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Mark Manley
Mark Manley, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 402
Experience:  Want help with your most important relationships? Licensed Marriage/Family Counselor.
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Hi I used to be a very outgoing and excited kid. Elementary

Customer Question

Hi

I used to be a very outgoing and excited kid. Elementary school and middle school were awesome as I made a lot of friends and never had a dull day. I moved to a new town in high school and had to start making friends from scratch. I had 3 close friends I always hung out with but outside I barely talked to people in class or outside the school. Being so reserved through out those 4 years really screwed my social skills I think. I'm at college now and while it's easy for me to talk to a person, I have a hard time holding the conversation for long. All I do is keep calculating what to say next in my head and that comes out as fake and practiced.

Even with friends that I have right now, I listen more than talk. It's really frustrating me because I have no idea why my brain is so blank. What annoyed me the most is when I had a crush on someone but the girl just kept on talking about another guy. How funny, smart, and great he was. I want to be that person again and I'm hoping you can help me out. Thank you very much
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Mark Manley replied 3 years ago.

What was the town and school that you moved to like?

What caused the move?

How was the rest of your family effected by the move?

Are you into sports?

What are your hobbies?

What is your major in college?

Did you have any what you would call girlfriends in middle school?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I grew up in the Middle East because that's where my dad worked before moving to the U.S when I was 10 years old. The reason for that was because my dad wanted us to get a better life and education in the U.S. I left all of my close childhood friends behind and I haven't talked to them since but I made new friends when I went to middle school in Virginia. Then we moved again to a different town in the state when I started high school. I stopped talking to my friends in middle school as well. In high school, while fun, I think I changed a lot. Freshmen year I was the perfect student, getting straight As without a problem. Then slowly my grade started to worsen as I started my sophomore year. There I met my best friend who I'm still friends with in college. I was a very reserved, quiet, and shy person and I wanted to change myself so badly I took a theater class my senior year to get out of my shell. That was a major boost to my confidence and my introvert self. Met a lot of cool people and made a lot of friends.

I love sports, soccer being my absolute favorite. Other hobbies include playing guitar (well I used to play it in middle school but I'm trying to pick it up again), singing, playing video games, traveling, and my newest hobby is astronomy. Basically the typical college student.

My major was pre-med at first (a big reason was because my best friend and I decided to become doctors together), but after listening to my dad explain why med school isn't the best choice (expensive, 8+ years of education, and far away from my family), I'm looking at software engineering. His suggestion was Telecommunication Engineer as that's a hot field right now and the future revolves around Telecom. My biggest anxiety about that though is I'm not good at math. I used to love math as a kid actually, but while growing up I built an anxiety toward it. It's something I want to overcome for sure. I'm also building my own small business on the side while I go to school.

I never had a girlfriend but that was by choice. I come from a very religious family and many chances for relationships surfaced. The reason I never pursued them is because my parent's teachings were always in the back of my head. It could also be because I have a fear of relationships even though I want one badly. Seems kinda odd huh?
Expert:  psychlady replied 3 years ago.
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Expert:  Mark Manley replied 3 years ago.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
@psychlady: Thanks for you the reply. I thought about going on a date actually, but there is a girl I'm interested in even though she made it obvious she wants to be friends. There is this hope that I will eventually win her over (she's been sending mixed signals), and that hope is affecting my ability to move on. I think I got too attached to her and now I find it hard to fall for anyone else no matter how hard I try to distract myself.

@Mark Manely: Thanks again for your reply. I believe the drop in grades were in part because I lost confidence in myself and grew a little numb from being turned down when I put myself out there for someone. It made me wonder why girls don't want what I have to offer you know? Girls say I'm a nice guy and that I will find the "one" but I think it's just a polite way for them saying they're not interested. I was able to bring them up somewhat but they weren't as good as I hoped them to be.

I think the drop in grades was also in part because I fooled around with my friends. It felt good to belong to a group and I cared more about that then my future for a while. Not at all I don't mind sharing. My religion is Islam.
Expert:  psychlady replied 3 years ago.
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Expert:  Mark Manley replied 3 years ago.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
How about when it comes to not being able to hold a conversation? Often times on the phone or when texting I go blank and listen more than I talk. It's the usual, "hello," "what's up?" and "what you up to?" What are some things I can do to be more witty and outgoing?
Expert:  Mark Manley replied 3 years ago.
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