Don’t Stand So Close To Me.

I’m really quite funny about my personal space and how much proximity and actual physical contact affects me. About 15 minutes ago I had one of my moments where I became immensely aware of how uncomfortable a situation, especially ones involving strangers, can be.

I’d just finished my appointment with my Psych and I was at the counter paying and making my next appointment. An older lady came up to the counter and stood right next to me because she wanted to speak to the receptionist. And to make matters worse another older lady came up on the other side of me to take up a free magazine they have on offer at the offices. But instead of picking it up and walking away, she stood there flicking through it.

So now I have these 2 complete strangers flanking me, practically standing at my shoulders. I could almost feel them breathing. I couldn’t shake the ominous feeling that came over me – even though logically I knew I could take down both of these old birds if for some insane reason they started to attack me. I am not kidding when I say it actually physically felt threatening to have strangers standing shoulder to shoulder with me like that. My baser instincts of fight or flight started winding me up, and I was starting to get angry with them for standing too close.

There was absolutely no reason why the lady wanting to talk to the receptionist couldn’t wait in line behind me – it was quite rude and impatient of her to stand there as if she was going to butt in. And as for the other lady: take the freaking magazine and read it elsewhere. Don’t stand there at my shoulder reading it. I know it sounds really odd, but things like that make me so uncomfortable, and a whole influx of crazy thoughts go through my head – from staging a “freak out”, to aggressively pushing them out the way, to planning what I will do when they start to attack. My mind goes into defensive overdrive when people stand too close to me like that, and it takes so much self control to not take it to the nth degree and go mental.

2 thoughts on “Don’t Stand So Close To Me.

  1. Ally says:

    I get this feeling all the time. If I’m in a normally-crowded place like a bus or shopping mall, I can deal with it. But if someone stands super close to me for no conceivable reason, I get very uncomfortable. I completely agree, it feels threatening when someone is that close to you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karlee says:

      Exactly! It’s like when I get into the elevator at work if anyone else gets in I usually go the opposite corner to get the max distance between. But I HATE it when some people decide to stand right in the middle of the bloody thing even though there is plenty of room to keep their distance from me.
      And there is another time I get irrationally upset at work. The rare times I might use the bathrooms (I usually avoid any kind of public toilet even for just peeing) – if the stalls are empty, I pick one of the ones on the edge. And then when someone decides to come in and take the one right next to me I have to bite my tongue to stop myself from screaming out “Why the fuck couldn’t you take the one on the far side?”
      I know it’s completely irrational, but I seriously get really agitated when people don’t respect my personal boundaries.


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