I’m Still Ashley, Just Different

I’m not really doing okay right now. I was totally going for a long streak of 0 bad days but it just didn’t happen. I just need to get some things off of my chest and I want to do it here, and on my blog.

To my friends…. I’m sorry that I never wanna hangout. I’m sorry that I don’t make an effort anymore. I’m sorry that I’ve become a flaky person. I’m sorry that I disappoint you when I cancel on our plans. I’m really really sorry when I promise to come to a party of yours, and I just don’t make it. I really am. I’m sorry that I seem checked out, withdrawn or uninterested. 

It’s literally not you, it’s me.

I really struggle in social situations. If there are more people than just you and I, I have a really hard time getting myself to come anyway. It isn’t because I don’t like who is going to be there, who your other besties are, or where we’re even going. Being around other people (whether I know them a bit or not at all) just gives me the most anxiety I’ve ever had in my life. Yes, I used to be social, and outgoing, and loud and made friends easy…. but that’s not me anymore.

I’ve changed.

This isn’t me having let anxiety take over my life. THIS IS WHAT ANXIETY IS. This is literally what I experience and it’s hard for you to understand, unless you experience yourself. I’m sorry, but it just is. Do you know how terrible it makes me feel when I cancel our plans? Do you know how sick to my stomach it makes me that my efforts are basically non-existent? Do you know how heartbroken that I am, watching my friends withdraw and find new friends? Heartbroken. H E A R T B R O K E N. I’ve spent many nights just crying and crying. Not focusing at work because I can’t stop thinking about all of the friends I’ve lost over the last 2 years. It isn’t easy for me. And I’m sorry it makes you upset. I am not doing this intentionally. Something in my brain, chemically, makes it hard for me to be in social situations, with a lot of people, or a few. That sounds needy, and dependent on others. It’s not, I just know (from experience) how my anxiety works and doesn’t work in different situations.

I’m a quiet person now. I prefer to keep things to myself (with the occasional Instagram post). I just want to be at home, with my husband, reading a book. It’s weird. I miss me. I miss being outgoing, and spontaneous, wild and loud… I miss being happy and friends with everyone… but I’m just not anymore. I’m good to have a close friend or two… someone I can truly trust with everything in my life. I need someone to love me. I need someone to stay in my life, as my friend, regardless of the struggle I have when it comes to socializing. I understand that everyone is different, and I’m not demanding all of my friends to attend to my every need. But what I am saying, is that it’s hurtful. It’s hurtful to know that I’ve disappointed you. It’s hurtful to know that I’ve hurt you by not being there. It’s just as hurtful for me as it is for you. And carrying that, is an even bigger weight. I’m sorry, I’m gonna say it like it is, without the intention of you doing everything wrong. Because that is most definitely NOT what I’m saying. 

All I’m saying is this. I’m losing my friends, left and right. More and more people I’m losing contact with. I know that 75% to probably 99% is my fault but that doesn’t mean I don’t care about you. It doesn’t mean that I don’t think about you every single day. It doesn’t mean that I don’t wish and pray for, every day, that we could spend more time together, and strengthen our friendship. I feel so lonely. Yes, I do have my husband, but he is not a girl, and girls need their girlfriends and girl nights. I’m only saying this because I don’t want anyone to assume anymore who I am, what I’m feeling, or decide for me, what I can and cannot handle as their friend. I’m just tired of it. I’ve changed. It’s okay. People change!! I didn’t expect to change, and I’m sure you didn’t either. But it’s okay. I love having friends, I do. And I wish that this wasn’t an issue in my life, but it is.

I feel really lonely. I feel sad that it’s hard for me to make an effort to be friends with someone. I’ve been on the back burner in many friendships before and it’s hard to continually put myself out there, despite my anxiety, only to be reminded that I’m not exactly that friend I thought I was all along. Gah, there’s so many mixed feelings going on in this post. Anyway, I mainly just wanted to say that I’ve changed. And yes, I’m well aware of how much I do not socialize anymore. I’m very aware of how different and withdrawn I am. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want any of you to be my friends. It doesn’t mean that one single bit. I’m just different, and I’m just asking you to love me for who I am now, instead of who I used to be. I’m still Ashley, I’m still here, I’m just different now.

I love you guys. I love all of my friends very deeply. I would do anything for any of you. I’m thinking and praying for you always.

xoxo

GRATIFY

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