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ette_'s avatar

Do you ever just feel like you're misunderstood--nobody gets you, only a few people (if any) care, and you're all alone?

Asked by ette_ (1360points) March 1st, 2011

I know that I’m going through a bit of depression at the moment, but even if I remove all of that, I feel like so many people in my life have given up on me. My family, friends, everyone. I literally spend my days/nights sitting at home alone for the most part, except for when I have my son, and when I spend time with my boyfriend about 1–2x a week.

The boyfriend and I don’t hang out with his friends because they are rude to me, and we don’t really hang out with my friends because, well, my friendships consist of people who are so diverse that I don’t have a single “core” group of friends like some people seem to. Most of my girlfriends are married and starting to have kids, and the other ones are totally single and in the party scene. I’m stuck in between. My best friend and I got into a disagreement a few months ago, and without going into more details, I went to apologize to her and she slammed the door in my face.
I’m not complaining about getting alone time, because I’ve actually learned a lot about myself by spending time alone, but sometimes I just get SO lonely. I’m always in this state of limbo because my nature is to be very outgoing, outspoken, and social. I know “everyone” but I’m not close to everyone. I just get to know people really easily, but cultivating long-lasting friendships is different. The friendships I’ve had in the past, I went through a lot of things where they weren’t able to withstand the hardships.
I know I can make new friends…and I’m trying to nurture my older friendships…but it’s just hard sometimes, seeing people out there who seemingly have so many people to just hang out with at the drop of a hat.

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22 Answers

Aethelwine's avatar

I feel misunderstood and alone all the time. I know I have a few people (if any) that do care, that’s all that matters. Nobody needs an entourage. unless you’re Charlie Sheen. ~

Focus on you and your son right now. That’s what is most important.

Scooby's avatar

All the time, I just plough on regardless…… over the last few months it’s been really busy with work & I’ve just lost touch a little with the friends I had come to rely on in the past, for companionship & social activities….. Maybe a little selfish on my part but the way I see it, life is full of ebbs & flows…… your just going through a period of calm in your life a chance for a little self focus as you said. “I’m not complaining about getting alone time, because I’ve actually learned a lot about myself by spending time alone”. take advantage of this & you’ll feel like a better person after reflecting on all of your friendships…. Friendships come & go, I really wouldn’t dwell on it, there’ll be a knock at your door soon enough or the phone will ring….. And there’s always this place :-/ chin up…….

markferg's avatar

Don’t look back. That only leads to regrets, which is of no help to anyone. The best advice I had about that was from being asked the question “If you want to pick an apple off your own apple tree, when was the right time to plant the tree?” So, the answer is “At least a couple of years ago.” But you can’t go back and do that and no amount of thinking about it will make it happen. So, if you still want your own apples, when is the next best time to plant the tree? Now! And every day you put it off likely adds a day to the point where you get the apples you want.

The key thing is you need to know what you want and you need to be specific about it. You might say, “I want to be happy” but you need to work out what it is that makes you happy. Is it really friends that would do it for you? Doesn’t sound like it has in the past. Perhaps it is the type of person you have been with. Sometimes people that know you cannot come with you on your journey as you change into the person you want to be. That is their handicap. They do not have the internal courage to accept your change. Find new people, and you might have to keep finding and losing people until you know what kind of people you are best suited to be with.

Perhaps, like me, as you get older, you might find you only need immediate family and have a loose number of changing, casual acquaintances and work colleagues. And some apples…

Bellatrix's avatar

Mark, write that response.. I am waiting to read it. However, yes of course. I think everyone has moments when they feel crappy and like the world is against them and nobody understands them. It is only a problem if you allow yourself to wallow in that feeling. Friendships end. People move on. So we have to move on too. If your family have given up on you, evaluate why? How much of that was your fault? What can you learn from it? It probably wasn’t all you, but you played a part. Life is a learning experience and sometimes it is really hard. We just have to fake it until we make it sometimes.

Bellatrix's avatar

Well worth waiting for Mark. Great answer.

ette_'s avatar

@markferg and @Mz_Lizzy, the problem with me is, I think I know the answer and ultimately I don’t think I have to be surrounded by people all the time or have tons of friends to be happy—I am pretty happy with where I’m at now in terms of my relationship with my boyfriend and having my son—but my problem always is me fighting against what “society” perceives the “normal” person should be…a person who has tons of friends or a group of friends to go out with all the time and yada yada. But I can’t sustain relationships with those types of people because then I’m not being true to myself. I end up having to “fake it” but I don’t really want to “make it” by “faking it” for the rest of my life. That was probably really confusing, but does that make sense?

