The beginning of the end of my social phobia...I hope.

As some of you know, I have social phobia. An intense fear of certain social situations (especially initiation), social phobia has wrought terrible consequences on my life. I have virtually no friends outside of the message boards and I have a very difficult time talking to my professors at university, making telephone calls and applying for jobs. Ironically, I know that I am actually a very social person and that I want to be social. I have social skills, and probably very good ones, but the anxiety which manifests itself when I need to initiate something social often prevents me from using them. However, once past the initiation, things generally become much easier for me and I usually succeed well in whatever I am doing.

Things are starting to look up these days. I was able to communicate with a former classmate of mine and invite her out to coffee later this week. I am also starting to become a little more comfortable submitting applications for jobs; I will be doing three today. I have no interviews yet, unfortunately (because I have submitted so few applications thus far), but I am not worried about them (for some reason, public speaking and job interviews, which often frighten social phobics, do not frighten me).

I am sure that I will have some relapses, but it looks as though I am starting to make some real progress. I am still thinking about talking to a counsellor at university anyhow so to gain help with my social phobia.

That’s good… Maybe you can help Manus over come his social phobia.

That’s good Perc! I know you can do it!

I hope you can over come it with a smooth landing. And manus, well, he’s working on his. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Well, my problem is severe shyness. Although I can talk to my teachers without a problem (and some of my best friends are my teachers and former teachers), I’m extremely shy around cute and nice girls, specially when they start showing interest in me. Until recently, this shyness was so severe I couldn’t even go into a shop and tell the shopkeeper what I wanted, instead, I usually just looked around and was unable to say a word. I just feel unable to move or even think. And that’s annoying because there are some very nice girls I really like, and I’d love to hug them once in a while (they know who they are ;D).
Well, I’m very laid back and I have trouble trusting someone. Just to give you an idea, I’ve known my best friend since my first school years, and since then I’ve only been able to interact with a few people each year. I only have a handful of friends, and frankly, I know more peope online than offline. The boards allow me to meet other people, but sometimes, I feel as embarassed as if I was actually face to face with them.
But I’ve made up my mind! I’m going to get over this!
Also, I have a hyperactive conscience that makes me feel horrible even when I have innocent thoughts, like hugging a girl. It’s really nasty. Feeling guilty for caring about someone is just not right.

So in other words, like CC said, you’re working on yours.

Yes, and once I get face to face with the adorable girls I care for, I’m going on a hugging spree! I’m tired of this condition.

Yeah, and get sued for sexual harrassment. Or mauled. Whichever’s worse.

Whoa, you get face-to-face with adorable girls!? Lucky bastitch …

I said “hug”, not “molest”! I have a great respect for girls, and that will never change.
Of course I’ll only go on a hugging spree around the girls I care for.

Until I was about 16, I knew feelings quite similar to what Manus knows at present. The result was that I had trouble approaching girls until then.

How did I overcome it? I am not sure, but I think that it related to how I thought about the situation. I learned a lot about feminism that year and how many modern women were rejecting the old beliefs about femininity derived from Classical and Biblical thought. Although I had held that women were equals to men in society since I was young (my mother is a feminist), learning about feminism really let me see how girls were just as human as I was. The result of that was that it did not bother me when I was around girls, because I did not think that the situation was very extraordinary at all; I was merely interacting with members of my own species.

I think that recovery in the area in which I have difficulty, initiation, merits a similar treatment. I have to learn to think about the situation differently. It is not an easy task to change neurological pathways in the brain as I hope to do, but I think that it will prove successful ultimately.

Originally posted by Manus Dei
I have a hyperactive conscience that makes me feel horrible even when I have innocent thoughts, like hugging a girl. It’s really nasty. Feeling guilty for caring about someone is just not right.

It’s called being a teenager and having hormones kicking in, it’s quite normal actually. Either go with the flow or contain them, but don’t go saying ‘it’s not right’ because it happens for everyone. The only difference is if people squelch that thought or go further.

You can still get sued for sexual harrassment for hugging. Seriously, though …

Well, I’ve always sympathized with feminism’s essence, and with the equalty of rights and duties that comes with it. What troubles me is actually expressing feelings towards them. I get afraid of caring too much, because I’m afraid of being hurt.
Also, I don’t think much of myself, so, when I see a girl interested in me, I think she must have a really bad taste.
I can’t hug the nice girls I care for yet, so I’m often stuck, waiting for them to do something.

