View Full Version : Loneliness


TimmyJ
07-16-17, 08:02 AM
Hi all,

So I'm not sure whether this problem is attributable to my ADHD or not. But I wonder if it's impacting upon my perspective. Tl:dr I wonder if my perspective is unrealistic and I expect too much from people.

A thing that's really driven me mad over the years, since I first started dating, is flaking. I don't really buy the excuses that are put forward, and... let's just say I have learned to live with it and to take it as a sign that they're not interested.

Over the last couple of years I've started to see this issue bleeding over into friendships as well as relationships. For example:

*I had a friend from law school. We had a lot of interests in common and we got on like a house on fire. He asked me to be his best man. This later changed to being one of three best men (an odd arrangement, but it has been known). However, in the period leading up to his wedding, I saw less and less of him and he would not give me anything to do - not even organising a stag party. When the big day came, I discovered I was basically an usher rather than a best man, and his other friend sat with the bridal party and gave a speech during the wedding breakfast. After that, he was always "too busy" to meet up, supposedly due to work, but his working hours were shorter than mine and I don't believe he couldn't have found one hour for a pint or coffee on one weekend in the months that followed.

* I used to work in East London. I'm not trying to blow smoke here, but I was honestly a very popular guy in the office. I was liked and respected. I had a reputation for being hard working, intelligent, passionate, supportive, funny and friendly. When I had my leaving drinks back in March, loads of people came and there was a speech about how great I supposedly was. People I stayed in touch with after I left laid it on thick about how much I was missed and how they would love to come and visit me in Winchester. But whenever I actually try to arrange something, it's basically "yeaaaaaahhhh... ummmmm... about that..."

Here's the thing: I get that people have other commitments in life, or emotional baggage from failed relationships in the past. But so do I, and I still manage. I'm told that people are just different, and I shouldn't write these people off... but I can't imagine thinking "gee, I really love that person, they are so amazing, I haven't seen them in months... but I can't be bothered to go meet up with them because I had a stressful day in the office." If I like someone and care about them, I look forward to seeing them. I get really excited about seeing them, particularly if it has been a while, and I feel very disappointed and insulted if others don't put in the same amount of effort. I've fallen out with a couple of people over this issue and they always act super-offended.

Is my ADHD at the root of this? Am I just unusually energetic and enthusiastic when it comes to socialising so I just don't get how NTs feel?

sarahsweets
07-16-17, 08:45 AM
Hi all,

So I'm not sure whether this problem is attributable to my ADHD or not. But I wonder if it's impacting upon my perspective. Tl:dr I wonder if my perspective is unrealistic and I expect too much from people.

A thing that's really driven me mad over the years, since I first started dating, is flaking. I don't really buy the excuses that are put forward, and... let's just say I have learned to live with it and to take it as a sign that they're not interested.
Flaking bothers me too. I dont think its an adhd thing, I think its more about the type of person you are.


Over the last couple of years I've started to see this issue bleeding over into friendships as well as relationships. For example:

*I had a friend from law school. We had a lot of interests in common and we got on like a house on fire. He asked me to be his best man. This later changed to being one of three best men (an odd arrangement, but it has been known). However, in the period leading up to his wedding, I saw less and less of him and he would not give me anything to do - not even organising a stag party. When the big day came, I discovered I was basically an usher rather than a best man, and his other friend sat with the bridal party and gave a speech during the wedding breakfast. After that, he was always "too busy" to meet up, supposedly due to work, but his working hours were shorter than mine and I don't believe he couldn't have found one hour for a pint or coffee on one weekend in the months that followed.

Im guessing it was a scenario where he decided he wanted a different guy to be the best man but didnt want to hurt your feelings, even though thats exactly what he did. He probably thought that it was a wise choice but it made him look like a jerk because if he honestly changed his mind, wouldnt it have been better if he just told you so?

* I used to work in East London. I'm not trying to blow smoke here, but I was honestly a very popular guy in the office. I was liked and respected. I had a reputation for being hard working, intelligent, passionate, supportive, funny and friendly. When I had my leaving drinks back in March, loads of people came and there was a speech about how great I supposedly was. People I stayed in touch with after I left laid it on thick about how much I was missed and how they would love to come and visit me in Winchester. But whenever I actually try to arrange something, it's basically "yeaaaaaahhhh... ummmmm... about that..."

Sometimes work relationships are like that. It seems like you will always be friends but really its more like you will always be friends as long as you see each other everyday and share the odd drink after work during the week. Its easy to maintain friendships when you are bound to see someone everyday of the week. Some people just are not willing to put in the work beyond that especially if you leave the job.

