|A Private person in cohousing||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Charlene McNamara (charlenemgmail.com)|
|Date: Sun, 5 Nov 2006 23:18:21 -0800 (PST)|
Okay, I know it has been discussed a million and one times here, but I'm in the thick of things here in our new community and need to get some perspective. I am a very private person, an introvert. Social settings drain all my energy. I moved into cohousing because I have young children and thought this would be a good environment for them and I love the idea of being friendly with my neighbors. I had GREAT concerns about my privacy. However, they were quickly erased by the comments read on this list. Additionally, my social husband assured me that privacy can easily be found in cohousing. Being that he lived in another cohousing community for 5 years, I released my concerns and embraced the idea of moving into community. This was 4 years ago. We've been through the development process and have lived here now for 8 months. I can honestly say I have never been more unhappy in my entire life. I feel that every movement and breath I take is noted by my neighbors. I am constantly feeling like I need to be "on." I am depleted and exhausted all the time. I run home to shelter myself from this onslaught daily and hide behind my closed blind windows and doors. I always have my "do not disturb" sign up. I have it up so much that most people now ignore it. A case of the boy who cried wolf, "well that sign is always up, I just figured you forgot to take it down." I have become depressed and have gained a lot of weight. I have wonderful neighbors here in our community and am friendly with most of them, some I am close with and others rather distant, but neighborly with all of them. I don't have concerns about the people here, just that I am constantly overstimulated by all of them all the time. It is simply exhausting to me to say hello to each and every person I ever walk by. Yet there seems to be an expectation that I do that. I literally have a few neighbors who go out of their way to get my attention just to wave to me from across the property. I know they are just being friendly, but there doesn't seem to be an understanding that some of us simply don't always want to be social. Am I the only person out there in the cohousing community who has had this experience? It seems I'm the only one in our community of 90 or so people. I am doing my best to focus on the positive and appreciate the good things that community does offer, but being exhausted and stressed out all the time does not help me in this endeavor! I really want to believe that cohousing can work for me, but spend most of my time dreaming of moving out and finding a nice single family home where I simply have nice neighbors, again. HELP! charlene
- A Private person in cohousing Charlene McNamara, November 5 2006
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