Also, in my isolation, I have deveoped a very rigid code of ethics, and some of the thoughts those hormones bring me make me feel embarassed and ashamed. I judge myself too harshly.
Sometimes, I swing between hypes and states of deep apathy, because of that inner conflict…

Sir Percival I’m really happy for you. I have the same thing as you do so I know how much of a bitch it is. I took Paxil for a little while but I couldn’t stand the side effects. I ended up dropping out of school when I was younger and had a hard time getting a job cause of being scared of the interview, then after the interview I would be scared to meet the people that I would be working with. I think the problem with us people with social phobia is that we over think about certain upcoming events that we have to go to until all we can think of is the worst case scenario.

I think a big help with my social phobia is my girlfriend. I hate thinking about not being able to make her happy so I’ll force myself to do things that I normally wouldn’t do. It gets a little easier after to having to do them over and over again. Having somebody there to pick you up when you fall is a nice thing .

relapses are expected. This is something we will most like have for the rest of our lives. I still hate ordering pizza but I will if I’m starving. :stuck_out_tongue: Unlike you I can’t stand public speaking. I think that freaks me out more then anything else. I’m going to be my friend John’s best man at his wedding next year and I’m freaking out already about having to make a toast.

I never did the counselor thing yet so if you end up doing something like that let me know how it works for you. I have a hard time discussing my problems if I’m not typing them out on my computer.

And once again, Good luck!

Manus, I think that your trip around the world will certainly do you good. If you are seriously lacking that much self-confidence, you might want to put priority in appreciating yourself. Without that, relationships become much tougher. When I had my first girlfriend some years ago, having some, even if not much, self-confidence made a large difference. I noticed also that times when my self-confidence dropped, things became a little more awkward in our relationship.

SoulDivider, thanks and good luck to you as well. If you ever want to talk and you have ICQ, you can sign me up: #38845696. You can, too, Manus, if you like.

<img src=“”> “All you need to do is lose all your morals and ethics, get an asinine yet “unique” hairstyle (the more fucked up the better - preferably throw some dye in there), wear “stylish” clothes which you first need to steal out of the Salvation Army bin, slap on a pair of expensive sunglasses, hug/grope everyone you see as a way of greeting (especially men - for some reason the women think this is a really cool thing to do; don’t ask me why), say in a husky voice absolutely idiotic things that sound meaningful (if you need help coming up with sufficiently idiotic things, read the Cliff Notes to any Ayn Rand book), talk in a faux accent (it doesn’t matter which one), keep repeating that society sucks and that love and friendship are all meaningless social constructs that have no value, namedrop every philosopher you’ve ever heard of (and every one you haven’t), and lastly, talk about fucking in the most lewd and lascivious manner in front of women (you can and should ask them to fuck you, the first time you meet them, but only after groping everyone who is present, then talking for a little while about how society sucks). Obviously, this might take a little practice in front of the mirror at home, and you might need to diet a little if you’re overweight (no need to be ashamed of that, it’s easy to fix anyway), but it’ll pay off. I guarantee that within a month you’ll have to fend the women off with a pointy stick. The only drawback is that I will hit you very, very hard if I see you, but even that will only get you more women in the end.”

– Aw come on, if you don’t know who this was from, you really need to pay more attention to RPGC :stuck_out_tongue:

For all these years, I have been looking for someone who would care for me, yet, at the same time, I was afraid of love. I was afraid of the pain of loss, of rejection… I would never wish this fate to befall anyone. It was very painful.

As for ICQ, I’ll see to it in due time, when I’m free to wander around the internet without having those pesky exams on my mind.

TD, what the hell was that all about anyway?! There’s more to life than getting some. Feelings are all that matters, the rest should be considered an added bonus.

In all. You both are tring very hard to over come this. Work hard and believe in youreself and you can accomplish it. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Originally posted by Manus Dei
TD, what the hell was that all about anyway?! There’s more to life than getting some. Feelings are all that matters, the rest should be considered an added bonus.

Originally posted by Tenchimaru Draconis
– Aw come on, if you don’t know who this was from, you really need to pay more attention to RPGC :stuck_out_tongue:

It’s hard not to know that SK said that.