As was foretold, we've added advertisements to the forums! If you have questions, or if you encounter any bugs, please visit this thread: https://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/240191/forum-advertisement-faq-and-reports-thread/

How do I stop being desperate?

Raiden333Raiden333 Registered User regular
edited November 2007 in Help / Advice Forum
So I always hear in the stereotypical "I need help finding a girlfriend" threads that one of the most key items is not seeming desperate for a relationship, or rather, desperate for anything at all.

Now, finding a girl is not my top priority right now, I'm working on a lot of other things in my life. However, I'm getting fucking starved for human contact. I only have about two friends that aren't just people I know on the internet and I rarely see them, about once every 2-3 months or so. I'm really bad at meeting new people unless they approach me first, and even then I have trouble establishing any kind of real personal connection.

For some reason I just cannot talk to people I don't already know or have a lot of common ground with (which is difficult since I'm into a lot of fringe interests). It also doesn't help that I live at home, an hour from my college campus, because I can't afford move closer and UCSC is stupid and gives housing priority to Freshmen (which they overenroll every year) unless you're already living there (which I couldn't afford to do earlier). I haven't seen anyone official about it, but I've been doing some reading recently and I think I might have some form of Avoidant Personality Disorder or Social Anxiety Disorder.

I'm getting sidetracked. More to the point, I've had one real serious girlfriend who broke up with me over two years ago (she's not important, I got over her after about 6 months), and since then, no relationships. Also, no real kind of physical human contact besides shaking hands with new people at my job. I can't even remember the last time I got a hug.

So basically, even though I'm not actively seeking anyone to date, any time I talk to a girl who I'm even slightly attracted to my brain goes into fireworks mode and me talk do bad. This sort of reinforces the behaviors I mentioned earlier about my aversion to starting conversations with people I don't already know. So basically what I'm asking is, how can I make myself not care as much when I talk to girls I'm attracted to so I don't shoot myself in the foot?

If you think I'm asking the wrong question and have a better idea to go about the problem, I'm more than open to it. Also, if anyone needs more information before they can give advice, feel free to ask. I'd appreciate any help because it's really starting to get to me.

There was a steam sig here. It's gone now.
Raiden333 on

Posts

  • ArikadoArikado Southern CaliforniaRegistered User regular
    edited October 2007
    Look at it this way...the majority of the couples in which both parties are actively looking to "hook up" end up not lasting long.

    Most of the people I know personally who have long lasting relationships/marriages end up meeting in some of the weirdest ways. My parents met while on a bus in Texas. My friend and his wife met on an airplane flight to Seattle from San Francisco.

    If you want to "meet" people, you could possibly participate in some outside hobby. I go to concerts often (once every other month or so) and I meet people there sometimes.

    Arikado on
    BNet: Arikado#1153 | Steam | LoL: Anzen
  • Raiden333Raiden333 Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Arikado wrote: »
    Look at it this way...the majority of the couples in which both parties are actively looking to "hook up" end up not lasting long.

    Most of the people I know personally who have long lasting relationships/marriages end up meeting in some of the weirdest ways. My parents met while on a bus in Texas. My friend and his wife met on an airplane flight to Seattle from San Francisco.

    If you want to "meet" people, you could possibly participate in some outside hobby. I go to concerts often (once every other month or so) and I meet people there sometimes.

    maybe I wasn't quite clear in my OP... I'm not looking for somebody, I'm just saying that every time I'm in a situation where there's the chance of a relationship starting, I end up killing it because I get too ahead of myself.

    (Not actively looking, I mean. I'd like a relationship, sure, but it's not on my list of priorities right now)

    Raiden333 on
    There was a steam sig here. It's gone now.
  • ZonkytonkmanZonkytonkman Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I find the best cure for chronic verbal diarrhea is to train yourself to talk at a much slower rate than normal (not TOO slow, don't sound retarded). It gives you time to think about what you're going to say, and speaking slowly has a calming effect. Every now and then you'll catch yourself speeding up, but then you just mentally check yourself and go back to your reduced pace. Speaking slowly projects confidence as well, so you double plus win.

