am i rational or just gaslighting myself

some background information:
I’m an introvert but I’ve been kinda forced to take on the “extroverted” role because the people around me won’t start conversations (which may not be that bad but it’s annoying for classwork and projects). This leads me to feeling burned out and tired after class - and now I have this image of being super talkative and excited which puts even more pressure on me to talk even when I don’t want to.

Recently I think I’ve hit my breaking point. I had been out sick for a couple of days + running CCA fiesta has led me to missing a couple of classes. TLDR; I asked for updates on assignments to do, complete silence and gotten blue-ticked. I’m team leader for a couple of modules and due dates are approaching. In the past I’ve given feedback to some of my lecturers but they essentially said it was a communication problem and it’s up to us to make do.

Often I would just end up digging through class schedules and dming lecturers to find out what to do - though I fear it might look like I don’t ask my classmates for updates and instead run to my superiors :face_with_diagonal_mouth:. With this radio silence I just tell myself that “maybe they were sick too” or “maybe my lecturer didn’t explain clearly” or even “maybe the work is obvious and I’m just too stupid to understand the assignment”. This kind of rationalising (or truth) had been with me since secondary school where I didn’t want to look dependent on my group or unreasonable when there were external factors that affected the group work that I didn’t know of.

But now I’ve been making the same excuses for so long that I don’t even believe them anymore - I just get even more burnt out and depressed. My family says it’s good to give the benefit of doubt and I should be patient with others, yet I’m doing it at the expense of my own mental state due to the added stress of not knowing what to submit, not knowing what’s happening in class, not knowing who I can actually depend on for group work.

I don’t know if giving them excuses means I’m rationalising their actions and choosing to look on the bright side or if I’m just gaslighting myself into believing that they aren’t bad classmates. My mind just goes on and on and it eventually ends on me being the bad person. Or maybe it’s correct and I’m just overthinking things. I’m so confused and tired and frustrated.

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Hi @mirahehe ! I can understand and relate to your experiences completely.

In my opinion, I feel that you should not really worry about being judged cos I feel that u have tried your best by reaching out to your peers and tutors. I had a similar experience whereby all my group mates were using discord to communicate and discuss abt the project, whereas I was waiting for the matter to be discussed via the official WhatsApp group. To my utter dismay, they had progressed on with the project without me and made me feel guilty at the end of the project. The best thing I could do was to try to add in my personal contribution and feedback to my tutor at the end of the project. Similarly, I feel that you have tried your best by trying your best to communicate.

As for these types of scenarios, I feel family members may not be able to know the seriousness of the matter. Especially since life after school is mainly projects and group works. Hence, if you feel your mental energy is being drained do not hesitate or feel guilty to reach out to your tutors. At least they can award you marks based on your individual contributions.

TBH, I had no friends other than a guy, whom I knew from secondary school , when I was in poly. This was not because I cannot communicate( ps. I scored As and distinctions in communication modules) but rather not anyone suited my personality. My personal advice is that you should not be pressurised of being labelled and stereotyped. I feel that you have come of your shell mainly because you chose to initiate conversations in the first place.

Another advice is that you have to embrace your personality.If you have friends beyond school, you can spend more time with them or just do something you like. This can help prevent yourself from overthinking and draining your mental energy. I learnt from a module in school, that the road to emotional wellness is like wearing oxygen masks during an aviation emergency. You have to maintain your emotional sanity before supporting others.

Hope this helps!

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Hi @mirahehe

It sounds like you are in a tough situation making you feel rather lost and helpless at the moment. From what you shared, it seemed like you made yourself step up to take a role that you were not comfortable with and tried your best to work things out. I would like to applaud you for having such courage to do so and being committed to it though it is challenging.

It feels to me that you still want to make things right but with all the obstacles, you are questioning why you are still holding on and how to navigate around this situation. You have done what you could to reach out for support and you feel that you have reached a stage of burn-out. Perhaps you can take some time off this concern and focus on yourself.

I would like you to think about why you took on the role and what is pushing the need to uphold this image that you are “super talkative and excited”. What happens if you let go of such expectations on yourself? It sounds like people are making things difficult for you, and it seems like you are making things difficult for yourself as well. Which is probably why you are feeling tired and frustrated. People do not seem to acknowledge or recognize your concerns, and you might be pushing aside your own emotions too.

Here are some options for you to consider:
Set boundaries: Assign roles and responsibilities fairly and set deadlines for everyone. Be firm and consistent with your boundaries. If someone is not responding, try having a talk with them to understand what is going on and clarify expectations.

Identify priorities: Know what your priorities are. If you feel bad for missing classes due to other commitments, are you able to participate lesser in those commitment? Often times, people lost sight of what is important to them when other commitments seemed more urgent. When the balance is lost between your priorities and other responsibilities, there could be a tendency to blame yourself or the situation. Let’s try different ways to remove the possibility of guilt tripping yourself.

Self-care: You can be free in expressing yourself and showing others who you really are. The truth is we can never satisfy everyone and what is more important is to be satisfied with who you are. Putting up an image for the sake of others can be tiring and make you feel disconnected with yourself. When you pay attention to your needs, you might find your own answers. If this term has been too much for you, don’t be afraid to take on lesser roles during the next term so you have time to attend to things that you enjoy.

Lastly, I want to tell you that you are not a bad person. You have done so much and it would be helpful to acknowledge your own efforts too.

I hope this has been helpful. Do keep us updated on how you are coping, we would really like to continue to support you here on this platform. All the best and take care!


i end up talking a lot because most people won’t start on their own during our meetings :sob: and in class it feels like everyone already has their own friends so if i don’t force myself out there then i’ll be alone (not bad, but it’s a bit lonely as my sec school friends aren’t in the same course as me)

uu i think it might be difficult for me to drop them - i just became cca exco and my outside commitments require long term service :confused: ill see what i can do though

thank you for taking the time out of your day to reply to my post :sweat_smile: ill keep your advice in mind :muscle:t2:

You are most welcome @mirahehe

I am glad to be of support. Good to hear you considering what options you can do for the upcoming term and I hope you can work things out.

Wishing you all the best!