Here's the thing: I get that people have other commitments in life, or emotional baggage from failed relationships in the past. But so do I, and I still manage. I'm told that people are just different, and I shouldn't write these people off... but I can't imagine thinking "gee, I really love that person, they are so amazing, I haven't seen them in months... but I can't be bothered to go meet up with them because I had a stressful day in the office." If I like someone and care about them, I look forward to seeing them. I get really excited about seeing them, particularly if it has been a while, and I feel very disappointed and insulted if others don't put in the same amount of effort. I've fallen out with a couple of people over this issue and they always act super-offended.

Is my ADHD at the root of this? Am I just unusually energetic and enthusiastic when it comes to socialising so I just don't get how NTs feel?

I really think this boils down to personal character and beliefs and not adhd. I know for me, Id rather know someone just doesnt want to hang with me or have them break plans rather than dodge me. Id rather be told that things arent the same anymore than play phone tag or make plans that they know will eventually be cancelled. I think its the cowards' way out to let someone hang out in the wind thinking that there is something there when there isnt. I know that I had to learn boundaries and learn that what I wanted was just as important as what my friends wanted and if they didnt see that then they arent worth my time.
Keep your chin up and welcome to ADDF.

TimmyJ
07-16-17, 09:17 AM
Sarahsweets, thanks for the reply and for the welcome to the forum.

If this isn't too off topic when it's not specific to ADHD, the bit I still struggle to understand is the way they protest about my getting angry with them or deleting them from Facebook.

I can sort of understand (though certainly not agree with or endorse) flaking on someone or phasing them out because you are too cowardly to confront them. But if you don't like the person, why get upset with them, insist that you want to be friends and lecture them on how they just don't understand how hard your life is? Why not just let them go if that's what you want?

For example, with the law school friend, I saw him at a mutual friend's wedding afterwards and we just blanked each other. I then spoke to another mutual friend in confidence to find out if there was something else going on that he hadn't told me. She told me that, as far as she was aware, the position was as he told me: he was too busy to meet up, I didn't like that, and that was the end of it. I pointed out that his working hours were not unusual, that I had a tougher job than him, and that he had even told me his employers didn't give him much to do. Nonetheless, the mutual friend insisted that I was being too harsh and admonished me to talk to him, because we hadn't been such great friends before and it was a terrible shame that this was no longer the case.

So I texted him. I said "hi mate. I've been thinking. We used to be great friends. It shouldn't be like this between us. How about we go for a pint on me?"

Then nothing.

There was also a work friend who I deleted after she flaked on me. She called me afterwards saying she was really angry hat I didn't at least talk to her first and went on about how tough her life had been lately. So I apologised and re-added her. Then she carried on flaking.

If the truth was that they just couldn't be bothered then why keep up the pretence?

TimmyJ
07-16-17, 10:07 AM
Sorry, that was a bit long and I couldn't end edit it anymore. Basically, I often find that people who do this get really angry with me when I confront them over the issue and beg and plead for me to take them at their word. Why make such a big song and dance about it if they can't be bothered to maintain the friendship?

Little Missy
07-16-17, 10:29 AM
Sounds like one of life's great mysteries.

sarahsweets
07-16-17, 12:11 PM
Sorry, that was a bit long and I couldn't end edit it anymore. Basically, I often find that people who do this get really angry with me when I confront them over the issue and beg and plead for me to take them at their word. Why make such a big song and dance about it if they can't be bothered to maintain the friendship?

Because people like that are controlled by ego. It doesnt matter that they chose to not maintain the friendship or that they have better things to do. Their ego tells them that they are so awesome and worth the effort that nobody in their right mind would want to end the friendship. That you should be grateful for the fact that you can still say you are friends and I would be willing to bet that when they end up with REALLY nothing to do at some point, they would call you and expect you to drop everything to hang with them. They will wonder what happened and why you are upset and are so obviously oblivious that they have their heads too far up their arses to even think they have done anything to affect the way you feel about them.


Ego is the main reason people do most things to other people. Plus when it comes to facebook, people take that crap too seriously. There are people out there who taking receiving "likes" as a reflection on them and what they shared as if all their friends hate what they posted when in reality, some people like myself realize that facebook is for fun and maybe staying in the loop as for whats going on; and that trying to keep real feelings and real relationships is best done with actual in person contact with other people. With rare exceptions, you cant expect to have an intimate, close and genuine relationship by following someone on instagram or facebook.
JMO.

TimmyJ
07-16-17, 05:15 PM
So I guess the options are not just (A) "I like you, therefore I will make an effort to see you" or (B) "I don't really like you but I'm too cowardly to come out and say it" but also (C) "I am self-centred and lazy, so I like you as an option for when I'm bored and/or it's ultra-convenient for me to see you". Like a platonic booty-call.

stef
07-16-17, 05:31 PM
also, "D":
"it was great working with you [ for example] but it's really hard for me, to make plans outside of work cause i'm actually super introverted and really ashamed of this"

TimmyJ
07-16-17, 05:38 PM
also, "D":
"it was great working with you [ for example] but it's really hard for me, to make plans outside of work cause i'm actually super introverted and really ashamed of this"

For this option I would still question why they agreed to meet outside of work in the first place. Especially if it was originally their idea.

