Relationships: Anonymous and Everyone

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Fair warning, writing isn't my strong suit, neither is formatting if i'm being honest, and this is the first time I've ever written something like this. So if you like random spurts of paragraphs vaguely related to each other thrown down on a page, then post is for you! But I digress, I'm going to talk a little bit about four relationship groups within my life, and how my mental health effects/is effected by them. Or at least I'm going to try to. Maybe some of you can relate and this ends up helping you in some way, or maybe it doesn't and it won't. 

Friendships.
When it comes to friendships, the strongest ones I have were made during my childhood until around about where I left home to go to university. It's been hard for me to create new strong ties with people, the biggest exception to this rule is my current romantic relationship which i will talk about in a moment.
The friends that I have made since leaving home are good, but again I don't feel particularly close to them, and it's usually difficult to hold a one on one conversation with them outside of where we met (University/Work etc) and I can't help but find it upsetting. Whether it's them giving short, closed responses to me, or just an awkward silence.
I also have A.D.D which has a couple social symptoms too; I jump into conversations and interrupt people without realising it. My lack of attention span means that it's sometimes hard to concentrate on what people are saying to me, meaning that I tend to give vague responses. "haha yeah" "oh really?" "as if!"
When I was younger, I read a statement somewhere that 80% of what people talk about if about themselves. Since then I've always tried to not do that, and in conversations I tend to ask a lot of questions, which I think has made me become more interested in people's experiences and their life stories. But the funny thing is, I found out that the statement I read was completely true. People do tend to just talk about themselves, or how certain situations around the world effected them/relates to them. I've observed conversations where two people just took it in turns to talk about how a small disaster in a different country, had directly effected them, and each time they brought it back to themselves, they tried to top whatever the other person had said. (Fun fact, I'm not friends with those two people any more)
Another social hindrance I carry is my anxiety. For the most part it doesn't effect, but sometimes when I'm having a bad day it effects me. For example; when I see two of my friends talking without me and laughing, my mind immediately assumes that they're making fun of me, or talking shit about me. It's really frustrating because I know that they are LITERALLY having a normal conversation which doesn't happen to include me.
Or even when people make plans with a group of people and I'm not invited, I can't help but feel like they are either doing it to spite me, or specifically said "Hey guys, let's all go do this thing together and not invite <my name>." Which I know is completely ridiculous and honestly rather self centred of me, but there's always a small sad part of me which can't help but think this. The stupid thing is, even if I was asked to join them, I'd probably decline due to my anxiety!
But in order to end this section on a cheerful note, I have a particular way of getting myself out of the anxiety ridden hole I've dug myself. Whenever I feel really down about something I've done, or something that's happened and I feel alone and hopeless, I count on my hands the names of each friend I have, I swiftly run out of fingers and toes, and pow, I feel better. 

Romantic.
I would just like to say how much I value my girlfriend, we're opposite, but the same in so many different ways. She understands me more than anyone else does, supports me in everything I want to do, motivates me and inspires me to be a good person. We have the same sense of humour, in fact one of the biggest reasons I was first attracted to her, was that I've never met a girl who made me laugh so much. She understands all the mental issues I face on a day to day basis, and she helps me come to terms with them and helps me figure out what I need to do.
Due to certain circumstances, we've had to move away from each other and we currently only get a chance to see each other just under two weeks of the month. (I know that sounds like loads, but when you've lived with each other since day 1 of your relationship, then it feels like nothing.) But it's not like we don't text and call each other all the time, even though it's not the same thing as sitting in the same room as each other. My only hope is that we can live together again soon.
Also one of the coolest things about us, is that if either of us have an issue with the other, we have a mature discussion about it. No passive aggressive shit, no shouting, no jealous rages, just conversation. And we've worked it out, every time.
(P.S you can fuck off with that whole it's healthy to argue in your relationship statement.)

Family.
Being an only child means that I'm particularly close to my parents. In my case, my mother especially. Growing up, I was close with a section of my extended family, I used to go visit them every couple of weeks or so. But again, i don't know if it was to do with my mental issues, I would find it hard to talk to any one of them in a one on one situation. That or that maybe I'm the black sheep of this section of family, not taking mediocrity for an answer and doing my best to chase my dreams. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to be as close with them as I was when I was younger, but if that means having a wider grasp on the world and not settling down with two kids in my early twenties, then it's a damn shame. 
My parents are aware and are understanding of my mental health issues, my dad in fact had to leave his job because of his nuclear levels of anxiety. He sometimes has really bad days, like now for example, as I'm writing this, he's locked himself in their bedroom. As much as a devil as anxiety is, the best thing to come out of it is that it's actually brought me and my dad closer. We were never that close when I was growing up, but now we understand each other more, and are much more patient with each other. However, there are times where I feel bad for my mum, specifically on days where both me and dad aren't coping too well. She's said to me on multiple occasions that she has tried her hardest to understand what it's like for us, but she just can't. She tries her best though, and she helps a lot more than she thinks she does.

Video Games.
I know it's not a proper relationship like the previous three paragraphs were, but they are such a big part of my life that I feel like I can't leave them out of this post.
Playing video games is probably the most comforting thing to me. It's my go to thing when I'm feeling anxious/down/negative in anyway. Someone at university was a prick? Just go home and play video games. Shitty customer at work? Go home and play video games. Feeling anxious about what to do after you graduate/applying for real jobs? Just play video games.
Whether it's the challenge, the escapism,or the chance to be part of a world far more interesting than our own, I can't figure out what it is about video games that I find so captivating. Maybe it's because it completely manages to hold my attention so it settles my A.D.D, or maybe it's something about being readily equipped to deal with any problem that comes my way which calms my anxiety.
Because I'm a sharing person, I am constantly trying to get my friends/family/significant other to play with me, but it's very rare that they even ask me about my hobby, never mind showing a genuine interest about joining me. Which is a shame, because I want them to experience the same joy I get from playing games. Fair enough, I mean if someone told me to go to an art gallery with them because it made them feel euphoric, I know it wouldn't have the same effect on me. What ever floats your boat pal!
Concerned that I depend on them too much, and I'm worried how I'm going to react to the fact that, I simply won't have much time for them anymore. Geez, writing it down like makes them sound like a drug or something.
Some people might look down on me for spending so much of my time playing video games, but I would argue that it's the same thing as spending loads of time reading books, or watching films. The truth is, if someone is really invested in a hobby of theirs which makes them feel great, then who are you to tell them to stop, or to do something else.


Odds are some of you will have you've figured out who I am. In which case I would appreciate it if you told nobody about this, and that if I come on too strong or am irritating in some ways to please forgive me and try to be understanding. And if you want to talk to me about anything, message me on facebook. Thanks to Tom for letting me contribute to his blog, and thanks for reading.

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