The quiet kid

“Speak up,” a nurse said. “Try to socialize more, you can’t get by without socializing.”

These are words I’ve heard my entire life. But, socializing simply isn’t that easy for people like me. I’d much prefer to sit in the back, and not talk to everyone. For me, that seems relaxing and not stressful. For others, especially social butterflies, this might seem odd.

I’m referred to as a quiet kid. I’m sure you’ve heard of them. The type of person everyone believes will turn dangerous. But I can assure you, we’re not like that. It is much more complex than that, instead of harming others, like everyone expects us too, we’re the type to keep away from others. Not out of hate, but because of anxiety.

One main experience I’ve had through all of this is being sent to a mental hospital in middle school because of my stand offish and quiet personality.

It began because my middle school counselor took notice of how I would never interact with others, and would rather be left alone. Even when said counselor tried to talk to me, I would refuse to respond. You might be thinking I refused to respond because I simply didn’t want to, but that’s not the case. Because I have social anxiety, it makes things such as having a conversation extremely hard. Instead of just thinking what I want to say and saying it, I think of what I want to say and re-think it at least seven times before I even say anything. Even then it is hard to say words. So, because of this my counselor thought there was something wrong.

My trip to the mental hospital was very uncomfortable. Nurses and therapists attempted to get me into full blown conversation, but it wasn’t working. The fact that I felt cornered in an unknown area also didn’t help their situation. To this day I still do not know what type of mental disorder they thought I had.

I was there for about two weeks, and it was the worst thing I had been to. They kept attempting to talk to me in several ways, such as writing, and dumbed down speech. It didn’t work, of course. It just confused me more. Even when I did speak, and insist I was not meant to be there they didn’t listen to me. After two weeks the school counselor finally allowed me to leave. Of course it was a hassle exiting due to the nurses and therapists.

So, because of my ‘quiet kid’ personality, I got sent to a mental hospital. It was not a fun experience. Just because I cannot keep conversations doesn’t specifically mean I’m crazy. It just means it’s a little tougher for me to communicate.

So no. We’re not going to hurt or murder you, just because of the ‘quiet kid’ stereotype. We’re just a little shyer than most.