Social Depression After Moving To The Midwest

Hi Everyone,

I've moved from place to place several times in several states. From the east coast to the south coast and now to the Midwest (Indiana).
I've been here two months and I'm still having a really hard time connecting with people.
I feel like my friendly nature is actually hurting me.
I don't get eye contact. I don't get conversations lasting longer than several words. When I make small talk, it is not reciprocated.

I'm keeping active, going to gaming events, and school events, but outside of that I have not really made any friends or acquaintances.

I see lots of cliques which is something I've never really seen before and it seems that everyone emphasizes how long they have been in the area if I do manage to strike a conversation.

Has this happened to anyone else?

Am I just being hypersensitive?

Thanks,

FCC

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Posts

  • AspectVoidAspectVoid Registered User regular
    I feel for you, I really do. When I was a kid, my family moved from Jersey to Ohio, and my older sister and I encountered the exact same thing. The midwest is very isolationist and all about "their" community. Either you belong to a clique, and thus the community, or you're an outsider to be avoided.

    So, its really not you.

    PSN|AspectVoid
  • Hahnsoo1Hahnsoo1 Make Ready. We Hunt.Registered User regular
    I'm originally from Indiana! And sometimes even as a longtime native, I felt like an outsider. Something to do with the weather and the distance between the cities in the Midwest makes it feel like you are living in an island colony. People aren't trying to be "cliquish", but there's no reason to include you in casual meetings if they are only going to see you one time. If there's a reason to see you more than once, then there's a reason to warm up to you and "figure you out".

    Maybe people think you are trying too hard? The "outgoing personality" thing may feel like, to the Midwest native observer (i.e me), you are 1) a politician 2) trying to sell something. I DON'T make eye contact, and I tend not to make small talk. This may be more of my ethnicity than my Midwestern-ness, but I can understand where that comes from. I've seen loud and boisterous Hoosiers that I've known for a long time clam up when it comes to social situations with strangers because we simply don't get that much contact with new people or people outside the tribe. There's no reason to go to Indiana other than the Indy 500, Gen Con, the Colts, and the Pacers. :D

    With all social situations, it can be difficult to find your "groove", I think. When I moved out to California, I didn't make new local friends for years. I stayed mostly in contact with my friends back home through the Internet so I didn't go insane. But I did eventually make friends and now I have regular social engagements. I know it can be tough for a more extroverted personality, someone who gets their "energy" from being around other people.

    I'm not sure I can give you a game plan... I didn't understand much of Indiana even though I lived there for half of my life! But I can certainly sympathize.

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    PSN: Hahnsoo | MHGU: Hahnsoo, Switch FC: SW-0085-2679-5212
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  • KyouguKyougu Registered User regular
    Maybe try meetup.com?

    Most people who attend events are going to be there for the reason as you: to make friends. They'll be more receptive to your social attempts.

  • Fuzzy Cumulonimbus CloudFuzzy Cumulonimbus Cloud Registered User regular
    Thanks everyone. I've been going to Friday Night Magic and having a blast. I joined a student group as well.
    I think there is a big tribal thing between long-time Hoosiers and long-time Hoosiers who work at the university and just university students.
    I've wound up kind of in the middle of each. I'm living in the residential area. I work at the university but I'm not a student.
    Heh.
    I have met some really friendly Hoosiers as well.
    I think I just need to give it some time.

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