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Too School for Cool
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I don't know for sure, I've never spoken to him, and I don't know if it's social or not.

I first noticed this guy about five minutes into our midterm, when he started hyperventilating like crazy. Within about ten minutes, I'm pretty sure he was up to a panic attack. The professor made everyone around him move, he had this little radius of empty seats around him.

I haven't seen him much since, I don't think he shows up to many classes. He walked into lecture this morning after class (wasn't in class) and was approaching the prof when our paths crossed. He had some serious deer-in-headlights syndrome, and it was very obvious he was trying to just avoid people in general.

That's all I know. My heart goes out to the guy, whether or not he just has really bad exam anxiety, or social anxiety, or panic attacks or whatever. I could be jumping to conclusions, but this is the first time I've seen some random person and actually had the strong feeling they suffer from anxiety.

So, SAS, what do I do? Leave him alone? Approach him? Try and sit near him in lecture? Pretend the midterm panic-attack never happened? Keep in mind I have SA myself here. I also have very bad exam anxiety, and while I can keep composure during the test, usually look like he did about 6 hours before the exam. I'd be annoyed if it were me and people just started approaching me, but then again I think it's always nice to know at least one other person understands on some level what you're going through.
 

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You should do something. Think about it, you finally met someone who has a very good chance of having SA and he is in your school. He probably feels like he's the only one, and probably doesn't have many friends. Maybe you should talk to him after class.
 

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putting myself in his shoes, id kind of prefer if someone just talked normally, if at all. I'd probably be too embarrassed to go back if I had that much of a panic attack in class that every single person in the class took notice, let alone having someone random talk to me about it.

best case senario, you talk to him enough daily to the point you can talk about the anxiety as aquaintances/friends instead of a random person...

just my 2 cents though. take into consideration im bad with people :D. I'd personally probably never be able to approach someone like that
 

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Maybe try to get to know him a little before bringing up the anxiety topic. But if he truly does have anxiety problems and might panic, I'd suggest talking to him somewhere quiet. I know you have SA too but you're also attractive so he might have a lot of trouble talking to you. I know I would. What you could do is find out from your prof or someone at school if he has a type of anxiety and mention that you want to know because you have issues with it too and would like to talk to him about it? I dunno, I just think it's cool you wanna do something. :)
 

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Sure, you should definitly try to befriend him if that is what you want to do, but I wouldn't push your friendship on him. Obviously don't suddenly mention something about anxiety, as that would be pretty weird and uncomfortable... I saw a girl like this in one of my classes and it was a shining moment for me to see someone out in public who had similar symptons to me. I never approached her though and still regret it, but oh well... Since, this is another dude, it shouldn't be as difficult as talking to a chick. Good luck.
 

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Sure, you should definitly try to befriend him if that is what you want to do, but I wouldn't push your friendship on him. Obviously don't suddenly mention something about anxiety, as that would be pretty weird and uncomfortable... I saw a girl like this in one of my classes and it was a shining moment for me to see someone out in public who had similar symptons to me. I never approached her though and still regret it, but oh well... Since, this is another dude, it shouldn't be as difficult as talking to a chick. Good luck.
Perfectionist is a chick. A hot one. :yes
 

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Well in that case...TALK TO HIM! You will honestly make his day and probably his life... lol. If that hot chick with SA talked to me, I would have been on cloud 9! (or is it 7? Hell I don't know.) Of course you would have to get over your SA for you to approach him, but it is worth the effort! I always had a weird fantasy where some shy chick would make the first move with me. Make his dream come true! haha :p
 

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So, SAS, what do I do? Leave him alone? Approach him? Try and sit near him in lecture?
This. Try to sit near him and try to make general chit-chat with him when the opportunity becomes available. Do not reveal that you are talking to him due to his unorthodox behaviour, as that would be very uncomfortable. Just try to make it a general sort of interaction.
 

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Well in that case...TALK TO HIM! You will honestly make his day and probably his life... lol. If that hot chick with SA talked to me, I would have been on cloud 9! (or is it 7? Hell I don't know.) Of course you would have to get over your SA for you to approach him, but it is worth the effort! I always had a weird fantasy where some shy chick would make the first move with me. Make his dream come true! haha :p
lol...I don't want to be a wet blanket here, but I'd be a bit concerned about the possibility of giving him false hope, actually. Not in the sense that the OP has any malicious intent whatsoever, but you know how us pitifully un-confident SA guys are: if an attractive girl in class were to come up and start talking to me out of the blue, I'd almost inevitably end up "interested" in her right off the bat. Unless she's interested as well, I think it might be a good idea to just let this one go in the interest of his longer-term well being. Or as an alternative, if she already has a BF, she could make that known fairly early in her interactions with the guy. That's just my opinion, of course, and I'm someone who's very cynical and has a hard time believing in platonic friendships.
 

