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The social anxiety friend meeting thread! Watch

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    (Original post by Perky Kangaroo)
    It's looking likely that I'll be starting College in September and all I can think about is the size of it, the fact I know no one, walking around on my own etc. Luckily I have my own car as I can't do public transport no matter what.

    I take inspiration from my brother, like you once he met his girlfriend he became more confident and starting seeing her friends and he's been with her for three years now and goes out with his work colleagues now and again.

    It'd be great to just join various clubs to meet people but it's that first step to actually join and adventure into something new that's extremely hard.

    What did you study at Uni?
    Going to college in the first place is a brave decision for someone with SA, so you should give yourself a pat on the back for that.

    I studied politics at uni, graduated last year. I spent my entire first year of uni very nervous. I was with 19 others in halls and they were mostly really nice but I just didn't know how to make friends at the time, I was too scared to leave my room for most of the year and didn't want to be outside. After seeing my GP during the summer after first year I was put on citalopram and I was gradually more confident during my final two years, especially after meeting my girlfriend.

    I do still find it hard to make friends and still spend a lot of time in the house as there isn't anyone I'm really close to other than my GF. I do get to go out a lot more now I am with her which is good.

    With regards to joining clubs, pick the one that you think you will enjoy most. Then, you should be able to find things to talk about with people there.
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    (Original post by laylarose)
    Haha, yeah, I noticed! Definitely, although for me I actually thought everybody felt the same way

    It's most certainly improved my mood, yes. I was prescribed escitalopram for my depression and I actually found that it increased all of my anxieties initially :mad: At first it also heightened any suicidal thoughts I had, but after a few weeks I found I was experiencing happiness for the first time in forever and it's pretty much been that way since ~December.

    What about you with yours? I heard a lot of the side effects with citalopram can be quite nasty.
    That's good to hear. I spent a long time worried that it would be dangerous for me to take anti-depressants and mess me up even more, but citalopram has just improved my general mood so much. Even when I spend whole days inside I just feel so much more positive.

    For a few days after starting on it I felt tired all the time, but that wore off pretty quickly afterwards
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    (Original post by Advanced)
    Yes the feature was on social anxiety and Zoella was claiming she had it because she sometimes has panic attacks about social situations. I'm not saying that her panic attacks aren't legit, but if you are a very popular Youtuber who is always putting your face in front of a camera and hanging out at 1D concerts all the time it's not right to say you have social anxiety.

    Having panic attacks about certain situations doesn't mean you have social anxiety.
    I see what you mean, but I don't know if I agree. Some people may just have a low level of SA. They push themselves to do social things, but inside, they're really panicking. They push through the anxiety, because they want to do whatever it is. There are YouTubers with SA and upload fairly frequently. Well, there used to be and I'm still there still is.

    I didn't see This Morning, though. Just basing my thoughts on what I've read here. She may just be suffering with a more generalised anxiety disorder.

    In regards to me; I'm 25 and suffering with SA and agoraphobia. It started to effect me when I turned 16, but didn't turn into a real problem until I was 19. When the panic attacks started, I knew that I had a serious problem.

    I have a couple friends, but I've had them since my school days. Since I finished school, I haven't made any good friends. Just a couple acquaintances. This doesn't really bother me. I'm not very sociable. I like to spend a lot of time alone. I just want to improve enough, so I'm able to go out and work without experiencing a large amount of anxiety.

    Going out is difficult enough, but when I have to, I find most social situations extremely difficult. I don't really like people looking at me and I have a tough job keeping eye contact with people. I can never relax in social situations. It's far easier to avoid situations that put me on edge.

