I always thought social anxiety disorder was for people with agoraphobia, I would never have thought my thoughts and actions towards other people were S.A.D because I am able to withstand being around people, just. I looked up social anxiety disorder and it shocked me, it wasn’t what I thought at all and described my feelings perfectly.
This especially surprised me:
“Generalized social anxiety disorder typically involves a persistent, intense, chronic fear of being judged by others and of being embarrassed or humiliated by one’s own actions.”
I just read this a few minutes ago while looking it up and now I just feel awful. I just thought those feelings were normal. I thought everyone worried constantly about what others were thinking about them when in social situations.
When with a group of people I will sit there nervous thinking “I bet she thinks my clothes are terrible” or “I hope they haven’t noticed that my eyebrows aren’t perfect” and I can’t enjoy social situations because of this. I feel like I turn back into the unattractive ten year old again who was overweight with huge eyebrows who was bullied for her appearance, when I’m around people I feel like her again. Obviously around close friends it’s different but around confident people or new people I feel completely insignificant compared to them. There will also be a person that I cling to a little just to feel safer. I know that all of these feelings have come from bullying from my family, church and peers. At one point I couldn’t be at church without my boyfriend at my side the whole time or I would have a panic attack.
I struggle to walk down the street without thinking “that person is looking at me and thinks I’m ugly” or I even turn away from people. I mean really confident loud people terrify me, I expect them to bully me for being shy, like they can smell my fear. I’ve been bullied in every community possible. Even primary school. Me and my friends were labelled as “freaks” by the “popular” girls who at 10 were looking at the boys and starting puberty early. I didn’t know why I was a freak I just knew I was one. At home I just had to trip on something and was shouted at and called stupid. I didn’t know why I was stupid I just knew I was. Secondary school, the more attractive girls were intimidating and still are, I wouldn’t speak out of fear of being laughed at and if I did say anything in class I was called a boffin or if I said somehing wrong I would be laughed at. Then there was my GCSEs, I don’t know how I passed with nothing below a B. I was harrassed in my English class by a boy and girl, they called me the male version of my name and threw things at me and would sit right infront of me in class and just stare so close and laugh until I wanted to cry. My attendance was 75% in those two years, I missed at least a day a week, espcially thursdays and fridays when I had English. Yet I got 1 A*, 2 As and 7Bs in my GCSEs, I think would I have done better if it hadn’t been for them. If I saw them now I was be frightened. My friends would always get better grades them me too, I would get an A and but they would get A*s it seemed like it was some kind of plan by the teachers to make me feel beneath them. But that’s another insecurity thing. I fear every confident, cocky person in the world, I know that I’m just an embaressment and a joke to them and I better not say anything stupid. Fear of embaressment takes over my life. And CBT scares me because I feel that it makes me vulnerable. If I stop caring about getting embaressed I’m more likely to embaress myself because I don’t guard from it. How do you tell your brain “they’re not making fun of you or talking about you” when it’s always been the case?