1. Welcome to Autism Forums, a friendly forum to discuss Aspergers Syndrome, Autism, High Functioning Autism and related conditions.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Our modern chat room. No add-ons or extensions required, just login and start chatting!
    • Private Member only forums for more serious discussions that you may wish to not have guests or search engines access to.
    • Your very own blog. Write about anything you like on your own individual blog.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon! Please also check us out @ https://www.twitter.com/aspiescentral

nearly 50, just so quiet and alone

Discussion in 'Love, Relationships and Dating' started by selectivedetective, Feb 16, 2019.

  1. selectivedetective

    selectivedetective New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2018
    Karma:
    +46
    AS usual, I've come here with lots of thought and feelings spinning through me. Then wasn't sure where to post, or even what I wanted from posting. I think I'm used to writing this kind of thing in my diary, but as I've now found some understanding and supportive people, thought I would open it up a bit.

    I'm single, with children, and had a pretty horrific relationship a few years ago. Since then I have had a couple of crushes on people, but no mutual interest has ever really been indicated. Before I had children and realised I probably had Aspergers, I could only socialise by drinking large amounts of alcohol, and then I would eventually find a man. Obviously this wasn't the best approach, and a lot of problems surfaced later.

    These days I'm a lot more sensible, but also realise I am very bad at forming connections with people. I have taken up running, and this helps me feel strong, and stay healthy. I thought I might make friends through running, but I tend to turn up at groups, runs,and rarely say more than hello. I think I say hello to people;s dogs more often.

    But there is one man I noticed when I first started doing weekly runs. The good thing here is that I haven't done anything embarrassing, but the bad thing is that I haven't really advanced at all. I started going to a local running club, partly because I thought he would be there, and he was. I have also mustered up the courage to start conversations with him, and he always keeps it going for a bit. It's not about much apart from running, but even that is quite a lot for me, without alcohol. After a run, I can sometimes be in a slightly better place for talking.

    Recently I made the decision to try and forget about this man, as last time I spoke to him for a while, and even managed to squeeze in a bit of a joke, he seemed to get fed up first, and started doing his warming down exercises while I was talking. I said, "sorry, I'll let you do your warm downs" and went off.

    But today, after a run, he came over to me in the café, and was so friendly, and I like him so much again. I did quite badly on the conversation front today though. I had just got over a burst of toothache, and wasn't prepared for talking. I was with my youngest son. My first mistake was, he came over and stood by the table with his coffee, and I remember briefly wondering if I should move my bag so he could sit down, but that seemed a big manouevre, and I really needed to put all my effort into just talking. I managed to ask him a few things, but when he asked me questions, I couldn't really think of what to say, even though they were appropriate questions and about running. When I can't think what to say -and it's sometimes that I can't be bothered to talk about that particular thing, sometimes confusion -then I end up looking down, and I know people just think I'm desperately shy, or bored. After a while he left. When we left 5 minutes later, I coudlnt see him in the other part of the café, so I really think he would have been happy to sit with us for a bit.

    So now I'm beating myself up a bit. Was it really beyond me to ask him to sit down? Amazingly, I actually do feel quite comfortable talking to him, and would have loved him to sit there. It was the perfect time too, as my older sons weren't there and there were only 3 seats, so no one else would have joined us. I only see him about once a month at runs now, so I probably won't see him for a while, and we have never had a need to exchange numbers. Actually one reason I like him is that he isn't too into his technology and I've never seen him with a phone. I also like him because he is tall, a bit odd -right up my street, and intelligent. He's not the kind of man who tries to talks non stop or jokes all the time. He could be a bit Aspie too, but I doubt if he'd realise.

    That's all really. I feel some excitement as we ran into each other again, but also a lot of frustration. On the alone bit, I feel very much ready for a partner right now, but wonder if I will ever get to that stage again. If I could only get someone through drinking, when I was younger, it feels as if there wont be much hope now.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • Like Like x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
  2. Clueless in Canada

    Clueless in Canada Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    384
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2019
    Karma:
    +912
    Perhaps you need to just go slowly and learn from the process. It seems like you will see this man regularly and he is willing to talk to you and will even initiate talking to you. My advice would be to remember to smile at him and let a connection between the two of you slowly evolve if it is going to. Good Luck :)
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
  3. selectivedetective

    selectivedetective New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2018
    Karma:
    +46
    Thank you.

    Yes, I could generally do with smiling more, in this situation and others. I am aware that I tend not to smile, especially when I need to concentrate so I make sense, and follow the other person. But I also know it makes me come across as aloof, cold, if I don't smile.

    So yes, good advice. I'd forgotten about smiling.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
  4. Oldlady

    Oldlady Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    219
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2019
    Karma:
    +343
    I have similar issues with talking to people and particularly when they ask me questions about myself. There are men out there who like the quiet, shy type. My husband is one of them. But, you do have to make an effort to show him you are interested because he doesn't know.

    It's too bad you couldn't just say to him, 'look ... I'm actually not very good at conversation, but I do like talking with you. So ... don't think it's you if I stop talking, it's just my awkwardness at socializing and has nothing to do with you.'

    You'd be surprised how such frankness can be appreciated (not too much frankness though).
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. wight

    wight Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    409
    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2016
    Karma:
    +975
    yep, totally relate to this. Through sheer practice I can talk at work with people, without being too awkward or self-conscious. But that is not the same thing as 'connecting'. And as I've gotten older, socializing is becoming exhausting.

    None of which is help for you to "fix it"... just know you aren't the only one, I guess.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. selectivedetective

    selectivedetective New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2018
    Karma:
    +46
    Thank you for these later replies too. After trying to forget this man, his approach, and attempt at conversation has got me thinking about him too much today.