    Medication helped me the most. I have done CBT (and still am), but it's not been a big help. I know that my thoughts are irrational, but that doesn't stop them when I'm within a panic attack. It's difficult to imagine being relatively 'normal' again.
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    I had really bad social anxiety in school and at university. At school I used to spend all my lunchtimes on my own trying to avoid getting picked on (and usually failing). I told myself when I finished school that things would be different at university - they weren't I spent 4 years pretty much totally alone. I would go to class, sit on my own and try to avoid other students' vicious comments (and failing). I tried joining societies and talking to people in my classes but this was completely pointless, I just couldn't make friends no matter how hard I tried to overcome my anxiety. Even today now I've left university I still find it incredibly difficult to talk to people. I'm currently receiving CBT to try and conquer my fears but it's not working all that well if I'm honest. It hurts me so much to think that things will always be this way.
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    (Original post by NathanW18)
    I see what you mean, but I don't know if I agree. Some people may just have a low level of SA. They push themselves to do social things, but inside, they're really panicking. They push through the anxiety, because they want to do whatever it is. There are YouTubers with SA and upload fairly frequently. Well, there used to be and I'm still there still is.

    I didn't see This Morning, though. Just basing my thoughts on what I've read here. She may just be suffering with a more generalised anxiety disorder.

    In regards to me; I'm 25 and suffering with SA and agoraphobia. It started to effect me when I turned 16, but didn't turn into a real problem until I was 19. When the panic attacks started, I knew that I had a serious problem.

    I have a couple friends, but I've had them since my school days. Since I finished school, I haven't made any good friends. Just a couple acquaintances. This doesn't really bother me. I'm not very sociable. I like to spend a lot of time alone. I just want to improve enough, so I'm able to go out and work without experiencing a large amount of anxiety.

    Going out is difficult enough, but when I have to, I find most social situations extremely difficult. I don't really like people looking at me and I have a tough job keeping eye contact with people. I can never relax in social situations. It's far easier to avoid situations that put me on edge.

    Medication helped me the most. I have done CBT (and still am), but it's not been a big help. I know that my thoughts are irrational, but that doesn't stop them when I'm within a panic attack. It's difficult to imagine being relatively 'normal' again.
    Can I ask what medication you're on?

    I'm so hesitant to take any meds bc of the bad press they get.

    Also, I've seen you around on the forum a lot. I dunno why but I'm surprised to hear you have SA. I guess I got the total opposite impression from your posts. But I guess this is the internet! I have to ask though - is that you in your avatar? I always wonder whether it is or if it's just a random dude :dontknow:
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    (Original post by Airfairy)
    Can I ask what medication you're on?

    I'm so hesitant to take any meds bc of the bad press they get.

    Also, I've seen you around on the forum a lot. I dunno why but I'm surprised to hear you have SA. I guess I got the total opposite impression from your posts. But I guess this is the internet! I have to ask though - is that you in your avatar? I always wonder whether it is or if it's just a random dude :dontknow:
    Posted from TSR Mobile
    I used to take Citalopram. I took that for about three years. Now I take Sertraline. I've been taking that for four months. That's understandable. Medication is still looked down upon. I don't think it should be. The way I see it is, if you had a physical illness and you were told to take medication, you would do what your doctor told you to. Very few people would question it. I don't think this is much different. It's just not predominantly a physical problem. Medication is not perfect. It won't make everything better, but it has been a big help for me.

    Yeah, other people have said the same. I have been told that I don't come off as someone with SA online. I'm not the same in real life. The internet gives me time to decide what I'm going to say and how I'm going to say it. The edit button is also there. I make use of it very frequently. I don't feel much anxiety online and will happily post what I want to. I know that some SA sufferers have problems doing that.

    No, that's not me. It's Donald Glover. I have a bit of a man crush on him.
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    (Original post by NathanW18)
    I used to take Citalopram. I took that for about three years. Now I take Sertraline. I've been taking that for four months. That's understandable. Medication is still looked down upon. I don't think it should be. The way I see it is, if you had a physical illness and you were told to take medication, you would do what your doctor told you to. Very few people would question it. I don't think this is much different. It's just not predominantly a physical problem. Medication is not perfect. It won't make everything better, but it has been a big help for me.

