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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wasn't sure where to post this --

Hi, I'm new to these forums so I'll introduce myself first. I am 17, high school senior, with plenty of friends and a 'great' social life. I am a state-level swimmer and have been successful in most of my pursuits. I will be attending an Ivy League school next year. I have never spoken to anybody about my social anxiety and I have been hiding it ever since it started about 1.5 years ago. Basically, I've been hiding it forever and dealing with it as best I can whenever I go to parties or am at school. This seems like a great place to get some help, so let me know if you guys can help out.

My main problem, which is really ruining my social life, is that whenever I think about going to or am at a party or big social event like Prom, Homecoming, etc. I feel extremely nauseous and throw up most of the time. If I drink at the party, my chances of throwing up increase exponentially. This makes me not enjoy parties the way I used to. I have the same problem at all of my swim meets. After I swim my first event, I get tired, and the exhaustion coupled with nervousness about my next event force me to run into the locker room and throw up. I've had plenty of experiences where I haven't made it to the toilet and I've had to make up lies to explain myself like having mono or food poisoning. Another area I had the vomiting problem was whenever I was near, with, or about to be with a girl that I really liked. It was really hard to eat anything whenever I took her out to eat, and she would find it really weird that I would throw away a sandwich that had but one bite in it. I have since gotten over this girl so that problem is not as severe as it used to be but I still have the nausea when I'm with some girls. After forgetting about this girl, I've become somewhat of a sexual deviant and in the past year or so have had sex with more girls than I can remember the names of, though my parents know nothing about any of it. I'm currently seeing 4 girls regularly and random girls that I meet for one night stands. I know that this may seem wrong but it's been a coping mechanism and nobody can be perfect so don't judge me on this, it's just how I live my life. I have lived with these symptoms and feelings for a while now and have been able to cope with them decently, but my life would be so much better if I could have this nervousness, vomiting, and nausea go away for good. I've been considering anti-depressants or some sort of medication but am scared to tell my parents about. I've also read up on the side effects of various AD's such as Paxil and I don't know if they are worth taking the drug.

Sorry about the huge background, but what I'm really asking is should I tell my parents about my social anxiety and the changes it has made to my life? And should I try to take an anti-depressant to fix my problem? I am going to an Ivy League school next year and don't want the side effects to hurt my studies or change my personality, but I really, really would like my SA to go away. I'm not sure what to do... and I've read that anti-depressants can ruin your sex life and I don't want this to happen either. If anybody can understand my situation I would really appreciate some advice or personal experience on side effects. Are they really that bad?

Thank you all; support like this forum is something that all people with problems like social anxiety deserve.

Edit: I also sweat A TON... way more than I ever remember sweating.
 

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I'm currently seeing 4 girls regularly and random girls that I meet for one night stands.
Lol. I'm sure this is a problem people with SAD with truly love to have. SAD usually inhibits dudes from being chick machines.

At any rate, it sounds to me that specific social triggers give you panic attacks. I don't know how well an AD would help you maybe a Benzo would be more theraputic. Then again, the benzo might not be so great for swimming matches.

As far as your parents are concerned, you know them best. Do you think they open to the idea of you being on meds? If not try waiting till you get to college there are more resources and privacy.

Lastly bro, try to relax and not be so hard on yourself to be "da man". Your bangin out 4 girls, I'm sure most guys are envious of you at school
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm not exactly proud of having 4 **** buddies, and I don't tell very many people about it so for the most part people at school think I'm just a normal smart kid. Lately I've been getting depressed about always having this nausea so I'm just worried that the depression will become chronic. Also, my religious views (my parents are Catholic, not extremely devout but more religious than average poeple) have been changing a lot and I don't really like my religion as much as I used to. I still have faith in God but I'm a little more agnostic than I used to be, which is really unlike me.

I'm not trying to be 'da man' or whatever, I'm just trying to present my situation because I don't think I have depression - I don't usually feel that unhappy - and I don't think I'm a typical social anxiety case.

Can I get Benzos OTC?
 

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Can I get Benzos OTC?
No, you would need to see a doctor who would give you the an SSRI like paxil first. You would have to ride the medical merry go 'round to get a benzo. I guess I'm not specifically understanding your problem.

and.....

Why are you not happy about having 4 girl friends? I like rocky road ice cream, so I eat. In fact I eat alot of it, if I didn't "like" it, I wouldn't
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well I didn't say I don't like it... I'm just not proud of it. It's something I would have been disgusted by before I started experiencing these symptoms. My entire personality has changed since then, including my values and beliefs.

But let's be honest here, it's hard not to like. And rocky road ice cream is delicious.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well I guess I'm unprecedented in this household. My older brother, my cousins, both my parents... have always been 'normal' and never had any problems. They're all hardcore conservatives and it's difficult to be different around here. Mainly the reason I'm not exactly comfortable telling my parents or anyone else in my family about my problem.

