One of the most persisting constants in my life has been a feeling of being an outsider. I never really had friends, or a group with which to do things before getting to university. And even in university I found it rather difficult to connect, to find people who would want to spend time with me and with whom I'd want to spend time with.
Nowadays I rarely get that feeling after all I do have quite a few good friends and know many, many people. But sometimes things happen, which make one relive those feelings of inadequacy and of being disliked. In the circle of people I know and hang out with, the problem seems especially made harder due to a few things. First of all, I used to be rather inept at social situations and did spend a few years being rather unpleasant person. Combined with my problem with facial expressions which disturbs some people, every now and then I find out that there are people out there in the circles I frequent whom I don't know, but who seem to know me and want nothing to do with me.
Since being disliked by everyone was the story of my life for the first 20 years, it's rather hard to relive those feelings when I run into a problem where people dislike me and I have no idea why. Luckily it doesn't happen often, but even once is a bit too often for me. I know it is my problem. Other people are quite free to dislike me and I don't presume to know why they do that. It is not my position that they shouldn't either, though I think they might be wrong on who those people believe me to be. The feelings are my feelings and I need to deal with them, but I do wish that people who dislike me and don't want to have anything to do with me, would come forward and say that to me directly. I think it would be a nice thing to do and it would make me appreciate them quite a bit more.
It hurt me, when I couldn't join an rpg game, because another anonymous player did not want to play with me. It hurts me, when a close relative of mine has decided that there is something irreparably wrong with me and it is no use trying to know me. It hurt me, when many, people I know and care about put up their own irc-channel and then removed themselves from those channels I used to see them in and did not invite me to join. I understand their reasons for not staying, things were getting ugly in the old channel (though I do not think I was one of those to blame - if I was, please tell me so that I may learn something from it). I can't speak for those people, but I guess and believe that they had good reasons for getting out - and that they had good reasons for not inviting me. But it still hurts, especially as the feelings of inadequacy and of being somebody whom no one would want to know resurfaced as a result. Feeling of being shut out. The feeling is mine and comes from my own insecurities and thus the responsibility is not theirs, but mine.
To be truthful, I never really knew many of those people. Partly the hurt feelings, I think, come from the fact that they were people I wanted to know and people whom I thought I would get to know now that I had actually gotten to a phase in my life when I was capable of getting to know people. And believing I had a place in that crowd. In my insecurity, though, I never really believe it.
The five smallest industries by firm size
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