    Zonkytonkman on
  • YodaTunaYodaTuna Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Arikado wrote: »
    Look at it this way...the majority of the couples in which both parties are actively looking to "hook up" end up not lasting long.

    I'm pretty sure this has absolutely nothing to do with if the relationship lasts or not. Just because you know some people who met each other in weird ways doesn't really mean anything.

    YodaTuna on
  • Bliss 101Bliss 101 Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I find the best cure for chronic verbal diarrhea is to train yourself to talk at a much slower rate than normal (not TOO slow, don't sound retarded). It gives you time to think about what you're going to say, and speaking slowly has a calming effect. Every now and then you'll catch yourself speeding up, but then you just mentally check yourself and go back to your reduced pace. Speaking slowly projects confidence as well, so you double plus win.

    I completely agree with the above. I used to have the same problem, until I kind of trained myself to take the time to think about what I'm about to say.

    Also, don't feel compelled to talk. If you feel you're about to start babbling nervously, just shut up and see if the other person brings up something to talk about. If they don't, just excuse yourself, do something else, calm down, see if you can come up with something you'd like to say/talk about, and when the opportunity presents itself, bring it up.

    Bliss 101 on
    MSL59.jpg
  • The-VThe-V Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    don't buy into the medical hype either... drug companies over-prescribe to make money. I would advise against filling your body with drugs you don't need. confidence is built entirely from being socially encouraged, if you just do one little thing a day, like saying hi to the bus driver, or make small talk with your co-worker, about how so and so is a hard-ass or whatever... and you see that people in general not just girls can be interested in what you have to say, you will start gaining that confidence. then you can start focusing on talking to any woman, i'd just say don't jump in.

    The-V on
  • kathoskathos Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Visit the fitness thread. Watch how them hot babes hit on you and make you feel awesome. And how cares if they're shallow when they're all over you :D!

    kathos on
    Brlito.png
  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    edited November 2007
    I agree with slowing yourself down. Stop yourself and think. For me, I got better at it in academic settings. I'd open my mouth and start a sentence and got into the practice of saying "Shit. I should think before I speak." and stopping if I actually hadnt logically constructed what I was going to say yet. Silence of thought can be received pretty well. Once I slowed down, I became a smoother talker in general, and you can reduce the "I mean"s "well"s and "Uhhh"s that make you seem less confident.

    As for getting to know people, personally I find it easy to ask questions. If you can get a person to start talking in depth about themselves, you'll find more common ground. You can make alot of acquaintances that way, and then chance and circumstances bring stronger bonds over time. Just work on enriched small talk, and try to do it with both genders so that you lose the stigma about girls in your mind.

    Iruka on
  • Raiden333Raiden333 Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Thanks for all the advice so far guys, I like the general theme of thinking before I speak. I tend to be as articulate as I can when communicating through writing, but it obviously doesn't carry over as well to speech. I'll have to work on that.

    Raiden333 on
    There was a steam sig here. It's gone now.
  • brandotheninjamasterbrandotheninjamaster Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I kinda had this same problem too, it used to depress the hell out of me. What worked for me is not to care. Not about the person but the interaction itself. I think you place too much importance on each conversation that you have. Realize that its not the end of the world if screw up a couple of times in conversation. Just kinda "roll with it" for lack of a better term.

    P.S. Sorry if that seems a little cryptic. I've just been out trick or treating with my son for 3 hours, my brain is not working so well.

    brandotheninjamaster on
  • KrikeeKrikee Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    The-V wrote: »
    don't buy into the medical hype either...
    Doctors will prescribe medication that may fix your problem but will give you different problems. In my limited experience, they are more concerned about you coming in for another visit then saying, "Oh, you don't want this medication. It does XYZ to you."

    Krikee on
  • FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Raiden333 wrote: »
    It also doesn't help that I live at home, an hour from my college campus, because I can't afford move closer and UCSC is stupid and gives housing priority to Freshmen (which they overenroll every year) unless you're already living there (which I couldn't afford to do earlier).

