13-03-2019 06:10 PM
I am new to this forum.
I am 24 years old and I have struggled for a long time with depression, anxiety, body image issues, and OCD. It has at least 12 years now that I have struggled with it. This has meant that I have struggled to develop friendships and I have missed out on a lot of opportunities.
This has lead to my greatest fear, the fear of never having a partner. I have never had a girlfriend, I am a virgin and it pains me greatly. I was in hospital 7 times over an 8 month period and part of this was due to the fact that I may never have a girlfriend. I also have crippling body image issues which means I never look in the mirror. The pain is exacerbated by the fact that I am the only person in my family over the age of 18 who is not in a long term relationship or married.
My problem is that I don't know how to get out more as I am struggling to find things to do. Does anyone else have the same problems as I do because it seems like everyone is finding it easy to get into relationships except me? Am I doing anything wrong?
13-03-2019 06:37 PM
@TheRenegade345 Hi Renegade345 and welcome to the forums. You are definately not alone.Two of my kidults have never had relationships ever. Now they do have many mental health issues to contend with but nonetheless they will probably never find a partner. Sad but true..
Have you got any interests or hobbies? Running, walking groups are a great way to meet people. Community courses are another low cost way in meeting people. Volunteer work with Landcare etc is another way of getting out there and meeting a range of different people.
24 is very young to be worried that you will be left on the shelf. You have loads of time. Spend some time looking after yourself if you exude self confidence you will find people will naturally be drawn to you. Like attracts like. Keep us posted. greenpea
13-03-2019 07:35 PM
Thanks for replying,
We do live in the world where relationships are ubiquitous and are everywhere. I don’t think it’s as simple as being confident because I like to think I am. I have strong principles and values that I will not budge on just to confirm to societal pressures (such as being a Straight Edge). I’ve been told by many people that are astonished that I have mental health issues because I always seem cool calm and collected.
I have have been playing guitar for 12 years now. I write my own music and have a varied musical taste. I own around 650 albums at home and I’m in talks with someone to join a band. I’ll have a look at landcare as I’ve never heard of it.
I also have a BA in history and English. I am passionate about history and there isn’t a history documentary on the ancient Romans that I haven’t seen haha. I’m also doing a Masters of Secondary Teaching (unfortunately it’s all online so I can’t make any connections there).
I don’t know if it’s as simple as being confident because I feel that I am but I keep getting rejected by women and I have no idea why.
13-03-2019 07:49 PM
@TheRenegade345 Wow! you are a smart cookie. Degrees and you write your own music! That is awesome. I hope your band does take off it will give you an outlet where to meet alot of women. This will sound a bit strange but have you heard of those historical groups that meet up and dress up in historical clothing. I know of someone who is really into it and they make their own clothing exactly the way they would have in the past. Is that something that you would like to get involved in?
I met my ex and father of my children at work. Work is where alot of people find partners (mind you I dated alot of duds before I met him).
13-03-2019 08:25 PM
I do know of those historical groups. I know specifically of one but its a long way away from where I live and unfortunately wouldnt have the time to travel there and back again.
I hope it does too because music is important to me and it gives me an outlet and a way to express myself like no other thing can.
I won't be able to find someone where I work. The personalities of the people that work there are in stark contrast to mine.
Here's why I get so frustrated. I have never made it past the first date. It makes me feel so sad and ugly. Like I am an incredibly boring person. The last time it happened she said that she really enjoyed herself and wanted to do this again. I never heard from her again.
14-03-2019 04:31 PM
Sorry to hear that you're having a hard time. I was a virgin until 25 - never even held hands with a guy let alone kissed one - & I also thought I was unattractive & destined to be alone for ever.
Of course that wasn't true. My mental illness has made relationships harder at times but certainly not impossible. I'm single now but much more comfortable with my chances of romantic succcess. Here are some things I've learnt along the way that may be of some help:
Number 1: Imagine that you will be single for ever. What would you want your life to look like? A wide network of friends? Engrossing hobbies? Career? Now go ahead and work towards that. Not only will you be happier if you remain single, but you will increase your social circle & make you more interesting, & both these things increase the odds of you finding someone.