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I don't know for sure, I've never spoken to him, and I don't know if it's social or not.

I first noticed this guy about five minutes into our midterm, when he started hyperventilating like crazy. Within about ten minutes, I'm pretty sure he was up to a panic attack. The professor made everyone around him move, he had this little radius of empty seats around him.

I haven't seen him much since, I don't think he shows up to many classes. He walked into lecture this morning after class (wasn't in class) and was approaching the prof when our paths crossed. He had some serious deer-in-headlights syndrome, and it was very obvious he was trying to just avoid people in general.

That's all I know. My heart goes out to the guy, whether or not he just has really bad exam anxiety, or social anxiety, or panic attacks or whatever. I could be jumping to conclusions, but this is the first time I've seen some random person and actually had the strong feeling they suffer from anxiety.

So, SAS, what do I do? Leave him alone? Approach him? Try and sit near him in lecture? Pretend the midterm panic-attack never happened? Keep in mind I have SA myself here. I also have very bad exam anxiety, and while I can keep composure during the test, usually look like he did about 6 hours before the exam. I'd be annoyed if it were me and people just started approaching me, but then again I think it's always nice to know at least one other person understands on some level what you're going through.
If it's just a polite move, you can at least say hello to him. Use what you know to open up to him a little. Show him that you can be someone he can talk to - ask him about the class, etc.
 

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Born Of Blotmonað
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My thoughts are if you feel you could and want to be friends with him then approach this as you would anyone else you want to make friends with so hellos before or after class, then small talk, then hanging out. Helping him with his anxiety should be secondary, for all you know he doesn't want help but the only way to find out is through a friendship first
 

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The guy that lives next door to me NEVER leaves his house. I saw him one time running after his dog in the park. He grabbed the dog and literally ran home (I can see the park from my house and I can see him running to the dog and back).

This thread made me decide something. I am going to put a note on his door asking if he has anxiety (agoraphobia). I'm even going to tell him I had agoraphobia to help him be able to reply more comfortably. That's just me though, I don't mind telling anyone about my SA. If he tells me he does I'm going to tell him to see the doc I see who has been very helpful. I'll tell him how I am overcoming. Thats about all I can do, but it's better than nothing.
I think a note on his door saying you know he has anxiety is going to cause him far far more especially you being next door. The best thing is to knock on his door and try to be a friend in short and infrequent doses and at some point after several meeting bring up your problem and ask if he would like some sources to borrow or have that helped you if he was into personal growth and would welcome it or mention a specific doctor that has been known to be compassionate (as they are rare) and not say "see a doctor" as that is not helpful, its bossy and meddling, and leave it alone. He is your neighbor. Allow your neighbor to keep his self-respect and live in peace. He may be exhausted from overwork, grieving, or want to be an introvert anyhow even if he improves. You don't know and shouldn't try to pry. Unless you are a friend of his and can just talk about yourself, it is none of your business. Leaving a note on the door saying someone's personal problems is very intrusive, IMO.
 

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Too School for Cool
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for all your input guys, I really appreciate it. I was really at a loss of what to do.

Part of me feels like it's almost..unfair to approach this guy because of his panic attack and potential anxiety, when if that had never happened we probably wouldn't ever speak. I don't know anyone in that class, sit alone, and haven't made any attempts to talk to people near me. And I can't help, I obviously have no solution to anxiety and have no handy tips for him.

But the other half of me feels like I should at least attempt to get to know him, on the offchance we could strike up an aqcuiantance. I wasn't planning on approaching him with "Hi, I am Elise, I couldn't help but notice your panicked and anxious behaviour so I wanted to meet you", but I feel this almost bond with him knowing we might suffer with some of the same issues. I hide my anxiety, so I guess I'm kindof longing for someone who I could potentially relate with on that level in person.

