cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Highlighted

I've been lonely since the end of school

Hi all,

I graduated from year 12 last year. It felt amazing to have finally finished, especially since I'd finished with straight VHA (very high achievement) scores. Virtually everyone in the cohort respected me. But I had struggled to make friends throughout school, largely due to my poor social skills because of my Asperger's syndrome. Although I had the quantity of friends I wanted at the end of school, I wasn't particularly close to any of them. Hence, when school ended, there wasn't much I could do to maintain them. They all had much larger friendship groups that they could spend time with, so I very much wasn't a priority. I've tried to keep in contact with my old friends as much as possible, but it's at the point where our conversations (over Messenger) are shallow. This is especially the case since almost always, I am the one to initiate the conversation.

 

An opportunity for a relationship came up the day after my formal. A friend asked me if I liked her. I said yes, and I was truthful. But since I was 15, I've struggled to have romantic feelings for girls. I don't know why this is and I'm seeing a relationship psychologist about it. So, because my feelings for my friend weren't very strong, I struggled to be affectionate with her, and flirt, etc.. She had promised me that should would wait for me to fix my issue, but she got tired of the lack of romance. She's dating someone else now. I was heartbroken when I found out, especially since now she doesn't talk to me much because it feels awkward. I haven't actually seen her since because COVID-19 has been prohibitive. She promised that we could still be friends, but I can tell that will be very difficult. I am, however, going to try my best.

 

I'm in the position where it seems almost impossible to make new friends and to revitalise my old ones. With the exception of my brother, I don't really have any friends anymore. I don't feel good about myself anymore like I used to in school. The lack of connections has made me feel unwanted and so I feel inadequate now. It was my 18th last week, though the day just made me feel worse because I didn't have friends I could spend it with. Although I still excel academically in university, this doesn't really do much for me anymore.

 

Any help would be appreciated. Whether that's in building new friendships, improving social skills or helping my self-esteem.

Highlighted

Re: I've been lonely since the end of school

Hey man, I don’t really know much about Asperger’s syndrome so i can’t really say anything about that without looking stupid and uneducated, but social situations change so fast. Just be kind and polite to people and try not to worry too much about it.. One day you’ll find someone perfect for you but in the meantime enjoy your life and always put yourself first !
Highlighted

Re: I've been lonely since the end of school

Hey @JasanicBible 

 

It sounds like you're feeling really lonely at the moment, and I'm guessing this whole COVID-19 situation is not helping. I'm really glad that you reached out and shared your story with us. It's takes a lot of courage to express oneself like you did, so that was really brave of you.

 

It's great that you're seeing a relationship psychologist. What sort of work have they done for you so far?  Are they purely a relationship psychologist or can they support you with other things? I'm just wondering because, if not, then it might be a good idea to see a psychologist who is knowledgeable in the area of ASD and can support you with that, and maybe provide you with some social skills training if you find it hard to connect with others.

 

Also, we have a great community of people here and you are always welcome to come on here for support. We are always here to listen and support you. This is a safe space.

 

I thought I'd share a few resources that can reduce your feelings of loneliness and provide you with a way to either interact with others or make friends. See here:

  • You can call FriendsLine  (see their info and contact number here). This service aims to free people from loneliness, and is worth calling if you just want to have a chat.
  • The Friends for good website (see here) has a lot of useful suggestions for tackling feelings of loneliness such as Meetup (see here; this is a way to meet with others who have similar interests), The Good Karma Effect (see here), Neighbourhood Connect (see here), and Ask Izzy (see here; they provide information on clubs and groups in local areas).
  • Please see our urgent help page here - please know that you can always call Kids Helpline or Lifeline if you're ever feeling lonely and want to chat. They have trained counsellors and operate 24/7.
  • You may want to look up ASD/ Asperger Syndrome support groups in your local area.
  • We have some great articles on communication skills here that might be worth a read.
  • We also have some great articles on friendship, such as how to make friends (see here and here) and what makes a good friend (see here).
  • We also run online "Getting Real sessions" and "Special Discussions" which you might want to partake in as a way to communicate with, and feel connected to, others. See the calendar for April 2020 here for what topics we are covering on what days. Please join if any interest you Smiley Happy.

Lastly, please know that you aren't alone. A lot of people feel lonely. Check out these statistics here. It might bring you some warmth to know that you aren't alone in feeling this way.

 

Thanks again for joining and sharing with us and we look forward to seeing you around the forums soon!

Highlighted

Re: I've been lonely since the end of school

Thank you both for your suggestions.

 

I've only had one appointment with the relationship psychologist so far. I was seeing another general psychologist before but I didn't think he really understood my problem, so I decided to change. My next appointment is later this week though, and my plan is to have one every fortnight, so hopefully we can get to the bottom of my problem soon. They also provide ASD psychology, which we might address as part of our relationship psychology anyhow.

 

You're absolutely correct that the COVID-19 situation isn't helping matters. With the uni classes moving online, it's difficult to socialise and connect to other students. And, of course, I haven't been able to see my ex-date. The suggestions you've provided for services are helpful, but I guess I'll have to be patient before I can join any groups.

 

Highlighted

Re: I've been lonely since the end of school

Hey there @JasanicBible , 

 

It's really nice to 'meet' you, welcome to the ReachOut community Smiley Happy

 

It sounds like you're being really proactive in looking for the right supports for you, and I really admire how brave and articulate you've been in your posts here. 

 

I also thought I'd just direct you to a few discussions that are happening on the forums at the moment about autism, and how they feel about being autistic/ what they have learned from the neuro-diverse communities. @Tiny_leaf  started a great thread here, and @hellofriend started a great one here

 

The current situation with COVID-19 definitely means that there's more barriers to finding social interaction and groups of like-minded people, but I know that a lot of organisations are also looking for ways to move these things online. So, hopefully online services like the ReachOut community and others (hello friend listed some great ones on their thread) might be helpful in the meantime Smiley Happy

 

One last thing that you may be interested in is the I Can Network - it's a proudly autistic-lead service that offer peer mentoring and support. You can check them out here if that's something you are interested in Smiley Happy

__________

Check out our community activities calendar for April 2020 here
Highlighted

Re: I've been lonely since the end of school

@Janine-RO I think my thread was in the builder's section..

I'd definitely recommend looking at @hellofriend's thread though. 

Highlighted

Re: I've been lonely since the end of school

Ahhh, sorry about that @Tiny_leaf ! I completely overlooked that, I'm sorry. I was wondering - would you like me to combine it with the thread from @hellofriend ? It was a great thread Smiley Happy

__________

Check out our community activities calendar for April 2020 here
Highlighted

Re: I've been lonely since the end of school

No thanks @Janine-RO.

Hellofriend's thread is really positive, it would be nice to keep it that way without heaps of me complaining about stereotypes.

Highlighted

Re: I've been lonely since the end of school

@Tiny_leaf  no worries at all! Just thought I would make the offer Smiley Happy

__________

Check out our community activities calendar for April 2020 here