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i really don't get it. i don't understand how people do it. nothing i've tried works or helps. when i'm alone doing nothing, sure, i feel depressed, miserable, worthless, lonely and empty, and i hate myself and it sucks, but every single time i try to "take a positive step forward" and "just put myself out there" i immediately feel a hundred times worse.

every time i try to make friends or talk to people, i have constant horrible panic attacks, feel constantly anxious and nervous, freaking out over every little thing i say or don't say, feeling this huge surge of fearful avoidant attachment issues surfacing, and always feel like im having a complete mental collapse and breakdown, to the point where i have to ghost everyone and isolate myself again, and cry to myself alone.

i've tried therapy also, which didn't really do anything for me. all i want to do is just make friends but even just saying that, even just typing it out, makes me flinch. being alive is such an exhausting, tiring burden... nothing helps... i just want someone to be there for me for once... i work so hard but nothing ever comes out of it...
 

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Yeah idk either. I’ve accepted that I’m an awkward piece of **** with a terrible personality and horrible social skills and that I’ll never have any friends or get married and I still feel bad about it. Well not so much the getting married part, I don’t really want to be married but I want friends... i think.

See.... it’s almost not even about the friends, idk I just feel bad about how my brain works because it gets in the way of everything. If I could have a friend I’d know that I’m getting better, but the bottom line is I want to be normal. I want to feel sad when someone tells me that their dog died, I want to create small talk whenever I’m next to someone I have something in common with. I just don’t like the way my mind works even though I accept it.
 

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Karmically Cryptic
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My advice is to start slow. Instead of jumping right in trying to start conversations, maybe just go to a coffee shop and sit and have a coffee around people or take a walk in a park or mall. My therapist always reminds me don't try to jump to the top of the staircase, take one step at a time. Maybe after you've expanded your comfort zone, as an example the next step could be purposely smiling and saying hi to someone in passing. Find what works for you and build up your comfort level.
 

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My advice is to start slow. Instead of jumping right in trying to start conversations, maybe just go to a coffee shop and sit and have a coffee around people or take a walk in a park or mall. My therapist always reminds me don't try to jump to the top of the staircase, take one step at a time. Maybe after you've expanded your comfort zone, as an example the next step could be purposely smiling and saying hi to someone in passing. Find what works for you and build up your comfort level.
I don’t feel like going to a populated place is a step forward. If I don’t interact with anyone I’m still hiding behind my laptop or phone and no one is going to come up and randomly talk to me at a cafe or resteraunt.

I thought starting a conversation was the next step, but it’s hard to do. It isn’t like there’s gradual steps all the time it seems the early steps are massive.

Like, saying hi to a random passerby seems weird. Why would I want to mark myself as a weirdo to someone I could potentially be friends with in the future?
 

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Karmically Cryptic
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I don’t feel like going to a populated place is a step forward. If I don’t interact with anyone I’m still hiding behind my laptop or phone and no one is going to come up and randomly talk to me at a cafe or resteraunt.

I thought starting a conversation was the next step, but it’s hard to do. It isn’t like there’s gradual steps all the time it seems the early steps are massive.

Like, saying hi to a random passerby seems weird. Why would I want to mark myself as a weirdo to someone I could potentially be friends with in the future?
That was advice for the original poster. If he's having panic attacks just trying to talk to people then maybe the first step should be to simply get comfortable being around others. And I didn't say hide behind your phone or laptop. Maybe sit on the patio and just observe while drinking some coffee or tea. You'd be surprised how pretty much no one will even notice.

Yeah because being friendly makes you look like a weirdo...I guess if you did it was in a parking lot or something but if you were walking in the park or around your neighborhood there's nothing wrong with it. If you think that makes you weird then maybe that's a clue as to why you are in the position you're in.

Edit: @Sainnot Sorry didn't mean to sound like a dick I'm just agitated this morning over something that has nothing to do with you. Wasn't personal.
 

