This is some of the feelings and effects of my worst SA attacks, not all of them but some. Yet there are people on SA forums who still advise you to “Feel the fear and do it anyway!”,insist that you are just making excuses and procrastinating and go and just talk to other people as if social anxiety is just a minor inconvenience. Do many of these people on self help forums really have chronic SA(social anxiety) or just minor to moderate shyness? If they have no comprehension of even how impossible or excruciatingly awkward and painful the most basic conversation can be they must have a much more minor anxiety than mine.
They insinuate that it is just cowardice that you have not had a relationship as if everyone gets nervous but everyone else is braver than you for forcing themselves to talk. Now imagine being a young man and trying to chat up a girl with all of the above going on in your head. These are the same sort of reactions I would expect from getting in a shark cage as great whites circled me or being told to walk through the bush with wild lions on the prowl. if you indeed do force yourself to try and talk and an anxiety attack occurs you come across as such a weirdo/lunatic freak that you become the laughing stock and then you desperately try to avoid contact with the same people again from the deep shame.This scars you and makes you worse, not better. No, you idiots its not simply a matter of feeling the fear and doing it anyway, you have to somehow cure all of the above first.
There seems to be an craze of demanding 3 positive things for the day across the internet as if it reconditioning the brain to think more positively and helping the state of mind.. This was a post on the anxiety forum recently with these added tips and of course many replies of “Great Post” as anything positive is applauded without thinking by the brainwashed guilt ridden masses.
It could be:
Positive thoughts you had about yourself.
None really, I think about becoming homeless or death every day.
Something that made you feel special or loved.
Nothing, I never see or speak to anyone
Nice feelings that you had.
None this week, I have started punching my head again
Something that made you smile or giggle.
Haven’t laughed in weeks
Something nice you did for someone else.
I speak to no other people most weeks
Meeting someone new.
Not happened in years.
A compliment that someone gave you.
No one ever speaks to me, Even in 20 years at work I never got a compliment.
Something that made you feel brave.
Good events that happened in the day.
I would be hard pressed to find 3 in a year.
Something that you achieved.
I watched TV and ate food.
Something that you tried or had a go at.
Nothing new, every day is the same.
Again how dare people demand positives and give examples which have bugger all to do with my lifestyle. They say it becomes a habit to think of good things and assume you have a vast array of choices because they do. Apart from food and TV I can’t think of any positive stimuli in my life for most days and I am going off my food and getting bored by TV.
I dont know about you but I absolutely despise sites that demand positivity and positive thinking only. Perhaps the truly miserable, lonely or desperate people are supposed to just go off and die and not annoy anyone. (We dont want to help them because they deserve to suffer for CHOOSING to be miserable,depressed,anxious,etc! Aren’t we great for choosing to be positive and trying! No, go on praise me and pat me on the back because I am so great! ) No, its not something to be learned. if you have experienced a shit life you will think shit. Its not deliberate , I dont enjoy wallowing in self pity, its not my own fault, its natural and just what happens after a long time. Its not a choice, I dont choose to be miserable. i did not choose to blush stutter and have panic attacks in social situations. I did not choose that I would be virtually asexual through my important teenage years either!
I want help to make me FEEL positive, not guilt or shame or bullying to force/encourage/bully me to think positive as if just like flicking a HAPPY switch. Otherwise Its nothing more than delusional thinking or brainwashing in which case I might as well be religious. At least religion offers me hope of eternal life whereas science and logical thought offers me oblivion. Believing in God and an afterlife is therefore the ULTIMATE in positive thinking and if used on earth can maybe accomplish just as much success but with the addition of helping others like the needy and poor rather than self wealth. This I believe is the most good a human can do in their lifetime and is probably the path to contentment and good mental health. Please come and fetch me God (if you do actually exist)and save me from all these self righteous and sanctimonious cretins on self help forums.
I remember being very envious of a work colleague who used to converse with friends all around the world on the internet. It almost seemed magical to be able to communicate with someone in Australia, Canada or Asia who would be looking out of their window upon an entirely different landscape and way of life. Of course many years later and the reality is somewhat different. The frequency of using the internet and getting replies from literally anyone on the planet who is connected has taken away most of the mystery and excitement. But should it? It is after all quite magical to be speaking to someone looking out upon mountains and snow when you are in wet rainy England. When kids at school used to communicate with foreign students as a pen pals it appeared much more exciting. Lifelong friends could be made and maybe one day even meet up. Of course nowadays you can see pictures almost instantly and even skype them and see their face as they talk.
