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The freaking shame

by LetTheLostKittensPlay

I feel like I’m barely a part of life, thanks to a little known and poorly understood DISEASE known as situational mutism. It’s so poorly understood, that people with this burden are having to refer to it as ‘situational mutism’ as the actual name implies it’s optional.

Just like most of us hear from others, ignorant people who refuse to believe we aren’t quiet or shy. In my case, throughout my late teens and early adulthood (from 18) I’ve been infantilised. Kick me if that’s the wrong spelling. In a condescending way I would have people speak to me in soft voices, as if speaking any louder would break me. And the biggest form of psychological torture is others walking eggshells around you, even when you’re an easily approachable person.

But with this curse named Situational Mutism, aka. involuntarily mutism, I’m unable to verbalise how uncomfortable their odd behaviours make me feel. Because I’m unable to talk in certain environments that trigger this deep-seated defense mechanism I never asked for, I try to convey my openness in other ways, by using fair facial expressions and wearing clothes that hint at my personality.

This does FUCK ALL to help the wrong perceptions people have over me, and the amount of times I’ve heard people say to me in response to this, “aren’t you also assuming stuff about their character?”
We learn so much in life by being observant, looking for patterns, looking at body language etc.

Imagine looking at life and not truthfully being able to interact with it, in the minds of others I’m just this timid, mentally ill, humourless creature with big peeping eyes and not worth anyone’s time. Nope, don’t try to trick me into having hope. In my 21 years of life and having wasted years in school, not once did people see me for me. I spent 2 years in college not so long ago without a single friend.

Want to hear the worst of my shame? Thanks to having no voice, I’m still stuck in that one place I should’ve left years ago. My only understanding of sex and relationships are from fanfics and porn. Because I haven’t been able to experience either of those, if you started telling me about your love life or whatever, I can’t realistically picture it. I can’t even tell you what a relationship is like or how the dynamics work.

And as I grow older it becomes more embarrassing to have no experience, and I’m frustrated and love-starved. And I’m INCREDIBLY PISSED OFF that I’m an extrovert that is forced to be an introvert, because of this fucking mutism. No social life for me, no hanging out at the pub, no memories of having friends to hang out with in my teenage years. No. I was just an agoraphobic, housebound mess who wished people weren’t so cruel.

Anyway. Be appreciative that you’re not in my boat, it’s Hellish to be observed under a false sense. My quietness is assumed to be my one defining traits, I don’t have any chances to make a first impression. Fuck my existence.


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LetTheLostKittensPlay 10/17/2020 - 9:33 pm

As for those who don’t know what this condition is, it manifests in childhood. Described as a phobia of speaking.

Confidence doesn’t change the muteness or ease it. My speaking voice feels unnatural, because in childhood no speech and language therapists helped me overcome this. Whenever I do attempt to speak, it feels like my vocal chords don’t work and my brain can’t put sentences together. Everything just freezes.

It happens when I’m outside in public places, either in town or at college. The best part is, situational mutism is harder to treat in adulthood.

It shouldn’t have been permanent.

Abnormal.Thoughts 10/18/2020 - 10:49 am

While I typically don’t suggest these things, have you tried starting a relationship through a dating app where you can begin with texting and either asking for a date somewhere you would be able to speak or explaining that you won’t be speaking much?

LetTheLostKittensPlay 10/19/2020 - 1:01 am

Because I’ve got no friends, I worry about anything bad happening while in the presence of a stranger with no backup.

Maybe it’s a pathetic fear of mine, but if I try online dating I’ve just got a real bad feeling someone who is a bit creepy would lure me into their van or be able to sense that I’m a coward… honestly.

Also 21 years and no experience is a massive turn off… or so I feel. Unless guys don’t mind that.

Abnormal.Thoughts 10/19/2020 - 8:56 am

I’m not a guy but I’m pretty sure it isn’t going to matter that you have no experience at 21, in fact, unless you tell them they aren’t going to know.
What types of places are you comfortable? Is there somewhere that’s somewhat public but is still comfortable enough for you? Maybe a park where there is enough room for privacy but still some seeing eyes?
Maybe you have a cousin or just and acquaintance that can be your third wheel?
I would also just take your time with anyone online so you can build a relationship and have some trust before meeting them.
It’s definitely a tough situation you’re in, but I believe you can find a way to work with it. Hell, if you just tell them you can’t speak and they understand then you could just write messages over dinner to gain that trust or something. Also maybe just arrange to play games online together at first or something?
Okay, you’ve probably heard enough of my suggestions, and I hope you can find someone to connect with and I’ll shut up now. 🙂

Rainwatch 10/18/2020 - 5:19 pm

I grew up with a slight stutter and Speech therapy done Fuck all for it. I had to CHANGE my way of speaking and that brought fluency. I can’t fully understand your problem from this post but perhaps CHANGING how u speak could help, I’m mean changing everything, pace, pitch, volume until it becomes second nature.

LetTheLostKittensPlay 10/19/2020 - 12:59 am

Alright… that struck a slight nerve with me. You’re not a bad person, but how many times did I CLEARLY say in my post that I’ve got situational mutism?

You already know what my issue is. Stop thinking my post is undecipherable, I’ve written in plain English.

Sorry, this is a defensive attitude I’m holding. Just, the amount of times I’ve done my best to try and explain clearly what I’m going through, only to be misunderstood by others. I’d smack my head against a wall over this… so many people over the Internet for some reason can’t understand my fucking posts. Gahh!

Sorry about your stutter. Speech problems make life harder and you should’ve received more help instead of being left to deal with this on your own.

Rainwatch 10/19/2020 - 9:38 am

There’s no need to fly off the handle.
I simply pointed out that I Stuttered til the age of 15 and cured myself by changing how I spoke, essentially starting from scratch, perhaps that might work for you. Anyway I wish you well.

thuri 10/19/2020 - 5:05 pm

Most people don’t seem to understand psychological disorders in general, let alone something like that. Being able to socialize well and displaying your personality is more important in society than brains to success. Never mind the need for positive social interactions and contact in order to be healthy mentally. Being trapped and forced inside behind something like mutism is no fucking joke, and has a nasty tendency to spiral downward with how negatively it can affect a person’s self confidence. That just makes an already hard time worse. It’s some real bullshit. Would be nice if people understood but I guess these kinds of things still aren’t taught in schools or anything, so it’s sort of up to the people with the thing to do the teaching or just deal with the ignorance. As far as relationship stuff goes, 21 and never dated isn’t something that odd. Some people just like being judgemental idiots. Fuck those kind of people though.

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