I don’t ever deny that I had a part to play in some of my relationships falling apart…I just have envy of those around me who I used to be friends with who just seem to not have a care in the world (yes, I know it isn’t true) but at least they can act like it and maintain a certain facade…maybe I’m just not meant to be surrounded by tons of people but there are two parts of me fighting against each other. I actually like having alone time. But I feel this outside pressure to conform and to be like “everyone else” and have lots of friends yada yada.

I just don’t know what to do when I feel so lonely sometimes. I guess I could start by reading a book. But I can only do so much reading…and I’m so connected via Facebook, etc. that it’s hard to not observe how “happy” and “loved” people are.

EDIT: forgot to mention that another thing I’ve had to deal with a lot of my life is people talking shit about me. The thing is, I’m not a “bad” person…but I’ve never quite fit in because I’m just…myself…with some emotional baggage…but I’m a pretty loving and friendly person…but I end up around people who just seem to have a need to talk shit about me to anyone and everyone. It really hurts. I know that “those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind,” but when it gets to be a lot of people in the same social circles, I feel like I’m running out of real estate. I should add that a part of this is because I’m Asian and the Asian population in my city is more like 2 degrees of separation than 6. Or maybe 1 degree.

choreplay's avatar

@ette, I understand, you’re not alone in these feelings. I have lots of acqaintances but am very disappointed in the amount of deep long lasting bonds in my life. I have tried to diagnose my own situation with the following explanations; for one I spent many years growing up in the Northeast but now live in the South, so those cultural gaps magnify the issue; I’m an older male and if there is a demographic group that isolates themselves more, its this one, on and on.

A couple of years ago we started a game night at our house, sounds trite and corny but it has really filled the gap a little. I guess I just take friendship and connection where ever it comes from. I have poundered all of this often and could go on and on, but I won’t but I will say, don’t get frustrated about a little give and take, @Mz_Lizzy is right, sometimes actions precede feelings, so fake it every once and a while to stoke some fires (friendships). If you feel lacking get plugged in, in different places (church, volunteer work, different night life scene that aren’t the party scene, like hang out at Ruby Tuesdays or somewhere where it social but not so much a bar scene), as mark says, plant some trees. Fluther has done a lot for me. You really have to keep trying things often to find that place or group you fit into. Got to get ready for work so no spell check, apologies ahead of time

bunnygrl's avatar

GA everybody <hugs> and @markferg you made some brilliant observations, its given me a lot to think about, thank you <hugs>

I spend a great deal of time (when I’m not working and hubby is) alone, no family to speak of anymore, (although I love my inlaws but they live so far away, I wish we lived nearer) and having severed ties with some toxic friends I had, I lost a dear friend to illness and my only other friend has health issues herself so doesn’t need my worries added. We talk on the phone sometimes, and email, but I haven’t seen her face to face for such a long time.

The only person who “gets” me is my hubby. I have no right to complain, I know that. I have what passes for a good life. I have a hubby who “doesn’t let the wind blow on me” as the old saying goes, he is very protective of me. I have a little part time job I love doing, my fur/feather babies, and I’ve always been happy with my own company but if I’m honest, sometimes I get really lonely. Fluther helps a lot. I sometimes wonder how many people are like me, not so much living as surviving. I suppose what I’m trying to say is, count your blessings honey, thats what I do. You have your boyfriend, and your son, and you sound like such a lovely person. My Dad used to say life is what you make it, and I haven’t really figured out how to make anything much of mine yet, but maybe someday, as @markferg says, I’ll learn how to plant some apple trees :-) keep smiling honey, sending hugs xx

CaptainHarley's avatar

For a mercifully brief time after my life fell apart, I was much the same way. I know this isn’t easy to hear, but give it time, hon. There are some really nice people out there just waiting for someone like you who can be a great friend. [ HUGS ]

marinelife's avatar

Stop looking at and imagining (usually wrongly) what other people have.

Be thankful for the good relationships in your life: your child, your boyfriend.

Work on cultivating new friends.

Consider joining a group that revolves around one of your interests (like Meetup.com).

