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Mike_GX101

On a measure of 0-10 how well do you think you bond with others in a social context?

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I used to be really bad at this unless a relative introduced me and the other person took most of the initiative. But as I've got older I find it easier having picked up 'tricks' along the way and would place myself at 6.5 maybe 7 initially. But I still have difficulty especially when it comes to developing the relationship to something more meaningful.

 

Most other people I know off line find this next step much easier and will end up talking about things at a rate that I can't reciprocate meaningfully at and end up losing interest and doing something else. I can develop friendships beyond this particularly if I know the person through a club and I've known them for a long time but critically I wouldn't say they become closer necessarily - just that I know them better. Others develop friends but I tend to develop 'acquaintences' apparently with an inability to advance the relationship like others who club together and maybe go for a drink or go for lunch.

 

Does anyone else have difficulty advancing intimacy in a relationship? It has taken me a lot of self-reflection to realise that I do have problems in this area and they are still ongoing even when I employ tricks I've learned along the way. To this day I worry I will never find love because I don't think I can reciprocate at that kind of level. Where others go out and cheer one another up over a good pint I very rarely do this as I find it hard to move to that level of socialisation which also means I'm not meeting my needs for social bonding and intimacy and am finding this is having a negative effect in other areas of my life where it is stifling my development somewhat.

 

So I'm just wondering if anyone else has problems like this?

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I see bonding meaning how u get on with others

But I struggle In new setting to make verbal conversation. Like at new volunteering setting where there is new members

I not met I struggle to engage with conversation and have very limited conversation even not speak up in the group until I'm used to them and know them well. What I found worked was because I had them add me on friends list we get talking them my confidence would be great that I could suddenly speak up for myself in the group until I know them all and not fear of being judged.

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I think bonding in friendship terms tends to be taken for granted by most people because it as natural a given as say breathing. But if you happen to have a difficulty with bonding or fail to realise your need to bond with others after you've left home then it poses quite a challenge in that whatever you've built up in education isn't going to take you very far and you'll end up stagnating because socialising opens doors to opportunities you might otherwise not have.

 

So you live a life where you feel depressed and saddened but you don't really know why. Others can see why but you can't. And bonding is one of those words that few people seem to talk about which is a real shame for those to whom it doesn't come naturally. So we end up trying to fix that need with other things like over-eating and buying things with the hope they'll cheer us up. But nothing really does - these are just temporary solutions and do nothing to soothe the lonely desolated soul in the long run.

Edited by Mike_GX101

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Sally44   

I know that I do but it is because I dont want the responsibility/hassle of having to 'tend' that friendship. My husband is much more outgoing and I tend to socialise with people he has met. I don't have close friends. If I did not have my husband I would maybe try harder, but I also like to do what I like to do when I like to do it.

 

I think the more you have in common with someone whether that is an interest, or even a similar sense of humour, that might make you want to spend more time with that person.

 

We recently started out own business [bakery], and to begin with I was very nervous about being behind the counter [and being the only one behind the counter]. But over the years I have learnt that if you have a go at something you are often much more competent than you think. It is all about confidence, and that grows with experience. So I would say I am getting better at the small chit chat with customers. And we do meet with employees in the pub for a drink sometimes. But having said that, i don't think I would want to take it any further than that.

 

I think the best way of describing bonding is to say you have something that connects you. As above, that could be a similar passion/interest or a similar humour.

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Merry   

The friends I do have are brilliant. All those who couldn't put up with my unreliability have filtered away over the years. I only have a few friends, and it's purely because of THEIR determination to be my friend....because i'm a useless friend, I have to admit. I picked up on what Sally said about the hassel of having to "tend" a friendship. I can do very well in this area at times but I am not consistent. The kind of friends I have now are people who understand that they won't be seeing me more than once amonth or longer because I don't like more than one, maybe 2 social events in a week. Can't cope with much more than that. Yeah, like Sally, maybe i'd try harder if i didn't have everything I need at home..... Even with close friends, that "bonding" thing is so subtle and a true connection is hard to force.... I think I just pretend it's there even when it's not because at a certain point in my life, I realised that caring about people is a choice. What mattered, was not how perfectly matched my friends and i were, but that there were people in my life who I could care about, if I chose to. And I made the decision to care. I've got to always remember though not to take on too much. I always think I can deal with more than I can. So what i've found is, if I limit socializing in general, i'm a much better friend for people and more likely to be there when they really do need me. The person i'm most bonded to is my baby. It's the only time it's ever been truly natural I think.........

So i'd only put my ability to bond at about a 4.

Edited by Merry

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I've always struggled with 'bonding', I've always had trouble moving beyond 'Hi' - at best i mentioned the weather, or asked how someone is, or said something funny as a desperate means to engage. However, I've realised in recent years that this isn't an effective strategy and leaves me sidelined and really awkward, which I've had enough of. So, I'm working on engaging when I can, trying to bond, and this involves a lot of positive thinking to overcome the negative thoughts/strategies I've developed since childhood. I've never really wanted to develop bonds with people at work etc., but thats changing because I accept thats how things work for NT's.

 

I would rank my ability to bond around 6 - I CAN do it but I need to put all my energy into making the effort. In the past it would of been 0-3 when I haven't really wanted to bond at all.

Edited by positive_about

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Shnoing   

... Others develop friends but I tend to develop 'acquaintences' apparently with an inability to advance the relationship like others who club together and maybe go for a drink or go for lunch.

...

Similar problems here, it takes a lot of time.

 

What I think helped to understand the mechanisms was Kate Fox: Watching the English. Even though I'm not.

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