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I haven't read too much on the science of social anxiety/phobias but I read somewhere that some people believe it's a learned behavior usually while your still young (also accompanied by certain genetics or whatever). After sitting around thinking about it I think I can definitely point out a good few events in my life that I feel have lead me to be the way I am. I'll make it quick tho & I'd like to hear of anyone else's ideas as to why / or what made them socially anxious as well.

I know for a fact as a toddler I was very outgoing, my father tells me this all the time. I'd make friends in waiting rooms & strike up conversation with complete strangers. I also had an extreme Electra complex & I'm pretty sure my "daddy issues" have a LOT to do with my SA because it started after my parents divorced when I was 4. He cheated big surprise.

Anyway after that I was living with my mom & brother. My mom shows NO emotion at all, while my father would always tell how much he loved me & how beautiful his little girl is. He would sit & explain to you what you did wrong my mother would spank and yell. They were very different and I was very sensitive so living only with my mom now made me very withdrawn.

Changing schools was another one. And entering middle school was yet another one. This coincided with my father going to jail and also the first time ever I remember being depressed in my whole life. (Although I'm told I cried for months after my mom & dad broke up). Up until this time I saw my father at least on weekends but now he was gone. & the worst part is he lied to us. I didn't know he was in jail until he got let out 5 years later. So in my mind he had just abandoned us completely. So yea enter depression & horrid tomboy phase that to this day I'm trying to pretend never happened.

After that I was just coping with life. Got to high school still real quiet & to myself tho manged to make some good friends & even a boyfriend (after I eased out of the tomboy thing of course).

Well none of that turned out good for me at all. The fckr turned out to be abusive & after two years of mental/emotional abuse he hit me. Choked me & dragged me around my house, ripped my clothes off all because I didn't wanna have sex with him on day & stood up for myself when he wouldn't take no for an answer. If it weren't for my dog he could've raped me. He could've killed me.
This here is a big one. Or THE big one. & it never would've happened if I didn't have the 'daddy issues' I had. If I wasn't so desperate for someone to tell me I was beautiful & that they loved me I would've never put up with the abuse for that long. It would've never escalated to what it did.

Life now is just the post of that break up; of that court case.
It happened a month before hs graduation & instead of looking for a damn therapist or something my parents shoved me off to college with a full course load and no direction. Needless to say that didn't work and I had several panic attacks on campus, failed a whole semester, wasted all that money and made NO friends. I had never felt such anxiety around people. I was always on the look out for my ex thinking he'd be stalking me or coming after me to finish the job. I'd have dreams of him breaking into my house dreams that felt so real I'd wake up crying. & of course thru all this my mother was no help. She gave me nothing but sht after this happened. She was angry with me because i wasn't a virgin anymore and living with her was horrible. All I'd get was a bunch of "I told you so's" and "It's your fault for letting him make you his ****".
I saw a therapist for a short time after this.. maybe like half a year and then he packed up and moved. Leaving me with nothing.

So there you go. The reasons I'm scared to put myself out there (except anonymously thru internet). The reasons I'm socially anxious around people I don't know, is because all hope for my confidence my whole life has been shot down by the people around me. But then again maybe I'm just too sensitive.
 

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Being yelled at as a child by loud ignorant lacking of imagination adults, yep that ****ed me up a bit and I still observe the ramifications today.
 

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My parents instilled fear into me as a child. Namely, fear of my peers, and the world itself. My childhood was rather chaotic and a bit traumatic. I had no voice as a child.
 

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I blame genetics for the most part...
 

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My psychotic grandmother. She lived with my mother, brother and I. She only picked on me and never my brother. She yelled at all the time and hit me for no reason. This went n for 13 years. To this day I do not know why she dhad it out for me. I had no voice at all. My mother never said or did anything to about it.
 
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Getting teased in elementary and middle school, losing friends because my physical appearance embarrassed them, having parents and relatives who'd always call me fat, having skinnier and prettier cousins, etc.
 

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I think I have always felt inferior from birth due to being a small person. Even when I was at the most extroverted point in my life (having many close friends and playing sports) I still felt inferior compared to my peers.
 

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Parents, cousins, brother, friendless beginning

I guess for me it's mostly genetics because I've been painfully shy for as long as I can remember. My mom has told me that she was like me when she was younger but not as bad.

