I can’t stand being around people, they freak me out (I think the clinical term for it is Social Anxiety Disorder, but I’ve never cared much for labels). I even get my own version of panic attacks if I’m in a large group for too long. I haven’t always been like this, I was pretty outgoing when I was a child, but somewhere in my adolescence that all changed. Before I knew it I was avoiding crowds and becoming very withdrawn. Even dealing with people over the phone was hard for me to do.
I hated going to the grocery store, and even walking down crowded streets was daunting. I practically never went into a mall when I was a teenager because there were always so many people that I felt claustrophobic. The only way I managed to get by was to make sure there was always someone else with me whenever I went somewhere. I don’t know why, but I found if I focused on a person I knew I could block out the masses around me. Not completely mind you, it still felt like I was being smothered, but it was better than nothing.
I thought that maybe over time it would get better, but it didn’t. It actually became worse as I got older. Probably because I found myself having to do more and more things without a “buffer”. Not having someone else around just seemed to to make the crowds seem larger and more suffocating.
I’ve managed to get a little better over the years by forcing myself into situations I’d usually rather avoid. That’s not to say I enjoy being around people more, I’ve just learned to cope with it a little by sticking with jobs that don’t require me to be around too many people, and using music as a way of blocking out those around me when I go out shopping. I’m still not comfortable wandering around with crowds, and I prefer tagging along with others when I go someplace, but I can function out in the world for the most part so I guess that’s all that really matters.
What is it about anonymity that makes people be such jerks? It’s like, ‘oh look, you don’t know who I am so I’ll be rude and obnoxious as I try to crush your hopes/dreams/feelings’. If you can’t say whatever it is to the other person’s face don’t slink around in the background talking crap. Any time someone does this to me I laugh and think how pathetic they are that they don’t have the guts to be like, ‘yeah, this in my opinion, deal with it’. I mean seriously, anyone not willing to take credit for their own opinions probably shouldn’t have them to begin with.
If you want to praise something, by all means, reply anonymously. But if you feel the need to give constructive criticism, plain old criticism, or even attack what they put time and effort into doing, don’t hide behind some “guest” account so they don’t have the option of asking about what you said. Sure, this may mean that you get scathing remarks and whatnot back, but if you’re willing to dish it out you’d better be able to take it too.
I’ve been talking about going to see the Nutcracker ballet for several years and I finally got around to it last week. It’s not that I’m a big fan of ballet or anything like that, it’s just something I thought I should experience at least once. Aside from an excellent location; the hall had killer acoustics, the orchestra was amazing, and the sets and costumes were very well done. I even thought the dancers did a pretty good job; of course I wouldn’t know even if they messed up so I guess that’s not saying much. All in all it wasn’t a bad experience, and I don’t feel it was a waste of either my time or money. Having said that, I doubt I’ll go see a ballet again. It’s just not my thing.