Consider volunteering.

Moegitto's avatar

Unfortunately, I have 0 friends, my family doesn’t acknowledge me, I never had a girlfriend, I never had sex, and pretty much everyone I meet betray me somehow. I can’t even make a reason for me to live. In my eyes you have it pretty good.

miki's avatar

I spent most of my life with only a few people who really knew me. And even 2 or 3 people that I considered real friends. Because I sometimes keep to myself when meeting new people, I’m often looked at as “standoffish”. If you want friends, you have to act like you do. For some of us very unique individuals, it’s a fine line between being agreeable/likeable, and being a suck-up (for lack of better words). But finding the balance between these two is worth it if you are unhappy right now.

ette_'s avatar

@miki if you noticed in my posts above, I am not the type of person to keep to myself when meeting new people—that’s not really the issue. But thanks.

What exacerbates this “problem” is that I have so many other “problems” such as my non-existent relationship with a toxic father (I will link the post later, but I am not speaking to him right now), the problems that he created in the relationship between my mother and I, and the acidic relationship I have with my son’s father (my ex). He seems to thrive on making my life miserable. He holds every single thing over my head and threatens to sue me for full custody, among other things, and says that because he is the “primary custodial parent” he has more rights than I do when it comes to our son.

I really feel like going and shooting someone right now. Figuratively. I’ve never touched a gun and never wish to. But I’m about UP TO HERE with shit right now. I actually had a dream last night that I got covered in shit!

CaptainHarley's avatar

@Moegitto

You are being too sensitive, and giving up too easily.

markferg's avatar

@ette_ ew! What a horrible dream. I had a dream recently where I was the artistic director of an Eastern European country’s national ballet. Not a clue about that, honestly! Never even been to a ballet.

12Oaks's avatar

All the time. I kind of like it that way. Better than having friends, anyway.

Moegitto's avatar

@CaptainHarley Sensitive, maybe, giving up? I don’t see a reason to try, so I can’t give up something I haven’t started.

CaptainHarley's avatar

@Moegitto

No matter how you slice it, it’s still “giving up.” You’re too valuable for that.

weareallone's avatar

ette I can relate to this a lot! I too have many friends but none that are as close as I want/expect.

You should address what seems like the root of the problem. You say you feel pressure to conform but really I think you put that pressure on yourself. Who cares what other people think? Honestly. Other people are lonely and insecure too they are just good fakers.

Also it sounds like you need something to relax you. Try finding something you can immerse yourself in to escape. Be creative: hiking, sewing, knitting, writing, yoga etc. And you might even meet people along the way.

The other thing that comforts me is know that we all do have a deep connection to one another, even if it is not fostered socially. People focus on differences a lot but our DNA is 99.9% the same as everyone else. We are all just humans trying to make our way. When I feel lonely it helps to keep it in perspective.

I realize that is a lot to swallow but it is a topic I am all too familiar with and I could write much more even!

buster's avatar

Im misunderstood and have only a few true friends. Probably because Im a smartass. I say a lot of offensive things just to get a rise out of people. Im a nonconformist. I break the law a lot but not ones that hurt babies or other common people not bothering me. Im a redneck punkrocker, fun loving criminal liberal, gun nut. I hate cars and ride bikes cars and skateboards which is apparently strange and gets me funny looks in the small tennessee town I live in. I despise snotty rich people but love having a fat knot of money in my pocket. I prefer the company of poor minorities and homeless people. I read books. I am peaceful but for some reason I get a thrill from fighting. I try to be a vegetarian in the bible belt but im a hypocrite and have to sneak off and eat a really bloody steak sometime. I sometimes go to a baptist church but only cause it makes my girl happy. Really I like Satan and hope hell is as big a party as I hear it is. I guess im a hypocrite kinda evil but I am kind with a compassionate streak but I will punch you in the face If you try me. My shrink and therapist love when I come in because I challenge them and really make them work for their money. Being locked up in jail makes you really lonely. Being a crack addict can make you so lonely and empty you will wish or try to kill yourself. Fortunately thats in the past. When your on drugs bad its so lonely. You alienate yourself and the only people who come around are worthless shells of people lonely as you just trying to hide their loneliness with a short lived high which leaves you lonelier than ever when its gone.

CaptainHarley's avatar

@buster

Sounds to me as if you don’t know who you are, so you’re trying to never grow up.

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