Things that may have contributed to it and made it worse:
>I got yelled at a lot by my mom and step-dad for no good reason. Things like spilling something, getting food without asking, washing my hands to much, being to shy to talk to people for myslef. I grew up with this distorted mind-set that even if I did the smallest thing wrong someone would get mad at me. I was deathly afraid of talking in class because I thought I would get in trouble and I think that may have a little to do with why I didn't make friends in my early years of school.
>I got teased a lot by my cousins for the way I dressed and acted. Whenever I would go to their house they didn't really treat me like they wanted me there and would always treat non-relatives better. Sometimes my cousin who was closest in age to me and the one I went to hang out with would just go to bed without even making sure I had blankets or anything and sometimes she would say I could come over then once I got their I would find out that she wasn't even going to be there most of the time. When we went places I would stick around her and she would get mad at me for being to clingy. She was always real popular and knew everybody so I got caught in her shadow a lot. I guess all this made me feel inferior and like I wasn't a very likeable person.
>My older brother was real popular, (good looking, football player) and was friends with almost every kid on our street, so I was stuck in his shadow a lot too.
>In pre-k I only had 2 friends in my class, my cousin mentioned above and this other girl. In Kindergarden I started going to a different school where I somehow made 2 friends. One who is still my friend today and this boy who was like my best friend ever, then he mysteriously moved away without even saying bye to me. Then my other friend started going to a different school leaving me with no friends in first grade. So the fact that I had no friends going into school made me much more nervous, much more likley to not talk to people, and thus much more likley to never develop social skills and be stuck with social anxiety.

So yeah.....and I'm sorry about all that happened to you, sounds like a pretty awful thing to go through...
 

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The major event that lead to my developing of SA was my father committing suicide when I was 9 years old along with his bipolar episodes before that; after that I withdrew completely from any friends I had and wanted nothing to do with anyone. I felt like I could of done something rather than the helpless bystander and the barrier that my young mind had that I could no comprehend what happened- I felt abandoned and worthless and wanted nothing more to have a father to be proud of me going up.

I feel as though I lost the opportunity to learn how to become a man rather than a scared little boy that I still see myself as at times- completely inferior to anyone else. It felt as though everything was taken from me- opportunity and my humanity.
 

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My mom shows NO emotion at all, while my father would always tell how much he loved me & how beautiful his little girl is. He would sit & explain to you what you did wrong my mother would spank and yell.
My parents are the exact opposite, but fit this description fairly well. They are also both "Christian." Well, my mom is definitely a Christian without the quotes, she is a very loving person who tries very hard not to judge people. My dad however, does not show any kind of love, never really has as far as I can remember, and he is also retired Navy so is VERY conservative. When I was growing up he seemed to express disapproval of a lot of things, and anytime me or my siblings tired to voice an opinion or did something even in slight disagreement with his moral code, he would be absolutely furious that we questioned him at all, as our father and authoritative figure. There is no such thing as open mindedness in my house as far as I'm concerned. He is very cold and distant as well, just like your mom would show no emotion, so I have always felt that he doesn't love me, that I don't live up to his standards and never will just because we don't see eye to eye on 99.9% of things. A few years ago when our relationship was extremely agile, I had a recurring dream in which he pretty much told me to kill myself. So basically, I was raised to think that my opinions don't matter, everything I do is wrong, he taught me to be terrified of being judged by those in my life who should be the most accepting of me, and to assume that I will disappoint those around me in every way... no wonder I can't make friends :sigh
 

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my hugyne was really bad in middle. im so ashamed that it went as far as it did. shame caused me to be so quiet i guess. also i just feel like you never know what ppl are saying behind your back, i feel like i cant trust anybody somtimes.
 

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I would have to say my older brother messed me up pretty bad and my *** wipe classmates in highschool.
 

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1. Constantly moving, Growing up in countries where I could not speak the language. Always loosing good friends, growing up in countries that were polar opposites, having to learn new "social rules". (Not speaking the language severley limited my ability to talk with everyday people on the street, I was fine at school but was unable to interact with everyone else)

2. Mean family who was racist against my immediate family, constantly called out on my looks (often called "maid hair" by my aunts who were racist against black people, my mother being bi-racial). Basically they did a lot of things and were unremorseful about it, and it affected my childhood self-esteem greatly.

3. Always being gawked at in a new country. I hated all that attention, the stares, the touching, people taking pictures with you that occurred daily.

4. Moving to America (finally could speak the language but the years of decreasing self-esteem and inability to speak casually with people on the street had taken a significant toll already)

5. Narc dad who decided that a life with prostitutes would be better than a life with my family (around the time I was hitting puberty, not a good time to leave and start being a jerk).

6. Narc mom who basically locked me up from the world

7. Forcing to be homeschooled by my narc mom

I think that's about it
 

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I do agree that it can be a lot about not getting affection,attention and not feeling that you are loved.
My parents would rarely show that they loved me,favoured my siblings over me,didn't give me enough love and wasen't very patient with me.This has a lot do with my personality too.I was and still am to a certain degree insecure about myself,kind of fragile and emotional.
I think that with a little bit attention,encouragement and some time I could have been a different person.
Of course they couldn't have done anything about bullying at school,but at least I wouldn't have this feeling that my parents didn't love me.


I still struggle with this now and it's one of the things that I just can't fix.It's so hard going home sometimes all though it has gotten better,but they just don't understand me and they don't seem to really care about what's going on in my life.It hurts so much :(

Also I think that moving from place to place didn't make things any easier either..
 

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I feel like the way I look is the biggest reason for my SA.
 
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