Hell, if I told my parents that I was having doubts about "my" religion they'd kill me, or at least think I'm nuts for doing it. Catholic households can be fun sometimes, huh?

Edit: To answer the question you just posed, I don't think a conflict between me and my parents is any cause of my anxiety... but I do think the anxiety prompted me to change my values and behavior somehow.
 

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Well try to feel comfortable knowing that your older brother, cousins, parents, dear dear dear friend Bob and even your pet turtle all have their own set of problems as well. None of us escape "personal" problems, but some are masters at hiding them.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
:b Thanks. I'm sure you're the first of many great people I'm going to meet here. Thanks for the info and advice. I'm about to go out and try not to vomit at a party I won't be drinking at. At least I know this kid has a sweet toilet in his basement... the flusher is a stickshift that you have to put in reverse to flush. Sad that I know that...
 

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Yea there is alot of cool and VERY knowlegable people in the medication section of this forum. Have fun tonight, be safe, and Rock out!
 

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Man, I have had the same problem with vomiting about stuff since I started 6th grade. Any social events, or any situations I feel uncomfortable in, and I end up getting nauseous for hours before it and usually puking.

I'll tell you my experience since we have similar symptoms. I've tried 3 SSRI's (Lexapro, Paxil, and Zoloft) and none of them really helped much. My new psychiatrist realized that SSRI's would not help, and prescribed me Ativan (a benzo), and it has actually greatly helped with the nausea/vomiting. Unfortunately psychiatrists don't like writing prescriptions for benzos (especially for teenagers like yourself) since for many people there are issues of dependence and these drugs are seen as unsafe. So, good luck.

Keep in mind, though... SSRI's affect everyone differently and could actually help you a lot. Some people swear by them.
 

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So after what event/s did you find yourself developing this social anxiety? Some traumatic event? Feelings of increased self, or outside, pressure to be successful which have gotten overwhelming? When did parties stop being as enjoyable as they used to due to these symptoms and what caused these symptoms?

It sounds like you have some hypomanic tendencies with some developing social anxiety on top.

I was raised catholic as well. My family wasn't all that hardcore about it, we went to church every week and prayed before meals is about all, but I latched onto it hardcore growing up and even was pretty sure I was going to become a priest or a monk. At about 14 I started to see through the BS (IMO) and at a steady rate eventually became the very agnostic person I am today at 24 years old.

I guarantee your older brother, cousins, and parents have had plenty of problems. Obviously if they are super conservative then they have worked hard to do exactly what you have stated your natural tendency is to do right now: hide all your problems and do your best to appear as normal as possible. Isn't that the typical stereotype of hardcore conservatives: adhere to the old standbys set forth by religion or tradition and be completely unaccepting and shaming of anyone who dares set foot off that path?

I will go off on a motivational speaker tangent here for a minute... Positive, positive, positive thinking and charge headlong at your insecurities and other issues to overcome them. This is very difficult and often very painful but it is the only way to get over them. Meds can help but this simple painful necessity will always remain and will never take care of itself without the hard effort. Progress is 2 steps forward, 1 step back, 1 step forward, 3 steps back, 4 steps forward, 2 steps back etc. Its painful but the worst thing you can do is let yourself get sucked further and further into a negative and self defeating mindset which is ironically the path of least effort.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I think it really all started after I was with my first serious girlfriend over the summer almost two years ago now... That was when I had my first experience with sex and I really cared about this girl. I used to get really nervous before we went out and stuff and ever since it's been the same just for parties and stuff. I'm really not sure if this is the exact trigger but I feel like right around that time I started getting the most nervous about social situations.

Good news though - I did go to a party yesterday (didn't drink though) and didn't feel very nervous after about two or three minutes of just sizing up the scene, and I actually enjoyed myself... so I've been pretty happy today. Then again, this has made me not want to mention anything to my parents because I didn't have any problems. I told myself if I threw up or got really nauseous at the party then I would tell them first thing in the morning, but I didn't and here I am again having doubts about saying anything if I don't have to...
 

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You sound like you could really benefit from taking a beta-blocker before stuff that makes you nervous, like parties. Nausea/vomiting is a direct result of the adrenaline rush and it is totally preventable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Beta blocker? What kind of med would that be?

Is there anything I can get OTC that would be helpful because I don't want to be on some prescription and I'm really afraid of all of these side effects on anti-depressants and related prescription meds...
 

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They're meds that block adrenaline in the nervous system. Used for heart conditions and used to relieve shaking, sweating, nausea, etc., associated with anxiety disorders.

A popular choice is propanolol, known by its brand name Inderal.
 
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