Growing into Me with Bipolar

Retreating


I think lately I have started to retreat again.  For a brief while here lately, I was feeling like I might be a bit ‘better’ and like I wanted to be more interactive, more social and involved.  This is always a huge, scary step for me. My default position to protect myself is to retreat into a world where I only deal with others superficially. I started going to the groups offered by my clinic, which they strongly encourage and consistently coax me to come to.  Usually this only makes me more determined not to attend them, but I also usually feel guilty for not doing what I’m told or encouraged to do.  So, I tried some groups.  And I found a chatroom for those dealing with suicidal thoughts, but the topic doesn’t always focus on that.  And I found some volunteer opportunities that sounded fulfilling and interesting.

But unfortunately, after a few weeks of groups and a few weeks of the chatroom, I no longer felt able to continue attending.  I’m not sure why I get that way. Why I suddenly feel as though it’s too much work, too much effort, too difficult to even think about trying to go.  As if all of a sudden, somehow, these have become places I can no longer cope with, no longer deal with, no longer tolerate.  At first, I feel included, part of what’s going on. I feel good about being there, somehow stronger, like I belong and like its good for me to be there.  But then it stops being that. And I can’t even tolerate the thought of going there.  It’s too overwhelming, too….i don’t know what.  I wish I knew what. I wish I knew why after some point, I just can’t even stand the thought of thinking of going.  Thinking about going to the chat room or to groups just makes me shut down, retreat into my own world where I only deal with people when I have to, when I purchase something or call for help or information.  Nothing personal, committed.  Nothing real.

It seems that somehow, after a short amount of time, I can’t continue being involved in an ongoing social group.  It seems that I shut down and go away.  But I don’t know why.  Am I afraid of becoming part of a group, of having a committed relationship with others?  Am I afraid of failing or or making mistakes and being humiliated or embarrassed? Or am I afraid of others, what they will do when they really get to know the real me?  That I will be rejected when they see who I really am?  I don’t know exactly why I leave and retreat back to my own world.  Maybe just being out in the world, exposed to others, is just too scary, just too dangerous.  Or maybe I don’t have good social skills.

But for the now, I hope to be able to keep writing here at least.  While I work on figuring out why I can’t seem to stay connected with others, why I always end up alone again.

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