I noticed that I tend to avoid eye contact with others whether they are good friends of mine or a family member. I try to but always feel my eyes wet and irritated. Most of the times I can’t hold a normal conversation (I talk to others but not as much as I’d like to) and feel that I’m lacking concentration or don’t give enough attention to others and what they are telling me. On the other hand I often wake up feeling down(sad) and actually don’t want to communicate with anyone else. I used to think I’m just a shy person but I realised it could be something more. I’m 19 so shouldn’t it be like a second nature to me?
A. You try to make eye contact but your eyes are “wet and irritated.” This might indicate an eye problem rather than a social problem. Wet and irritated eyes might be the result of allergies or other eye problems. It would be wise to consult a physician to determine what might be wrong.
You also described feeling sad and not wanting to communicate with others. Those might be signs of depression. People who are depressed tend to isolate. They want to connect with others but their depression makes it difficult to do so.
I’m not certain what you meant by this question: “I’m 19 so shouldn’t it be second nature to me?” Are you asking if it should be “second nature” to be conversational because of your age? Perhaps you are wanting to know if you “should” be more conversational because you’re young. Age and being a good conversationalist are not necessarily correlated.
It is possible, based on the limited information provided, that you may have symptoms of depression. If that were to be the case, then it might explain why you are having difficulty connecting with others. Relatedly, your wet and irritated eyes might indicate allergies or other medical problems. If that were true it might explain why you your inability to maintain eye contact. Both of these issues should be investigated. They are easily corrected with the assistance of professionals: a physician for your eyes and a therapist for your mood issues. With the right treatment, these problems can be eliminated. Good luck with your efforts. Please take care.
Dr. Kristina Randle