    Yeah, other people have said the same. I have been told that I don't come off as someone with SA online. I'm not the same in real life. The internet gives me time to decide what I'm going to say and how I'm going to say it. The edit button is also there. I make use of it very frequently. I don't feel much anxiety online and will happily post what I want to. I know that some SA sufferers have problems doing that.

    No, that's not me. It's Donald Glover. I have a bit of a man crush on him.
    Why did they change your medication if you'd been taking Citalopram for so long, successfully? Citalopram and Sertraline are the two that I've been prescribed too. Yeah, I know what you mean, that's what my family keeps saying to me. I will most likely take them eventually, I think I'm just delaying the inevitable!

    I guess most people don't come across as having SA online. I think that's the great thing about the internet. It gives you something to hide behind, but you can still be social. There's been times in the past though, I've been all chatty online, and I've met up with people from TSR and then I'm just totally different .

    Ah okay, haha. I had to google who he was but at least now I know who it is!
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    (Original post by Airfairy)
    Why did they change your medication if you'd been taking Citalopram for so long, successfully? Citalopram and Sertraline are the two that I've been prescribed too. Yeah, I know what you mean, that's what my family keeps saying to me. I will most likely take them eventually, I think I'm just delaying the inevitable!
    Apologies in advanced. I have to go into my life story to explain. I was taking Citalopram for 3 years. It got to the point where I felt like I didn't need to take it any more. I should have gone back to my doctor to discuss how I was going to come off them, but I decided to do it on my own. I went cold turkey and felt no ill effects. It's not advised to do this, but that's what I did. I felt fine and my anxiety was low.

    I started a new job and my anxiety started to creep up. Not enough for me to think about taking my medication again, but it was rising. A lot happened at work (a bit of tl;dr, so I won't go into it) and I ended up getting back to my pre-med days state. I had major problems leaving the house and I was having panic attacks again. I ended up having to quit my job, because I couldn't go in any more.

    My doctor advised that I begin taking Citalopram again. I did so and it helped to ease my anxiety. It got to around 3 months and I didn't feel like it was working as much as it should be. I was already taking the max dose for Citalopram, so I was given Sertraline to try. That's pretty much where I am now. Sertraline has been good, but I'm still on the lowest dose. I will ask my doctor if I can increase to the next dose.

    Meds will effect people in different ways. As I've said before, they helped me and I recommend them to others that are struggling. Don't put yourself through a high amount of anxiety when there are ways to help to reduce it. They're scary to take at first, because you think about what everyone says about them. You also read the instructions and that is another thing that scares people from taking them. You have to look past it and think of the potential benefits.

    (Original post by Airfairy)
    I guess most people don't come across as having SA online. I think that's the great thing about the internet. It gives you something to hide behind, but you can still be social. There's been times in the past though, I've been all chatty online, and I've met up with people from TSR and then I'm just totally different .

    Ah okay, haha. I had to google who he was but at least now I know who it is!
    Completely agreed. I'm very thankful for the internet and other tech we have today. It gives you a way to communicate, even when you're feeling like you can't with people face to face. It also allows you to speak to others that understand. You feel less alone.

    That can easily happen. You feel comfortable online, but don't in real life. I'm sure you would have felt more comfortable if you met them more than once. I have had chances to meet people I've met on the internet. There was one person on TSR that I planned to meet, but SA got the better of me. I know I missed out on a good thing. I wish real life was as easy as the internet.

    I don't think a lot of people know who he is. I've been PM'd a few times and asked if it were me. I wish it was.
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    (Original post by NathanW18)
    Apologies in advanced. I have to go into my life story to explain. I was taking Citalopram for 3 years. It got to the point where I felt like I didn't need to take it any more. I should have gone back to my doctor to discuss how I was going to come off them, but I decided to do it on my own. I went cold turkey and felt no ill effects. It's not advised to do this, but that's what I did. I felt fine and my anxiety was low.