The mental health forums don’t really work do they? Some people like them but for many if not most they are no better than real life for finding friends. There are so many lonely people in the world and many of these are connected to the internet. It would be wonderful for them to unite and became friends, someone to share problems with and someone to trust especially if they have no family or real life friends. Why then is it so hard? Facebook is notorious for trolling and abuse. Is it simply human nature to be a good and bad at the same time and for many people to be outright vile? We often dare not make a connection for fear of being used or let down. Safety in isolation. For example I have tried to be more active on the anxiety forum I use and did share PM’s with several people at one stage. I found that even messages over the internet were better than near total isolation and did lift my mood. However these people often vanish without trace or don’t seem that eager to talk again even though they contacted me first. Perhaps I am not what they had hoped for. Of course many of them have huge problems, physical and mental. I have known someone to meet up with an online friend only to find the person in real life to be rude and almost abusive when staying at their house. Using the internet to find friends to me is like fishing in a vast pool of water. Occasionally you find someone wonderful but the vast majority of time is spent doing nothing or hooking rubbish. I have only ever found one good friend on the internet in all these years and the vast array of all my communications has been pointless. Perhaps I am lucky to find one.
My mental state has been getting progressively worse over the last 2 weeks. My anxiety is high and any concentration on TV or reading or anything else is almost impossible for more than a few minutes. I tried to go back to a walking routine this week but my joints ache intensely and I feel exhausted. As a non driver living in the heart of the city it requires planning to go on any decent walk, planning bus times,train times and maps. Its too much when my brain is confused. Just the thought of going on a long train journey makes me anxious and I then even find it hard to sleep. Speaking of which I am still drinking and taking allergy tablets to make me drowsy. I see no end, no hope any more.
I try and use the forums more to make contact with real human beings but as usual it is hopeless as people are too judgemental and dont want to speak to others who are negative. This forces depressed people to pretend to be positive in order to be accepted and not appear miserable or they dont post at all in order not to be criticised which means they get more isolated and worse. Once again the anxiety forums only help those who are not that anxious and are most social. precisely the ones who need help the least. This is of course because people are just an animal species who obey certain social norms of behavior in the same way as any animal species. In effect we evolved to dislike and avoid nut cases, mental ill, ugly people, faulty people to stop us breeding with them and passing on faulty genes. If you think this is far fetched look at most animals and you will see that they do the same. some species even kill faulty animals.This is why you are just as likely to be ignored on a mental health anxiety forum as in real life. The people on there are no more understanding at all.
The advice as usual is to go out and do things but as I am not only just SA but entering a time of intense misery and depression i would not only find it hard to make conversation but my hopeless and negative attitude would repel other people making them dislike me and not want to see me again. This would of course intensify my paranoia and SA and actually increase my SA and depression. Once you cannot see any kind of recovery is possible and that the NHS is so overrun and underfunded to help then the only conclusion is a long and painful struggle to survive. I still fear being made homeless at some time in the next few years and of course when that does occur, suicide becomes a sensible choice.
“Do you fancy a bogey mate?” Yes that’s the level of conversation you get walking down the street In England these days. Mind you it is a rough area.A teenage girl said this to me as she picked her nose in broad daylight as she walked by me on my way to Tesco yesterday. Well it is the school holidays so the poor girl is probably just bored. I said no. I don’t fancy eating my own bogies let alone someone else’s. Even when I was her age I never got so bored during the summer holidays that I ate my own nasal excrement, perhaps I was luckier than I thought. It felt like someone had injected me with a drug this week. I felt quite deflated, exhausted and miserable (yes even more than normal! I bet you didn’t think that was possible!) I thought I may have taken the wrong allergy tablet but it was the same for several days in a row so its probably general mentalness. Watching TV or doing anything became so irritating that I could not concentrate and was flipping channels over and over again feeling forever restless and edgy. How do you try to be positive when this wave of overwhelming madness/sadness even anger and rage sweeps over you? It makes me realise that when people feel proper depression and anxiety then trying to be positive must be almost impossible. It’s as if the brain chemistry has gone haywire and becomes a matter of just waiting it out. Of course misery repels other people in real life or online making you even more isolated so I guess the people with the most acute problems often don’t even dare post for fear of upsetting others making any support/contact impossible. Society demands social happy people(shiny happy people?). Hence the “I’ve got 50000 friends on facebook” types because they want to appear popular and liked.
I forced myself to go on 3 hour walk yesterday afternoon. It was cooler than of late but I felt much more exhausted than I used to be by the time I got home. I feel considerably better today but still fear this overwhelming hopelessness coming back whenever it gets the urge. I have just seen a video on 6 signs of depression and now qualify for all of them so its obvious that I have been going down hill fast. I also don’t like the feeling that I should feel guilty about being sad or miserable or I have got to hide it. I’ve pretended to be happy many times in the past as if trying to please others when in reality I was in turmoil and fearful inside. To be honest, F**k these people who demand positivity as if it’s a prerequisite of being allowed to post just because it makes them feel better. You want fun, go to a comedy site.