Can't joke around with people...that's why I can't make friends.

I don't know how to playfully tease people, or crack a joke. It's always an ordeal for me, whereas it seems to come so effortlessly and naturally to most people my age (I'm 25)...because they've been at ease with their friends/people in their peer group since they were pre-teens. If someone cracks a joke about something/someone in the environment or tells a funny story, the most I can do is "roll with it" and laugh along. RARELY do I have a witty response or an interesting story to share in return. I don't have any experience in dating and extremely few friends (right now, zero). I have both depression and social anxiety, and they're taking over my life.

All I want to be able to do is communicate in a cool way and be witty like 100% (or so it SEEMS) of people around me are. At least people wouldn't think I'm so boring, and maybe ONCE in my life people would be open to being friends with me, and girls would think I'm cool enough to be a potential boyfriend.

This is really tearing me apart. In fact, I'm ashamed of how much suffering this problem is causing me...I've seen other people with social anxiety who aren't as desperate and tortured as me. Does ANYONE with social experience have advice?

I want to be uninhibited, say whatever's on my mind, use appropriate slang and profanity (yeah, I can't bring myself to do it casually around people--you might not think it's a bad thing, but I'm really desperate to be normal), or even crack jokes, be an exciting and fun guy to be around...but I just can't Any help will be appreciated.


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  • Okay, first you need to have some sort of experience to work with. Start by watching a few good comedians for the repartee stuff, then try reading the news and going out to places so that you have material to use.

    It's a tough thing to work with when you have social anxiety but the only way to improve your confidence is to ensure you have something to talk about. Go to the gym, a music concert, an art gallery or something just to give you a random story. Try something extreme like abseiling if you want to improve your conversation and your nerve.

    I know it sounds easier than it actually is, but you want to change so start by changing your experiences. Who knows, you might even enjoy doing it.