    Yes Oldlady, there is a way I could say something vaguely similar to what you suggest, another time. He also suggested I could try doing the Saturday run more often. That is difficult, time wise, but tempting!

    I remember when I went to the Running Club, I did my usual thing of feeling confident to give the basic details about myself the first time. After my confidence petered out and I found I really couldn't say anything at all in front of a group. So, in that kind of situation, people start to think you are a bit rude, and sort of seem to ignore you a bit. But this man always made an effort to say hello and sometimes walk next to me and talk to me. This, in turn, gave me enough confidence to sometimes approach him at another run, and begin a conversation.

    It's good to know others have similar experiences around people, and it's so good to be able to share on here. I haven't even told my closest friends about this. A few years ago, when I had just come out of the worst relationship ever, I had quite a crush on a man that some of my friends and I used to come across regularly. I plucked up a lot of courage to speak to him, ask him a bit about himself and try and show him I was interested. He was younger than me, and very cool but kind and quiet. He never really initiated any conversation, though he did do a nice smile and hello, whenever we passed. After a while I let go, and now when I think tback, I was a bit desperate then, and not only was he pretty definitely not interested, but we wouldn't have been at all suited. Luckily, really, in his case, my forward is everyone else's reticent!

    My friends were very sweet, listening, as I went on about the previous man, but I think they thought I was a bit crazy and deluded. I think they'd think the same, if I mentioned this man, and it would be upsetting, as I think I have moved on a bit since then. One rule I've made for myself, is that I would want to build up some emotional connection and affection, before anything more physical. Because I am so awkward, that would need to be with someone I felt comfortable talking to, someone who didn't make me feel I had to constantly be on my best behaviour or look totally stunning with. That's why I think this running man might be more likely to work -but I now there is a long way to go, and I have to be very brave.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Oldlady

    Oldlady Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    219
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2019
    Karma:
    +343
    Yes ... it takes a very strong backbone to put yourself out there in this way.

    I was completely out of the dating game for six years before I decided to give it another go. I put on my social mask and flirted with a few potentials until I settled on my 'now husband'. That was 18 years ago. I'm very glad I made the effort, but of course it could have turned out differently. It's all a crap shoot.

    I am the sort of person who regrets more what she has done than what she hasn't done. I don't like to think that I missed an opportunity. But, it is exhausting.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  8. selectivedetective

    selectivedetective New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2018
    Karma:
    +46
    Thank you Old lady. It encourages me when I hear that others in a similar boat have found someone. I feel that if I'd known then, what I know now, I would have been so careful with my choice of husband, or at least with the partner I chose after that. But no-one knew then.

    I've had about the same time as you, with no relationship. After that earlier crush, I tried not to really think about men for a bit. Also .y children were younger and it has been hugely beneficial to be able to concentrate on them, rather than having to divide my energy between them and a new partner.

    But they are a bit older now, so I feel in a better place for a relationship, plus I've had time to become more self aware, and also process what happened .before. For a few years I was so confused and traumatised by the end of the last relationship that I couldn't even talk about it without crying, and I dreaded telling people I was a single mother. I could now tell a new man about it without getting too upset and making myself too vulnerable.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2019
  9. Oldlady

    Oldlady Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    219
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2019
    Karma:
    +343
    I was a single mother for 22 years and never married before. I married my husband 4 years ago and it is the first time I ever got married. Also, my two children each have a different father.

    Let the shaming begin. Actually, I have never been shamed for those choices (not to my face) ... bad as they were. Perhaps I should have been shamed a bit, then maybe I would have made better choices.

    I digress ... your past is your past ... own it. You are not the person you were and that will come through in your words and in your actions. Take your time, but don't do nothing (double negative). Keep moving forward toward your goals and then there is some chance you will meet them.

    Grasshopper ....
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. selectivedetective

    selectivedetective New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2018
    Karma:
    +46
    That's a lovely post Oldlady.

    I think sometimes for me "not doing nothing" is to keep showing up and just doing the best I can. A few weeks ago, I was almost on the point of going to a run in a different park, as I found the situation with this man too painful. But I decided to turn up again and just see if he'd approach me. And he did at least.

    I do find the whole running event exhausting though. The actual physical side of the run is nothing compared with the social stuff!
     
  11. Oldlady

    Oldlady Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    219
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2019
    Karma:
    +343
    It's exhausting for sure, but as long as the alternative is worse ... loneliness, isolation ... then it's still worth doing. When it becomes too much, take a break then start again. That's life.

    You're on the right track as far as I can see. Just keep swimming. :)
     
  12. selectivedetective

    selectivedetective New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2018
    Karma:
    +46
    Yes, good advice. The messages here have cheered me up. I was beginning to think I was doomed to be sinlge forever now, but I realise that although no one knows what the future holds, there is so hope.

    I feel quite strange sharing information though, I've realised. With this man, , I have very gently started sharing slight details about my life, rather than just talking about running. I'm always a bit afraid he's thinking, "why is she telling me this? I really don't care." And I realise I am constantly analysing whether what I say is worth anything, to other people. Others blurt out all kinds of nonsense, but before I open my mouth I'm always weighing up the comment I wonder about making, from all angles, to see if it is entirely relevant, and whether it could possibly be perceived as stupid. YOu can see why I end up saying very little.
     
  13. Oldlady

    Oldlady Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    219
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2019
    Karma:
    +343
    I am the same way ... Aspie's?

    Just wanted to say good luck and goodbye.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2019
    • Like Like x 1