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i really don't get it. i don't understand how people do it. nothing i've tried works or helps. when i'm alone doing nothing, sure, i feel depressed, miserable, worthless, lonely and empty, and i hate myself and it sucks, but every single time i try to "take a positive step forward" and "just put myself out there" i immediately feel a hundred times worse.

every time i try to make friends or talk to people, i have constant horrible panic attacks, feel constantly anxious and nervous, freaking out over every little thing i say or don't say, feeling this huge surge of fearful avoidant attachment issues surfacing, and always feel like im having a complete mental collapse and breakdown, to the point where i have to ghost everyone and isolate myself again, and cry to myself alone.

i've tried therapy also, which didn't really do anything for me. all i want to do is just make friends but even just saying that, even just typing it out, makes me flinch. being alive is such an exhausting, tiring burden... nothing helps... i just want someone to be there for me for once... i work so hard but nothing ever comes out of it...
I admire the fact that you are trying and making an effort. Fortunately, you also seem to have opportunities available, and so you must have elements of a sociable personality. It's these anxiety-induced symptoms that get in the way of this. A shame therapy didn't help, and I guess the advice they gave probably wasn't earth-shattering.

I agree with @Starcut83 advice. Though I don't know the context of your encounters, or how you're trying to make friends, but just slowing the pace down, lowering the expectations, and celebrating any overall improvements (in your own self-development) helps. Apologies if this doesn't help, as I think more specific advice would require more specific information regarding the scenario. Feel free to share if you want.
 

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I think many of us could do with getting to know each other for real and not just online. In an ideal world we would all get together and face the world and maybe among our own we might feel more relaxed. That would be the first really helpful step instead of just throwing ourselves to the lions. Many of us are not ready for the big shift between our room and the big world. If I ever get to become independent financially I wouldn’t mind meeting all of you.
 

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I think many of us could do with getting to know each other for real and not just online. In an ideal world we would all get together and face the world and maybe among our own we might feel more relaxed. That would be the first really helpful step instead of just throwing ourselves to the lions. Many of us are not ready for the big shift between our room and the big world. If I ever get to become independent financially I wouldn’t mind meeting all of you.
Yeah I feel like I could be friends with people here maybe just because we all understand how hard it is out there if you have the cognitive impairments that we share.
 

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You need to rewire your brain, it’s had a lifetime to get the way it is so your only option is to be verrryyyy patient in your healing. For anxiety, ACT is a really effective therapy, it’s helped me enormously and it can be applied immediately. I’m reading ACT Made Simple by Russ Harris, it’s so fecking amazing 🤩
 

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Karmically Cryptic
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Have you guys looked for a Social Anxiety meetup near you? I know it may sound like an obvious idea but there's one around here and I just thought of it with what @Socialmisfits said.
 

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Have you guys looked for a Social Anxiety meetup near you? I know it may sound like an obvious idea but there's one around here and I just thought of it with what @Socialmisfits said.
I went to one once, the people I talked to were much higher functioning than me. I don't think those kind of groups attract people with severe anxiety very often.
 

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Karmically Cryptic
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I went to one once, the people I talked to were much higher functioning than me. I don't think those kind of groups attract people with severe anxiety very often.
I went to the one here once. There were some people engaging in conversation but there were a few who said almost nothing and I'm guessing it was due to being in their head with their anxiety. But yeah, this was years ago.
 

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i really don't get it. i don't understand how people do it. nothing i've tried works or helps. when i'm alone doing nothing, sure, i feel depressed, miserable, worthless, lonely and empty, and i hate myself and it sucks, but every single time i try to "take a positive step forward" and "just put myself out there" i immediately feel a hundred times worse.

every time i try to make friends or talk to people, i have constant horrible panic attacks, feel constantly anxious and nervous, freaking out over every little thing i say or don't say, feeling this huge surge of fearful avoidant attachment issues surfacing, and always feel like im having a complete mental collapse and breakdown, to the point where i have to ghost everyone and isolate myself again, and cry to myself alone.
Same,severe anxiety has ruined every aspect of my life,even when i'm on xanax i still don't feel like a normal person.
That's why i don't even bother trying to make friends anymore,i've accepted my situation.
 
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