    Housing at UCSC is a goddamn fucking clusterfuck, but if you can afford to live off-campus the social scene in Santa Cruz isn't bad. It isn't stellar, but it's a lot better than a lot of other towns.

    Feral on
    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.

    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
  • Raiden333Raiden333 Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Feral wrote: »
    Raiden333 wrote: »
    It also doesn't help that I live at home, an hour from my college campus, because I can't afford move closer and UCSC is stupid and gives housing priority to Freshmen (which they overenroll every year) unless you're already living there (which I couldn't afford to do earlier).

    Housing at UCSC is a goddamn fucking clusterfuck, but if you can afford to live off-campus the social scene in Santa Cruz isn't bad. It isn't stellar, but it's a lot better than a lot of other towns.

    Big if. The cheapest I've found is like $500 a month (for a ROOM, not an apartment or something), and I make $600 a month before any costs. I'd really like to move closer, but it's just not feasible now.

    Raiden333 on
    There was a steam sig here. It's gone now.
  • L|amaL|ama Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Also remember: If you don't get out much, then fucking up immensely isn't that huge of a loss.

    L|ama on
  • TechBoyTechBoy Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Raiden333 wrote: »
    Feral wrote: »
    Raiden333 wrote: »
    It also doesn't help that I live at home, an hour from my college campus, because I can't afford move closer and UCSC is stupid and gives housing priority to Freshmen (which they overenroll every year) unless you're already living there (which I couldn't afford to do earlier).

    Housing at UCSC is a goddamn fucking clusterfuck, but if you can afford to live off-campus the social scene in Santa Cruz isn't bad. It isn't stellar, but it's a lot better than a lot of other towns.

    Big if. The cheapest I've found is like $500 a month (for a ROOM, not an apartment or something), and I make $600 a month before any costs. I'd really like to move closer, but it's just not feasible now.

    Wouldn't living on campus cost money too? More even? Or does SC get snazzy housing subsidies that we at LA don't get. $500 a month isn't that bad for a room, I'm paying $600+ a month to split a place with 3 other guys.

    TechBoy on
    tf2_sig.png
  • nescientistnescientist Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Jerk off more often. Wait! Wait! Don't infract me! This is actually completely serious, level advice. Orgasm is an incredibly powerful stress-reliever, and, more to the point, not orgasming for prolonged periods will make you nervous.

    This almost certainly isn't your only problem, but every little bit helps. And solving social anxiety disorder is a lot more difficult than wanking.

    I have the exact same problem, and (no, I didn't solve it with more wanking. More wanking is never really a problem for me) I probably would have had a much more difficult time of it if I didn't have several female friends who I've grown extremely comfortable around. I've never really bought the idea that "they'll tell you all the secrets of the female psyche!!1" as if women are a different species or something, but it certainly goes a long ways towards reducing the intimidation factor in your own mind.

    So if you haven't already, try approaching someone with the goal of being a platonic friend. You don't have to force it - but anytime you're in a public place, and in proximity, it's usually not inappropriate. Think of it this way: you probably spend lots of time hoping to be approached, or at least are receptive when someone does say hello and ask a simple question. So does everyone else. And the penalty for failure is extremely low. Have you ever seen Jackass? If you find yourself blanching, even for a moment, just imagine that dude in the thong humping the air three inches in front of peoples' faces.

    And he gets away with that. A polite inquiry or invitation to coffee probably won't evoke a more serious response, even at the worst imaginable.

    nescientist on
  • MoSiAcMoSiAc Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I used to be the same way, but like others said I really found out that not caring one bit about what you are really doing helps, just talk to pepole about anything. If a conversation comes up talk. Honestly I didn't stop being that desperate kind of guy until I broke out of my 'safety circle' yeah its a crappy name for it, but I was anti social and only stuck to my same group of friends until I moved 9000 miles away and had to make new friends or else go insane. It helped that I was with people who had done the same thing, but in the end it really made me a more social person.


    So maybe a study abroad might help you deal with the issues, because you can look at the situation as if you are only going to see these people for a couple of months and after that you may never speak to them again so you'll try and hopefully make the most of it.

