Feelings are contagious

Anxiety is a great example of a contagious feeling. I’m sure that my NLD anxiety sometimes drives people away. I also withdraw into myself, as though I’m a natural wallflower. I’m most comfortable reading or writing alone, in quiet spaces, and caring for my dog. I suppose there is a great opportunity in the synergy of comfort with one’s own thoughts, and a direct line to evaluating truth. NLD, in its left-hemisphere strengths, can result in logical aptitude. It’s even possible to succeed in math, but it must be the right learning environment. And there must be ties into the student’s interests, plus proper support based on the student’s individual needs. Social situations cause me to feel, to use a very overused cliche, like a fish out of water. Even with my own family I feel this.

My own parents, who gave me life and some of my most significant long-term relationships, are socially awkward to a great degree. As a teen, I found their social troubles to be very distressing. And since that time, I’ve sought out other adults to provide the guidance that my parents could or would not. The first person I found turned out to be abusive. Social comprehension troubles made me more susceptible to that abuse, and the conditions that allowed it.

Going back to the post topic, though, I have a very anxious elderly relative. I feel so anxious around this person that I struggle to even be in the same room. It doesn’t help that other relatives also avoid this person. Or that disease symptoms (relative has nursing home needs) cause barriers to effective communication. It also doesn’t help that relatives pressure me to come to the person’s aid. But I can’t. I have enough to deal with managing my own life. I get accused of being selfish for this, but caring for myself is really a responsibility I have, and a big one at that.

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