I’ve not blogged lately, mainly because I’ve not had much computer time in between having a sick family for 5 weeks (colds, ear infections, sinus infections, etc.), maintaining the daily mom-chores, attempting to write a novel, and keeping up with my Etsy shop.
I’m not one to talk about my feelings much. I grew up to become a very isolated and “tough” person, emotionally. In a lot of situations, emotions tend to be a burden. Now, in my adolescent years I was dealing with depression. But, I’m a firm believer that my depression was a result of my environment, not because it was a chemical imbalance. Each person’s situation is different but this is my own opinion of mine.
With that being said, and because of how I was “raised,” I am quite the introvert as an adult. I literally enjoy being alone when in the comfort of my own home, but I panic when I’m alone in public. I don’t enjoy small talk with people and I can come across as somewhat awkward around new people.
This isn’t because I have mental issues. It’s because my introvert-ism has become my safe zone. Somewhere in the transition of becoming an adult, I also learned that I am OCD about certain things. This doesn’t hinder my everyday life but it sometimes becomes frustrating, personally.
I do not confide in people. I do not have special people (or, friends) who I see on a daily basis. I have people I consider to be friends that I talk to every once in a while but they live far away, so our communication is electronically (but never talking on the phone because I don’t like small talk).
So, here’s where the main reason of this blog comes into play: How much isolation is too much isolation?
At some point, I become overwhelmed at realizing that people my age (even if they’re married with kids, like I am) are living a happy life, hanging out with their friends in their spare time, and being sociable. With my husband constantly working, that leaves me to tend to the kids, house, doctor appointments, etc., by myself. Which, that’s what I’m here for. That’s why I’m a mother – my family depends on me to take care of these things.
But, when your only free moment – your only moment to sit in peace by yourself – is when you take a shower at 8 o’clock at night, that doesn’t help the feeling of isolation. While others are able to make weekend plans, to make dinner plans with family and friends, to make vacation plans, I still have my responsibilities at home that need to be tended to.
I wouldn’t go as far as to say that I envy the people who have free time (while they perfectly balance family responsibilities in with that). But, though I’m a serious introvert, I find myself craving social experiences. My husband has friends he hangs out with. They golf together and call each other and they act like normal friends do. My family members have friends that they spend time with and confide in.
As someone in their mid 20’s, I find it hard to just say, “Ok, I want a social life. I’m going to make new friends.” Because, at that point, how does a housewife and mother of two toddlers go out and make new friends?
Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love being a stay-at-home mother and I feel beyond blessed that my husband is able to work to allow me to be home to raise our children. I didn’t always have it this good. Before me and my husband met, I was barely making it, so I see him as my knight in shining armor – my saving grace.
Most days, I feel fine with my isolation. But there are some days where I just can’t help but ask myself, “How much is too much and how do I get out of this rut?”
A psychology professor writing in Psychology Today observed:
“I know of no more potent killer than isolation … no more destructive influence on physical and mental health than the isolation of you from me and us from them. Isolation has been shown to be the central agent in the development of depression, paranoia, schizophrenia, rape, suicide, and mass murder … The devil’s strategy for our times is to trivialize human existence and to isolate us from one another while creating the delusion that the reasons are time pressures, work demands, or economic anxieties.”