I think I'm going to go the route that John, Canadian Brotha, and JS86 suggested, just maybe trying to say hi to him in lectures and see if I can get some sort of light conversation going about class or whatever. I'm not sure how successful I will be, as meeting new people isn't exactly my forte (duh) and he is never in class, but even if the anxiety never gets brought up, I'll at least have said hello to someone new, I guess.

This is a tough situation. I don't want to somehow offend him or make him even more anxious. I also don't want to look stupid, or like a huge dork. Ergh.
 

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Absolutely you should befriend him. It doesn't look like he is going to have much of a chance or willingness to make friends in college which, believe me, he will look back upon with a lot of regret. I wish that somebody like you, who understands about the difficulties of SA and the fears that go along with it would have opened up to me and I could have found somebody in college whom I could have related to. Besides, both of you could help each other and will be much better off from it. It's kind of like having workout partners. You need someone to spot you doing bench presses (for example) and vice versa, and someone to keep you motivated. Yeah, definately approach him. Say something in a very even and non-confrontational way that you've noticed that he has been getting nervous and you would like to help him because you've had simillar problems and you can relate (even though it may not have been severe). If it doesn't work out on the first day maybe try a little bit the next day. Eventually, I think he will come around.
 

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I don't want to be negative here, but it sounds like you're feeling a little sorry for him. You said yourself that you wouldn't of talked to him if he didn't have that panic attack. I think if you want to make an acquaintance with him or even make a friend out it, then that is a good thing, but do it because you genuinely want to get to know him, not because he's that hurt puppy in the road and you have to take care of him so to speak.

Edit: Everyone that read my original post; I changed it because I didn't read her second post fully.
 

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Yes, I agree!

I'm glad you posted and gave me this different perspective.

I'll have to re-think this completely. When I see him cutting his grass I'll say "hi". Then I'll see if he's receptive to talking over the fence. Normal neighbor stuff. I'll talk about his dog. I'll take it from there.

Thank you for taking the time to reply. Your reply, pausing me, probably helped him a lot more than my original intention.
Well, I thought of something else though where I give you credit for wanting to be so forward in your intention however. Years ago, the man next door killed himself by drinking himself to death and he had been dealing with severe oppression I found out. Perhaps he could of been helped if he had a friend. His parents lived down the road I found out but maybe they were oppressive to him. I don't know. His parents knew he was depressed and alcoholic. I was an introverted person then too and didn't talk to single men easily and didn't know him at all. I wondered if he could of been saved if he had someone to talk to. Yet, I think that if someone is too friendly it scares them more. I think that's a good idea to talk about light subjects like his dog and other common stuff. But some people are in a bad condition and may need someone more friendly but not too too so. I still think about that guy sometimes whose life was as important as anyone elses and it just makes tears well up.

Its great you want to help :)
 

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I don't think it's a "pity case". The OP noticed someone like herself and she has never seen that before in the public. Naturally she would be interested, as you would be too.
 

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just a warning, if he really has SA, there is a good chance he has had a severe lack of relationships in his life, being your a girl and he is a male, if your attempt to communicate is successful he may get it in his head that you may want to be more than just friends, since you have SA yourself then this similarity may escalate the chances of him believing that.

Me being a guy I can tell you if a girl went out of her way to talk to me the idea that she must like me is going to go through my head, chances of me acting on it are low, but that is going to be on my mind at some point.

so think of it this way, it will either not work or you will probably give him false hope.

I do think you should try though, false hope is something you could get over and end the ending I suppose having one friend is better than none.

On the other hand he may not be like that at all and be happy to be your friend on the spot, hard to say what goes on in everyone's head. I just know that on this forum a female companion seems to be at the top of most guys wish list.
 

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Yep. This happened to me last year (I made a thread about it). I was trying to help a guy with SA and it went wrong. He didn't have any friends, so I thought I would befriend him. Not too long after I started to hang out with him, he wanted something more than a friendship. I was going out with someone at the time, but he didn't care. He started to get really creepy - stalkerish creepy. Trying to get rid of him was another problem. It wasn't easy.

That's the last time I try to help someone out.

I say you leave this guy alone. You might give him false friendship hopes if you talk to him, and later decide to stop for whatever reason (nothing in common; you don't find him interesting). It might make him feel ever worse - he would blame himself for you not being interested in him. I think you will be doing the guy a favor if you don't talk to him.

I agree with LaRibbon - "everyone's encouragement of you approaching him is way over optimistic."
I agree.
 
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