When Silence Isn’t Golden

“You’d think that silence would be peaceful. But really, it’s painful.”

David Levithan, Will Grayson

Of shyness, anxiety and selective mutism… how does a person live with all of these?

I may not look like it, but I rarely speak and I don’t talk a lot. I often go out, but I try my best to conceal myself so that I won’t have to see anyone I knew and I wouldn’t have to talk too much. Either I was careful with my words (as with my actions) or there are certain factors that prevented me from participating in such conversations.

Unfortunately, my communication skills are starting to get worse with each passing day, and I might find it hard to utter something just to express myself.

##########

I don’t recall being talkative back when I was a kid, but what I remember back then is that some of my classmates discourage me from joining their conversations. Try to join their conversation, and they’ll tell you to buzz off and/or make a face and tell me to stop talking. It was a slap in the face, in the sense of rejection. I feel embarrassed afterwards and vowed myself not to engage in any conversations even if they asked me to. That somehow changed over the years, but I only engage myself in a conversation if they asked me to, only when I feel like it.

Now, if I try to say something, they’re usually asking me to repeat it and/or tell me to speak louder. That was kind of bothersome and irritating, as I’m not fond of repeating myself over and over just to be heard. I sometimes tend to shout if ever they didn’t understand what I just said.

Also, they would ask why I was quiet most of the time. It’s not like I’m avoiding conversations, but this is getting on my nerves just being asked that. Well, I decided to let it pass since most people [I am with] are extremely extroverts and cannot live a day without talking, even for just a short time. They’re not like me.

##########

When you hadn’t said a single word, like, in years, chances are you may find it difficult to finish a statement without stammering. Your communication skills are affected, and you feel awkward trying to express yourself through speaking. Keeping your mouth shut for long periods of time is like abandoning a skill you’re good at. In other words, you’re a rusted machine, unable to function due to lack of oil lubrication.

Selective mutism is a severe frustration, and it can be serious. Personal/social anxiety plays a major role in this. You try to say a word, only you get irritable because you’re unable to express yourself. You feel uncomfortable when being confronted, and you’ll do anything just to withdraw from an unexpected talk with a person.

It’s sad that I feel like I’m losing out when it comes to conversations, and I doubt if I’ll ever communicate again. I hate it when I feel inferior just because I couldn’t say a word out of shyness and anxiety. I need to do something about this. Otherwise, I’ll remain like that for the rest of my life.

Advertisements