Video on Living With Social Anxiety

This is very good and a highly accurate depiction of social anxiety. In fact its just about the best video I have seen on the subject. Its from Kat Napiorkowska I have not come across her before so dont know if she is the one suffering from SA or just playing the part as the video is so professionally made rather than the usual thing shot in somebody’s bedroom. She has several other vids up about mental health and seems to be real.

“Social anxiety doesn’t just ruin your life. It stops you from living it at all.”

How very true.

Its even sadder when you are older and your chances may have probably slipped away for ever.

Graded Exposure To Hell

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I can quite understand how graded exposure therapy would work for a fear of spiders and other phobis like that. You start very slowly and gradually work your way up and your mind realises that there is mostly no danger so habituates and you get better. Of course its supposed to be like that for social anxiety. But it isn’t.

Because fear of humiliation and being ridiculed is often worse than the fear of physical danger. People still cringe at being ridiculed in front of the class at school many years later for instance.It also often needs prolonged exposure so you learn to adapt. For instance I got much better using phones at work until in the end  before I got made redundant I almost enjoyed it. Mind you I was in an office for 8 hours a day for 48 weeks a year and it still took several years. Speaking to a cashier only lasts for 30 seconds and if goes badly then you dont want to even go back into the same store again or if you do you avoid that same person you spoke to last time. Failure which causes humiliation causes even more avoidance.

Another of these strange social mishaps I read online is to deliberately wet your arm pits with a water bottle so you look like you are sweating and then get this quote; “Go inside this convenience store, point at your armpits and loudly tell everyone how sweaty they are,” the doctor told him. Again you are supposed to act as if you are mentally ill to cure anxiety so most people would not even do it. So it wont work then.I am not sure why you dont then get embarrassed when you go out the next day and some people laugh at you and talk about what you did, probably calling you a complete twat or mental.  Would you really go back in the same shop again? You would already have to not give a f**K about what people think of you. Why not go the whole way and wet your groin next time and shout “I have just pissed my pants!”

I have also just read that for the fear of being the centre of attention you should walk around with your shirt or dress on inside out. Does that mean you have to do it every day for weeks until you dont care any more?  Because people really will think you are mad, kids really will mock you and think you the local nutter? Some people really are attacked physically. Remember i was attacked for walking strangely due to a bad hip.Does this really improve your self esteem in the long run? Being a laughing stock to the local community. The idea that people dont notice no matter what you do is complete shit!  Then some people are amazed that you, somebody who has been avoidant for years with chronic anxiety dont want to even go to therapy.

Also much exposure therapy seems to be aimed at simple shyness and awkwardness rather than the very shy. If you go to a cashier and you are blushing and sweating every time you try and talk about the weather then YES,they do notice and think you strange. Yet some therapists tell you to deliberately wear a sweater to actually make you sweat and go red as if not getting attacked will cure you as you then realise there is no danger.Some people might even have pity for you but lots of people will ridicule and mock you.Every single time I blushed at work somebody mentioned it in a mocking way. That made me more avoidant. They do notice even if strangers dont always say anything. How many more times, its not the fear of physical pain that maintains avoidance for many people, its the fear of ridicule and humiliation so exposure to more shame and ridicule in order to supposedly habituate you is not going to work especially if you want do the therapy in the first place. Having to do a fear hierarchy list with your worst ever fears on the top and being told you are going to have to do them all will make lots of people never go back so it doesn’t work. 1/4 people apparently quit CBT. I am amazed its not 9/10.

When feeling as unmotivated as me right now the thought of starting CBT therapy where you are expected to go out daily and initiate conversation, being friendly and optimistic to strangers is about as likely as expecting me to swim the channel. if I had to do a role play in therapy right now I would just sit there or walk out as my mind is F**cked.  The supposed simple things like making small talk to strangers are almost 100 for avoidance. I can barely make eye contact and often get a look back like they think I am a c**t which makes me feel worse and increases anxiety.  You see when people talk about getting help and then mock you for not doing enough like you deserve to suffer they completely ignore that when you get to the depressed as f**k stage then telling you to do CBT with added intense and unavoidable humiliation as the only cure makes you think there is no option other than death.  You cant bully optimism into depressed people and you cant bully positivity into anxious people by calling them a coward.

