For the most part, I believe I’m pretty good at faking it. Sometimes, we need to do the best we can to fit into the culture of our surroundings. Co-workers and schoolmates, for example. Finding common ground through humour has been sort of my modus operandi, if you will. If there’s one of two things I’m comfortable with in a social setting, it’s getting/sharing laughs.
I’ve had many acquaintances throughout my life and few friends. I’ve rarely maintained friendships longer than a couple of years. Often it was because they back-stabbed me, sometimes there was a falling-out that never really got resolved, or we just simply grew apart. Others, I can’t really explain why. They were perfectly nice people (and trust me, I’ve got an excellent sense for these things). Despite their best efforts to keep in touch, I just couldn't be arsed. Don’t even get me started on ex-boyfriends. Maintaining tired relationships of all kinds is exhausting. Besides, more people in life are just obstacles to that sweet, sweet solitude.
While most social interactions are the equivalent of doing time, there have been periods in my life where I did my best to suck it up and just go with the flow, as it were. This usually requires being under the influence of something, mainly hard liquor. For a few years, I actually did all right; there were many, many bar nights, full of fun, rowdiness, and lots of drinking buddies. It’s funny how many best friends one seems to accumulate in a bar. Walls came down where they shouldn't have. I’m probably a more fun, likeable person when I’m drunk. In fact, I know that to be true. Drinking and the inevitable drama that tends to go along with it began to take its toll and I was completely drained physically, emotionally, and psychologically. It had to stop, so it did. Imagine my frustration when those I continue to socialize with unrelentingly urge me to drink. Just one drink…just a shot. Just one won’t hurt… Occasionally I’ll give into the peer pressure and have a drink or three. Then, I hate myself (and my friends) later. Not worth it.
Sometimes, I feel horrible that I rarely want to go out and participate. Most people just don’t understand it, especially extroverts. To them, energy is gained from socializing and interacting with other people and loneliness is derived from being alone. I no longer even try to explain to people how the loneliest times I’ve ever had were in crowds. I speculate that I come off lazy, moody, and apathetic. I admit, I rarely possess the energy to try and prove otherwise. I used to just have people over, entertain them in my own element. However, too much of a good thing and then I’m slipping back inside my head again.
So, where does that leave things? I’m not entirely certain. As the months and years tick by, I find myself progressively detaching from everyone outside my own head, including family. I’m not doing it because they deserve it. It’s just happening. The part that scares me, is that I’m fine with it.