Understanding Rejection Sensitivity

Have you ever felt like you’re always expecting people to not want you around? Some people feel this way a lot, and it’s called being sensitive to rejection. It means they often worry about being rejected so much that it affects their everyday life. This is known as rejection sensitivity. 

Rejection Sensitivity

Rejection sensitivity is when a person is very worried about being left out or not liked by others. It’s like they have a super-sensitive radar that’s always looking for signs that someone might not want them around. When they think they’ve found a sign, even if it’s not really there, they might get really upset or scared. This can make them act in ways that might actually push people away, without meaning to. It’s as if they’re expecting to be rejected all the time, which can make it hard for them to relax and just enjoy being with friends or meeting new people.

The Never-Ending Worry Circle

Imagine always being on the lookout for signs that someone doesn’t like you. That’s how it feels for those who are really worried about rejection. They might think someone doesn’t like them just because of a look or not getting a quick reply to a text. This can make them act in ways that actually push people away, starting the cycle all over again.

Signs You Might Be Sensitive to Rejection

  • Always Watching for Rejection: Some people are always on alert, worried they’ll be left out or that friends don’t really like them.
  • Taking Things the Wrong Way: A simple face or a delayed text message might make them think the worst, like friends are mad at them or don’t want to hang out.
  • Feeling Really Upset Over Small Things: Small things, like someone canceling plans, can make them feel really upset or angry.

 What causes Rejection Sensitivity?

  • Faces and Feelings: Some people might see someone’s neutral face and think it means they’re upset or don’t like them. Their brain reacts more strongly to these signs.
  • Body Reactions: Just worrying about being rejected can make their body react as if they’re in danger, making them feel even more stressed.
  • Jumping to Conclusions: Simple things, like not getting an immediate reply, might make them think someone doesn’t want to be their friend anymore.
  • Focusing on the Negative: They might ignore all the good stuff and just focus on any sign of rejection, making everything seem worse.
  • Worrying About Relationships: They’re extra sensitive about any sign that someone might not like them, which makes it hard to feel secure in friendships and relationships.

Why Do Some People Feel This Way?

  • Childhood Experiences: Growing up, if someone faced a lot of criticism, neglect, or rejection from family, friends, or peers, they might start to expect rejection as a norm. This could be because of bullying at school, tough parenting, or feeling left out in family or social settings.
  • Traumatic Events: Experiencing traumatic events, especially those involving loss or abandonment, can make someone more sensitive to rejection. They might start fearing similar situations in the future, leading to anxiety about being rejected.
  • Low Self-Esteem: People who don’t feel good about themselves are more likely to 
  • believe that others won’t like or accept them either. This lack of confidence can make them more sensitive to rejection, as they’re already doubting their worthiness of being liked.
  • Social Anxiety: Those who are naturally anxious about social situations might constantly worry about doing something wrong and being rejected for it. They might overthink interactions and assume the worst, making them more sensitive to perceived slights.
  • Personality Traits: Certain personality traits, like being more introverted or neurotic, can make someone more prone to feeling rejected. They might be more sensitive to what others think and feel more deeply affected by negative interactions.
  • Born This Way: Some people might be more prone to feeling this way because of their genes or personality.

How Being Sensitive to Rejection Affects Life

It’s tough. It can make people feel really sad or worried a lot. It might make friendships and relationships hard, as they’re always scared of being rejected. This fear can stop them from making new friends or keep them feeling lonely.

Finding Ways to Feel Better

The good news is, there are ways to deal with these feelings. Talking to someone like a counselor can really help. They can learn ways to not jump to conclusions and to think about situations differently. This can make them feel better and help improve their relationships.

Help in the Denver Colorado Area

Feeling sensitive to rejection is hard, but understanding it is the first step to feeling better. If you or someone you know feels this way a lot, reaching out for help can make a big difference. Remember, it’s possible to overcome these feelings and have happier, healthier relationships.

We invite you to call us at 720-551-4553 for a free 20-minute phone consultation. You can schedule your appointment via phone, email, or the contact page on our website. We offer both in-person and online Couples Counseling. We’re open to whichever option you feel more comfortable with.  We look forward to hearing from you!

Self Care Impact Counseling envisions a new age of counseling for adolescents, adults, couples & groups that makes a REAL difference with core values of GROWTH | BALANCE | COMPASSION | INNER HARMONY.