Little Missy
07-16-17, 06:06 PM
For this option I would still question why they agreed to meet outside of work in the first place. Especially if it was originally their idea.

you could always ask them

TimmyJ
07-16-17, 06:13 PM
you could always ask them

I would if that were what they told me.

Do I detect sarcasm in your responses?

Little Missy
07-16-17, 06:27 PM
I would if that were what they told me.

Do I detect sarcasm in your responses?

not at all, how else would you find out what you want to know?

sarahsweets
07-17-17, 07:49 AM
So I guess the options are not just (A) "I like you, therefore I will make an effort to see you" or (B) "I don't really like you but I'm too cowardly to come out and say it" but also (C) "I am self-centred and lazy, so I like you as an option for when I'm bored and/or it's ultra-convenient for me to see you". Like a platonic booty-call.

I hesitate to say yes as if its that cut and dried but in alot of cases it can be. People are giant A-holes sometimes.

finallyfound10
07-17-17, 06:58 PM
Sometimes "social protocol" is driving that part of conversation rather than reality or truth.

I can only speak for myself when I say that I have been guilty of flaking when anxiety and/or depression and the "comfort" of socially isolating overtake the commitment I made or statement I made with the very best of intentions.

stef
07-18-17, 03:37 AM
For this option I would still question why they agreed to meet outside of work in the first place. Especially if it was originally their idea.

As Finallyfound said above, anxiety;
at the time, you honestly, truly want to do this, to be there, to meet up, to interact, to socialize.

It has absolutely nothing to do with seeing the person; it's the outing in itself.

I'm certainly not saying this is the case for everyone, but it can happen.

TimmyJ
07-19-17, 06:05 PM
As Finallyfound said above, anxiety;
at the time, you honestly, truly want to do this, to be there, to meet up, to interact, to socialize.

It has absolutely nothing to do with seeing the person; it's the outing in itself.

I'm certainly not saying this is the case for everyone, but it can happen.

Well, maybe that's the case for some people. However, the people I have in mind socialised with me before and have no problem continuing to socialise with other people.

@Finallyfound, what did you mean re: social protocol?

sarahsweets
07-20-17, 05:31 AM
Well, maybe that's the case for some people. However, the people I have in mind socialised with me before and have no problem continuing to socialise with other people.

@Finallyfound, what did you mean re: social protocol?

I dont know if I can chalk it all up to anxiety. I think some people are really selfish, even if they dont realize it and do not think of other people beyond themselves.

stef
07-20-17, 05:41 AM
Well, maybe that's the case for some people. However, the people I have in mind socialised with me before and have no problem continuing to socialise with other people.

@Finallyfound, what did you mean re: social protocol?

It's the case for some people, yes; but then I agree that there are many selfish ones as well.
Sorry to hear this happened to you.

TimmyJ
07-20-17, 02:02 PM
The reason this bothers me is that it makes me feel like I can never be truly secure in a relationship. Like I can do everything right (at least to my knowledge) and I still can't rely on them not to lose interest out of the blue for no (stated) reason. Like there is no light at the end of the tunnel.

ILoveMyDog
07-28-17, 01:37 PM
Friendships are so confusing. I have teenage children who i counsel really well and who have great, strong friendships, but in classic adhd lack of self awareness style my relationships are beyond my understanding. people drop out so easily - and as soon as i feel this absence i feel a sense of rejection and the relationship crumbles. i recently lost a friend when she got a new boyfriend and she immediately dropped me. the worst part of it is i know she thinks it was me who dropped her. for me it gets past the point where talking about it is possible...it hurts so much....:(

finallyfound10
07-30-17, 12:11 AM
Social protocol are the things we say and do because they are what is socially deemed " the right thing to say and do."

Friend you run into and haven't seen for a long time: "It's been too long! Let's get together and have dinner to catch up!"

Me: "Yes, absolutely! Let's be in touch soon!"


Sometimes, I really do want to get together with them but other I do not but I pretty much say the same thing to both. I've made commitments to go to particular event from Meetup.com but then have gotten very anxious so I bail.

Gypsy Willow
08-18-17, 12:23 PM
So I guess the options are not just (A) "I like you, therefore I will make an effort to see you" or (B) "I don't really like you but I'm too cowardly to come out and say it" but also (C) "I am self-centred and lazy, so I like you as an option for when I'm bored and/or it's ultra-convenient for me to see you". Like a platonic booty-call.

^^ This is awesome! :lol:

Gypsy Willow
08-18-17, 12:24 PM
The reason this bothers me is that it makes me feel like I can never be truly secure in a relationship. Like I can do everything right (at least to my knowledge) and I still can't rely on them not to lose interest out of the blue for no (stated) reason. Like there is no light at the end of the tunnel.

I know how you feel.