Sociality is not about specific people, but people in general. We all need to be social in some fashion that fulfills our needs, and we all have a format we need this fulfillment in a dissimilar fashion to anyone else. Social connection is a nuanced need—unlike food, clothing, and housing. I speak of these three needs as having a base level we all conform to in terms of being just “fulfilled.” Social interaction is a cup necessary to fill, of wildly different shapes and sizes for everyone.
I have people in my life that I love and love me back, I am by no means cut off from the world completely. However, I look at the entire universe in a manner that sees myself as the center and everything else revolving around it. I fully believe in the multiverse, and while I wish to not bring anything of a religious sense into that which I explore through my writing, I see this universe being mine. And I believe there are infinite universes out there, some or all belonging to others. In some fashion, that can be explained somewhat scientifically when we think beyond the four dimensions we’re used to—but can’t fully be described in terms of true meaning. Scientists often leave that part out—doesn’t help with the publication of papers.
When I was a young child, I always wondered very simply—why can I see the world from behind my eyes, with my brain… and everyone else is existing outside of that? What is different about me, that I am positioned here and they are all positioned elsewhere? I understood I was a human being like everyone else, but I was the only one… here.
As I grew older I came to realize that inside my brain was a cavernous full-on universe—some of it locked to my ability to perceive and act within, and some of it able to be unlocked. However, the key here was I was living in two universes: one inside of myself, and one outside of myself. The one inside myself has facsimiles of people, it has facsimiles of situations. Some would call this sort of thing “daydreams,” but by all definitions of that word—mine were much more real.
When it comes to social interaction, these universes can not mesh at all. There is a barrier between the social universe in my head and the realities of whatever this universe is—regardless whether it is one of many or the only one.
In this “real” universe—the one you’re in—it probably doesn’t need to be mentioned, but I am extremely socially awkward as well as blind to most social signals. I just don’t do well. However, as time goes on I learn how to deal with that better and better. My ability to socialize only really matters, though, in how social life works inside my head versus how it works in this “real” universe.
I write a lot. I write to present to the world who I am. This is a form of being social. You reading this is us interacting in some fashion—though we may never communicate beyond this1.
With all that I write, create, and otherwise put out into the “real” universe as social engagement (one-way or two-way,) it works nothing like how things work inside my head. I simply cannot, no matter how many words I use or how I finalize creations like paintings or whatever, get across the points that form perfectly in my own universe to form perfectly in this “real” universe everyone else exists within.
I’ve tried pretty much everything. I’ve used technology well before “social media” was a term used by anyone to attempt to communicate to everyone and anyone not inside my head. I’ve used pretty much every medium you can imagine. None of it works. Nothing crystallizes socially outside my head like it does inside my head.
Thus I get to the term “lonely.” It is a very important pathway I have drawn here to this term because it does not mean what the dictionary says it means. Therefore, other than the headline to this article, it serves us best to paint the picture of the two or more universes we may be dealing with.
I exist alone in my own head. There is not anything necessarily wrong with this, so to speak—because the concept of “wrong” needs to be defined in the world outside my head. It is not wrong to me. However, it is lonely. It is lonely because I wish to reach people with my thoughts and have them mean what I need them to mean inside others’ brains. That does not happen. I can tell. While I remain one who cannot read social signals, I can read others’ absorption of my thoughts. This absorption leaks and very little of my thoughts remain inside others’ brains.
I come back to the people I love. They’re fine. They are wonderful people to be able to connect to on the levels I can connect. However, they are not everyone. I wish to connect to everyone in some fashion. Don’t get me wrong, I am not frustrated that I happen not to have a television show about me. You’ve read this blog, you know such a show would be an overly-droning mess! No, no! I wish to connect socially with the universe I have been placed in because I feel that is why I was placed here. Yet, I can’t.
The sheer volume of thoughts I wish to convey to the world remains dammed up inside me. That is a loneliness. It exists in the barrier between the universe inside my head and the universe outside of it. It will forever be this way, I am guessing.
And that is… frustrating.