    I started a new job and my anxiety started to creep up. Not enough for me to think about taking my medication again, but it was rising. A lot happened at work (a bit of tl;dr, so I won't go into it) and I ended up getting back to my pre-med days state. I had major problems leaving the house and I was having panic attacks again. I ended up having to quit my job, because I couldn't go in any more.

    My doctor advised that I begin taking Citalopram again. I did so and it helped to ease my anxiety. It got to around 3 months and I didn't feel like it was working as much as it should be. I was already taking the max dose for Citalopram, so I was given Sertraline to try. That's pretty much where I am now. Sertraline has been good, but I'm still on the lowest dose. I will ask my doctor if I can increase to the next dose.

    Meds will effect people in different ways. As I've said before, they helped me and I recommend them to others that are struggling. Don't put yourself through a high amount of anxiety when there are ways to help to reduce it. They're scary to take at first, because you think about what everyone says about them. You also read the instructions and that is another thing that scares people from taking them. You have to look past it and think of the potential benefits.


    Completely agreed. I'm very thankful for the internet and other tech we have today. It gives you a way to communicate, even when you're feeling like you can't with people face to face. It also allows you to speak to others that understand. You feel less alone.

    That can easily happen. You feel comfortable online, but don't in real life. I'm sure you would have felt more comfortable if you met them more than once. I have had chances to meet people I've met on the internet. There was one person on TSR that I planned to meet, but SA got the better of me. I know I missed out on a good thing. I wish real life was as easy as the internet.

    I don't think a lot of people know who he is. I've been PM'd a few times and asked if it were me. I wish it was.
    Thanks for your reply. Don't apologise! Thanks for going into detail, it helps to understand why anyway. I'm sorry you've had such a rough time. I really hope the Sertraline works for you and you get back on track. Hearing that you had to quit your job because of your anxiety...I mean it's not a good thing by any means, but it sort of makes me feel better. My anxiety has affected me massively, and it's refreshing to read that I am not the only one who has had to adapt around it at times. But also, reading your experiences has definitely made me want to try my medication. Did you get any side effects at all when starting?

    Yes, I was so unbelievably close to turning back when I was supposed to meet this person, but it sort of got too late, but man, I felt so sick and dizzy on the way there. Majorly ill. I felt quite uncomfortable throughout too. It's a shame because I know that when I am relaxed I am not an uncomfortable mess, but people always get the wrong impression because of it all.

    Yes I wish real life was as easy. Imagine a pause button and if you said something bad you could rewind and plan it so it was perfect - like editing a post. But it's not and hey - you should never wish you are someone else. Instead, take steps in your own life to build up to those who inspire you. Well, I know it's easier said that done. I can't listen to my own advice
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    (Original post by Airfairy)
    Thanks for your reply. Don't apologise! Thanks for going into detail, it helps to understand why anyway. I'm sorry you've had such a rough time. I really hope the Sertraline works for you and you get back on track. Hearing that you had to quit your job because of your anxiety...I mean it's not a good thing by any means, but it sort of makes me feel better. My anxiety has affected me massively, and it's refreshing to read that I am not the only one who has had to adapt around it at times. But also, reading your experiences has definitely made me want to try my medication. Did you get any side effects at all when starting?
    That's no problem and thank you. You're definitely not the only one. That's why I love the internet. Being able to read about other people having the same issues is comforting. Well, on one side it isn't great. I wouldn't wish this on others, but it helps to know that you're not alone.

    I did get some side effects. I felt strange at first. It's difficult to describe, but I didn't feel normal at all. I experienced heart palpitations and they made it difficult to sleep. I already suffered with nausea before taking them, but that got a little worse over the first week or so. Those side effects passed after about two weeks and I felt better.

