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Byline: Coleen Nolan

Dear Coleen,

I'm 25, have no friends and have never had a boyfriend.

I only ever go out to work or with Mum and Dad and I feel like some of my family and other people I meet think I'm cold and heartless.

But I'm not - I just don't know how to act or what to say. r I just wish I had some more confidence. Please help. d .

Coleen says..

They wouldn't be better if you weren't here - imagine how your mum and dad would feel? if ne ad I'm sure you're a great person, but I think you're probably painfully shy and, often, shy people do come across as cold or standoffish because they take longer to relax around people.

Try letting people know that you're shy and that it takes you a bit longer to get to know new people to take the pressure off. That could be an ice breaker and people will be sympathetic to it.

You're not having much of a social life so why not try joining some clubs?

Everyone has to make the effort at a club and no one knows each other, but you're all there for the same reason.

I know a lot of very shy people who've joined amateur dramatics groups and it's really brought them out of themselves. Learning to be more sociable and relaxed is a gradual thing, but the more you try it, the easier it gets. And if you're feeling very down, please get help and support from your GP.
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Title Annotation:Features; Opinion, Column
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Mar 26, 2012
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