People who know me might be surprised to learn that I talk a lot – like, a.lot.
The thing is though, most of these conversations are going on in my head, so no one else actually realises they are happening. I am constantly dissecting things I have said, things other people have said, wondering if I have hurt someone’s feeling because they didn’t respond to a message straight away – as I type this I am going over a conversation I just had on the phone and wondering if I handled that the right way. I tell you, they never stop. I have trouble sleeping for the same reason. I am hopeless in group situations – I say that I have no ‘small talk’, which is true I guess, but even truer is the fact that most of the time there is a running dialogue going on in my head, scratching around trying to think of things to say.
I have heard people refer to me as ‘aloof’, and I guess that could be the impression I give. It is not intended, and certainly not how I see myself, but there you are. I am trying to change this. When I was young (and up to 8 yrs ago) it was alcohol that got me through social situations. I gave that up when I realised that, mentally, it was doing me more harm than good. Now, without the ‘comforting buffer’ of alcohol I find social situations excruciating. It is so much easier for me to just stay at home, but at the same time, I realise that I am isolating myself, and the more I stay away, the easier it becomes to distance myself from the world. I see my mother – with the benefit of hindsight, I think she may have felt the same.