Schizophrenia.com

Online vs. Face-To-Face Communication

I usually dont look at people when talking face to face which strikes others as odd. what are some experiences between the two

I’m working on improving the eye contact. But then I have to remember to blink. I know people are a bit unsure about talking to me sometimes because I’m not looking at them.

Sometimes I find that I can understand them better if I just focus on something else and concentrate on the words.

At work people talk to each other without looking at each other all the time. But in a some what social setting, it’s something that I know I need to improve.

I find online communication fine, I can articulate and I don’t have to look people in the eye.

I rarely make eye contact apart from with people I trust and if I feel I have to, to make impressions. I find it painful and one of my delusions was that if they were spies they’d have orange eyes so I’m always fearful the minute I look at someone they’ll prove themselves to be a spy. I also feel judgement through eyes I feel like they can see right through me and I feel ashamed. So the best thing for me is to avoid eye contact but I’m working on it to make myself look up more.

Do you know why you feel you can’t make eye contact, or don’t you really know why?

For me, eye contact used to be too confusing. I’d be focusing on their eyes and would loose what they were saying. That would sort of freak them out. Plus I used to think they could see into my brain.

Then I didn’t make eye contact out of shame. Then I didn’t make eye contact because I got a bit lazy and stopped doing it. But now a few things have changed in my life and I’m trying to learn it again because I feel it will help me if I can get this skill back.

With online there isn’t the issue of how much eye contact to make. Face to face making an effort to get it right can be mentally tiring.
Also a major difference with online is that you can take time to create a response and don’t have to if you don’'t want to. Whereas with face to face there is the pressure to come up with a virtually instant response to keep the flow of conversation going.
I don’t know about the rest of you but my ability to do that varies considerably. Sometimes i can get into the flow of conversation, and others thinking up replies on the spot is hard and i just want the conversation to stop.
Then there is the social anxiety which kicks in face to face in a way it doesn’t anonymously on a forum.