Second, flirting, dating, etc - try not to think 'I'm bad at this, no one likes me'. Socialising is a SKILL that can be learnt. Not in a dodgy pick up artist kind of way, but more that you can learn little tricks that help you present yourself well, read body language, become good at conversation... I'd recommend googling DrNerdLove who has plenty of advice for the unlucky in love. Then go out and practise.
Thirdly, remember that no-ones owes you love or affection. It's a gift people give each other, that's all. I think it's important to approach this kind of thing with a generous heart & without expecting anything in return. Attraction is based on a lot more than looks, and as trite as it sounds your inner personality is more important.
14-03-2019 05:48 PM
I guess I'm still very much engrossed in the idea that it is very possible to live an entire life without finding someone. I have read some stories and testimonies of poeple who have lived lives where they have never had a relationship. So, in my mind, it is still possible.
I like your tips, and I appreciate your effort in replying as it means a lot. My answer to the first one is that I have done that and continue to work hard at that. I have a much more well defined sense of self over who I am and, as such, I have strong values and principles. The second one I'll come back to but I guess the third one makes sense. Then again, I tend to give a lot of myself to people only for them to just stab me in the back and not acknowledge how much help I have given them. To be more specific, I had a friend who used to come to me for advice and help for a variety of things. I would always do the best I could to help them. When I tried to ask them for help for certain things that feeling of care was not reciprocated. It is why I have developed a harder outer shell because this happened a lot. I felt like I was taken for granted.
To come back to your second point, I don't think I am too worried about my socialising skills, even though they can be worked on. My problem at the moment is that I can't find anything to do to engage in social things. Because I don't drink, and some people get very offended if you don't drink, the majority of meetups (which is the site I use) are out of the equation. (I've been called unAustralian, twice, for not drinking alcohol which I don't drink because of health reasons). I know I can be social and I have the feedback to confirm that. I need help finding things to do because it seems like there is nothing out there. I tried volunteering for the Starlight Foundation, it turns out all the positions for upcoming events are full.
That's why I am so stuck. I know I have a lot to offer but there really isn't anything out there for someone who identifies as a straight edge punk rocker. (I have looked for punk rock clubs to but I have come up short there as well).
14-03-2019 06:10 PM
17-03-2019 03:24 AM
Have you tried meetup. They have all sorts of interests and social groups. My daughter who was very shy joined one and made some friends. Starting out as friends is great and if you are doing something the pressure is off trying to think about what you are going to say. They have all sorts of stuff with thousands of people young and old just like you. Who want to meet people.
Also about your body you could try the PCYC My son is short and skinny but he does boxing, he doesn't punch anybody, he just learns the moves and it makes him feel good. The people are nice and they give you suggestions to get fit and all that.
Hang in there Renegade. You sound like a lovely guy. Good luck. Regards Sweet cheeks
17-03-2019 10:12 PM
Hi, thanks for replying.
I have tried meetup. I've found that a lot of the social groups revolve around alcohol, which is something I abstain from. I would go to those groups but I have found people can get very offended if you don't drink. I have very good reasons for not drinking. I have found a group that meets every Thursday for mental health and that has been very beneficial so far. So I have had to look a bit farther than others to find like-minded people.
I actually have a boxing class that is near where I live which is something I aim to participate in the coming weeks. I have a big week of uni which means I have to focus on that for this week. I used to do boxing so it would be something that I would feel quite comfortable in anyway.
As a side note, I went to the park today with a friend. Over in the distance I saw two people making out. It made me feel so dead inside. I know its something I will never have because I am a hideously ugly with an immensly boring personality.
I am convinced that there some people who have no understanding of just how priveliged they are. They haven't had the negative experiences I've had with women which means they don't have to worry about finding a partner. Trust me, there are people who have very naive and shallowminded views on this subject. I had someone say to me once that I may not find someone until I'm 50. So wait, I have to wait another 25 YEARS before I find someone?? What an incredibly condescending and dismissive thing to say. It shows how much we take it for granted and have no idea of the stories of people who NEVER fall in love because of things that have happened that were out of their control.
I am incredibly depressed about it right now and am struggling to work out what is so ugly about me?
If you need urgent assistance, see Need help now
For mental health information, guidance and referrals, see the SANE Help Centre
SANE Forums is published by SANE Australia with funding from the Australian Government Department of Health
SANE Australia ABN 92006533606
PO Box 226 South Melbourne 3205 Australia