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Hello everyone,

I joined this support forum to hopefully get some advice from many of you about my situation. I have been in a relationship with my partner for almost nine years. About three years into our relationship, his social anxiety developed. Some days, weeks, months are just great, and others are just miserable and challenging due to this illness.

I have seen him suffer by being affected by people who are our close friends, even family and ultimately me on occasion. I have seen how hard it is and have seen how he is affected.

It has been very difficult for me supporting him throughout these times when he feels as though our friends may have an inside joke on him, are making fun of him to his face or behind his back, thinks someone said something they didn't say, construe something someone said as if it was directed at him, or may have said something that by coincidence coordinates with how he is feeling at the time.

Many of our friends are aware that he has social anxiety, but at the same time, we don't know what they might say that he will take the wrong way. In those situations, both parties get hurt. Our friends don't always understand. I too, don't know when something I may do or say may affect him. I try to be very careful. In those situations, I become the middle man trying to ease things over with our friends if they find out they've hurt him somehow and they feel terrible. I spend hours, sometimes days, trying to help my partner understand that our friends wouldn't say something awful about him, or make fun of him, clarifying things that were said or looks that he felt he got from people.

It takes an awful lot of convincing, but in the end, he sometimes agrees to look at a different perspective. This eventually has eroded his trust in me because he thinks I take their side and not his.

He says to me "I just want you to say that I wasn't making this up. They did say that. They did make fun of me." If I think it is true I will tell him, but I truly do not ever think it is. As you can probably guess, this makes him feel like I'm "in" on it and take their side, when in reality, I am trying to clarify the reality of the situation.

To him, in the end I look unsupportive. Eventually we have had to separate ourselves from these friends all together, these feelings he would get seemed to never go away whenever these people were around. I have worked to do that over the last year or so. We are working on obtaining new friends with whom he is comfortable.

This has been going on occasionally for years.

I can't imagine how difficult it must be to go through so much pain with his anxiety. After his first bout with Social Anxiety, I was the one who suggested he be treated for his feelings several years ago. He was resistant at the time, but I was adamant that he may need to talk to someone. He has been treated for social anxiety ever since and sometimes things are good, sometimes bad. He continues to remain resistant about accepting the fact that he does indeed have Social Anxiety.

Last night was a really bad night. We didn't have any social interactions outside the home, but a lot of memories came up from over the years and eventually he told me that he blames me for sending him to a doctor for treatment (which he thinks he doesn't need). He thought our friends' actions which have damaged him from long ago and his feelings are completely valid and he has not healed.

I didn't know this was still affecting him, because we haven't interacted with these friends for over a year. He said he did not need his medicine anymore and blamed me for being on it in the first place because he "is a walking zombie" on it. Then he got up and threw what was left of his 90-day prescription of bupropion down the toilet. I am still shocked and don't know what to do now.

He made me feel terrible because I still maintained these friendships at first and didn't realize for a long time that I needed to sever our friendships for him (much to the discomfort of our friends and me). It was difficult, but I didn't want him to be around people that didn't make him feel good, but it was still hard to move on for me. He had never told me that he still was upset and had these feelings after all this time and that he blamed me. I am really hurt.

I want to be a strong supporter for him and his social anxiety. I have been and will continue to be patient, but I am completely opposite from his personality. I am outgoing and extroverted, but I understand his shyness and want so much to help.

I thank you for taking the time to read this posting and would appreciate any advice you might have for someone like me who is indirectly affected by Social Anxiety.

Thanks,
Kevin
 

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Well this probably sounds wrong, but you should let him walk in on you in bed with 1 or more other strangers.

It will make him not so much of a wimp as he currently is, maybe toughen a bit and command his woman a little better instead of the other way around?

If you don't wanna go through with it, break up with him and leave him a link to this website so he can join the rest of us in the great battle.
 

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maybe he deoesnt have social anxiety... do normal things with him and if he flips out in public ask him if he took his meds. he'll be reminded that he flushed them down the toilet. maybe then he will go back to the doc and ask for help. This is obviously something that he doesnt want to be part of his life; that's a good thing. help him get through it and dont accept SA as an answer as many people already have. good luck
 
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