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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm really quite sure I have social anxiety, I've only kind of realized it's not just shyness, but I've had symptoms for ages, it's just the physical symptoms have probably gotten worse the last year-ish, I guess. It interfers with my life, the worse affect is probably not being able to talk to teachers or make new friends very well.

I don't know what to do from here now that I've recognized this. I mean most people will recommend tell a parent, tell school counselor, tell your local doctor and get meds/referral to a therapist etc, but how do I do this?

1) How do I share this when I have extreme difficulty sharing my feelings and talking to people "above" me, or just new?
2) How do I get my Mum to take me seriously.
3) How am I supposed to a doctor if I shut down and can't explain?
4) How am I supposed to talk to a therapist if I'm paranoid that she'll under estimate how I feel, and I've never met her and most people I haven't met are hard to talk to?
5) How am I supposed to do this?
6) What can I expect my local doctor to do?

Can people please explain personal experiences of reaching out for the first time?
 

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♎ Mackinac Island Fanatic
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28,958 Posts
Hi and welcome. I'm sorry you're suffering and it's so difficult to even think of talking to a professional, but I assure you, they've heard all sorts of things and are there to try to help you. Success isn't guaranteed (my own therapy experience didn't go well), but it's something everyone who's willing to get help should try.

If you have great difficulty telling your problems to others, you can write them out. Therapists and doctors do not mind this. :) At some point you're really going to have to try to swallow your fear and speak, but writing your initial worries and problems down can be a good start. Get it all out, and give it to the therapist/doctor to read.

A medical doctor probably can't do much to help you, maybe just refer you to a psychologist or psychiatrist who is more likely to provide help for social anxiety. But if you have to approach a medical doctor first to get the ball rolling, then do so.

How to get your mother to take you seriously? Sometimes, unfortunately, those without SA, even family members, just can't understand. :stu You have to be prepared for that, but in the meantime perhaps you can just share a few of your worries with her, ask to see a doctor/therapist...if you must, write things out for her too. Maybe find an informative website about social anxiety and print something out for her regarding the symptoms. Perhaps she'll understand.

If you have to start with a school guidance counselor, you can go that route. When I first got into therapy as a teenager that was the route I followed--guidance counselor referred me to a women's resource center, which referred me to therapy, etc. Whatever it takes to get things started so you can feel better.

I do hope something can help you out, but you have to summon the courage to take that first step!
 

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hmm.
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I walked around just hiding it from everyone for about a year thinking that nobody would understand me. I started off by telling my parents about it, i just spilled my guts for them telling them everything about how i felt and how everyday life had become a struggle for me. They turned out to be very understanding and supportive and thanks to that i now find it alot easier to express my feelings. And last week i went to a doctor and he prescribed medication Zoloft 50mg for me and referred me to a therapist who i'm going to start seeing this week. This is where i'm standing right now.

I would recommend you to just talk to your mum about it, i am sure she will know you good enough to know when you're being serious.
 

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Angsty Adult
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Regarding # 4:

I have recently started therapy and I could feel myself starting to shut down in sessions. Fearful of opening up, fearful of being rejected. I'm not sure if it would help you, but what I did was write everything down (you can take as long as you need for this, I ended up taking a few hours) about how you are feeling and any sort of behavioral patterns you noticed. I then emailed that to my counselor so she would have something to reference. This way we get down to how I really feel, and I was able to avoid talking with her face-to-face about most of my issues. I strongly advocate it if you have trouble opening up, especially face-to-face.

Hope that helps!
 
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