I've had social anxiety for about four years now and it's got to the point where I think even if I wasn't anxious around people, I still wouldn't be able to get on with them because I've forgotten how to interact. I can't even make conversations flow anymore and I think people are automatically on edge around me because I'm so awkward.
I feel like people always hate me and I always interpret what people say as being malicious or them having some kind of motive to avoid me.
Do you think it's possible that the anxiety just makes me think people dislike more than they really do? Any advice on how to keep conversations flowing?
Has anyone tried antidepressants for socia anxiety and did they help?
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Social anxiety ruining my life watch
- 19-10-2015 21:54
- 19-10-2015 22:34
I can sympathise so much with this, it got so bad I ended up having a breakdown, wrote down everything and took it to the doctors, who finally understood the extent of my troubles and prescribed me antidepressants, which did help. I hope that you find something that works for you
- 20-10-2015 08:57
Thanks for you reply, was just wondering how much the antidepressants helped you? Did they just decrease your anxiety or did they make you more outgoing and chatty?
- 26-10-2015 21:37
Hi. I have social anxiety too and I left it so late before I did anything about it. I thought it would just go away and I changed schools and jobs and friends and tried to change everything around me to get rid of it- I thought it was these factors which were contributing to my anxiety. But of course that didn't work because it was me who had the problem. I get so nervous around people especially those in authority to me or whatever. It's difficult and horrible and I got sick of it so I went to the doctor and I got prescribed propanolol. It's a beta blocker and works by blocking adrenaline so it stops the physical symptoms of anxiety like a racing heart and nerves, it doesn't change your thinking though. I'm about to start counselling because I need someone to talk to about it and he ,e who arnt my parents. Feel free to message me or whatever because I truly understand how you feel x
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- 26-10-2015 22:35
I really feel for you, I've also tried changing everything around me in the hope that the problem is my environment but it's a soul destroying exercise because it is like trying to escape from yourself! I've found anti-depressants have helped with feeling less anxious but not much, but then I think I probably have the same issue as you with not knowing how to socialise as well due to having just forgotten (or maybe never learnt?) the social skills...I don't know what I'm trying to say from this, other than I think I can understand how you're feeling...because I know how reassuring it is to hear you're not the only one, like how I felt when I found your thread!
- 26-10-2015 23:26
At Uni around 15 years ago, I deliberately socially withdrew due to lack of confidence/anxiety etc. I felt 'unable' to interact. Now at work I am quite (outwardly) extrovert and people are flabbergasted when I tell them how shy I was in my youth. Im not saying it will take you 15 years(!) but it can be something you pull out of.
One of the biggest fears I think that those with social anxiety have is that they will come across as boring/socially inept etc. Which is a horrible Catch 22 situation as the very fear of coming across as socially inept makes you- seem socially inept! The biggest lesson and revelation you learn is that people my notice but actually don't care and in actual fact most people are amazingly tolerant of those who socially struggle. It is easier said than done I am well aware. And if you are at all paranoid etc, you have to remember that talking to people and getting a response you don't like is actually in many ways progress - you ARE talking to others and in fact the 'comments you don't like' can be part and parcel of normal relationships!
Antidepressants can help (I wish I had tried them earlier) -good luck!
- 26-10-2015 23:58
I struggle with social anxities a lot too. Asking for help is hard because it makes you open up and connect to other people, which is hard
Im starting counselling, which is free at my uni, so I hope it has helped
Since starting university, it has massively helped me just exposing myself to lots of differemt things, and sometimes realising its ok not be ok. Its good to connect to people in the knowledge that were not all perfect, we have issues, and thats ok. I have withrdrew from things and still get anxiety where I dont want to go places. So I hooe counselling will help
- 26-10-2015 23:59
Also, do you think social anxiety can be conquered without antidepressentz. I have a big aversion to them
- 27-10-2015 11:17
Many people are on antidepressants, there is no need for the aversion. You are *supposed* to drink less on them but it never stopped me when I wanted to have a session, although you find you need to drink far less to be happy!
- 27-10-2015 11:24
Hi, I think I have social anxiety too. I looked it up and I literally tick all the boxes for it. I am trying to get better on my own by trying to go social situations that make me feel suffocated, but it's easier said than done. I have this irrational fear that if I am alone at break for even two seconds (which everyone is) people will think I'm a loner, and I'm paranoid that people think I'm trying too hard to fit in, even though I know both is not true.
I feel inferior to everyone, and sometimes feel like my friends are degrading themselves by hanging with me.
I'm trying to tell myself help is the last resort, but I'm not sure anymore. I don't think my parents will be very understanding...
Back to you, have you heard of CBT? Apparently it's effective for anxiety disorders, and its recommended before medication is even considered.
- 28-10-2015 13:20
I think (again, easier said than done) that, on reflection, those people who are confident are 'relaxed' in the company of others and don't 'overanalyse' everything said. (One of the classic symptoms of social anxiety is analysing what was said and reanalysing it, and normally interpreting what others say negatively for instance a general comment of 'I'm bored' would be seen by the socially anxious as 'You're boring' which is not true.)
One good way of 'forcing' yourself to relax is get involved in a residential trip/sleepover/summer camp etc - you will physically get to the point where you are tired and start relaxing around people!
- 28-10-2015 20:44
Hi here are a few tips that have helped me:
-make yourself vunerable by opening up to people (most people are understanding of people who find social situations difficult, and it can be a big relief)
-camomile tea helps me calm down before an event
-try and think positive thoughts in anxiety-provoking situations, then this becomes a habit
-treat yourself after goimg to social situations-hot chocolate, favourite tv show etc.
If i think of any more ill add them
- 29-10-2015 21:35
It's nice to know I'm not the only one going through this, not that I'm happy anyone else is in this situation. It's weird how much I can relate to people who have posted, some of these posts sound like I could have written them. I feel like people who don't have this don't understand how horrible it is and how much it can ruin your life. Maybe if people were more aware of the disorder then they would be more understanding and not just think of us as boring or arrogant.
I've recently booked an appointment at the doctors and I'm going to ask to be put on antidepressants and maybe to try cbt, hopefully this will help. The advice that's been posted is also really helpful and I'm going to try and follow it. think the worst thing to do is to just do nothing, because that's what I've been doing and it's just been getting worse. The advice that's been posted is also really helpful and I'm going to try and follow it.