 

Cellar Dweller

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From the shyness and social anxiety guy who sells his book for $47.

“If you look at any forums for people with social anxiety, they are usually full of depressed people who…

  • Stay inside their home  for days at a time unless they absolutely need to go out.
  • Have stopped taking showers for the past few weeks and say they’re starting to look like a hermit.
  • Haven’t gone out to socialize for months … or years.
  • Spend hours a day watching TV or browsing the internet.”

Yes Sean,yes! That’s mostly all true. You forget about all the social justice warriors on such forums and politically correct students calling people racist every ten seconds but its mostly true. I do shower more than once a week though but not every day as I live in England and my unheated bathroom is very cold in winter. I even hoover most days and change my underwear before it gets too smelly.

“In either case, this article will reveal how you can overcome the depression and low self esteem caused by staying inside a lot.”

Will it Sean? Really?That’ll be a first. Do I have to be highly motivated and optimistic and under 40? Less sarcastic maybe?

“Treating Yourself Like You Value Yourself. When you value yourself, you will take actions to take care of yourself. This means being decently healthy, watching what you eat at least a little, eating more fruits and vegetables, cutting down on the junk food, exercising occasionally, going outside to enjoy nature, maintaining your personal hygiene, taking showers often, shaving, cutting your hair, brushing your teeth, taking care of your skin, etc.”

Oh, I have been doing all that for years.I even eat spinach now and go out every day. It has not increased my confidence or self esteem in any way, shape or form. In fact i have gotten much, much worse and that is why I have been getting depressed and finding it hard to leave the house and find any motivation.

“This means taking steps to actively improve yourself. Getting out of your comfort zone regularly, being productive, learning new things, taking classes, travelling, and enriching your life.”

So you have to go out and socialise with strangers as a complete hermit who is socially inept and thinking about suicide and act like you are not depressed or socially anxious in order to get over being depressed and socially anxious? Again, how do I get this motivation in the first place?  Having a shower every day does not make me Mr. Motivator. Having no motivation means little interests me now and……….

If you spend your day productively – you eat a healthy breakfast, hit the gym, learn something, accomplish something, and all the sudden you’re brain is bombarded with evidence that you’re WORTH something. Then you go out around people, and you feel less insecure.You feel a new level of confidence you didn’t have before, a calm, steady feeling of self esteem. 

No, still feel like a socially inept hopeless loser. Eating a banana and watching a documentary on polar bears does not have me approaching women on the street and making the witty banter thinking I am Tom Cruise (although he is actually older than me.)  Maybe its because we live in a world where long term unemployed men who are still virgins and socially inept are considered hopeless losers.(by everyone). Evolution, evolution! evolution! I know, a monastery! I could live in a monastery! Pity its not medieval times, they drank lots of beer too so would be perfect for an alcoholic like me.

 

 

It’s crazy what you could’ve had

Quite a  bad day and getting the strong urge to not be here again. Woke early and did not go back to sleep but had headaches and felt incredibly jumpy all day. Even going to the supermarket made me feel bad and I am finding it harder and harder to do even simple things like this any-more without feeling mad and irritable. I once again look at help for social anxiety and it actually increase my feelings of wanting to commit suicide as CBT looks like a perverse kind of torture. Why do they never take depression into account when its so common with anxiety?  You cant force yourself to be pleasant and friendly with strangers when wanting to cry or even die(sometimes both!) just as making small talk about the weather will come across as awkward and increase anxiety. Normals dont like talking with awkward shy people or depressed people. You get looked at like you are a freak or ridiculed. Stop pretending witty banter ensures. So it makes you feel even worse as you are disliked and avoided. So the idea that you go and hang around  with normal people is stupid. This is not negative thing , its reality. If you have never experienced it you have never really had severe social anxiety.

