Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

Do I feel emotions or do I just don't understand them?

Community Member

This is a bit of a rant, sorry.

This is probably not the most important thing somebody will post about, however I've been struggling with this for so long and it's kinda gotten harder to deal with.

Sometimes I care about nothing. When I say nothing, I mean nothing. I've found myself start to drift away from certain things. I talk less to my friends, a lot of my conversations consist of small talk and the inkling to just get out of there. I fill my time up with assessments as I can avoid people, I hop from interest to another quickly without a care and dread seeing people often.

I've recently discovered I care about NOBODY. Metaphorically I would take a bullet for nobody, I don't really feel emotions towards people except negative ones often.

I don't know if its selfishness, or if it's the inability to create bonds with people. I think it would be the latter as I often find myself feeling empty or hollow. I have no hobbies. I dread spending time with my friends. I don't care about my family. I don't care about my animals.

I don't have a connection to my emotions either, god this is really hard to write an explain. I'm not very good at explaining emotions and I often feel like I'm faking them. Like I know when I'm supposed to be happy, I know when I'm supposed to feel sad. So I pretend to feel this way.

I recently had a family member pass away and I told my self over and over again, 'we didn't see them often, it's normal I'm not sad, it's normal I'm the only one in the room that doesn't have a good memory shared with them to talk about' but soon I realized that that's not how I should be feeling.

Sorry for the rant, and sorry if I posted this in an inappropriate place as I only signed up a few minutes ago but is it normal to feel like I don't understand myself and my own emotions? Is it normal to not be able to identify or explain them?

5 Replies 5

Community Champion
Community Champion

Welcome to beyond blue.

First thing I want to mention is that your thoughts and feelings sound normal for you. As for faking your emotions - I have a little familiarity with that. There are a couple of stories here I could tell you. I guess in some ways I might have imagined relationships as presented on TV or in the movies. But nothing is really like that?

My dad had problems expressing himself. Showed mum a feeling wheel to use to help him with the explanations you are looking for. If you asked him how he was he would answer fuzzy or anxious. Ask him what he was thinking and get a similar answer.

I would like to suggest you chat with someone about how you feel etc

Community Member

I can relate to that which is probably why I’m friendless. I sort of drift away when the conversation is self-centred. I just talk to people when needed – my bipolar is something im conscious off and I try to make sure I don’t seem ‘off’ or over enthusiastic.
Most of my time is spent doing university assessments too – I’m a homebody and I have no to hang with either. Since I’m a mid-year entry student I see no point in getting to know people unless I have to… it’s only 6 months that these people would be in my classes. I am antisocial but I can change to be ‘social’. This includes pretending to be interested by asking from their last conversation how did it go e.g. the Canoe competition.
I’ve realised I’m selfish,,, but I’ve been used by people. I do think you care… why else would you post here? I’ve realised that all my negative thoughts are coming true like how despite the advancement of technology the stupidity of people has increased e.g. texting behind the wheel of a care.
I’m socially awkward but you will find them once in a blue moon… treasure it while it lasts because life has many paths. You sound really down and I hope you can at least say 1 positive thing about yourself, it’s like you’re in a black hole. Truthfully I don’t care about my family either, they’re all toxic and liars. Please take care of your animals they are living things. I always feel hollow – felt that since I was 19 like something was missing to fill the void.
I’m not a very good communicator in person. You’ve written your thoughts out pretty well! I went through that phase of faking them and I still do…

My father passed away and I don’t have any guilt for not mourning for him. He filled my childhood with some trauma and blamed me for the separation of my mother and him. This was just after I was discharged from hospital.
Emotions are how you express yourself. Right now I’m sensing confusion, frustration, curiosity, scepticism and doubt,

P.S. people are complicated beings - just focus on your emotions first then observe how other people express themselves. Hope this helped

Community Member

Hi Hollow Shell, just wanted to say that i can relate to your comments about being emotionless , feel like drifting through life on a river of nothingness at times. It can be hard when in this lack of feelings stage to relate to others who appear to be enjoying their life and being happy and or sad. Writing a journal about what i am going through has helped me see whats happening around me even if i am unable to emotionally feel those things. It can also be good to have this information on you if you decide to seek psychology assistance to work through this issue. Extreme apathy or complete emotional detachment can sometimes be a way that we shelter ourselves from connecting with a troubled past or abuse or just a coping mechanism because we've taught ourselves that if we don't show those emotions then people won't judge us or perhaps abandon us in our times of need. Hoping you find a way to start finding those things and working through your issue. This forum is a open and accepting place that you can use to reach out or just express yourself and what you are dealing with at the time.


Community Member

Hi Hollow Shell

Unfortunately distorted thinking and inability to express emotions authentically are two of the primary and cruel symptoms of CPTSD. I know exactly how you feel. I can feel how you feel. How long ago were you diagnosed?

Kind regards


Community Member

I've never been diagnosed, this is a result of talking to nobody about how I feel, ever. Props to me...

I was quick to deny this until I finally read a little more about the subject and oh. I don't want to self diagnose or whatever but it does make sense.

I don't have a connection especially to my parents because I've always been an annoyance to them. I used to want to spend time with them and play board games and stuff but I was constantly ignored and waved off. I am also given the impression daily that I'm a bother to my parents and they despise my existance.

Back when I was younger, my dad was more aggressive than he is now. He would constantly yell and scream at me and my sibling. He would often use force and tell us how worthless we are. He only did this when we screwed up (swearing, shattering a cup, refusing to clean my room ect.)

I don't have a say in my family life. My parents word is law. They mention excitement for when we resch 18. This is when they told us we'd have to start paying to live at home and stuff. The excitement in their eyes at the prospect of cashing in from us. Ugh. Arguing with them (or just suggesting anything) resilts in being shot down and shut up. As I said, no say.

probably not the same thing but it's nice to get off my chest.