6. Have you ever had any kind of treatment for SA?
No, I think many people are forced to get treatment as they are not working and on benefits. However I managed to work albeit in a low paid menial job for 20 years so it was not a priority. I was also confused and did not actually know what social anxiety was until I was in my late twenties. I would not have known what to say and would have felt ashamed and embarrassed to say I was shy to a doctor. My own mother saw our doctor for anxiety issues and panic attacks and was given some pills and told “They will probably not work anyway!” She was given no further help whatsoever. As far as I can see there are only pills to reduce anxiety and then CBT which has an enormously long waiting list on the NHS. I have also been appalled by some of the stories I have read on anxiety forums about people seeing their doctor and being treated with contempt or even anger as if their doctor had never heard of social anxiety and thought it a minor problem that they would just grow out of. I know of women who were told by their doctor that all they needed was a boyfriend and that would cure them of social anxiety!
Even now and if I had a friendly doctor and no waiting list for CBT I am still not sure I would want to see him. I have grave doubts about CBT. The idea that I would be expected to go and drink in cafes alone and just because I wasn’t beaten up this would give me confidence. Being asked to do stuff every week like speak to complete strangers and ask them random crap does not give me hope or confidence. Lots of this stuff only works without any nerves in the first place. If you do stuff with chronic nerves things usually go wrong and the nerves get worse. However so many people on anxiety forums have such chronic guilt that they smear anyone who is not fully optimistic of all treatment as cowards and not worthy of recovery or a normal life.