thanks for sharing your feelings with us. I have similar problems with friendships, but I didn't suffer the abuse you did.
I had some very close frienships growing up all the way until my early 20's. I'm now 38 & unfortunately don't have one true good friend I spend time with. Part of that is b/c I spend SO much time at work, and I'm married with 3 small kids. I really don't have much time for friends, but I need to do better.
Here's my advice: sometimes you have to take the risk of calling up someone you think you'll connect with. If they don't call back, there's always others to meet :)
Go ahead and call the lady you met in the hospital. the fact she invited you to call her is great sign. She may feel the same way you do about friends. maybe she doesn't have many and is reaching out. She wants to develop a friendship with you from what I can tell. Sometimes those of us with our mental stuggles only need 1 true friend in the world. That's sorta why I don't do facebook. The people I see on it have the most superficial "friends" that they could never count on in real need.
I think if we all had only about 3 close friends along with a larger support system (like this one), that's all we need.
Maybe we can make an agreement to start reaching out to others and develop some friends. That's important for our well being. Sorry for writing so much, I really hope this helps!
keep posting. your online friend Tommy :)
Diagnosed Bipolar II-----May 2010
Lamictal 300mg/day (no side effects) Effexor XR 150mg/day- research shown SSRIs make biplolar worse (now weaning off Effexor under MD guidance).