Do I have social anxiety??

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rosejmj

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#1
I have been told for years that I have social anxiety. I have always been super shy to the point where I rarely talk to anyone outside my immediate family and have never really had friends. I haven't had anxious thoughts like I have read about, like constantly thinking if people are judging or worrying for days before events. Usually I don't feel very anxious, but around most people I just can't talk. It is like I become a different person. I am stuck inside myself. If I talk it is really quiet and I don't know how to keep a conversation going. I want to avoid people because I hate feeling stuck inside myself. I've tried to "act", to be a different person but I just can't do it. It is like I become paralyzed. Also I always feel like I am not good enough and that I cannot people... I don't know if I am awkward around people. People often tell me I am very quiet. For some reason even when I try I am not able to make friends. Even wierd awkward people are able to make friends, but because I don't talk enough I'll never have friends. I act completly normal at home and am actually kind of talkative and loud.

From lots of stories I have read it seems like people with social anxiety just get lots of anxiety during/before social situations, but they are able to still act pretty normal and talk to people
 
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gam9147

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#2
hi there. Are you better with a single person one-on-one and just shyer in groups?

shy is not really social anxiety, and there are of course a big range of social anxieties from slight to extreme. I think I'm socially anxious but only in a smaller regard, I am very quiet around others may times.

Accept who you are, you don't really need to label it if it isn't bothering you. Is it bothering you?
I don't have a lot of friends either, or people I feel close to because of my shyness, and I'm working on it but again not sure it needs a label.
 
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rosejmj

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#3
well... It is more than just normal shyness. It is like I am paralyzed and I cannot talk. It has been this way since I was a baby. I have never really had friends and I hate social situations. I can't even talk to my extended family and I see them a few times a month and have known them for my whole life. I never talked at school and I have quit jobs because of the anxiety it caused.

There is no way I will be able to have a stable job with these problems. There is also no way I will be able to get married if I can't even make friends. So I will be alone forever and live at home forever

In groups I never talk. I don't feel as much anxiety because I am not the center of attention. One on one I can manage to talk a little, but after a few minutes it gets awkward and I can't keep a conversation going and I am afraid of what the person thinks of me.
 
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rosejmj

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#4
I have gone to 6 different therapists about this and they have never helped. I have become depressed because of it and I want to die

My shyness/social problems seem to have gotten worse over the years
 
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gam9147

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#5
Hi my friend. I'm so sorry your feeling this way. Have you seen any cognitive behavioral therapists in there? Cognitive behavioral therapy is really good for social anxieties and highly effective.

I was very shy when I was younger, and really didn't talk around my extended family either, my voice is very soft and doesn't carry, so its almost a physical limitation in that I literally can't speak in a crowd very effectively.

But it certainly does sound like this is concerning you and you want to change. It does take time and patience. If you are in the DC metro area (I grew up there), the good news is there is a lot of really talented help for you. How long and what kind of therapies did you try?

Not that is a complete substitute but I found that online chatting and conversation helped me a lot. I can type pretty quickly and I'm a lot less shy online. I'm not sure if that is better for you? There are plenty of chat rooms, including for anxiety, and social sites as well as social games you can play to talk with people and 'practice'.

I hope some of this can help. You can get better, so many others in your position have! don't lose faith :)
 
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rosejmj

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#6
Well I do happen to live near DC and I started going to the Ross center for treatment. It was CBT but after a few months I quit. It is too hard. I can't do it and I am a Mt a point where I almost don't want to change. I just want it to all end
 
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rosejmj

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#7
Hi my friend. I'm so sorry your feeling this way. Have you seen any cognitive behavioral therapists in there? Cognitive behavioral therapy is really good for social anxieties and highly effective.

I was very shy when I was younger, and really didn't talk around my extended family either, my voice is very soft and doesn't carry, so its almost a physical limitation in that I literally can't speak in a crowd very effectively.

But it certainly does sound like this is concerning you and you want to change. It does take time and patience. If you are in the DC metro area (I grew up there), the good news is there is a lot of really talented help for you. How long and what kind of therapies did you try?

Not that is a complete substitute but I found that online chatting and conversation helped me a lot. I can type pretty quickly and I'm a lot less shy online. I'm not sure if that is better for you? There are plenty of chat rooms, including for anxiety, and social sites as well as social games you can play to talk with people and 'practice'.

I hope some of this can help. You can get better, so many others in your position have! don't lose faith :)
Well I do happen to live near DC and I started going to the Ross center for treatment. It was CBT but after a few months I quit. I also started taking antidepressants and ended up quitting. I couldn't even follow through on the small goals we set because they felt too hard. And these goals were just like smiling at someone or saying hi...

I have gone to therapy at different points of my life starting when I was 9 usually only lasting for months because I hated it and it didn't help. It is too hard to change .I can't do it and I am am at a point where I almost don't want to change. I just want it to end. Even if I could change I don't see the purpose of living in this world just so I can work to support myself. I'm going to die anyway so why not now?
 
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rosejmj

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#8
Not that is a complete substitute but I found that online chatting and conversation helped me a lot. I can type pretty quickly and I'm a lot less shy online. I'm not sure if that is better for you? There are plenty of chat rooms, including for anxiety, and social sites as well as social games you can play to talk with people and 'practice'.
What kind of online sites did you use?
 
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gam9147

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#9
Hi Rose.

Well it is clear that you are very depressed right now and I am so sorry to hear this. I've been having a lot of trouble as of late and so I know how you feel when you say it is hard. It is. I can only say that you (and I) need to keep trying. It does get better, but it does take time and you won't always feel like this. I know that may be hard to believe when you feel like this and have for quite some time. I can tell you as someone who has felt that bad and then has also felt very good for many years that it does in fact get better.

For online, its really whatever makes you happy. Do you have any interests? Find a chat site or a game. Do you like games? I always played world of warcraft, which is a very social game so there is a lot of text chatting, assuming that would make you more comfortable?

For chat sites you may want to start with an anxiety chat. the one I know of is in discord called /r/anxiety. If you message me I can send you a more direct link to it, not sure if they want that in the general forums here.

There are so many social games now, or even facebook you can start with. Do you have a facebook account? tell me what kind of interests you have or what kind of games you might like to play and I can help you get started if you like.
 

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