    That being said, not everyone gets any side effects. Others may have gotten more than me. You might not get any. You might get some. If you do, just keep going for a couple weeks. They're not nice, but you have to remind yourself that they will pass and it will be worth it in the long run. I'd advise that you start to take them when you don't have to do much for a couple weeks. Uni, work, etc. You never know how they will effect you.

    (Original post by Airfairy)
    Yes, I was so unbelievably close to turning back when I was supposed to meet this person, but it sort of got too late, but man, I felt so sick and dizzy on the way there. Majorly ill. I felt quite uncomfortable throughout too. It's a shame because I know that when I am relaxed I am not an uncomfortable mess, but people always get the wrong impression because of it all.
    I know that exact feeling. My anxiety is always at its worst during the build up. Avoiding the situation is so temping when it gets really bad. Do you usually settle down after you begin doing whatever it was making you anxious or do you feel terrible throughout? I don't know if you do or not, but it may help if you let the person know that you suffer with SA. At least they will expect that you may not be at your best when you meet. Anyone worthy of being a friend should understand.

    (Original post by Airfairy)
    Yes I wish real life was as easy. Imagine a pause button and if you said something bad you could rewind and plan it so it was perfect - like editing a post. But it's not and hey - you should never wish you are someone else. Instead, take steps in your own life to build up to those who inspire you. Well, I know it's easier said that done. I can't listen to my own advice
    Haha, a pause and rewind button would be amazing. I find it hard to put my thoughts into words sometimes. I have to stand and think about how to word what I want to say and it probably comes off as weird. You don't have to respond instantly online, so it makes things so much easier. It does seem to be a lot easier to give advice than to follow it yourself. Thank you all the same.
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    (Original post by NathanW18)

    I did get some side effects. I felt strange at first. It's difficult to describe, but I didn't feel normal at all. I experienced heart palpitations and they made it difficult to sleep. I already suffered with nausea before taking them, but that got a little worse over the first week or so. Those side effects passed after about two weeks and I felt better.

    That being said, not everyone gets any side effects. Others may have gotten more than me. You might not get any. You might get some. If you do, just keep going for a couple weeks. They're not nice, but you have to remind yourself that they will pass and it will be worth it in the long run. I'd advise that you start to take them when you don't have to do much for a couple weeks. Uni, work, etc. You never know how they will effect you.
    Hmm, yes this is true. I have no plans until September, so I should really take them now if I'm going to. I have heard it's normal and they do subside after a couple of weeks, so I wouldn't worry if I had any. Beofre you took your meds, did you know side effects were expected? I find it strange because my mum and aunty have been on citalopram, and they aren't the type to go googling about them like I am, and they have both been fine with absolutely no side effects. Sometimes I think when you expect them, it happens regardless.


    (Original post by NathanW18)
    I know that exact feeling. My anxiety is always at its worst during the build up. Avoiding the situation is so temping when it gets really bad. Do you usually settle down after you begin doing whatever it was making you anxious or do you feel terrible throughout? I don't know if you do or not, but it may help if you let the person know that you suffer with SA. At least they will expect that you may not be at your best when you meet. Anyone worthy of being a friend should understand.
    I don't know if I settle or not. It really depends on the situation. If I am meeting up with someone, like that time off TSR, then I feel bad throughout and can only relax once it's over with. However, I had a few interview days earlier in the year and I had the classic physical anxiety signs before hand, but as soon as I went in I was fine. Then again, I guess it is normal to be nervous for an interview.

    What about you?

    I have this horrible habit though. It think it's partly due to my SA, and partly just a bad part of my personality, but I'm very judgemental when I meet people. So I'm very quick to make a decision in my head as to what type of person this person is, and whether I could get on with them. This tends to mean that if I'm feeling uncomfortable it's probably because I've stupidly told myself that I could never realistically get on with said person.