    MoSiAc on
    Monster Hunter Tri US: MoSiAc - U46FJF - Katrice | RipTen - Gaming News | Los Comics
  • AithAith Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    You mentioned your interest in more "fringe" things... It's been my experience that a lot of people are more interested in those things than they're willing to admit. So, I bet you have some things in common with more people than you think. Also, if somebody isn't interested in some of the same things you are it could be because they don't even know that world exists... so introduce them to it... but also be willing to learn from them. You can make friends pretty quick when you're teaching each other parts of life that you knew nothing about before.

    On a side note I have a close friend who has social anxiety disorder... the weird thing was if you met him you'd have no idea. He is super outgoing, talks to everybody... but in the midst of that he would excuse himself from time to time to go throw up. What I guess I'm saying is that even if you were diagnosed with something like that it might not necessarily hold you back. Sure, he would throw up from time to time, but he wasn't afraid to get out there and take that chance. Plus it seemed like it always gave him enough warning that it was coming... I knew him for 3 years before I even knew anything was going on like that.

    Aith on
  • Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator mod
    edited November 2007
    My girlfriend has social anxiety and a prescription has helped her out quite a bit.

    Mostly, you need to find an excuse to actually go out and hang out with people. You're in school - join a club or a team sport or something. You might have social anxiety or you might just be introverted and an awkward dude which is getting exacerbated by your lack of human contact. Either way, you really need to rub shoulders to try to get used to how humans properly interact with each other.

    Irond Will on
    Wqdwp8l.png
  • wunderbarwunderbar What Have I Done? Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    YodaTuna wrote: »
    Arikado wrote: »
    Look at it this way...the majority of the couples in which both parties are actively looking to "hook up" end up not lasting long.

    I'm pretty sure this has absolutely nothing to do with if the relationship lasts or not. Just because you know some people who met each other in weird ways doesn't really mean anything.

    you know, I think it's at least somewhat true as well. Granted, its not black or white, but i think in general yes. my best friend has been trying very hard to find a long term boyfriend for about 4 years now. she dates a guy for a couple of months and that's it. I feel bad for her, because she tries so hard, but thats why. she goes out pretty much looking for any guy who'll give her the time of day, and try to date him.

    When I really, really wanted a girlfriend, and tried really hard to date some people, it went nowhere. I gave up on dating for a bit to concentrate on school, less than 3 weeks after that, I started dating someone, and we've now been together almost 2 years, and are planning our futures together.

    tl;dr Don't try too hard at it. Honestly, because then people see you're trying too hard, and that is a huge turn off, whether this is a prospective friend or relationship.

    wunderbar on
    XBL: thewunderbar PSN: thewunderbar NNID: thewunderbar Steam: wunderbar87 Twitter: wunderbar
  • CrossBusterCrossBuster Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I used to be exactly like this, and to some extent, I still am.

    I'm still not the most social person in the world, but I've gotten a lot better. I did this (sort of unintentionally) by putting myself in a situation where I had no choice but to interact with strangers: I did a study abroad program in Paris over the summer, and when that was done, I spent a couple weeks traveling around Europe by myself. It was fantastic.

    I quickly realized that if I was going to enjoy myself, I had to talk to people. It's a little nerve-wracking at first, but it gets a lot easier.

    I'm not saying that you have to backpack across Europe for a month to help your problem, but just put yourself in a situation where you have to talk to people you don't know. You'll quickly realize that it isn't that hard, and that you have nothing to lose if you screw up.

    CrossBuster on
    penguins.png
  • Raiden333Raiden333 Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Yeah, CrossBuster, one of the things I've been considering as far as making myself better at interacting with new people is signing up for the Peace Corps once I get out of college, but that's still a couple years away.

    I appreciate all the advice given, guys. Thanks a lot for the help. I know I have to work on these things and not expect an overnight change, and there's no time like the present to begin working.

    Raiden333 on
    There was a steam sig here. It's gone now.
  • ZonkytonkmanZonkytonkman Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    just to be clear, thinking before you speak is definetly important, and an underutilized skill for most people, but part of what I was recommending is also reducing the rate at which words leave your mouth.

