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Relationships & Social Issues This forum is for adults with AD/HD to discuss how AD/HD affects personal relationships.

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Old 11-05-17, 03:56 AM
heythere999 heythere999 is offline
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Friendships are hard

I was once SUPER SUPER extroverted, constantly called "popular," etc.

However, within the past 15 or so months, I underwent some major changes: I had a fallout with a group of friends that I had for 3 years, I became officially openly gay (I never announced it on social media or anything, nor do I have anything that's even remotely gay on my bio or whatnot, but you can tell if you look through my profile for a little bit. Plus I came out to a bunch of ppl and told them you could tell anyone idc), AND I officially got diagnosed with severe Inattentive-type ADHD.

Lots of things changed:

-Used to smoke 1-3 hours a day; would bring friends over, too. Now, I no longer smoke.
-Used to drink 1-2 times a week. Now, I hate drinking. I only drink if it's a bday party and the bday person says "please, you have to drink it's my bday."
-Used to be totally codependent and didn't even drive. Now I drive 2.5 hours a day 5 days a week.
-I finally started taking care of myself; hygiene has improved a lot. I also used to have horrid taste in clothing and people would constantly make fun of how "middle-school-y" my clothes were. My hair was also atrocious because I was taking care of it the completely wrong way. I was also around 40 lbs heavier last year, and up to 60ish lbs. heavier 2-3 years ago. 70 lbs. heavier 4+ years ago.
I have also started eating a lot healthier. Aside from the day of drinking + day after, on regular days, I tell myself to avoid bread/rice/etc.

I did all this, because I no longer wanted to be seen as the funny fat guy who makes fun of himself and does stupid things (unfortunately not on purpose). I wanted to be respected. I wanted to attract people in my life that respect me. I also wanted to stop being so codependent because I had no faith that I was capable of correctly doing anything.

And now, my life has completely changed. My personality has also completely changed. I've had someone tell me "no offense, but when did you get really smart?"

And I'm also super busy now. Beforehand, I would put friends above everything else... I would constantly text people, a BUNCH of people. On holidays I would spend hours texting dozens of people, and I would actually think of genuine stuff to say to them rather than copy/paste. I would have friends over every weekend. I would try to hang out with people for most of my free time.

But as a result... I never really kept up with my life. Which is why I didn't drive, I didn't take care of myself well, I also didn't have any time to play video games or anything.

I've been super stressed lately because, well, I'm still adjusting to a lot of changes in my life, and I have a lot of things to do and take care of. I'm basically trying to catch up on being an adult, since I neglected taking care of myself for years (this also includes mentally taking care of myself). Because of this, I barely have time to see friends. 90% of time spent with friends in the past year have been "catch ups" because I haven't seen them in a billion years. The other 10% has been birthdays. And at this point people have to literally force me to go out, because if anything, going out on weekends adds more stress. Especially since I don't want to drink or smoke and that's almost everyone's idea of fun.

Because of this, a lot of friends have taken my general distancing from EVERYONE, very personally. And some have called me a "poopy" (more vulgar version) friend, because I don't text them or I barely hang out. Well, I don't have much actual "relaxation time," and you know what, I've barely played any video games for years, and I want to catch up! Maybe I want to clean my room (I'm still very messy and disorganized), maybe I want to take some time to relax and focus on my mental health, maybe I want to do HW, etc. Plus, I work. So it's demanding.

And the thing is, it's not that I don't care about any of my friends... if anything, it's the total opposite. I love so many people, and I love a lot of my friends. I remember years ago, my silly dream was to be so rich that I could have a private island where all my friends could live there and we could hang out and party every night (lol sounds like Gatsby pretty much. Except I actually know these ppl). But now that I'm ACTUALLY trying to play catch up and be a responsible adult... I can't be close with a billion people anymore.

Other issues I've had is that I have some friends that take issue with the fact that I've changed; I'm no longer the self-destructive, immature, lazy person I once was. And gossip no longer interests me or makes me feel good. I also really don't care for drama and I've had my fill for the rest of my life.

And lastly: even though friends have been supportive of me being gay, I can tell that a lot of them are embarrassed to, I guess publicly, be my friend. Because I'm "that gay guy." I don't have the "typical gay voice," in fact it can be very deep, but I do have an earring, and I did dye my hair, and I dress somewhat fashionably. I live in a pretty homophobic community, so makes sense. But it sucks.

Oh, and an interesting observation: I used to be known as a super funny guy. I would post the dumb things I'd do, ppl would laugh. People would praise my "self-deprecatory humor." Now? I CONSTANTLY get comments from people, whether it's professors, acquaintances, or friends, that "you're very mean to yourself." Which is funny because the way I talk to myself is exactly the same as it's always been.


I dunno man... basically this is all just word vomit, but man FRIENDSHIPS ARE HARD. Anyone else agree? Anyone else overwhelmed after making major life changes?
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  #2  
Old 11-05-17, 05:38 AM
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Re: Friendships are hard

Way to go, heythere999! You have achieved so much, that's incredible!!

OK, anecdote time! I am an extrovert myself (we seem to be a rather rare species on the internet ) and in my teens and very early twenties I partied a lot. I would throw a huge everyone-is-welcome-just-BYOD party at least once a week and so naturally I had a lot of "friends." I grew out of it and the people who stuck with me after I became much more boring were my true friends. They made up about 2% of this group of people.