    Just an example, sorry if I'm going on a bit too much.
    Spoiler:
    Show
    But I planned to travel round America in June, and this involved two weeks of being on a tour with other people my age. I don't know what gave me the idea that I would be okay with this. I think it had been so long with me avoiding social situations that I'd forgotten how bad I really was. Anyway, I got there and met this guy from the tour and he was pleasant enough but then I started reading into things he was saying too much and thinking 'oh I'm not going to be able to be friends with this guy', so then the anxiety signs started. Then in the morning when we all met up to start the tour, my mind just automatically told me that I won't get on with these people. Then I started panicking because I was going to essentially be 'trapped' with them for a week, with no alone time, and then I didn't go. It's just times like that where I can hear all the negative thoughts that are my own worst enemy, and I think back to my CBT, but it makes no difference when you're in the midst of a panic attack.
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    (Original post by Airfairy)
    Hmm, yes this is true. I have no plans until September, so I should really take them now if I'm going to. I have heard it's normal and they do subside after a couple of weeks, so I wouldn't worry if I had any. Beofre you took your meds, did you know side effects were expected? I find it strange because my mum and aunty have been on citalopram, and they aren't the type to go googling about them like I am, and they have both been fine with absolutely no side effects. Sometimes I think when you expect them, it happens regardless.
    Yeah, that'd be the best idea. I did know that side effects were possible. Before I take anything, I always do a lot of research surrounding them. That's great. Not everybody does experience the side effects. Even if you do, they will go after a couple weeks. If they don't, you should go back to your doctor and they will give you something else to try.

    I don't think I really expected to get them. We've all taken medication over the years and they all state that there are possible side effects. I have never had any side effects from taking anything else.

    (Original post by Airfairy)
    I don't know if I settle or not. It really depends on the situation. If I am meeting up with someone, like that time off TSR, then I feel bad throughout and can only relax once it's over with. However, I had a few interview days earlier in the year and I had the classic physical anxiety signs before hand, but as soon as I went in I was fine. Then again, I guess it is normal to be nervous for an interview.

    What about you?
    I think I'm similar. It depends on the situation. I did have a couple interviews about a year ago and like you, I experienced the physical anxiety symptoms, but I calmed down while I was actually being interviewed. I do avoid the vast majority of things that make me feel anxious. If I believe the chance of a panic attack is there, I try and avoid.

    There have been other times where I've had to get out of the situation. I've been on the verge of a panic attack and I knew that I had to leave before I had one. In my pre-med days, I used to have panic attacks very often and didn't have much chance of getting out of the situation. Although, back then, I didn't know that I was having panic attacks. I knew that something was clearly wrong, but I didn't know what it was.

    (Original post by Airfairy)
    I have this horrible habit though. It think it's partly due to my SA, and partly just a bad part of my personality, but I'm very judgemental when I meet people. So I'm very quick to make a decision in my head as to what type of person this person is, and whether I could get on with them. This tends to mean that if I'm feeling uncomfortable it's probably because I've stupidly told myself that I could never realistically get on with said person.

    Just an example, sorry if I'm going on a bit too much.
    Spoiler:
    Show
    But I planned to travel round America in June, and this involved two weeks of being on a tour with other people my age. I don't know what gave me the idea that I would be okay with this. I think it had been so long with me avoiding social situations that I'd forgotten how bad I really was. Anyway, I got there and met this guy from the tour and he was pleasant enough but then I started reading into things he was saying too much and thinking 'oh I'm not going to be able to be friends with this guy', so then the anxiety signs started. Then in the morning when we all met up to start the tour, my mind just automatically told me that I won't get on with these people. Then I started panicking because I was going to essentially be 'trapped' with them for a week, with no alone time, and then I didn't go. It's just times like that where I can hear all the negative thoughts that are my own worst enemy, and I think back to my CBT, but it makes no difference when you're in the midst of a panic attack.
    I haven't experienced a similar issue like that. I do avoid most things, though, so I don't get a lot of chances to meet new people. I can understand why your anxiety increases when you believe you won't like the people you're with. The trapped feeling is definitely one I understand. My anxiety is worse when I believe that I won't be able to leave the situation. If it's something I can bail on if I don't feel up to it, I tend not to feel so bad. Fair play on going on the holiday in the first place, though. I haven't been on a holiday for 6 years now. I'm afraid to go on one.

