Social Hibernation

15 Apr 2019

Does everyone feel like this at times when you just want a holiday from people and life in general?

I would describe myself as fairly sociable and I enjoy going out and am not worried about being at a party with strangers. However, now and then I will not be able to go out due to anxiety.

I feel pressure to be always up, bubbly and especially so that people won't ask me pressing questions. I was at the hairdressers and someone who was supposed to just cut my hair started to ask the intrusive questions they feel they have to ask – where do you live, are you married, do you have children... yes I have a stepchild... yes she lives with us, no her mum doesn't not want her it's just the arrangement (cue the "Oh it must be so hard looking after someone else's child" - when will it STOP!!.

Some people seem to find me endlessly interesting because my life does change a lot of the time – not always by choice I have to add. I have many interests but I am ricocheting from one thing to the next – a sort of creative ADHD. I can't sit still for long although I am getting slightly better at it. At these times when I feel like it's a cross examination (even of the well-meaning sort), I do get stressed although I don't always show it, I don't know what to say, I feel I should be the life and soul of the party, and if I am quiet, people don't know how to handle me and I don't know how to handle it. It then starts to feel really pressurised and I get myself tied in knots.

It is exhausting trying to keep a charade or be the most polished version of myself so I've started not to wear make up all the time, and go quiet and if people ask I just say I'm tired and leave it at that.

Why do I feel I owe everyone such a detailed explanation or maybe I'm just a detail queen or maybe I just think too much. My racing mind won't often give me a rest. Or occasionally I have got (accidentally, never on purpose) almost paralytic on alcohol at social occasions and then have got incredible anxiety the next day (did I offend someone, why haven't they replied to my apologetic text, did I swear too much, have I pissed off my husband yet again etc)... or sometimes even before I go I'm doing a "mum and dad" on myself – don't get drunk, don't swear, don't wear the wrong sort of clothes, don't say the wrong thing etc. Easier to stay in!

So I recently have had a social hibernation with two hobbies of mine and I don't do the coffee meet-up for one of them afterwards. I've not been for two months and concentrating on the other main hobby which is writing and even done a performance at a local theatre with my fellow writers. A bit nerve-wracking but a total success which was fabulous. But by my non-attendance with the other hobbies, I've felt as if I've been forgotten. What a daft self-imposed quandary.


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