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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm 17, and i've always been shy.. i've always been the quiet kid who sits at the back of class, never speaks, and sits in the library at lunch with the other quiet kids.. i've always felt different, especially over the past 5-6 yrs.. i felt like i was the only person in the world who felt this way, until about a month ago, i came across a "social anxiety" article and i seemed to fit all of the symptoms..
For me, the main fear is bumping into someone that i know when i'm out. The minute i leave my house, i put my headphones in, and walk with my head down. If i see anyone that i know i pretend that i haven't noticed them, and if they shout me, i pretend that i can't hear them... sometimes, it is impossible to avoid certain people because i make eye contact, and then i have to talk to them otherwise they would think that i am ignoring them. I dread this happening, because my heart rate increases and i often feel uncomfortable.. at times breathless, and i often stutter and find it hard to articulate things.. even if it's a family member..
I started college in september, and in august i had to have an interview.. i felt abit nervous when i was travelling there, but when i sat down face to face with the man, i was shaking, mixing my words, and i became slightly breathless.. i felt so uncomfortable..
even when my family come to my house to visit, i always make an exuse to either leave the house or stay in my room.. i feel really awkward in social situations because i never know what to say, and i always feel that i will start talking crap, which i often do, haha.. and i always think that people are thinking negative things about my appearance and personality. i have a few close friends, and i enjoy being with them, and i feel comfortable around them, but alot of the time i enjoy being alone. i enjoy doing odd things.. eg. today i skipped college because i feel uncomfortable their.. the people are friendly and kind to me but i still feel anxious around them, and i went on a 2 hour bus journey around town.. as weird as it sounds i really enjoy it.. just me and music, watching the world go by.. i am yet to find anything more fulfilling.. :p but i do think that i have something wrong with me... does anyone have any thoughts?
 

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Hey Toffee, welcome to :sas
 

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Sounds like you're in the right place. Welcome to SAS.
For the record, I understand your situation completely, I've definitely been there.

Take care! See ya around.
 

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Damn that's a long post. Have you guys noticed a trend on self-help forums yet? It seems like the majority of first-posts seems to be a detailed life history explicating their problems at length.

I just read the title and I have one thing to say: If you think you have social anxiety, then YOU HAVE SOCIAL ANXIETY.

It's not very hard to determine whether you experience it. And there is little room for error. Here's a test. Go to Food Lion and ask a random person (not a clerk) where the milk is. You will even feel stupid ...because EVERYONE knows where the milk is. If you don't feel any anxiety, then you don't have social anxiety.

If you do, then you do.

This isn't hard.

And the extend to which you experience anxiety can only be determined by yourself. If you think social anxiety is prohibiting you from getting what you want, then do what it takes to get rid of it. That's all you need to know.

If you are looking for a comparison with the rest of the world (i.e. if the world labels you as SAD), don't. If you stick such a heavy label on yourself, it will only drag you down.

However, even registering in this forum implicitly labels you with SAD to an extent... **** what have I done!!

That's another reason why I'm never going to a therapist for my anxiety.

-First and last post (mebe).
 

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Welcome, Toffee! :)
 

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Ok so we've established you've got it, now lets talk about some ways to deal with it.

First of all, as fond as you are for riding buses on your own, it's not the best past-time to partake in if you want to get rid of your SAD. In fact it could be making it worse. At the very least you'll just stagnate and it'll take longer to get out of. But if you really enjoy it then keep doing it, just make sure its not destructive in regards to your progress.

As for your disdain for bumping in to people when you're out, I have the same thing. And I'll tell you what helped me with that. All I did was think, "in 5 years time, is this really going to matter?" Obviously its not. Can you pinpoint every moment you were socially awkward 5 years ago? Chances are you wouldnt be able to remember something from a month ago, let alone 5 years. You also shouldn't try to avoid people, because it makes it that much worse if you actually do bump into someone. You should be prepared, and lift your head up. There's no way anyone can live without communicating with others, as much as we'd all love that, its just not the reality we live in. Even the people that seem completely together and confident often aren't, they're just very good at masking whats wrong with them. That's not to say that all confident people are like this, but you don't know they aren't.

If you take one thing from this essay, its to remember that whatever's in your head only exists in your head. It's not reality. Think about when you're 80 years old and you pop in a dvd of your life, do you want that dvd to be exciting and full of adventures or just full of scenes of you riding on a bus.​
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I can't believe it's been almost 4 years since I posted this...I remember typing it, it seems like last week. I'm still the same as I was then to be honest...I still struggle in alot of social situations, but it doesn't get me down like it used to. People still look at me at times like I've got three heads, but it doesn't bother me as much. The older I've got, the more I've realised how phony most people are ... the vast majority of people aren't nice. I'm beginning to accept the fact that I'm a weirdo. But yeah...4 years ago?! That is scary..


"The only thing that could spoil a day was people. People were always the limiters of happiness, except for the very few that were as good as spring itself."
 

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There are a lot of people like you here, welcome to SAS :).

Even though it's hard try to socialize as much as you can when talking to a clerk/cashier at the store, fast food, or gas station little by little.
 
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