I Get Drained by Social Interactions

The other night I had to go to a big social event in town where I was expected to give a little speech.  That’s not really a big deal for me anymore.  It was only in front of a couple hundred people and it’s not like I haven’t been on stage before because of my past dance performances.  Really, that’s not what exhausts me or stresses me out.

What does utterly exhaust me is social interaction.  When I’m with a few close friends I get energized but put me out into the public and expect me to talk to random people?  It’s exhausting, especially when you’re at an event where a lot of people are focusing on you in particular.  And want to talk to you in particular.  (Which is definitely different from group dance performances like I took part in.)

Really, it feels like you’re being put on parade and it just utterly drains me emotionally, physically and mentally.  After about 5 or so hours I just get utterly exhausted and have to push through to the end.  The event can be enjoyable or not, it doesn’t really make a difference, but what always stays the same is the exhaustion.  I can be having the time of my life and just go, “I really think I need a break”.  Or I can be totally miserable and say the same thing.

Does anyone else here have this problem?  I don’t really get anxious about social interaction because I can go through all of the necessary forms just fine but it does exhaust me.

7 comments

  1. Abigail Owen

    Well hello fellow natural introvert. I am exactly the same. What’s funny is that I’ll tell people I’m a natural introvert and they don’t believe me because I’m friendly, I enjoy doing things with smaller groups of friends, and I can talk to just about anyone and in front of large groups. However large social things, and especially with strangers, is a total drain on my energy. I have certain things I do to help me “fake it till I make it” which is why most people don’t suspect. Introvert doesn’t necessarily mean shy, it means you get your energy from alone time or time spent in smaller/intimate groups of close friends and family. Extroverts get their energy from crowds and lots of people.

    • Carrie Slager

      Exactly! I’ve practiced the fake it till you make it thing so long that almost no one believes I’m an introvert when I first meet them. I was shy as a child but worked through it. I don’t get stressed by social situations or anything now but they definitely do exhaust me. I just need some ‘me’ time and I suspect a lot of writers, readers and bloggers are similar.

  2. charliegirlteachergirl

    Yes, I am the same! Although I do still sometimes get anxious in new settings/groups of people. I am also an introvert, and I prefer small groups (unless it’s my family, I mean, there’s 20+ grandkids alone). I do get exhausted from it, which some people don’t understand. It has definitely caused some issues at times because the more of that I’m doing, the more recharging time I need.

    • Carrie Slager

      Yes, that’s so true! The more social things I do, the more recharging time I need. Especially after ones where I’m expected to play a big role and be on display constantly. Family gatherings exhaust me because I’m not particularly fond of my extended family but in general small gatherings aren’t nearly as exhausting. When a few friends and I get together every once in a while, that’s fine and I can talk until I turn blue in the face. But at large gatherings? I usually need to leave around the 5 hour mark.

  3. Pingback: Sunday Post (May 31) | Girl of 1000 Wonders

Leave a Reply