 

Old Fart!

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Never too late for multimillionaires!

When you are mad people often tell you its never too late to do certain things for instance like have a relationship. They assume certain things too. I did when I was younger. You see an elderly couple on one of those dating shows and assume they still both fancy each other because like attracts like. It may seem callous cruel or ignorant or it could be just all men and how we evolved but when I got older, into my forties, I did not suddenly start getting exceptionally aroused by women my own age and then thinking younger women were ugly.  Everyone gets uglier with age.  Most people reach a peak in our twenties and early thirties and gradually diminish over time just like sportsmen/women. Of course there are still some attractive people in their forties and even fifties but not as many.

I say this as I saw a you tube video from a popular youngish female blogger who seemed astounded that men over 50 were watching her channel. She was actually talking about anxiety on one video which is how I came across her.(who isn’t these days?) She even made some kind of comment as if they were, well perverts at that age. But actually if you think they were only watching to get aroused then younger men are far more likely to be turned on or attracted to you and tossing off as they are far more randy but what? That doesn’t bother you?  You assume males are only watching you for sexual pleasure? What about older women or lesbians?

I think she said she was 26, hardly a child. In fact about 100 years ago she would probably have been married 10 years  and have 3 kids by then. Yes, you are probably attractive to many straight men. men in their forties and fifties still get attracted by younger women as younger women are usually sexier.  Its not perverted, its perfectly natural. Why do you think almost all female news and weather presenters are picked to be as attractive as possible? It gets more views. The most popular female vloggers just happen to be attractive most of the time. Lots of older men still like younger women, they just know they can’t get one.(unless they’re rich!)

Age is also relevant to social anxiety too. For instance the moronic advice of just approach and then make conversation with all women you find attractive that I read online is a bit stupid if you are in your forties as many younger women will understandably think you an old pervert and tell you to F**k off. Yet younger women are usually the most attractive of course and men evolved to go for looks far more than women. Yes its evolution again. What? They just assume you know to only speak to women the same age even if you are socially inept? I read that most people form relationships with others within 5 years of themselves, over 10 years is unusual. I am a lot uglier now than I was in my youth just as women my age probably are too. Its not cruel, that’s life. Therefore the chances of me even finding a female who is available and I find attractive around my age is much less even ignoring my own massive amounts of faults that would be a huge turn off to the vast majority of all normal women. So it probably is too late. you lying bas***d!!!!!!

 

Nerd!

I often wonder if I am somewhat biased in my views and perhaps also bitter and twisted as well considering I am an older male virgin in a world that treats male virgins with total ridicule, contempt and like the scum of the earth and I of course I often dont speak to real humans for weeks on end so may already be mental anyway.  However I read this on the shyness and social anxiety guys website today.

Frankly, It Doesn’t Matter If Girls Like Shy/Quiet Guys…Because if you can’t go talk to her and ask her on a date… then it doesn’t make any difference IF a girl likes you. Either way, you’re still going to be alone because you’re too scared of rejection to make a move.

As a man, YOU are the one who is expected to initiate almost everything when it comes to dating. YOU will have to risk rejection every step of the way if you want to start dating and get a girlfriend.

  • Everything from starting a conversation with a woman you’re attracted to…
  • Being expected to keep it going in the beginning…
  • Asking for her phone number…
  • Planning and setting up the date…
  • Trying to avoid the friend zone…
  • Going for the kiss…
  • Later leading everything to the bedroom…
  • And so on…”

Goes too  far? Inaccurate or the undeniable truth? Almost everything he says has been pretty damn accurate in regards to my own experience. However for me it was being scared of blushing and stuttering and open ridicule and contempt rather being scared of rejection. I never even got to the making pleasant small talk with a girl I liked, let alone getting to the stage of asking her out.Like I said before I worked in a large company with plenty of females for TWENTY years. I know I only saw most of them in the canteen but did any show interest in me first, initiate conversion with me or ask me out? Of course not. Perhaps I was the world’s ugliest man but you should have seen some of the freaks I worked with and they all got some one.

