Anxiety by new friendship
Hi I am new to this so apologies if this is all over the place.
I moved to Aus in 2007 with my wife and two kids 6&10 at the time. My wifes side of the family is settled here moving from india, i thought it would be better for her (being close to her family) and my kids growing up in a rural setting. I left my career, family and friends since childhood to do this. A long drawn out visa process caused a lot of stress but has now thankfully been resolved in aug 2022. This process made me anxious for the first time in my life. In about dec22 a female started to talk to me at work which was not usual for the area. Through regular interactions i really began liking her and it started reminding me of what i was missing with my friends from uk. Although i liked the chats i noticed it made me more anxious when they didnt happen (when she was busy at work etc). Ive told her that all i want is friendship and that i am happy with my marriage. Ultimately I dont know if this relationship is good for me or is making me more anxious. In my heart I dont think she really wants to be friends but just likes to chat occasionally. I haven't made any other friends since moving here although there is new family connections. I dont like sitting in pubs etc and dont follow aus football which excludes a lot of people. I feel lonely and really miss speaking to friends in social setting. I try to talk via phone but its often difficult due to time differences. Ive told my wife how i feel and she has been awesome, she phones me throughout the day which helps to an extent. Should i stop talking to the new 'friend' if it makes me anxious?
I'd like to welcome you here to the Forum. A wise move as you if oyu look around you can see how other people have handled similar situations and get an outside perspective.
For a start let me say you have accomplished an awful lot, moving to a strange country, dealing with all the stresses of visas, getting employment and having your wife's family here too. Plus giving up family, friends and occupation in India to come here. On top of all that being a parent.
You must be a very capable person.
Without many friends in you new situation it is every understandable if you attach a great deal of importance to anyone who is friendly, particularly if it is just the one person, and can worry if they seem distant at times, and closer at others.
You did say the association is making you anxious. Could you say why you think this is? Do you wonder for example if you will eventually want to form a relationship with this person, or she with you? Is there some other reason? Is it just there there is no one else?
Perhaps if you can say what is wrong the problem might seem less.
I do think you are lucky to have a partner who tries to hard to make you feel better, I know you have you talked over this particular problem with her, does she have any ideas as to why this friendship worries you ?
I do hope you come back and we can talk some more
Thanks Croix for the nice words. I dont really take time to think about it but i am capable for achieving a great deal. In regards to the friend we did discuss that i wanted only friendship, I was anxious that she may think i wanted more before this chat. I think it is more of there not being anyone else that I can chat to and feeling lonely. Taking time to breathe helps but sometimes the anxiety takes over. I decided yesterday that it was best for me to end the friendship, i wrote a detailed letter explaining what was happening to me and it was best for me to walk away. Just hope i didnt hurt her feelings.
I'm sure if she is a nice person she will understand. Having to worry about the friendship all the time would not have been doing you any good.
Several times now you have mentioned anxiety, something that came on after your move. As someone wiht an anxiety condition myself I can appreciate it can make life miserable and can affect sensitivity and judgment (at least in my case).
I am in a much better place now, but was incapable of improving by myself, and only started to recover when I got medical assistance. May I ask if you have any medical support, or if not have been thinking of going to seek it?
I'm glad you can relate and also that you have taken matters in your own hands and sought medical help. It is a great pity that there always seems to be a wait, and cost is no help eihter. As I benefited from the same sort of assistance I'd hope you will too.
Yes many meds do have side effects, I've trialed a lot over the years, however now I am on a regimen that suits me, and has no appreciable side effects but does the job. I'm very happy with them.
I can very much sympathise with not getting to sleep, I used to dread going to bed as I knew my mind would be in an endless loop of dismal thoughts about what I'd done or was going to do, thinking up disastrous endings.
Something you might care to try that does not have side effects is the free smartphone app I use, called Smiling Mind. It admittedly takes practice to get started but then becomes surprisingly effective at stopping that loop and leaving one feeling calm. If I take that calm feeling, maybe have a cup of cocoa, and then go to bed, turning over the Smiling Mind experience I may go to sleep.
Smiling Mind has a very large series of exercises with alt least one to suit everyone, even me, who has the attention span of a goldfish:)
Do you think you would like to give it a few tries? I'd be interested to know how you go.
How are you feeling
I understand how difficult it can be to be an immagrant in a new country and how hard it is to be going through the settling process. It must be hard to not have your community with you like you did back home in india. You must try and make multiple social connections with people in your community a good way is to possibly find a social circle which you can connect with who has a common interest like maybe getting into some volenteer organisations for example the RFS or st johns ambulenc. Maybe go to people in your local community and ask a simple question.
What can I do to be of service to my community?
I am also an immagrant and I totally understand but connected socailly with your new community is important because everyone can be your friend if you offer a serving hand to your community.
Loyalty to your family to your community to your country is important to be gratful for what you have been given.
I know it's hard to connect with the footy crowd but there are so many other ways you can connect with your community and socioty.
You can always find a way to be of service to your community?