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SHY GUYS: Who raised you?


Altruist
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It started in 6th grade for me.

 

Idiot parents sent me to military school. In 5th grade, I was hanging out with alot of girls and always being cool with them and was learning about the opposite sex - attitude and personality wise anyways.

 

I was starting to make friends with a lot of girls, but then blam Military school and then all boy high school. It pretty much killed my contact with women for the next 7+ years.

 

By the time I got into college, talking to girls was foreign to me, and I always feel awkward.

 

I blame my parents for a lot of poor choices that they made, and it goes a bit deeper than that.

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Your subconscious adjusted so that you could internalize most of your feelings and channel them towards a stronger cognitive ability.
This makes me think of a path-finder program I pioneered with my school. If hadn't participated in, I would have graduated a year earlier. The basics of it was that the dangerous, lacking failures would be cross taught by a select group of students. I was one of the six "pans" as the people who needed to be there called us. What makes me bring this up is that the teachers all describe me as a largely emotionless person, I didn't even say a lot. I mostly listened. Well, this one day, I can't recall the specific events but it had to do with the programs funding and the credits value of the program, I became furious. They changed the standards and decided to fail a couple guys I had been working with that showed (imo) incredible progress. I can recall their faces as I started swearing-up a pissed-off storm. They didn't know what to do or how to respond, the teacher, the cop we had, none of them.

 

Introverts find it hard to quickly pick up subtle and sometimes even overt signals from others as evidenced by the examples you gave.

What's your social life like now? I wish you the best in your social interactions

My social circles continue to shrink, but thats at my own accord. I need to watch out for myself, my friends don't do that very well and are hindering my ability to auto-monitor. I took a job as retail salesman on commission. I am not sure if this is helping or not but I am getting a vastly wider and varied interpersonal experience than ever before. I am still very, very slow to interpret the signals. There has been improvement though, I now can tell that the signal was sent almost immediately. It still takes me awhile to interpret what that signal meant not quite 3-4 years, I am probably down to 3 weeks to 2 months. Still crazy lethargic but better to the point where the opportunity may not have evaporated yet. Not that I have the slightest clue what to do after I have decoded it all. haha ](*,)

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I was shy until my 10th grade year in terms of meeting new people. I sucked at it before then, but once I got to my sophomore year I would talk up a storm and constantly got into trouble in my classes for talking too much, but I loved being able to make 20+ people bust out laughing everyday so any trouble I got into was worth it.

 

For some reason when I got to college in '04 I became really shy again... I think it had to do with always wanting to sit at the front of the class because I know from personal experience that I WILL NOT pay attention if I sit near the back or the middle. Unfortunately this meant I barely talked to anyone during my first two years of college and to this day I've only made 2 pretty good friends there... but I was still able to make entire classrooms laugh, which feels even better when it's 150+ students, lol. Another contributing factor was being in a long distance relationship during those first two years and getting to the point where I completely relied on her to be my social life, so I had no desire to make new friends. Even after we broke up I was like that for another 3 months or so, but for some reason I completely broke out of that shell in December and have been meeting new people left and right over the past couple months, but I'm not in school this year so I'm really excited about how I'll do when I get back next spring.

 

My parents were together until I was 16. My dad started travelling for his job 8 months out of the year once I turned 13 or 14, so I would say I was raised by my mom... especially since my dad has told me a few times now how sorry he is for not being a better dad and not being there enough for my brother, sister and me when we were growing up. Both my parents were incredibly liberal when it came to raising us though, as we were never grounded by them and rarely punished... I tried to avoid any serious trouble because I hated disappointing them... it was never about fear of getting in trouble, I just couldn't stand to see them upset/disappointed with me or my brother and sister.

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I was (and still being) raised by both biological parents. My childhood was maybe even bit above the average in the terms of wealth and care. I don't mean that we ever had money to spare really much into this we don't really need, but there has not been times when I would have to skip meal or something for having no money. My mom stayed home nursing me for couple of first years of my life, and as my brother was born year after me, she did the same for him.

 

Later, since daycare, I was quite outgoing and wanted to get new friends and stuff. Not shy at all. I got friends and got along fine with everyone, never really got bullied in school or anything. While I wasn't the most popular guy at school ever (not that I even would wanted to be...), I was in this small group of friends. And some of those guys I still see like weekly.

I'm not sure when I started to spend more time inside on my computer, thus getting more and more shy when it comes to relationships as time passed. I just reduced the time I spent with my friends, "lost all interest" to opposite sex, etc. etc...

 

I see no connection here with me and my parents it this matter. My mom meets many, many people in her work daily, and she's also involved in some voluntarily stuff. My dad's almost the same thing.