Actually there were about 3 girls that showed some interest in me, only because they knew I liked them first and then of course when I failed to chat them up or acted awkward due to my anxiety they disliked me quite intensely and gave me evil looks along with their friends.One of them actually asked another guy in the canteen if I was mental and loud enough for me to hear!  When I got to the bus stop to go home after work one day I heard one girl say”Oh dont look at him, he wont do anything!” Yes because as a male its simply assumed and expected of me to speak first just as the above article says. “I must impress the females with my witty banter!”  It almost reminds me of one of those little birds doing a courtship dance to impress the female on a nature documentary.  Fascinating that most women wont risk rejection first but the man is expected to or he is called a coward. Perhaps this is why so many young men are so cocky and confident. They evolved to be in order to have the guts to make the first move or the human race would have died out long ago.

This is even better/more truthful:

“But Some Women Love Shy Guys”

Occasionally I will run across a woman writer in a blog or forum who claims that “We love shy guys!” I find this hard to believe, since I spent most of my school years watching the cutest girls go out with the more confident, popular or charismatic guys.But I try to keep an open mind, and I think I now understand what women mean when they say “shy guy.” She imagines a guy who is well-liked and cool, and maybe also a bit quirky or artistic. The guy who may talk a bit less than other people, but he’s self assured on the inside and isn’t afraid to speak up when he wants to.

Again I think this is highly accurate. Many women imagine a nerdy guy who is cute and sweet and sensitive. In reality a shy guy who is cripplingly shy is treated exactly in the same way as a the creepy weirdo.  In fact I mentioned once before  a very shy guy at work who was working up courage all day to talk to a girl he liked out in the car park before he drove home and she reported him for harassment because he was acting weird and creepy! Weird and creepy to most women is EXACTLY THE SAME AS VERY SHY! He then had a mental breakdown and was actually hearing voices speaking to him from the radio and had to leave! Yet the  blokes at work had egged him on all day and told him to do this with classic lines such “Be a man! What’s the worst that could happen?”

In fact even on social anxiety websites now they still insist as a man you just force yourself to approach and chat to every single attractive female you see so you get used to it! For crippling social anxiety this is absolutely F**King useless. Its almost guaranteed to make you worse! In fact many very shy men doing this would probably also get reported for harassment or just told to “F**K off you creep!” This is what I was also getting at in my last post with the vampire theme. All self help sites seem to imagine the shy guy is like Robert Pattinson. Cute and attractive but just a bit quiet, mysterious and different. In reality the shy guy probably looks more like Mr Bean but blushes more and is even more socially inept!

 

Random Musings of a Shy Man,no. 244

How self help sites imagine it is for a guy who likes a girl but is too shy to speak(yes, forget he’s a vampire although at least he should have no problem with blushing!). They are all highly attractive, she doesn’t think him a creepy weirdo(even though he’s a vampire)and after initial nerves it all ends absolutely lovely. Just go talk to her you cowardly shy man! Its a man’s job to speak first! What could possibly go wrong?

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Meanwhile in reality this is pretty much how I reacted when I was a young man whenever an attractive girl sat near me in the canteen at work.(not often then!)

MY MIND: This is just so awkward! Just force yourself to speak. Say anything!

Me: Shall I speak about chicken farming in Sweden? Perhaps something about tractors or the history of the spoon. “Mumble, mumble,”

Girl: “Excuse me? Did you just say something about gerbils?” Christ I am not sitting near this weirdo again!

Me: Never speak first again you moron! Women hate me!

All Women at work: He’s so weird, he never speaks!(Despite the fact they never speak to me first ever!)

 

From then on this is how your anxious paranoid mind imagines you come across to all female kind (keeping with the vampire theme!) “Weird and creepy? Me? How bloody dare you! I lead a very active social life in the evenings! Why do you mention the dentist?”

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If you are very shy this is the reaction you get whenever you ever tried to approach and talk to an attractive woman in the past, even when getting a bus pass in the city centre shop. Yes, that girl appeared to openly hate me. Why God, why? Perhaps she was just a bitch. “Oh God,not him again!”