    Completely agreed. I understand that my thoughts are irrational, but you can't think rationally in the middle of a panic attack. Therapists give you techniques to help, but I find that they don't really do anything. I have another selection of sessions scheduled, so I'll see how they go. Do you still have CBT sessions?
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    I'm 17 and have an unconfirmed diagnosis for SA. I had a diagnosis assessment for autism, but it was unsuccessful as they viewed me as a "normal" child when I was younger, although I felt they didn't get enough information about me. Anyways, they suggested SA, and told me to come back in a few years if I got worst. Personally I don't think they were too bothered about how I was coping. This was a year ago and I've been thinking of going for an actual assessment so I can get some treatment. I'm really interested in psychology, but I never viewed CBT as very effective when learning about it. Is it worth trying? I only have 1 friend, which is my boyfriend of 2 years. I struggle starting a conversation, making eye contact and all the usual characteristics.
    The only thing holding me back is the experience of seeing a psychologist again, it only made me feel more depressed. My parents don't seem too supportive of it either, as they think I'm quite confident around them.
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    This guy was healed of SA and cardioneurosis (fear of having a heart attack).

    (FF to 2:54)
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    Hi

    I'm Danielle, I'm 19 and I've suffered with general anxiety & OCD for about 4 years now.

    I've dropped out of my A2s twice over the past 2 years because of depression/anxiety, and I'm now hoping to complete them at home as a private student, then go to uni or do an OU degree in History.

    I've had one course of CBT for a phobia, but I think I might try and get some more help to make sure I'm ready to work and study again.
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    (Original post by prophetkid)
    I'm 17 and have an unconfirmed diagnosis for SA. I had a diagnosis assessment for autism, but it was unsuccessful as they viewed me as a "normal" child when I was younger, although I felt they didn't get enough information about me. Anyways, they suggested SA, and told me to come back in a few years if I got worst. Personally I don't think they were too bothered about how I was coping. This was a year ago and I've been thinking of going for an actual assessment so I can get some treatment. I'm really interested in psychology, but I never viewed CBT as very effective when learning about it. Is it worth trying? I only have 1 friend, which is my boyfriend of 2 years. I struggle starting a conversation, making eye contact and all the usual characteristics.
    The only thing holding me back is the experience of seeing a psychologist again, it only made me feel more depressed. My parents don't seem too supportive of it either, as they think I'm quite confident around them.
    Where I live you just have to go to your GP and explain what you're feeling, then they refer you to a local Let's Talk service, who can give you CBT. I had one course for a phobia that was related to my anxiety and it really helped. It taught me how to see the anxiety for what it was more than how I was feeling/what I was thinking and view it more logically.

    I think with my social anxiety the CBT helped me to work on things myself, by questioning the thoughts and explaining them more rationally, if that makes sense?
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    Hello, I'm obviously called Steve, obviously, and I probably have anxiety issues as I never want to leave my room. It's quite detrimental to my life, I'd say. I live just north of London (note: not North London) in Hertfordshire if anyone close by wants to imagine what it'd be like if we could go outside together.

    (Original post by AmyBurge)
    I work from home
    What do you work as? I'm desperate to find a job that doesn't destroy me, though I also don't want to completely shut myself in so it's a tricky situation really.
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    (Original post by NathanW18)
    Yeah, that'd be the best idea. I did know that side effects were possible. Before I take anything, I always do a lot of research surrounding them. That's great. Not everybody does experience the side effects. Even if you do, they will go after a couple weeks. If they don't, you should go back to your doctor and they will give you something else to try.

    I don't think I really expected to get them. We've all taken medication over the years and they all state that there are possible side effects. I have never had any side effects from taking anything else.