    People sometimes perceive fast speedy talking as nervousness. Slow talking shows that you aren't worried that people will cut you off, you know what you are saying is important.


    On speaking to randoms, if I were you i'd make a conscious effort to spark conversations with strangers when you see the opportunity. Say you're waiting inline at a store and notice something funny about the situation. Share it with someone in line next to you. Stuff like that. Joke a little bit with people you are buying stuff from. It will help with general socializing and with talking to strangers in general.

    Zonkytonkman on
  • DaemonionDaemonion Mountain Man USARegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Confidence in yourself is right up there with slowing yourself down.

    Just remember, you don't have to be impressive. You don't have to think about impressive or witty things to say, jokes to tell, whatever.

    Sometimes, I act like a complete goofball infront of groups of people. Sometimes I'm an arrogant asshole and criticize every damn thing I see. Sometimes I'm very sincere and a good listener. I also wear these fucking weird - but awesome - shoes. I openly profess my love for them, in their all of their tacky glory.


    The point I'm trying to make is that you genuinely being yourself in a society that can be so fake at times, is impressive enough.

    Honestly, if people categorize or judge anyone as one thing or type of person right off the bat, there's an inherent, negative vibe there that is pretty easy to pick up on. If you talk with enough people, with your now heightened sense of confidence and security in yourself and your style, you will eventually meet genuine people, too - and you will become friends.

    Daemonion on
  • desperaterobotsdesperaterobots perth, ausRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Maybe a job in telemarketing or in a call centre! That'll get you talking to all kinds of idiots and then you'll realise you have nothing to fear: You are always smarter than these guys! I think my job has helped me socially, is what I'm saying.

    But personally, I withdrew from all of my established friends and places to hang when I had a huge falling out with my only group of friends. I spent about a year away from everyone and became very anxious about asking people out to do stuff, and also quite jealous and upset when I felt I was overlooked.

    So I went out by myself a lot. Usually under the influence of a lot of alcohol. I bumped in to a lot of people who I hadn't seen in a long time. I was introduced to new people. It took a few months, but now I have a wide array of really great friends, all of which I really love. Alcoholism is not the answer, but taking the edge off can't hurt.

    desperaterobots on
  • hijinksensuehijinksensue Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I havent read the other replies, just the OP, so forgive if this has been addressed. I know the comfort that comes from being around people that "get" the same things you do. If you are into "fringe interests" and you are already actively social on the internet, I would suggest finding some locals online into the same things and setting up a meetup. Its much easier to make friends when you already have something to talk about. Its much easier to be popular in a group when you are an authority on a subject that the group cares about. It could be computers, coding, art, music, d&d, literature, whatever.

    Before you venture out into the scary world, seek out some friends that you already have something in common with. Most colleges already have a group for just about everything anyway.

    hijinksensue on
    HijiNKS Ensue
    geek comic
    www.hijinksensue.com

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • xeroismygodxeroismygod Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I havent read the other replies, just the OP, so forgive if this has been addressed. I know the comfort that comes from being around people that "get" the same things you do. If you are into "fringe interests" and you are already actively social on the internet, I would suggest finding some locals online into the same things and setting up a meetup. Its much easier to make friends when you already have something to talk about. Its much easier to be popular in a group when you are an authority on a subject that the group cares about. It could be computers, coding, art, music, d&d, literature, whatever.

    Before you venture out into the scary world, seek out some friends that you already have something in common with. Most colleges already have a group for just about everything anyway.


    I have a similer problem to the OP but I am a lot better then I was years ago. I just force myself to go out and do things an surprisingly enough people will like to talk and get to know a person if you seem to be enjoying yourself and look non threatening.

    Hey OP if you ever want to hang out shoot me a PM. I live in SJ.

    xeroismygod on
  • ege02ege02 __BANNED USERS regular
    edited November 2007
    www.meetup.com

    you can thank me later.

    ege02 on
Sign In or Register to comment.