All of the other grad students in my cohort like to go out to bars and clubs on Friday/Saturday nights. I can't stand it. I don't drink or smoke, I don't know how to dance, it's too loud, the flashing lights are too much, and I'm terrified of drunk/high people. I get so overstimulated and uncomfortable and it makes my skin picking 10 times worse. I don't want to go, but it is generally the only way they like to interact with one another outside of class. I don't want to be left out while they all get closer to each other. I would suggest a different type of hangout, but I don't want to be seen as a killjoy and have them resent me. What do I do?
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
Anxiety (Including GAD)
I have the same problem in public places. I recently discovered that I am a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP). It explained why things like public gatherings are so difficult for me. Picking is a "bad habit" I developed to cope with life. Check it out. There is a quick test you can take. There are lots of videos on the subject too.
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