Sunday, May 7, 2017
Adventures in Social Anxiety: Chapter 4: Telephobia and The Reset Button
Ah phones. Both the bane and savior of my existence. The communication parts, Messaging and Phone, ugh, the rest, blessed be. So if you wonder why my phones generally in permanent silent mode, why I am scared of the phone, take forever to respond or forget, you are about to learn...
I've always had a fear of phones, no different than talking to people in person, perhaps worse. Unless we are close, I will not answer a phone call, and will go out of my way to avoid a call, practically begging others. Or in the case of work, I'll come find you or come to your desk rather then try to work it out on the phone.
I think this comes from the fact I've rarely had a good phone call in 10 years, always bad news and more, ever since I got the call about my mom and granny passing away. With medical problems, debt issues, and spam, my fears only get worse with each passing call.
Then came texting, and while ten times better, as we all know, has it's faults. I can't do two way conversations well. Like I can send a meme but I can't keep a conversation going for the life of me. I may truly want to talk to someone, see how they are doing, how's life, but once I get a response I get scared and panic. Or if I get no response.
Damned if I do, damned if I don't. I never know when to keep texting or when not to, and it wrecks me, so a lot of times I'll send a text and shut my phone off. Fearful of the response, even if it was a simple meme or howdy.
I am more comfortable with texting, and you'll notice I can type walls quick. In some ways this is my downfall. I can type a novel faster than some can type a sentence. Incredibly efficient at it, and even as busy as I can get, I can multitask so with work so quick, I can overwhelm people quickly.
Shoot, I typed the movie chapter while I was running the dishwasher and washing machine while walking to the mailbox, and cleaned it up some between flips of my steak.
It's not as natural to others, and I have to accept that. Also, don't rub it in my face how I have too much time on my hands if I have time to type that much and how much you work and all that. I take it too personally, working on that, I work to, 50-60 hours a week. I can't help being extremely efficient at idle time with my phone.
My phones also become a crutch for my anxiety, and it can provide much needed relief. Hopping onto a game or texting someone or any host of other functions, take my mind off thoughts, which makes me extremely defensive about my phone.
Unfortunately that can backfire, especially if I send a message and it takes awhile for a response. I understand people truly get busy and rationally, logically I tell myself 100 times.
No, no, no, they could be asleep or eating or having sex, studying whatever, it's no big deal, but it can shoot my anxiety through the roof and cause an attack, so I rarely even text unless I have to, are worried, or some important life event is happening, or maybe a funny meme I'm sure they'll like.
Texting is rapidly becoming like the phone for me. Nothing good seems to come out of it, and my calculations for this year are hovering at a 75% misunderstanding rate. I'm scared of the responses or lack thereof.
Humans seem to assume the worst of anything you say and it breaks me. I already overwhelming feel I'm a burden and a bother to people. Even the cat today, she was sleeping on my bed and I came to take a nap and she got up and left and I felt so sad until I fell asleep, Sorry to bother you with my presence kitty.
People wonder why I sleep so much, there's most of it. If I'm asleep I can't be a burden on others. I won't have anxiety attacks. I can breathe, relax, chill. My heart doesn't skip beats from phone notifications.
Sleep is the reset button to my anxiety meter so I can start fresh. Hence my insistence on not going straight to places from another place, like work to a movie.
A nap in between resets the emotions and I can manage better. I awake and can make it an hour, sometimes more in anxiety free bliss. Hence me taking time off to do stuff. Hence why the lack of sleep can make me more anxious and miserable than others, I don't get that anxiety reset and it builds and builds, like the cat being in heat. Some of my worst weeks come from that, I've identified the problem and can fix it.
Coming Soon: Driving and Work
Adventures in Social Anxiety Chapter 7 - Gas Stations (slightly longer, but more real in time scenarios, like the first two chapters)
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