    I think I'm similar. It depends on the situation. I did have a couple interviews about a year ago and like you, I experienced the physical anxiety symptoms, but I calmed down while I was actually being interviewed. I do avoid the vast majority of things that make me feel anxious. If I believe the chance of a panic attack is there, I try and avoid.

    There have been other times where I've had to get out of the situation. I've been on the verge of a panic attack and I knew that I had to leave before I had one. In my pre-med days, I used to have panic attacks very often and didn't have much chance of getting out of the situation. Although, back then, I didn't know that I was having panic attacks. I knew that something was clearly wrong, but I didn't know what it was.


    I haven't experienced a similar issue like that. I do avoid most things, though, so I don't get a lot of chances to meet new people. I can understand why your anxiety increases when you believe you won't like the people you're with. The trapped feeling is definitely one I understand. My anxiety is worse when I believe that I won't be able to leave the situation. If it's something I can bail on if I don't feel up to it, I tend not to feel so bad. Fair play on going on the holiday in the first place, though. I haven't been on a holiday for 6 years now. I'm afraid to go on one.

    Completely agreed. I understand that my thoughts are irrational, but you can't think rationally in the middle of a panic attack. Therapists give you techniques to help, but I find that they don't really do anything. I have another selection of sessions scheduled, so I'll see how they go. Do you still have CBT sessions?
    Great, thanks for letting me know about the side effects anyway. I have a friend who is similar to me and he has just been put on sertraline, so I was using him as a sort of guinea pig :lol: , so I'll see how he is going on too.

    Completely understand with the bailing thing - I'm the same. I often do bail, and the few friends I have just expect it now so it's not too bad. I like that.

    Nah I don't have CBT anymore. I've tried it twice now but it doesn't really do anything. Most of the time I think they are stating the obvious. In the past I have paid for private counselling and it helps but because it's £45 an hour, I have only been able to have odd sessions, so I went to my GP a couple of weeks ago and asked if I can get counselling on the NHS so now I am on waiting list which is nine weeks long, but better than nothing. I want to try counselling because I want to know WHY I feel this way :dontknow: . I feel I want to talk about it sometimes, and CBT never let me do that. In fact I had a really annoying woman leading it, and I felt she was just ranting at me all the time and it ended up feeling like homework or something.

    Does it help you at all? Have you ever tried counselling.


    ____________________________

    I like this thread. It is nice to talk about it with people who understand. The people who know about me at home think I'm a freak. I hate it, it is so embarrassing, yet I just wish they knew how I felt in these situations and that I'm not just being pathetic. It is very real at the time when you feel scared and anxious.
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    I guess this comes under SA?
    I was diagnosed with selective mutism at the age of 7. I didn't talk to anyone at all, bar my two closest friends and teachers (limited) until I left secondary school. I talked more at sixth form (I moved to a different school with completely different classmates) but it took me several weeks to really find any friends. In the end I sort of just fell into a group of friends, through no real input of mine. I feel like I've kind of just grown less anxious over the past few years, been more confident, kind of stopped caring what people think of me. But I still feel incredibly nervous when talking to people who I am not comfortable with, not my friends etc. I find small talk very hard and I find that, even with my friends, conversations seem to just grind to a halt and I feel like it's my fault. I'm going to uni in September and I am slightly nervous of meeting new people and finding new friends but easily not as nervous as I would have been 5 years ago. I guess I'm improving and I clearly pale into insignificance compared to you guys but I needed to get all that out.

    Phew! :indiff:
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    Hello

    I've always been socially anxious and I feel I can say it has made my life a lot harder than it needed to be. Things that most people seem to be perfectly fine with can be difficult for me due to how I feel around other people. How do you actually find out if you do have social anxiety? Do you just book a doctors appointment? I would just like to know if there was anything that could be done to change it. I'm also worried though if there is nothing wrong with me (if that makes any sense) and I'm just being an idiot.
 
 
 
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