As I wanted to start building relationships to people in terms of dating, I noticed that all this shyness I've gotten along the years has been like a wall I can't climb. Quite rare are the times I've had myself even to the point of talking to opposite sex in real life, not to mention that I would been able to tell them about my feelings. Usually in those kind of situations I just try to quickly say what I need to say, and then get lost.

 

So to sum things up; raised by social parents, somehow grown to exact opposite.

 

And sorry for any grammatical mistakes I've made, English it's not even my second language

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I was raised by both up until I was around 14/15ish (freshman year of HS). My dad was probably the most strict parent of all the kids at my grade school. One time the 6th grade class trip was to a nature retreat or something for 3 days overnight. This one kid at the breakfast table ticked off my dad, my dad just gets up starts screaming at the kid, *silence of 300 person cafeteria* and makes the kid stand in the corner the rest of the time. Pretty much the only person who could stand up to the guy was my grandmother (my mom's mother), as she pulled a knife on him once. Wow, ok, this is sounding way more extreme than it is. I've heard the theory that guys with relatively well-adjusted fathers (perhaps fathers close to the Platonic "Just Person", or Nimochean Ethicalness or something) tend to be more introverted because show anger and basically scare the extro-ness out of the kids. My dad was ok most of the time. He encouraged my computer and math skills (my math skills actually suck now, I just dropped out of Calc 2), and the bastard leaves me with a love for the Museum of Science and Industry which he took me to almost every year.

 

And then he died. That's an awesome paragraph opener, eh? Yeah, cancer. It got progressively worse until he didn't even know who I was. Most people were just relieved. I should back up a bit. My Dad did call me a * * * * * a lot, and although he never laid a finger on me (and put up a good fight against the State's regulations of the sexual version of that), to sum it up (TOO LATE!, heh) very strict and demeaning to both myself and my mother (my sister was too young when he died to be terribly effected).

 

Up until that freshman year of HS, I only had one friend, who (to this day) lives accross the street. This kid had (or has, I don't know) a massive temper.

The second I wanted to leave, he'd beat the * * * * out of me and rip out my hair. And yet my parents would continue to send me over there. So not only am I fairly introverted and shy, I'm also extremely sensitive.

 

Since my dad died, I've been raised by my mother. She used to fairly passive. I was too, but after the experience of getting a girlfriend at the end of my HS career I got into punk rock and all that. So I'm getting better at not being so passive and sensitive (as that girl talked about, see this post). After pointing out an extreme amount of times that she doesn't need to be polite to everyone, I got her to stand up to some rude employees at Best Buy (this is like last month). That was probably the first time I've ever seen my mom assert herself to anyone/thing; it was a rather weird experience.

 

If I can think of more, I'll write it down, but that's about as good exposition as you're going to get from me at 3 AM.

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^Thanks guys for the continued insights.

 

Kholest lets hope your new job helps you out. The more people you interact with, the better you will become at interpreting signals fast.

 

MrCrazy2u it's good to hear that you have managed to break out of the shyness shell. It seems having an absentee father can affect how we interact with others, especially during the early childhood years.

 

Faun, contrary to what you stated- I see a connection with your parents. In my opinion, extroverted parents are almost like absentee parents. They spend more time fixing their social lives than they spend with their kids. If the kids are left out of that social life, they can grow up shy and introverted because they had no-one to teach mirror in social interactions.By the way, your English is quite good

 

Hangin10, as you tacitly agreed, your shyness is rooted in your father's strictness. Excessive strictness in parents usually kills assertiveness in children, with the problem sometimes extending way into adulthood. I'm glad you have found a way to reclaim your assertiveness.

 

Thanks ladies and gentlemen. Keep the insights rolling in!

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I have not read all the posts here, but I do not think it is helpful to think of shyness as a condition, that cannot be changed. In my experience shyness is based on one of two things:

(a) Negative social feedback

 

(b) Negative family feedback

 

To reverse shyness, in my opinion, what is needed is positive social feedback. This may be gained by learning social skills or by doing good deeds for which you get social approval.

 

A sad fact of humanity is if you look to others for your self esteem, you will always be lacking in self esteem. Self esteem has to be generated from the inside by trying to be a good person and accepting yourself as you struggle and fail frequently. A good exercise I do sometimes is to step outside myself and look at myself like a non-judgemental parent. I can see how hard it is for me to be me and how much I struggle and why I fail. Looking at myself from the outside like this separates me from the emotions that may be obscuring my view when I am looking from the inside out. It helps me accept myself as I am and to work towards what I want to be. This has helped me deal with my shyness and to progress in life.

To answer your survey, I was raised by my father who was a harsh and sometimes brutal man, but I had 7 siblings and we all tend towards the shy end.

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Firstly... I do not believe people are born shy.

 

I think a lot of people would consider me shy...

 

I was raised mostly by my dad (my mom was working alot), but I think the reason I'm queiter than most is because my mom and oldest brother both love to hear themselves talk. I'm a great listener.

