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Last Saturday night, I celebrated my birthday out in town. I invited loads of people from work, both of my jobs and members of my softball team and of course all of my family who were of age. My two stepdaughters came as well as my youngest stepson and stepdaughter in law. Since I was running late, my wife took me and the family for a nice meal that went longer than I expected. Therefore, before I took my wife home because she wasn’t feeling well, I dispatched my stepdaughters and stepdaughter in law to the pub where we planned to meet. When I finally arrived at the pub with my stepson, the only ones there were those three. I did text one work colleague who promised to be there but he text back saying he had left. My stepdaughter who knew him said she never saw him. I would find out the following day he went to the wrong pub but at the time, the Billy No Mates effect was beginning to fill inside me. Fortunately, all of the ladies from my other job, who were on a night out, showed up at the pub and those anxieties left, so I had a rather good night.

My feelings that nobody likes me stems way back in my childhood, even before the time period that “He Was Weird” was set. Because of my Aspergers traits, I was often perceived as weird on mentally retarded by many children. Furthermore, this was added on by my lack of fine motor skills making me not very good at sports, although I didn’t give up trying. My overactive imagination which most people tried to discourage instead of encourage didn’t help matters either. Throughout many chunks of my childhood, I had few friends, especially during those years “He Was Weird” was set and that started a feeling that nobody liked me which has haunted me all through my adult life. This pattern repeated itself during my early to mid twenties when  I left the marines simply because I was “that freak with the long hair and boots.”

One suggestion that was made another of times was that I should approach them with the offer of friendship. In theory, that sounds great but with my past experiences, I found it hard to do so because I feared rejection. Going up to people was just not in the cards. Of course there were times when the reverse was true. During times of severe bullying or exclusion, combined with the fact that some so called friends only became my friend in order to exploit me, I would have my guard up. In a few cases, someone may have approached me with a friendship offer but because my guard was up, they saw my apprehension as a rejection of their offer. This misunderstanding sent my anxieties skyward because I would then believe it was all my fault and that played havoc with my self esteem as well.

As usual, I have written a lot more than I originally planned but once I get onto something, I find it hard to stop. So, in conclusion, I can say that those fears will be with me, probably forever but I have found ways to counter act them. For instance, many of the no shows had prior plans. I’m cool with that. I also try not take things like that personally although it’s not always easy. However, it’s the only way I can keep my sanity and realize that I’m not the hated person I used to believe myself to be.

To buy He Was Weird go to: https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1465333764&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird