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Hi guys

I guess I will make it short. As a former social anxiety patient or victim or whatever you call it, I am free from this horrible illness. I try several therapies, countless anti-depressant drugs and nothing help. I took it one step further and literally expose myself to my most fearful and uncomfortable situation I could think off. My worst fear back then would be walking to class and maybe some very cute girl would walk past me and I knew the moment I see her, I would receive a panic attack, and for me that was the worst feeling. My solution to this problem was to take baby step, I would walk out of my room maybe about 1 feet farther everyday. After two months of self-therapy and many months there after I completely cure it on my own. My panic attack are gone, in fact I am now enroll in a acting class where one of our activity was to staring at someone in the eye for around 30 minute without loosing eye contact. I was fortunate enough to get a pretty girl to do this activity with and surprisingly she look away after two minute. It is literally Amazing, before I could not stare at a girl for even 2 second.

I guess that pretty much summarize everything I want to say. The only thing else I find interesting is that therapy and drug never help at all no matter how many therapist said so. I don't have social anxiety at all, in fact I don't have even 1% anxiety. It gone in my life forever, I like who I am, I know people like the new me, and it been me this whole time, but it was hidden under many layer of anxiety.

Now I don't know how many people will be willing to face perhaps their worst fear or am as determine as I am, but I came here to answer people questions and to help anyone who want my help because I know how horrible this illness is.
 

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Welcome!

Hey Wolf,

Happy to read your success story, and i think i can speak for everyone when i say its good to know there's still hope. Sometimes it feels as though, even if i manage to get past my SA, I'll never be 'normal', i'll just be an ex-SAer.

That being said, thanks for coming to help us out. It speaks to your character that you would take time out of your day to help others out with a problem that's no longer relevant to yourself.

Welcome
~Eric
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hey Wolf,

Happy to read your success story, and i think i can speak for everyone when i say its good to know there's still hope. Sometimes it feels as though, even if i manage to get past my SA, I'll never be 'normal', i'll just be an ex-SAer.

That being said, thanks for coming to help us out. It speaks to your character that you would take time out of your day to help others out with a problem that's no longer relevant to yourself.

Welcome
~Eric
Eric don't think that way. I can't tell you how exhilarating it feel to be able to scream at the top of my lung or stare at a girl in the eye until she look away and look back and smile at me. Of course social anxiety has done a number of things to me in the past that it is hard to let go off. I think the two most important factors has to do with friends and having a relationship, and all those miss opportunities. But like everything in life, if your alive, then you will have another opportunity to change.

It is not a problem at all, I am going to be a psychologist/therapist one day so maybe this would be good practice, and I just like helping people in general. Having had social anxiety from 4th grade to 14th grade (sophomore year in college) is a disgusting curse, and one that should not even exist in the first place.

You are given this life and yet you suffer from perhaps one of the worst illness. Everyday you see life as black and white and what is the point of living life without joy? I'll tell you, there isn't any point to it, and that what make this illness horrible. I want people to see that life is not just white and black like through the lens of a dog view but rather it is full of color.
 

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Can you describe in better detail your "self-therapy"? What exactly did you do? Would you say forcing yourself into social situations is any more helpful than talking with a therapist/taking anti-depressants when, for some people, all it does is reinforce their anxiety and even makes it worse?

P.S: Sorry, I don't mean to sound like I'm attacking you, I'm just genuinely curious.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Can you describe in better detail your "self-therapy"? What exactly did you do? Would you say forcing yourself into social situations is any more helpful than talking with a therapist/taking anti-depressants when, for some people, all it does is reinforce their anxiety and even makes it worse?

P.S: Sorry, I don't mean to sound like I'm attacking you, I'm just genuinely curious.
No cabos that is exactly what your suppose to do and the exact reason why I am on here. If you ask me specific question I can better answer you better, and I welcome all question.

I may answer your question better via aim because I find having any kind of support directly would be better, it would be talking to a live person than receiving an email.

I actually did a lot of thing, but first I just want to say that my social anxiety was so severe that I didn't think that I was going to live very long just to point one thing out. Yes in fact self exposure is better than any therapy or anti-depressant drugs. Now for me taking drugs actually increase my anxiety even more, to the point where the only friend I have left said "your freaking me out". However if you do take drugs, I advice you talk to your pdoc about lexapro and ask for a generic brand, and you can get them at Costco for around 7 dollars. And Lexapro has very low side-effect.

Do you know why self exposure is so powerful? The reason is that it pinpoint your exact problem and try to fix it. Now CBT doesn't, and in fact I find CBT to be quite useless. It doesn't help me in any way because CBT isn't going to make me much social and it sure isn't going to cure me of my panic attack. Now if you have therapist that do exposure therapy, then by all mean try that out. Self-exposure and exposure therapy is all the same thing, the only difference is that it much harder and you have to do everything by yourself.

Now Cabos it not ever going to happen overnight, like I said it took me almost a year to completely get rid of social anxiety for good. But after a few months, My anxiety was less severe and I could feel the improvement. I live in a small town, and no therapist here does exposure therapy, it seem those only happen in those big city so exposure therapy wasn't a possiblity for me. But I did research online and exposure therapy made the most sense, and I knew what I had to do and I do it was a "do or die" situation for me, and if I didn't do anything about it, then I will be this way forever, and I couldn't bear the thought of having a future like this, so I took it upon myself to do something about it.

Now self-exposure rarely happen, in fact I don't know anyone who has done it. No books or online said it possible, so I don't know if I am the only one or not, but that is why I am here, and I can help you. I will probably write a book someday because I will be a therapist or a psychologist one day helping people having similar problem like the people on here, and I will work with anxiety stricken patient.

Now I don't remember every single step I have done for the past 8 months or so but if you talk to me on aim, maybe I can help you with your current situation. I need to know more things about you before i can let you know what is the best solution to your problem. Everybody is different, and it not like I'm any different from anyone else on here, but perhaps it has to do with the fact I have live a difficult life, one that most people could not bear, and because of it I am emotionally stronger. Anxiety is bad, but I have suffer much worst and because of that I guess there is something powerful about living a horrible life that make a normal person do extraordinarly things.
 

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Hi Redwolf,

Thanks for your detailed response. I've recently started CBT sessions with a uni counsellor, and I'm at the stage where she wants me to start initiating small talk with strangers. Needless to say I'm finding this impossible.

I admire your story and the fact you now want to help others. Your comments that you've lived a very hard life (do you care to elaborate on this?) and that this helped make you a stronger person really makes sense to me. So far, I've lived a comfortable if extremely sheltered life. Which unfortunately has led to the point where I don't have a strong enough backbone to do anything on my own to get rid of my anxiety.

So I expect while you may be able to find people here who are brave enough to 'just do it' and self-expose by going out and talking with people etc., many more don't have that kind of courage.

Best and good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hi Redwolf,

Thanks for your detailed response. I've recently started CBT sessions with a uni counsellor, and I'm at the stage where she wants me to start initiating small talk with strangers. Needless to say I'm finding this impossible.

I admire your story and the fact you now want to help others. Your comments that you've lived a very hard life (do you care to elaborate on this?) and that this helped make you a stronger person really makes sense to me. So far, I've lived a comfortable if extremely sheltered life. Which unfortunately has led to the point where I don't have a strong enough backbone to do anything on my own to get rid of my anxiety.

So I expect while you may be able to find people here who are brave enough to 'just do it' and self-expose by going out and talking with people etc., many more don't have that kind of courage.

Best and good luck.
I won't go into too much detail but it has to do with war, lost of country, being bully, tease, ridicule, life threatening illness, accident that almost cost me my life, witness my best friend hang himself, religious freak accident and the fear of being abuse by my parents.

The brilliant thing about this is anyone can do it. If I didn't believe so strongly I would not sign up on here in the first place. You know why I believe this? It because CBT and other therapy don't work and because if it did, then you will hear a lot more success story. The truth of the matter is that social anxiety was only discover about 20 years ago, and still a lot of people don't know about it.

I feel strongly that the only way to get rid is to face your fear, and if your not willing to face your fear, you won't get rid of anxiety. It like hey "I like this girl, she cute, but I can never date her" that kind of mentality will get you no where. You like her, go up and talk to her. I mean everyone know you ain't get a girlfriend if you don't ask her out, people know these concept yet they talk themselves out of it, and it the exact same thing as overcoming anxiety. People who I know or read success story online got rid of it through exposure therapy.

Now if you don't think you can challenge yourself then your already lost my battle my friend, but you believe you can, half the battle is already won. Now since your a uni student, my insight will help you. I battle anxiety in college and I'm still in college. I got rid of anxiety winter quarter of my sophomore year for good. College is one of the most comfortable place to deal with anxiety and since you say your at uni, then well we have lot in common.

Now it your turn to help yourself, aim me, I might be going out to eat soon though but I will be on aim most of the time, or try to.

Now before I go I want to ask you something. Do you think I am any different from you, do you think I am tall, short, medium, average build, muscular, skinny, or thin? I am no different from you my friend. No super hot handsome guy can get girl I can't, no other guy has higher confidence than me. No but it the right mentality to have.
 

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hey welcome, just wanted to mention that exposure therapy is normally part of CBT - it's the B in CBT, for behavior.
and why do you only want to talk on aim? if you talk on here then everyone can benefit.
 

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Hey Chris, welcome to :sas
 

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Welcome, RedWolf! :)
 
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