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FluffyChicken's avatar

Why am I so afraid of being alone, and what can I do to like myself more?

Asked by FluffyChicken (5459 points ) May 30th, 2013

I am very much an extrovert. I feel best when I am with other people in social situations. I realized recently though that I am actually terrified of being alone. I have started multiple relationships because of this and I believe those are the wrong reasons to start relationships. I hate being alone by myself and when I am, my thought process is often negative and self-deprecating, so I think that self hatred may be the root of the problem. I never thought of myself as someone who hated themselves and am normally quite a positive person full of affirmations and good vibes, but I am not that way, usually when I am alone. I feel like I need other people to validate my existence. Why am so afraid of being alone, and how do I stop?

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13 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

Seems like you amswered your own question, you need someone to validate your existence. Is that really it? Or, some psychology jargon that sounded good? Could it be you aren’t having a good time unless you are in social situations? Maybe a combination of both?

Just to be sure I understand, you are talking about always needing an SO? Or, you hate to be alone period? You don’t like to live alone, go to dinner alone, go to the movies alone, etc.?

I think it gets much easier to be alone as we get older, I don’t know how old you are, because we realize we are tired of compromising and want to do exactly what we want to do. That is what happened to me and most of my girlfriends.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@FluffyChicken I’m going to throw a curveball at you. I don’t know where you are, but have you tried long walks in the woods by yourself. You aren’t alone, there’s a lot of nature you’ll see, but the solitude was nice and you connect with yourself on a different level that way. You have to get comfortable in your own skin that way. It’s quiet and peaceful and it gives you time for insight into who you are.

longgone's avatar

Are you talking about always needing to be in a relationship, or do you just want to be comfortable when you’re home alone? I will respond to the latter for now, let me know if I got it wrong.

Not sure if I can relate, since I’m fine with being alone. But I do know the feeling of thinking too much. If I’m in that mood, I tire myself out – physically and mentally. For example, I might go for a walk or bike ride, then read about a topic I find hard to understand. Afterwards, I am usually calm enough to enjoy myself.
What do you like to do? Treat yourself when you’re alone: Have fun, instead of forcing yourself to do things you don’t want to do. Maybe something that keeps your hands busy, like baking or cooking? If silence is hard for you, turn on some music. And sing along.
But: You have to accept you’ll need some time to adjust. You’re training yourself. Be patient.

marinelife's avatar

Consider getting and reading the book (and doing the exercises) “Self-Parenting The Complete Guide to Your Inner Conversations. It will help you get in touch with and banish your negative self-talk.

rojo's avatar

“I hate being alone by myself…” As tough as that can be, it is harder on the psyche to be alone with someone else. Not being flippant here. Just pointing out that loneliness is different from being alone.

From personal experience I would rather be alone than lonely. I am content to be alone sometimes, my biggest problem is self-motivation. I need others to give me a kick-start.

I don’t think what you have is a self-loathing/hatred issue but a loneliness one. And the negative thoughts are due to insecurity; to not knowing if “anyone” will ever want to be with you again. In my opinion a needless concern if you are an extrovert and have been able to establish multiple relationships in the past. Why would you be unable to now? Time to get out and get together with others.

I would be asking why am I not content within my relationships?

ucme's avatar

Just acknowledge that you, like all of us, are your only constant company & embrace that fact…or don’t.

Pachy's avatar

Just this morning while I was out walking I heard for about the thousandth time a Jesse Colin Young song I’ve loved for decades called Ridgetop. One line grabbed me in a new way and is, I think, pertinent to your question.

Young is singing about how much he loves the hilltop home he built for himself (I’m sure the song is autobiographical), and the line is “It’s lonesome and peaceful and you know I like it the way.”

I feel the same way about loneliness. It can be sad and sweet at the same time.

KNOWITALL's avatar

My grandfather always told me that you weren’t worth a crap if you couldn’t sit on a stump for an hour without freaking out, basically telling us to be okay with being still and listening to nature. I love being alone and never get enough of it in this busy world.

Find out what bothers you about it and fix it. If you’re not okay with yourself, I don’t see how you can possibly be okay with others, that’s how important self-love is.

augustlan's avatar

Therapy might help you find out the reasons you feel like you do, and help you to either change your feelings or to accept yourself as you are. I know it helped me with a lot of things.

Inspired_2write's avatar

Try and create several ways to spend time on your own, slowly to begin to accept the challenges that life presents.
As a child we all expected our parents to take care of us, but as an adult we learn to
grow and do for ourselves while going through obstacles in life.
We all grow stonger and more confident enough to parent our own children in the future.

FluffyChicken's avatar

After doing some research, I think fear of abandonment might be a bit part of my problem. I am planning on going to the shelter to see what therapy options are available to me. Thanks guys

augustlan's avatar

Keep us posted, and good luck!

longgone's avatar

Sounds like a great idea. Please do, and good luck!

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