Social Anxiety Support Forum banner
1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there

My first post and all that...

I'm 36, from the UK and have always suffered from bad social anxiety. It seems like it has only got worse as time has gone on. I find that I don't know how to talk to people and understand how I am supposed to know them. I find that strangely its not too bad talking to someone I don't know for the first time, but the more I get to know someone the more awkward and difficult it seems to know them and understand how to know them. I fear meeting them and it feels like they get frustrated with me. Its like the better they get to know me the harder I find it to relate to them and in the end I avoid seeing them and make some really awkward situations for myself. Its like I don't understand how to know someone, and I find I worry about this stuff all the time.

I'd like to have a girlfriend, but I am very shy when it comes to meeting people, and if I do meet people the more I get to know them the harder I find it to communicate and the more worried and anxious I get about these social situations.

I feel very self conscious all the time, and simple things like just going into a shop make me feel so anxious and awkward. This makes me angry with myself. Why is it so difficult for me to do ordinary stuff?

About 4 months ago I stopped smoking weed (skunk/marijuana) after about 19 years of doing it almost every day. I am pleased to have knocked it on the head, but I was hoping that giving up would make talking to people I know easier, but it just seems to be making things harder, and my thoughts, feelings and anxieties feel more heightened and confused than ever. Given up smoking weed is changing me and I hope its for the better. I find that I have sexual urges more than I did, but annoyingly this is just leading to me downloading porn from the net, which I feel bad about and I don't want to do that sort of thing.

My current pattern of getting to know people a bit, feeling more an more awkward as I get to know them and then eventually avoiding them is threatening a good friendship with a girl that I work for, and also threatening my job. She seems to be desperately trying to get to know me better, but the more this happens the more awkward and anxious I feel trying to communicate with her. My communication with her is becoming quite destructive and I only seem to be able to upset and worry her. I work with her, her ex boyfriend and her teenage daughter, the 4 of us all in a little office. Its a good job, but I thinks its all gonna come crashing down because the more I get to know these people the more anxious and paranoid I feel in their company. It feels like a very difficult dynamic in the office when we discuss stuff, like its really confrontational, but none of the others can see it. I try and explain to her how I find the vibe in the office difficult, but it just upsets her and after my last e-mail exchange she has asked me not to come back into the office for a week.

I'm not sleeping well at the moment and I feel really dizzy sometimes, like I have to steady myself on stuff to not fall over when its really bad. The doctors can't work out whats making me so dizzy, but to be honest I haven't discussed any of the stuff that is going on in my head with them. I am scared of being prescribed some kind of "anti-depressants" I guess I worry that I will know my own mind even less if I take these.

History....

As a child I was very very shy. I spent my childhood terrified of my Father, who would hit and kick me for being a bit dreamy. I never did anything bad as a child as I was just too scared. Leaving my trainers on the doormat for a couple of days in a row, or not doing some difficult chore exactly right meant getting hit and kicked. My Father is a very big man and I was always a very small and skinny child.

I was sent away to school from the age of 11 in an attempt to try and toughen me up as my parents had some money back in those days, and I think that as the oldest son it was thought that I should get a good education and inherit my Dad's business. I think it was also considered that I was too clingy and close to my Mum, and I guess we did used to hug quite a lot. My older Sister and younger Brother were spared this punishment, although my Sister was also physically punished at home by my Dad in the same manner for just being a bit dreamy.

Boarding school was basically just 5 years of hell and it had quite a big effect on my life. Since the day I left the school I have not spoken to a single other person that I was at school with and I have never wanted to. I think though that the kids I was there with would probably just remember me as the kid who was always crying. My Mum noticed I changed during this time, and I no longer had funny little stories to tell, like somehow something died inside me. I would beg and plead with them to let me come home, but my Dad would always insist that it was for my own good and point out how much money it was costing them, which would make me feel really guilty. I kind of dealt with it like a prison sentence and realised that I just had to do my time and eventually it would be over. Boarding school might be a different place now, but 20 to 25 years ago it was very harsh and very unfair. Kids can also be particularly cruel at school when you are much smaller and quieter than them, and there is no going home at the end of each day. I left school with no qualifications at all, I think because I was always so upset and just hated it so much.

Relationships have been very few and far between, and the only significant one I had was when I was between 19 and 21. She was the first of only 2 girls I have had sex with and I was madly in love with her. I had a little flat in the town near the village where my parents lived, and for around 3 years we shared the same single bed and would always sleep curled up together. Sexually things were tricky but I did my best to be understanding. She had been sexually abused as a child by some dirty old man who had touched her. This was such a horrible thing, but at the time when I met her she seemed to be dealing with it really well. It meant I couldn't touch her with my hands in bed, but she was keen to have sex and we found ways without me touching her with my hands. After a while things got difficult though and there were occasions in the middle of being intimate when she saw me as the guy who had abused her. We would stop and I would try and comfort her, but she wouldn't let me hold her and clearly these things from her past were a massive issue. I tried to convince her that we should go and speak to someone, but she was not prepared to. In the end we stopped being intimate at all and didn't even kiss. I was desperate to stay with her, even if we never had sex, but in the end she ended the relationship saying that she was not being fair to me. I have not seen her since around that time, as I guess I was not (and probably still not) emotionally mature enough to deal with seeing her and not being able to hug her and have her as my girlfriend. It generally left me feeling kinda freaked out about relationships. I think that the fact that she saw me as her abuser has done my head in a bit. The only other relationship I have had was 10 years later and only lasted a few weeks. Sexually I really didn't know what to do and I couldn't help feeling like some sort of pervert. It didn't feel fun like it should and I ended it. She was really, really upset and she seemed to take it really badly. She had told me that other guys had messed her about and I have always felt really bad about it.

Sorry that I have written so much. I guess that I have a lot of stuff going on in my head at the moment, and giving up smoking weed has made me think a lot about my life so far. I feel quite lost and alone at the moment and I feel that I am struggling so badly to communicate with anyone and I am getting very frustrated with myself. I'm looking for a way out of this but things just seem to get to worse at the moment.

Othy.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
177,223 Posts
Hey Othy welcome. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,475 Posts
Hi Othy, welcome to the forums :)

Don't worry about writing too much, I know what its like when you start writing what's on your mind, it all comes flooding out. That's a good thing, and i'm sure no one here minds, they'll take the time to read your post.

I know what you mean about people feeling frustrated with you. I sometimes think people i'm close to at work get frustrated with me, as sometimes I find it hard to talk normally to them ,even after knowing them for four years. I think you have to realise that if people want to talk to you and keep coming back to you to talk, then they must like you for you, so you don't really have to be anxious around them. I know that's easier said than done, but keep it in mind, and try to act yourself around them, i'm sure they'll like you more if you just be yourself.

I hope things start getting better for you from now on. Keep posting on these forums and before you know it you won't feel so alone. There are so many friendly people here, I know its helped me a lot since I joined :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hey thanks for your reply.
You're right in what you say, I should bear in mind that the people I know who try make an effort to be friendly with me clearly they want to get to know me, regardless of how difficult it feels to me, so I should try and remember that. I guess I'm lucky to have those people. I just need try and figure out why it feels so awkward to me.
Thanks for your support.
Othy
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
38,431 Posts
:wel
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
154,235 Posts
Welcome, Othy! :)
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top