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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just a warning, this might depress some people, so if you're not in the mood for a depressing story, then please don't read.

I've had SA since I was 14-15, I stayed in school but ended up with really low marks. My parents tried to get me into uni through "non awards" programs, but I dropped out in part due to SA and also because my father had started drinking heavily again. Tried TAFE "community college" but again the SA got the better of me and I left after 1 semester. What frustrates me is that it's not the work involved that stops me from doing anything it's this goddamn anxiety.

For the past two years, I've been working in a warehouse. At first I loved it, everyone was easy going and relaxed, and they were pretty good when mistakes were made.
Or so I thought, after two years it's apparent half of my co workers aren't interested in working/achieving anything and instead spend their time stoned or drunk (or selling drugs) and the other half are too busy playing politics to actually care about making the warehouse work. I realized I have nothing in common with any of them. I can easily make friends if I start doing what they are doing, but 1) I don't want to get into the whole drug scene (my father was an abusive alcoholic, and i really can't stand people who rely on drugs to get through life's difficulties) 2) I really don't like playing politics and my SA is too much for me to deal with it.

I get up and dread going to work, every morning my stomach churns and I don't want to get out of bed. I goto work and don't really speak to anyone for the first 4 hours, I relax a little after that and try and chat with the few people I do like (most of them are 15+ years older than me). But I have to FORCE every word out, and even as I speaking I am totally self conscious and double checking what I am saying. This usually makes me mix up words, stutter, sound childish/pathetic/arrogant or instead I just draw complete mind blanks in mid sentence (I really, really hate it when that happens). I can pretty much forget about expressing any ideas I have to the managers because all of the things mentioned above occur every time I open my mouth around them.

I think they think I'm arrogant and aggressive, because most times I pretty much blurt out what I want without the pleasantries. I do this because there's anxious thoughts running through my head pretty much all day while im at work and it's a struggle to even talk to anyone, not because Im arrogant. But of course they don't know that. It doesn't help that I can't stand the fact that most of my co-workers are loud, foul mouthed gossips and/or are obsessed with sex and/or getting high off something (alcohol, nicotine, weed, speed, cocaine, crystal meth you name it they're doing it).

So I decided to enroll in TAFE again, and again the SA is the biggest obstacle. It effects my memory in that I can't really remember what I learnt even 5 minutes ago because half of my brainpower is dedicated to SA. While everyone else is quickly following instructions, I'm there still fighting the anxious thoughts and trying to force myself to be practical. When I get home I want to forget everything that happened at TAFE because it just brings up more anxious thoughts...and this isn't really a good thing for my studies.

With full time work and part time study I barely have time to sleep on weekdays, but the fact that I can't sleep half of the time because I feel like I need to relax (relaxing for me means playing EVE Online) after being subjected to anxiety hell throughout the day means I get about 6hrs or less sleep everyday.

The worst thing is all this is really badly effecting my health, I get a really sore throat most of the time, which affects my voice, which then leads to more anxiety when I'am talking. I also have stomach acid problems which I suspect are the result of SA, and which again make me feel uncomfortable in social situations. It all seems cyclic.

I am turning 25 this year and wondering "how long can I keep this up?"

At least it's feels good to finally let all this out. Thank you for listening.
 

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I know this isnt much help but maybe if you have spoken classes you could try to get hold of a dictaphone? It would mean extra work re-listening to it when you got home.
But maybe a way to be in a more comfortable place and be able to absorb the information better?

Goodluck!
 

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wow, the stuff your going through, is totally what i'm going through..

especially the having a sore throat all the time, which effects my voice, which makes me even more anxious

and i also have acid reflux/stomach problems..

weird...
 

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Hope things get better for you. I am in a similar situation kind of. For me, I don't care about my job at all. Just like having a routine. Haven't gone back to school yet, but am trying to work up the courage.
 

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I know much of what your mind puts you through as I am too a SA sufferer. The only thing you can do is work your *** off getting your mind to think more rationally. Otherwise, it will never get better and in fact, will get worse over time because you are constantly reinforcing your irrational thoughts. You need to think about getting professional help if you can. What has really helped me is CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy). The best book I have come across to explain this type of therapy is Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by David D. Burns. It would help tremendously if you could work through the techniques he describes in this book with a therapist who is well versed in SAD. Medication is always an option, but not a requirement. I myself am in the process of this type of therapy and for the first time in my life I feel like I am fighting a winning battle against my irrational fears. It's important to take care of this ASAP.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Sorry for the late response, work has kept me busy, not to mention bouts of depression :)

Thank you for the replies guys. Much appreciated :)

I'm thinking about CBT, thinking about doing something...problem for me is actually getting out there and doing it. Sometimes the depression/anxiety can be so strong I can't get my self out of bed. My next session with my psychiatrist is on this Saturday, so hopefully something fruitful will come of it.
 
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