Social Angst

People are always pointing out to me that I am anti social, shy and meek. I think I’m just misunderstood. When the weekend rolls around I usually have a strong desire to sit in my apartment alone and do things like Swiffer the floors or scrapbook, but you can’t tell people things like that. To a normal person the statement, “Oh, I can’t go to brunch, I’m hodge podging today while conditioning my hair” is confusing and insulting. To an introvert, that statement means “Ooh, you need some ‘me’ time.” So to be respectful to normal people, I usually try to make up lies and they usually involve my brother Tim. “Oh dear I wish I could go to your friends housewarming party but my brother is acting in his first silent film on Saturday night…” “I’m so sorry I’ll try to make it to the dinner, it all depends on how long my brothers obo recital goes..” “I wish I could but Tim and I are going to the La Brea tar pits…” People get so excited when they finally meet Tim because they think he is a silent actor/obo player who enjoys educational museums. Tim doesn’t mind me using him as an excuse because he’s a good brother. That, and he would rather have me lie about going to the La Brea tar pits with him than actually go with me.

I don’t hate people, I just need time to be alone and process things. Faking it is not an option when your eyes are almost as big as your head. Put on the spot I always fail because I haven’t had enough time to scope out the situation or absorb enough information. If I can’t observe before I act I end up just making a scene. At work I’ve been instructed that when clients are coming to the office I am to stand up and make my presence known as they come through the door. Be the face of the company! What usually happens is clients come in right as an executive comes walking down the hall for their meeting, their attention immediately centering on the executive, and as they all introduce themselves to one another I stand a few feet away, behind my desk, smiling and waving like a big dodo bird.

At parties I can usually make a round and meet everyone but then I’m tired and need to retreat someplace where no one is. Sometimes a persons bedroom where I’ll find a cat hiding under a bed that I can sit and pet. Sometimes I sit outside on curbs, sometimes I just leave unannounced. I wish I could pal around with strangers but I just can’t, I just can’t. Nothing is more terrifying to me than group mentality.

Dinner parties are the best types of parties because food is involved and it’s not polite to talk while your mouth is full, so I usually just shovel food into my mouth all the time, which is an activity I enjoy doing alone and with others.

Sometimes I imagine what I’d be like if I were extroverted. I imagine myself being an actress or having a series of popular YouTube videos. Or maybe have an Instagram full of selfies or tweet a whole bunch. Being that person who is the center of attention in any given situation, who is always chatting people up. That flirty fun girl at parties. That graceful and articulate human being others look up to. But just thinking about it makes me want to lie down and take a nap.


2 thoughts on “Social Angst

  1. This post made me giggle, that sounds just like me! The problem I have is no-one knows I am secretly an introvert, they all just think I am slightly non-commital to friendships or uninterested. Just like you, I hate group situations with strangers. My mind is constantly considering everyone’s impression of me and I find meeting new people so overwhelming and mentally draining. I love spending time alone but other people assume I must be bored or unhappy! Thanks for the post 🙂

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