Hi everyone, this might be a bit long but if you have time to read and can offer some advice I really thank you!
Throughout my years at school I found it so hard to make friends because I was so shy and struggled so bad with my social skills because of my autism. And even when I got close to making a ‘friend’ I would always struggle maintaining that friend because I would start to become a bit controlling of that friend because I didn’t want that friend to make new friends. I wanted to be that person’s best friend and I couldn’t mentally deal with the fact that when I had a friend that that person would want to go and make other friends on top of me because it made me feel insignificant. So really all of my ‘friendships’ have turned sour because it’s always ended in arguments and I’m left with none.
Now I’m at the point where I’ve finished sixth form and I’m on a year out, about to go to uni this year. One of the things I’ve done on this year out is use friend making / dating apps to try to connect with people, find common interests and make a friend. Every time I mention the words ‘I don’t have any friends’ to someone then all of a sudden they don’t want to be my friend. There seems to be this stigma about having no friends and I find it really upsetting! I do pretty much everything on my own, I eat out at restaurants on my own, I go to the cinema on my own, I go to gigs on my own, I go to the pub on my own when I fancy a drink and everyone always gives me dirty looks for being by myself or says I’m weird if I end up in a conversation because it’s seen as unacceptable to have no friends.
It doesn’t matter how many interests I have in common with people, it seems no one wants to be my friend because of the fact I don’t have any friends right now! They think it must suggest I’m a really bad person.
I’m probably going to concede that I won’t make any friends on my year out. But I really am so desperate to make new friends at uni, I feel that socially I’ve improved to the point where I can talk to new people (but I’m still below average). I have lots of interests so I really hope I should be able to connect with people at uni, but as I said above it worries me that if I say to someone at uni ‘I don’t have any friends at the moment and I want to make friends at uni’ then they will turn against me for not being the social norm. I really want friends I can do stuff with, hang about with, go out with, I’d love to go to festivals but since I’ve no friends that impossible too.
What do you think about my situation? How will I be able to make friends when it seems everyone has this stigma against me for being a loner? Do things get easier at uni or will people still look down on me for arriving with no friends? It’s sad that so many people have this judgemental stigma. And also if I get to the position where I do make a friend how can I prevent myself from making past mistakes and getting upset when they start expanding their social network (it’s so hard for me because it feels people crowd me out when they do this)?
Thank you so much again!
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