I’m 18 years old, and I often feel there is something wrong with me. I don’t have friends and don’t care too. I feel as if they are more work than their worth. I isolate myself from others. It’s not because I’m afraid of people or anything of that nature, I just feel more comfortable by myself. The only time I enjoy company is if it’s of the other sex, and I’m interested in them. When I was a child about 10 years old I was molested multiple times, and the man attempted to rape me but was caught. Later on in life from about 13-17 there was a man who molested me multiple times over the years. If feel this May be necessary information for you to know. I notice things that bother others emotionally, don’t bother me the same. I prefer to not feel though, I’ve even went as far as to teach myself to shut off my emotions. It seems life is easier that way, so I prefer it. Is there anything I should do?

A: I appreciate you writing us here at Psych Central and I hear how isolated you feel. Sometimes as a protective reaction our psyche shuts down feelings. In order not to deal with the power of feeling betrayed we can blunt our emotional awareness to the point where we can become anesthetized.

But whatever protects, inhibits, and if you shut down because of negative feelings, it is also going to affect your positive feelings.

I would highly recommend individual therapy. Being able to talk about your feelings, or the lack of them, is a good place for you to begin with the therapist. I believe those prolonged molestations have created an emotional reaction that makes sense in terms of protection, but may also be keeping you from feeling good.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral