When I’m talking to people I feel like I’m not really there mentally. It’s a sad, hopeless feeling like I can’t connect with people or maybe don’t want to. I’m known to be a very quiet person and have very few friends. When I was younger I really wanted to have a best friend but didn’t really know how so I never did. When I felt like I had a good friendship with someone they always seemed to have found someone else that was more fun. Regarding friendships, I feel like I’ve given up even trying to connect because it’s never worked for me before.
I never felt like I had a solid opinion about many things. Often I just don’t care that much about anything to have an opinion, so therefore I don’t have much to contribute to a conversation. I realize now that I used to try to be the most beautiful or the weirdest or the funniest or the smartest one in different situations. Not because I wanted anyone to tell me that I was those things but maybe just so I felt adequate. When I catch myself doing these things now I honestly hate it so much and wish that I could just act and feel normal like everyone else.
When I’m out with people one on one, half the time I feel like it’s pointless and I don’t know why I’m even there because I don’t feel satisfied with it. I take more pleasure in watching people have a conversation than actually taking part in a conversation. I feel super awkward with people a lot of the time.
I get really jealous even when I know that logically there’s nothing to be jealous about. For example, when my girlfriend is with her friends, I’m on edge while she’s gone. I feel guilty about this and wish I didn’t. I want her to be happy but I feel like my jealousy is toxic, so I want to leave the relationship when I feel like this. I have trouble with knowing whether I love her or not. I want to. I feel like I do sometimes, but I don’t want to leave, so I’m just really confused and upset because I feel like no matter what I do I’m causing pain for myself and for her. I am unsure of my sexuality and if I have one.
You seem to be struggling with your identity. That is common with people your age. The developmental psychologist Erik Erickson calls this phase identity versus identity confusion. It’s the time in someone’s life when they are attempting to find out who they are and what they believe. It is a time of becoming emotionally and psychologically independent, parting your identity from that of your parents and peers.
Developmentally, your experiences seem fairly normal with one exception. Your tendency to want to isolate could indicate depression.
You should discuss your symptoms with a mental health professional. Though everyone experiences these life stages, they’re not always easy. In fact, they’re often confusing and frustrating.
You would feel better if you had the guidance of a trained mental health professional to assist you in understanding your feelings. Many people enter counseling with similar problems. Why not utilize the assistance of professionals trained to deal with the very problems with which you are struggling? It would seem wise to get some counseling. It could really help you to feel better. Please take care.
– Dr. Kristina Randle
Feeling Lost, Hopeless About Life & Relationships
Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW
Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.
APA Reference Randle, K. (2018). Feeling Lost, Hopeless About Life & Relationships. Psych Central.
Retrieved on July 21, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2016/03/18/feeling-lost-hopeless-about-life-relationships/
Last updated: 8 May 2018 Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018 Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.