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I would suggest that you begin by being sure you're talking about shyness.

 

I've been saying that I was shy for most of my life, but looking back, I realize I was actually deeply sensitive in ways that made me behave as if I were shy. But there is a difference.

 

I suspect plenty of other people are the same way. Very high sensitivity can cause behavior that looks just like shyness. Very sensitive people are more deeply affected by their experiences than most people, and this can cause them to become socially avoidant.

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I would suggest that you begin by being sure you're talking about shyness.

 

I've been saying that I was shy for most of my life, but looking back, I realize I was actually deeply sensitive in ways that made me behave as if I were shy. But there is a difference.

 

I suspect plenty of other people are the same way. Very high sensitivity can cause behavior that looks just like shyness. Very sensitive people are more deeply affected by their experiences than most people, and this can cause them to become socially avoidant.

 

You have a point Squarewheel. I would describe shyness as the symptoms of the various factors that you mentioned.

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Hi, I got a private message on this so I said I would put the response up here for all to see:

i saw one of your posts where you said you were extremely shy, but changed your views on people/the world and you became more social and made mroe friends.. i was wondering if you wouldn't mind sharing more details on that (i.e. what were your old views, what are your new views), and the steps you took to get there? thanks!

 

 

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I was not born shy. I was probably the most daring kid in my school.

Up until my late teenage years was when i became shy. I guess i just grew up differently to others. And also experiences, or lack of, also attributed to my shyness.

 

Another factor is my body image. Causing me to always think about what others think.

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In addition to shyness being about negative social and familial feedback, I also think that there are two (or more) types of shyness:

 

1. Situational shyness

 

2. General shyness

 

Some people are only shy in certain situations or around certain people - a party they don't know many people, a boy or girl they want to date but are unsure of reciprocal feelings, etc. Others are shy in all situations, or can be shy around everyone unless they know a person well.

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Firstly... I do not believe people are born shy.

 

Data showed that genetics contributes substantially to the babies' tendency to cling to their mothers, cry or exhibit other shy behavior when encountering a stranger, new toys and other novelties. These researchers and others indicate that genetics constitutes roughly half of the foundation of shyness.

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As much as I can tell - I don't really know the reason why I was quite shy, I defeated my shyness...

Perhaps it could have been the way how I tried to cope with my parent's problems - I still have some kind of wall in front of me when I have to talk about several things regarding family and spiritual matters - I start to tell pointless jokes and behave quite childish - Only while being completely alone with a person and only knowing him/her for a long time, I am able to talk about his/hers and my beliefs...

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I just stubbled upon this and had to respond. I am the "shy, nice guy". I was the first born and mostly was raised by my mother as my father wanted nothing to do with me. My father and I fought all the time and he favored my younger sister over me and blamed me for all the family problems. I know my shyness comes from this upbringing and am trying hard to overcome it, but its very difficult. Also in my early teenage years when I did put everythign on the line to a younge girl, I was rejejected or laughed at, so that kind of added to it, and I didn't have a "fatherly figure" to go to for advice. The only time I am shy is around new people and mostly in One-on-One situation with females. I dont know if any of this helps but it might bring a little insight into my shyness.

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My first post on the board. I don't know the main reason why I am shy. There are some reasons I can come with. Based on those 3 choices, my shyness would have to be from number 1. Both my parents raised me but my mom didn't go back to work until I was in high school. She was around me all day and once I came home from school she was there also. It looks like she had more influence on me than my dad. But I also think it has to do with genetics and childhood experiences. Kids can be brutal and I was one of those smart kids that got made fun of all of the time. I think my experiences in school definitely made more shy. I broke out of my shell somewhat when I was jr. in high school. Still, I am like some of the shy guys (never had a girlfriend or been a date) on this messageboard. I at least want to go on dates now and I found this site because I was searching on google about shyness. I was looking for tips and this looks like a pretty good messageboard. These sites about shyness have a lot of good info.

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I have come to the conclusion that, Im shy because:

 

1. My dad was and is not very close to me. He thinks he's single, that's why I don't like him. My mum has been through lots of crap.

2. As a child, I was never motivated by my parents to do anything.

3. My mum doesn't have friends. I think that their children could be friends with me.

4. I don't even know lots of my cousins, because my mother's brothers fight a lot.

5. I'm not used to girls. I wish I had a sister to be more used to them.

6. There's a severe lack of communication with my brothers.

7. My father hit me several times (and my mum) when I was little. I got so scared I didn't even want to get up from bed on Saturdays. This is why I think that I tend to be very defensive about people, so I don't trust in them very much.

8. Unexperienced in social stuff. I think if I knew lots of places to hang out or to go and drink a soda, then I would feel more confident about asking a girl out.

 

I hope this helps

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