Meeting new people

Most of us feel a bit nervous when we meet people we don’t know. It can be hard if we feel worried about what people might do or say. We all want to make a good first impression. 

Are they SCARED?

For some people this might be the first time they have met someone with a visible difference. Changing Faces uses SCARED to describe how people might act.

IF THEY FEEL

THEY MIGHT BEHAVE IN THESE WAYS

Sorry / Shocked

S

Staring / Speechless

Curious / Confused

C

Clumsy

Anxious

A

Asking / Awkward

Repelled

R

Recoiling / Rude

Embarrassed

E

Evasive

Distressed

D

Distracted


Are you SCARED?

IF YOU FEEL…

 

YOU MIGHT…

self-conscious

S

act shy

conspicuous (standing out)

C

cover yourself up

angry or anxious

A

be angry or anxious

rejected – like people don’t want to know you

R

retreat – pull away or hide from people

embarrassed

E

be evasive – ignore people

different

D

act defensive – try to protect yourself

When you meet someone new you might be worried about how they might act towards you. 

  • You might expect people to be mean… which can make you even more worried
  • You might think everyone will be unkind to you 
  • You might feel angry with the people giving you a hard time and shout or feel upset
  • Or you might take it out on the people around you, like your family
  • Or maybe you just keep it inside and try not to think about it.

All of this is normal… this is what people do when they feel hurt or upset. 

Try to remember:

  • You are unique and amazing
  • How you look is only a small part of who you are
  • Other people may act in the way they do because they are SCARED
  • There are things you can try – and it’s fine to practice them and try things out in different situations (maybe starting with your family and friends). Don’t worry if you don’t get it right straight away – it will take a bit of practice and time at first.
  • Smile – smiling has a funny way of making us and everyone else feel better – even if you just smile with your eyes!

There are lots of ways you can respond. As each person is different, you’ll need to find out what works for you – and when it works best. If you want to look at ways of managing other people’s reaction you might want to look at some of our Coping with other people’s reactions tools. 

Handling questions

Read

Handling questions

Read

More people are using Changing Faces services than ever before. We want to be here for everyone affected by with a mark, scar or condition that makes them look different.

We’ve made all our services, factsheets and information free for everyone. It takes time and money to do this, but we think it is really important.

That’s why I hope you’ll understand why we need to ask for your help. If you’ve found our website or services helpful, and your circumstances allow, then please consider donating. Every penny counts and you can give at www.changingfaces.org.uk/donate Thank you.