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Hi my name is Joanna,

In the past few years I think I've done tremendeously well in improving my social skills but there's still a lot of anxiety that I can't seem to shake off... I have a very hard time meeting new people and going to new places without giving the opportunity to prepare for it. Wow, that was really hard to "say" out loud... When I'm in the wrong state of mind I get really anxious in new company and I shut down completely. Doing that makes me even more anxious because I feel like everyone thinks I'm angry all the time or not interested in their company when in fact I just feel anxious and scared and have absolutely nothing to say.

I've gotten better at going to new places, I couldn't do that at all before but now I can do that as long as I get a good notice to prepare for it mentally. I'm really proud I can do at least that. The feeling I hate the most is going to a new enviroment; a new bar or a party or other event, then start to feel like this; :afr and feel my heart pounding. When I feel like that, it's only a matter of time before I find myself hyperventilating and crying and it makes me feel really embarrassed.

I used to only feel anxious, then I added up crying, later on hyperventilating combined with crying... Last year I started to feel my heart beating really hard, like it's coming out of my chest. I thought there was something physically wrong with me and went to the doctor who told me that my heart is beating just the same but apparently I'm so stressed out/anxious that my brain makes it feel like it's beating harder. It's weird what our body can do to us...

Last night I got into a fight with my best friend because I couldn't go to a new bar she wanted to go to because I hadn't had time to prepare for it. I tried to explain it to her but I don't think she got it and she just got annoyed because I was so "stubborn." I just wanted to stay in a safe enviroment in a bar I already knew and not go somewhere new to most likely cry and hyperventilate. Eventually I went home early and started to wonder if there was a social anxiety support forum and I found my way here.

I haven't really ever met anyone who could really understand me with this and it makes me feel like I'm a freak. Maybe I can find support here...

♥ Joanna
 

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Welcome, jjoann! :)
 

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I know what you mean about having to build yourself up mentally to go out somewhere or interact with unfamiliar people... I hope you're able to move past that one day. Welcome to the forums joanna :)
 
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