    I can see that you are learning to accept what your real friends offer and I think you will find the balance between tons of honesty and tons of consideration for others. It is a balancing act and takes time to learn and get used to.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Your feelings are echoes of mine and I’m sure many of us who don’t know the best way to be ‘friends’ in the midst of our pain. I hear you. I understand you. I am you. You have a friend in me and many here like us. Hugs, Hope

    Like

  4. Well written post I know with my illness at the moment I have lost friends and support, some have stuck, with me so now I know who I can trust. Great work sometime I can not get to everyone to visit but I keep trying. Decided to follow

    Like

  5. The hardest lesson I ever had to learn was to love people for who they actually are instead of who I thought they were or who I wanted them to be. For me, this would mean knowing you need to say these things, but also knowing you don’t need me to rush in with emergency services and a white horse to fix everything that’s wrong.

    Maybe you need to gently tell your friends that when you said this:

    ” I didn’t feel like I wanted to be alive anymore, how I was a shit employee who made people’s lives difficult, how everything was my fault and how I was scared to go home and be alone in case I hurt myself.”

    That you don’t need rescue or white horses. You just need your friend to listen and offer a kind word. You need to tell her that these scary words are what goes through your head on a regular basis. It’s not something you need her to fix, any hurt you caused yourself would be small.

    When people who are “fixers” (like me, and obviously your friend) hear what you’ve said, we worry, fret, want to help, change, fix things. We know we can’t, and it kills us. But if you tell us that that is NOT what you need from us, that you need an ear and a kind heart, then we know how to better respond.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. You and me both buddy. I have decided not to open up at all. I can’t take any more rejection and scorn. You have three friends to open up to, that is so marvellous! We can’t stop blaming ourselves for everything that happens around us, that’s part of the deal with Depression.I hope your friends understand and not give up on you. I won’t say that you shouldn’t blame yourself. For one, my saying it, or anyone else’s saying it won’t make any difference and secondly, it’s not easy dealing with a depressive and at times the hurt our supports experience is real. I hope your friends and you can see through it.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. First, I’m sorry that you’re experiencing this difficulty. Second, you’re right that you can’t make everyone happy. But that isn’t because of your depression, not does it mean anything’s wrong with you. No one can make everyone happy. Fortunately I don’t love the people I love because they make me happy. I love them because having them around enriches my life. That doesn’t mean they’re always fun or entertaining or happy. Sometimes it’s hard being around people I care about because I can see that they’re struggling. But if I love them, I stick around anyway. Sometimes I feel uncomfortable or try to fix things or make them better or don’t listen as I should. But that’s not their problem; that’s mine. I think everyone needs and deserves friends. I’ve found that having friends also involves forgiving them when they don’t respond the way I’d like, and it means forgiving myself for having problems and making mistakes. To be a human being in this world requires forgiving myself and forgiving others every single day, and continuing to sincerely do the best I can. And the professionals who have helped me are the ones who’ve reminded me of that. Perhaps you can find one who will help you remember that too. Peace

    Liked by 1 person

  8. If you have ONE person you can open up to, you’re ahead of the game. Remember that your friends have their inner demons, too – if they need to pull away, it’s because of what THEY carry on the inside – NOT because of what you’ve brought them. We all have to take care of ourselves first and foremost….some people can only handle that much; they have to get their masks on before they can be of use to others needing help.

    We all do the best we can. Take care of YOU!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. It isn’t a great thing to say, it’s probably something that wasn’t very thought out and like you said meant something completely different to it’s literal interpretation. The way I would take those words is that the reason you told them is because you wanted to get help, share something that bothers you and help yourself… which meant you should go with your instincts and let other people help you, if they want to help you don’t feel like you can’t accept it. If you are genuinely feeling crap then you should tell someone, but relationships with asparagus can be difficult you need to find a way to express the gratitude you feel for them, if you love them tell them… if it feels appropriate tell them how much it means to you being able to say these things. This will help them feel that you’re feeling safer in yourself, and that they have helped.

    ~ good luck, be well

    Like

  10. Isolation is something I deal with on a daily basis. I am home alone most all day. The most important people in my life were and are much older than I, so they are in heaven now. I do finally have a sibling who cares about me as well as 1 loyal aunt and a friend who lives 45 minutes from me. Quality is what it is all about, contrary to what the pop-cultural world view professes. My only wish is for more time being spent with these people, who have full lives compared to my limited one. I pray to God for you and for myself about trusting Him to bring a few more special people into our lives. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hello,
    Today, I visited your blog and read some of the posts.
    First of all congratulation for creating this wonderful blog where you are expressing very clearly and courageously……..
    I wish, I should have a good friend like you, so, please feel free to visit my blog and let us have a friendly chit-chat and talk………….
    Wishing you all the best…………..

    Like

  12. It sounds like a lot of us here could learn about how to deal with boundary issues both in romantic and platonic relationships. I try to guard myself and then let my defenses down when someone is kind to me. All I know how to do is to keep the wall up. I can’t get the balance right. I wish there were more than long books to help me with this. Maybe someone can provide resources for us.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s