Actual, true friends are hard to come by. They are the ones who love you for who you actually are, not for your social status, sexual orientation or because you're always so funny. My actual friends who stuck by my side after I quit partying were happy and supportive when I came out as gay (and later as bisexual) and even go with me to gay bars. They cheered me on when I quit smoking even when they still smoked and they have supported me when I have gone through rough times and been as much fun as watching paint dry.

It was certainly difficult to adjust at first to not being super popular, but I have since gotten used to it and wouldn't have it any other way. I much prefer the company of introverts these days because I enjoy deeper and meaningful one-on-one conversation. It's also easier to focus like that than in a group of people all talking at once! Plus, I find that because my introvert friends often need a lot of personal space I have time to fit several in during my week and still have plenty of time left over for my own hobbies!

That ended up much longer than I intended. Sorry!

TL;DR: What I was trying to say with all those words is that yes, friendships totally are hard! But once in a blue moon you come across someone really special, and with them friendship is a lot easier. The best thing about them is that they are for life and conversation with them is so much more fulfilling that you only need to find a few. The transitional period is really difficult but you will be so much happier when you get used to it, I promise!
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Old 11-12-17, 11:12 PM
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Re: Friendships are hard

Quote:
Originally Posted by OyVeyKitty View Post
I much prefer the company of introverts these days because I enjoy deeper and meaningful one-on-one conversation.
Introvert or extrovert is fine by me, but yes, dyads for the win!


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Old 11-05-17, 10:34 AM
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Re: Friendships are hard

I feel ya'. I used to be considered the life of the party and was quite the social flutter-by most of my life. Always on the go, always helping and doing for others, and unfortunately, always putting others before myself, just like I'd been trained and conditioned to do.

Did a total script flip in my own life regarding what I consume and surround myself with, as a result of a medical emergency and becoming almost bed ridden and incredibly miserable prior to that, which in turn has warranted me the best health of my life, thus far, and thought for sure others would celebrate my greatly lessening my life-long suffering with me, and would also be eager to learn how to do the same for themselves.

Boy, was I wrong. No longer engaging in all the reindeer games makes for a lonely reindeer existence. But I also learned who was a true friend vs. fair weather...who was truly invested in their own health and that of those around them vs. simply settling for satisfying societal addictions...who really gave a damn about me (and themselves) vs. who just wanted to hang around for the various benefits others can provide, etc.

I eventually learned how valuable that space of perceived loneliness truly was, as I was finally able to get to know myself more thoroughly than I was ever taught by others, both inside and out. Friends/acquaintances can be taken away by circumstance, or choose to walk away, but the knowledge I've gained is priceless, incredibly helpful for enriching the quality of my life, and will remain with me, regardless...unlike most humans.

I've learned that my vibe very much attracts my tribe, and therefore the vibe nor the tribe are meant to remain the exact same as we travel through the various paths we must go down, although there will be a few gems in the rough that will thankfully always remain, no matter what. Precious and few, indeed.

What once brought me great comfort ended up being the worst possible energies to surround myself with. Another f'n growth opportunity, as I like to call it. AFGO! Learning to be our own best friend first makes friendship with others a smoother process.

Without filling our own love cups first, there won't be any excess to spill out and share with others. Not having folks in your life who ever healthily modeled all of that makes the hurdles even harder to jump.

The more we grow, the stranger things go, it seems. Rock on with what you know to be right for you and allow yourself to be entertained by the happenings that occur as a result. You'll find your people. Or they'll find you.
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Old 11-05-17, 05:13 PM
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Re: Friendships are hard

That is amazing that you've made so many positive changes in your life! I believe a person is lucky to have a couple friends that are for life, but most friendships are eventually "outgrown". They work during a certain period in our life and when they stop working, you move on. Maybe you have outgrown these friendships. They worked for you when you were a person that you didn't really like to be, and now that you have changed for the better, it's time to find friends who accept you as you are now. If you becoming healthier and more responsible is a problem for them and they can't be happy for you, that's their problem. I don't see any point in continuing a friendship if it's no longer mutually beneficial, just because you were friends in the past.

I have lost some friends due to life changes, but usually they weren't very close friends to begin with. I am lucky that I have a few friends I made in young adulthood, that I count as lifelong friends. We all live in different states now, got busy with our own lives, and don't even talk very often. But I know they are there if I truly ever need anything and they know I am here if they ever need anything. We do "keep up" through Facebook and the occasional IM, but that's about it. It's still comforting to know there are a few people out there who really know me and always accepted me as I am. Friendships are hard, but finding that one-in-a-million friend is priceless.
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Old 11-12-17, 10:46 PM
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Re: Friendships are hard

Regarding personality shifts later in life, I remember reading some stuff related to the Myers-Briggs personality test, and how people's dominant personality traits tend to shift later in life, around middle age. For example, people with a dominant Feeling trait shifting to a dominant Thinking trait. I don't know if there is any actual scientific basis for this, but I can provide an anecdotal/personal experience side of it in my own life.

I know that in my case, when I was a younger person I absolutely hated any math higher than pre-algebra. Now, I am trying to learn algebra on my own. A while back I actually purchased a student text book, student solutions manual, and instructor text book (with all answers) for Beginning Algebra. I am slowly making my way through it as I get time.
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