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Not everyone enjoys socializing. In fact, there are people out there who hate it.
Though, it may be that “hate” is too strong of a word. It may be that you have an aversion to socializing because of some other reason that is driving your feelings of discomfort. You may find that your hatred of socializing lessens if you can identify and address that underlying issue.
To accomplish that, we need to better understand some of the issues people who hate socializing face.
Speak to an accredited and experienced therapist because they are best-placed to help you get more enjoyment from socializing if that’s what you would like. You may want to try speaking to one via BetterHelp.com for quality care at its most convenient (get 10% off your first month when you sign up through this link).
1. You’re an introvert.
There are three types of people when it comes to socialization: introverts, extroverts, and ambiverts.
An extrovert is someone who thrives on socializing. They recharge their batteries by being out there, talking to people, laughing, and having a good time. It’s not that they can’t enjoy or don’t want time alone, it’s that they feel replenished when they can spend time in social situations with other people.
An introvert is someone who needs quality time to themselves to recharge their batteries. Socialization drains their battery, and they will get exhausted after some time. The introvert may be able to spend time with a few specific people without their social battery getting drained. It’s not unusual for an introvert to have a friend or relationship partner that doesn’t drain them.
One thing that should be said about introverts is that plenty of misconceptions float around. Introversion doesn’t mean being socially awkward, anxious, or inept. On the contrary, many introverted people can socialize just fine, enjoy socializing, and have vibrant social lives. It’s just that when they’re done, they need time to themselves to recharge.
Why does that matter? Because a lot of people write off mental health issues that should be addressed as them simply being introverted. You can learn social skills if you’re awkward or inept. There are books, videos, podcasts, and therapists that can help with that. If you’re socially anxious, it may require therapy or treatment to address. But you’re not going to do that if you chalk an actual problem up to “that’s just the way I am because I’m an introvert.”
And, lastly, there are ambiverts. The vast majority of people are some combination of introverts and extroverts. Sometimes they’re introverted; sometimes they’re extroverted. These folks are ambiverts.
We’ve already established that many introverts don’t hate socializing. Unless you are an extreme introvert, it may be less that you hate socializing and more that you don’t have enough time to recharge. We are so busy nowadays that creating space for ourselves can be challenging. An introvert who has to bounce from work responsibilities to family responsibilities to life responsibilities and never has a chance to decompress will be drained.
Their not wanting to be around people is because they’re exhausted. That can look like anger.
2. You suffer from social anxiety.
Anxiety is an often confused and misinterpreted feeling. The main issue is that many people interpret anxiety to look only like anxiousness. It’s not always. Anxiety may also look like anger because the anxious person is being put into a situation their brain is trying to keep them out of.
People with social anxiety may seem to hate socializing because it makes them uncomfortable. And because they are being put into that uncomfortable situation, their brain is reacting in anger to create more distance to get them away from it. That can be interpreted as hatred.
The idea of socialization often causes the person with social anxiety to feel fear of being judged, saying the wrong thing, or doing the wrong thing. These feelings are amplified in a way that people who do not experience social anxiety will typically experience.
It’s totally normal to be nervous or anxious about a social situation. Everyone experiences that. However, when it prevents you from meaningfully engaging in socializing when you want to, it is an issue you will want to address with a mental health professional. They should be able to help you learn how to be less socially awkward.
3. You lack common interests and connection with others.
You may feel like you can’t be yourself around others because you’re not around people who share similarities. You may not be finding fulfilling social connections because of it. That may make you hate socializing or want to avoid it altogether. But, on the other hand, you may feel there is no point if you can’t develop those connections.
And who would want to reach out and socialize only to be constantly misunderstood? That causes feelings of depression, anger, and anxiety in many people.
4. You’ve had negative social experiences in the past.
Past negative experiences may influence our present or future choices. For example, people with bad social experiences may want to avoid future socialization to prevent that from happening again. And because they want to avoid that situation, they may respond with negative feelings as a self-defense mechanism.
The truth is that we cannot let a bad past experience guide our present and future life. Is there a possibility that things may go bad again? Of course! But there is also the possibility that you will make some great friends and have a great time! But you’ll never have those great times if you don’t risk having some of those bad times.
It’s like asking someone out on a date. Sure, they may reject you, and that’s not typically a good feeling. Or they might not reject you, and it turns into something great.
5. You fear confrontation.
Anger often masks fear and sadness. Fear and sadness are vulnerabilities that people don’t typically want to express to the rest of the world. These things almost serve as an open invitation for malicious people to try to exploit. Plus, it’s hard to be vulnerable to a lot of people. It’s a skill that requires some work to do healthily.
However, anger is something other people tend to back down from. A person with a fear of confrontation may be intimidated by angry people and otherwise seek to avoid them. That fear isn’t always rational, though. Most situations aren’t going to include angry or aggressive people.
It may also be that you’re afraid of being judged, called out, or embarrassed about something.
6. You have difficulty making social connections.
A hatred for socializing may stem from difficulty in making social connections. Some don’t connect well with others due to mental health issues that cannot be circumvented. For example, a person on the autistic spectrum doesn’t feel emotions in a typical way. As a result, they often don’t connect with other people in a typical way, either.
A mental health issue may cause you to feel an aversion or hatred for socializing because it’s hard to create and maintain those connections. Resentment would be a reasonable reaction to that frustration. And if you’re frustrated by it, that may certainly look like anger or hatred. Why be more outgoing when you can’t seem to form friendships and relationships?
7. You believe people aren’t that good.
What else is there really to say about that? People aren’t that good a lot of times. They’re emotional, demanding, territorial, selfish, and can flat-out be jerks for no other reason than to be jerks. And if you focus on that, that’s all you’ll see.
People can also be kind, compassionate, understanding, and warm. Many good people out there want to feel a connection to their fellow man, woman, or people that don’t identify with the traditional gender constructs.
“I hate socializing because people suck.” That’s a totally valid point. But to live with that mindset is to deprive yourself of any possible positive connections and healthy people. It may help you to learn more about red flags in socializing so that you can spot those negative people before they can affect you.
How do I learn to enjoy socializing?
So, you clicked on an article about the reasons that you hate socializing. Why? Not why you hate socializing. Rather, why did you click on the article?
You may hate socializing, but you may be craving social connection. You may want friendships and relationships but can’t achieve that because of aversion or anger at the idea of socializing. You may want to be socially graceful and to be able to have a good time with other people.
And if that’s the case, then it’s very likely that you don’t actually hate socializing. What you hate are circumstances that affect your perception of or ability to socialize. For example, anyone would hate socializing if they feel like they’re going to embarrass themselves or be attacked if they let themselves be vulnerable.
You will need to understand why you hate socializing if you want to address the issue. That may require the help of a mental health professional. BetterHelp.com is a website where you can connect with a therapist via phone, video, or instant message. And you'll get 10% off your first month when signing up through this link.
In the meantime, you could try working on your tolerance for socializing by stepping into lighter social situations with fewer people. That is far less overwhelming and may be easier for you to form some connections with others. It may even help you enjoy socializing.
Avoiding the issue will only make it worse and harder to address as time goes on. Avoidance reinforces those behaviors. So, whether you want to or not, it is a good idea to put yourself out there to socialize, even if it’s not a lot.