I feel like something’s wrong with me. I feel like I can’t interact with people, and I feel like I don’t fit in. I have an overwhelming sense that people don’t like me. It’s like I don’t know how to interact in a social situation. I don’t know how to be cool, and I always try too hard and people take notice. Or I’ll say something that makes someone uncomfortable and not even realize it. Sometimes when I feel like I’m actually being included or that people I’m talking to are enjoying talking to me, I get overexcited and ruin things. I just feel like everyone else knows how to have friends and talk to them and I don’t. I have no idea how to fix myself. I’ve had thoughts like this kinda bottled up for a while but then today I was at my boyfriend’s birthday party and I said something that embarrassed him and it made him feel uncomfortable the rest of the night. When he talked to me about it later I broke down and all those feelings I’d been having for months kind of all just exploded out. He said maybe I should talk to someone professional, but I don’t want to be just the next whiny teenager who claims to have anxiety for attention if this person tells me that I’m perfectly normal. I just need a little advice I guess.
- Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings with the TeenCentral community. It can be difficult and scary to really open up, but in the long run it really helps. Many people have difficulties reaching out for help, it was very brave of you to take those first steps for a little advice.
- Often times when we keep things bottled up, emotions come out when you least expect it. Making a list of some trusted and supportive people that you can talk or vent to may alleviate some of those stressors.
- Grounding techniques such as breathing, meditation and (if it is relevant to you) prayer can help you focus better, calm anxiety and bring you peace of mind. When you become comfortable practicing these techniques, you will be better equipped to feel grounded in social situations that make you feel anxious. Under the Tools tab on Teen Central, you can find some basics on social skills as well as positive self-talk.
- If you need someone to talk to, you can head to the Teen Central website and click the Help tab to use a hotline or text line. If you feel like you need some more in person guidance, you can speak to a trusted adult, peer, therapist, school counselor or religious leader.
- If social situations are uncomfortable for you, what are some places or circumstances in which you do feel comfortable? Can those situations assist in building confidence or feeling at ease?
- How can you bring awareness to some of the negative self-talk that can contribute to your discomfort in social interactions? In what ways can you challenge that negative self-talk? Learning self-love benefits your well-being.
- Take moments throughout the day to identify your strengths within yourself. How can you celebrate those strengths and also bring them to social situations?