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Self help sites; Its all in your head! Its all paranoia. Women love being approached by ugly random weird, shy awkward men and being awkwardly chatted up by them. Keep doing it or you are a coward! Keep doing it and you will get better! Keep pretending women and men are exactly the same and yet ignore the fact that no woman has ever shown interest in you,approached you or asked you out ever(even though you worked in a large company full of women for 20 years) and that you must speak first or die a virgin as women never make the first move. Wonders why you have no confidence and yet insinuates you are just a coward for not trying to talk to strangers and ask women out at every opportunity.

We can choose what we choose to believe

 

It never used to be that bad
But neither was it great
Somewhere in the middle then
Content and much too safe
Ooh tell me please
Why it takes so long
To realise when there’s something wrong?

                                                                    Crowded House, Now We’re Getting Somewhere.

 

I forced myself to go out for my weekly walk this afternoon despite still feeling quite exhausted.Far too much considering I have done nothing much all week. I did not get up until 11.10 after waking early and not falling asleep again for several hours.  Although I have taken no tablets or medication of any kind my mind still feels completely different as it has all week. I am either going through spiritual enlightenment or going mental. Is there a difference? Unfortunately I still get highly irritated by people in my way but at least the feelings of misery have subsided somewhat and I also had two bouts of unreality although not as strong as last week, one next to the cathedral. Perhaps it was divine intervention.

I have also had neck pain quite often so it could be wonky connections to the brain. I think its probably due to hitting myself in the back of the neck a few years ago with a large pebble from LLandudno beach. It still cracks loudly when I move my head sometimes. It was after I had watched a documentary about how they killed out of control elephants by using a large nail and mallet to the back of its neck and thought it was a good idea for me. At the time I really did feel like dying but it was late at night and I was drunk.However, when I am not drunk I realise it would probably just paralyse me from the neck down.and leave me with even less control. Today, I made no eye contact with any strangers whatsoever while out walking. F**k em. I wish I could find something decent to watch on Netflix.

Symptoms of Depression

1.  Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions

What?Who?When? Yes, My memory is not so good any more. I forget things.

2. Fatigue and decreased energy

Yes, I feel exhausted now and dont go out much.

3. Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, and/or helplessness

Of course I am guilty, if you have social anxiety there is always some know it all making out you deserve to suffer for being a coward unlike them who were so, so brave and they keep telling everyone for good measure. They have apparently never had depression themselves so think you are lying.

 4. Feelings of hopelessness and/or pessimism

Well I am due to become homeless  if I cant get a job in a few years and have never had a relationship even though I am over 40 and dont speak to other people for weeks on end. Wouldn’t most people be hopeless?

  5.  Insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping

Oh yes, thankfully i am in the sleeping too much mode right now before the insomnia kicks back in. I’ve had about 25 years of this on and off.

  6.  Irritability, restlessness

Jesus Christ yes. I feel like one of those bison that wants to charge people if they get too close in YouTube videos about Yellowstone park.Not a good idea when shopping at Tesco. Perhaps I should go on a meetup and make friends! I am sure they love miserable loners with massive paranoia and social ineptitude! Then they can blame me for not being friendly and sociable enough!

7. Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable, including sex

Well never having sex in my entire life is part of the problem of course. I never really had many hobbies anyway due to being a mad loner.

   8. Overeating or appetite loss

Not really. I still get hungry and am slightly overweight.

   9. Persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not ease even with treatment

Oh yes, the aches are getting worse, My digestive system goes haywire and head aches and pains all the time. Must stop punching myself in the head!

10. Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” feelings

Well I have had those since school to be honest, almost daily. Never ending social anxiety, having no friends or a partner and people treating me like a c**t while other people still saying its my fault for not trying hard enough sort of do that to you.

11. Thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts

Oh, I so wish I had the guts. Its messy though. The NHS treat you like scum if you survive so better do it properly when its time.

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