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Sat Aug 18, 2012, 11:45 PM

I don't know how to tell people how I feel.

I don't know what it is. My conversations with anyone are inevitably superficial

For example, I recently moved cross-country for a job and I was just feeling lonely and stressed today, but I couldn't really explain it to my boyfriend, who lives in another state. I don't get it, it's like I just can't find the words. So our conversations are stilted and superficial like I said before.

I've always been like this, unable to relate to people the way I should, which means I invariably end up alone.

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Reply I don't know how to tell people how I feel. (Original post)
alarimer Aug 2012 OP
Tobin S. Aug 2012 #1
alarimer Aug 2012 #2
Tobin S. Aug 2012 #6
Denninmi Aug 2012 #3
alarimer Aug 2012 #4
Scuba Aug 2012 #5
mnhtnbb Aug 2012 #7
alarimer Aug 2012 #10
Populist_Prole Aug 2012 #8
alarimer Aug 2012 #9
nolabear Aug 2012 #11
alarimer Aug 2012 #12

Response to alarimer (Original post)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 12:03 AM

1. You just told us how you really feel



I know it might be harder in person, but you have just proven that you really know how to express yourself. There's some kind of barrier that prevents you from doing it otherwise, though. What do you think prevents you of telling people how you really feel?

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Response to Tobin S. (Reply #1)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 12:25 AM

2. I've been trying figure this out for years.

I have no ready answer, except that fear of rejection or ridicule is at the heart of it. It's almost like it's better to keep people at arm's length is better in case they reject me. When they then reject me because I keep them at arm's length. Kind of a Catch-22 I guess.

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Response to alarimer (Reply #2)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 01:08 PM

6. Maybe fear of being vulnerable?

Because if you make yourself vulnerable that's when you open yourself up to being hurt the most. Maybe you've been hurt really badly in the past when you opened up like that. I'm kind of guessing.

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Response to alarimer (Original post)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 04:32 AM

3. Maybe it just takes practice.

It isn't easy to identify your feelings at times, it all gets wrapped up together like a pot of spaghetti, and it's hard to pull out the individual strands.

Just being able to articulate the problem is the first step, you have identified what is making you uncomfortable or unhappy. Now you just need to find the right approach to resolving it.

Posting and chatting online about your feelings in a protected forum might help you. DU has one. There are others out there.

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Response to Denninmi (Reply #3)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 10:04 AM

4. Yes it does take practice.

I am actually pretty terrible on the phone. We use Skype, which helps some. It's easier when we can see each other.

All my anxieties, about money, about relationships, about whatever, just feed on each other until I can hardly think of anything else.

I had a therapist tell one time that I should set aside a time of day to worry and get it all out. I told her, "Yeah I do, usually between 3-6 in the morning." I'm pretty sure that wasn't what she meant.

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Response to alarimer (Original post)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 11:00 AM

5. A woman who doesn't talk about her feelings is every man's dream....

Seriously, you're growing just by writing this post.

For what it's worth, I am worse than awful on the phone. Anything that requires more than a "yes" or "no" answer and I'm useless.

Don't beat yourself up. There's plenty of others willing to do that for you.

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Response to alarimer (Original post)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 02:19 PM

7. Have you ever kept a journal? It's a good way to start putting your feelings into words

and practice doing it in a way where you can gain some confidence in saying what you feel.

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Response to mnhtnbb (Reply #7)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 05:06 PM

10. Off and on.

I haven't really kept to it very much but it might be a good idea.

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Response to alarimer (Original post)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 04:31 PM

8. I'm on the other end of that problem

There's a girl being just that way toward me and I can't tell if she's just trying to slowly push me out of her life or if she's too repressed to have a conversation of any depth. She says I mean a lot to hear but when it comes to walking the walk she seems detirmined to keep me at arms length: no closer, no farther.

Funny thing is ( and I think literally funny ) is a couple of times she called me after taking Ambien before she went to bed: As it took effect we began having the most sparkling conversations then, and she was making all manner of overtures toward me. Well, if that's what it takes to get the ball rolling....

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Response to Populist_Prole (Reply #8)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 05:06 PM

9. For me it's usually wine, rather than Ambien

But the effect is the same. It not a good idea to rely on things like that, I suppose.

I would be as patient as you can be.

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Response to alarimer (Original post)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 07:01 PM

11. This is a great thing for therapy to help. I mean it.

Therapy isn't just for deep depression or mental illness. It also really, really helps people to understand why they do things that cause them problems and to change them. A good therapist is, above all, a talented and curious and caring listener, and can help you to open up, to think in new ways about yourself and your feelings, and to create relationships that help you feel connected and to grow.

(I know; I am one and I do this with people all the time. It can realy be life changing.)

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Response to nolabear (Reply #11)

Sun Aug 19, 2012, 07:54 PM

12. I've tried it. Didn't care for it.

Didn't seem to work either, as far as I could tell. Bear in mind that I was limited to the 10 or so visits allowed by insurance.

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