Can’t take it anymore




I’m 51 years old. I have no friends, because time and time again I upset them without even knowing I’ve done it. People baffle me totally – I have no idea how to be with people and not irritate them, at least after a while (often when we go on a vacation). I tell myself that I don’t need them – but the reality is I’m lonely. I’d like to maybe find a counselor to help me unpack what’s wrong with me – but I’ve no idea where to find one. Help!

  • listener

    Hi dockers

    Reading what you’ve said, it sounds like you can get friends but keeping them as friends is a problem and without friends you feel lonely. I am sure it is lonely on your own so it’s good that you are reaching out for help.

    I can give you details of where to look for a counsellor and I will do that below. You don’t give any details of your situation but often people who have difficulties in relationships with other people (not just romantic relationships but friends, family, colleagues, any sort of relationship really) have experience difficulties in their relationships with their main carers when they were growing up. Not always, but often. That is definitely something you could explore with a counsellor.

    You could ask your GP for a referral to NHS counselling. Alternatively, if you are in the position to pay for the counselling (sometimes referred to as therapy as well) yourself, please see the below links. I would advise you to approach several different counsellors/therapists who tend to offer a free initial meeting, or an initial meeting at a reduced price. This will allow you to better understand their approach and see if they are someone that you would like to work with. It is important that you find someone you feel safe and comfortable with.

    - NCS | Search (

    Please know the Nacoa helpline is there for you if you'd like to talk. Mon- Fri 12-9pm
    0800 358 3456 Mon- Fri 12-7pm
    I hope this helps and take care of yourself.

  • nacoa17

    Hi there,
    I see you are struggling with some issues surrounding maintaining friendships, and feeling annoying or irritating, which are two horrible emotions to experience. I would like to clarify that you are neither of these things, and that you have the capability to maintain healthy friendships! Everyone, including you, deserves to feel loved and supported, and I feel counselling would really help you to work on overcoming these issues. The links my colleague has pasted above are great for finding a counsellor that suits your specific needs and I wish you the best in finding one. Always feel free to contact NACOA either on our helpline or by email for further support/ referrals.

  • sk

    Hi dockers,
    I'm really sorry to hear of your experience of loneliness. It is often an isolating and unpleasant feeling. People with no friends or lots of friends can still feel loneliness and it isn't nice to feel alone.
    Sometimes things happen in our lives which lead to us having difficulties in making friends or maintaining friendships. This doesn't mean there is something wrong with you. And it doesn't mean it will be like this forever.
    I really hope you're able to find a counsellor who can help, and find some ways to feel less lonely. You are deserving of friends, relationships, and care.
    Sending warm wishes,

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