Ever since I was little, my relationships with others have been pretty much nonexistent. I never felt close to my family. My mom was the closest thing to a relationship I had, and by relationship I mean that she would smother me when she was pleased. Until she didn’t get what she wanted, then she would have massive fits where she would talk about how hard it is to be a mom and how none of us did enough for her. So I was always afraid one wrong move would set her off.
My father I remember more fondly but only because l never really knew him. I always thought that he wanted me to play sports, but I never could, so I never felt good enough in his eyes. It didn’t help that he would have vicious fits of anger where he would yell at us too. Either way, he’s dead now - he died when I was 14 from illness. I genuinely could not give you five unique characteristics of his person.
The rest of my family I feel as if they’re just strangers. I don’t really feel any sort of affection towards or from them.
From the get-go, school sucked for me. I could never connect on any meaningful level with others, and was haunted by the persistent sense that I was totally unwanted, if not outright hated by the other kids. I recall playing sports in Phys Ed, having mental breakdowns when I screwed up a kick, crying and smashing myself in the head. Ditto for when I did less than a perfect score in class, because I had already decided that academic talent was the only value I was ever gonna have. If it wasn’t crying, of course, it was screaming and destroying stuff. Needless to say such behavior did not endear me to others, in fact it led to even harsher rejections, to the point where I was told that I was scaring other kids and that school parents didn’t want me around their children. I spent a lot of time in the counselors office.
I did make some friends. But the overwhelming fear I had seen justified over and over again in the most demoralizing ways made it extremely difficult to relate to them, and once middle school started and my mom stopped pushing me, I quickly stopped hanging out with almost everyone, other than one person. But he and I have drifted apart, and I don’t see him much anymore either.
Which brings us to now. I haven’t hung out with someone from school in probably 5 or 6 years, and I’ve come to feel the effects of total isolation. I watch as everyone around me effortlessly makes friends, hangs out, dates, falls in love, and I feel not only completely alien to them, but totally incapable of changing my situation. Deep down, I don’t trust anybody. Not my family, not my classmates.
I have the sense of something beyond simple loneliness, something more akin to being not human. 18 years of social deprivation have made me wonder if there’s anything left on the inside of myself that would qualify me as a human. As if I died a long time ago and I’m just a husk now. The very idea of friendship or being desired is uncomfortable and incomprehensible to me. You may as well talk to me about a square triangle, or speak to me in some dead language. If anything, the idea makes me afraid. I’m reminded of Harry Harlows infamous monkey experiments, where, after a lifetime of solitary confinement, monkeys showed no interest in socializing at all. Because when being alone is all you’ve ever known, the idea of not suffering is suffering in itself.
I don’t have any questions this time. If you’ve read all of this, thanks. If you have similar experiences, you can share, and perhaps explain how you address them.