Everyone Terrifies Me

Social anxiety is one of the banes of my life.
I know there was a long time I had no clue I had it, I just thought I was a sort of shy person. It wasn’t until I found a social anxiety forum and was reading about people’s experiences that I realized I actually had a problem. Then it seemed obvious.
It seems obvious that a person shouldn’t be terrified of telephones, or of speaking in class, or of asking people the time. It seems obvious that a person shouldn’t have a panic attack every time they are going to do something they have never done before (go to a bar, ride public transit alone, etc.). Yet, obviously, these things all bother me.
Medication helped a little bit, I suppose. It certainly didn’t hurt at all. I also did group therapy towards the end of 2011 which by no means cured me, but it gave me a little push in the right direction.
For the most part, I don’t think about the social anxiety that much now, nor do I really notice it. My girlfriend does though, and it drives her batty. We were in Best Buy because I needed to buy a new hard drive, and when I had a question, she told me to go talk to somebody, and was frustrated when I hesitated. She didn’t understand till later that it wasn’t just me being stubborn, it was that it makes me anxious to have to go talk to sales people like that. This morning I returned home after having made a purchase at a much higher price then I had expected (I didn’t know the price because it wasn’t labelled). Her combination of sleepiness and frustration with me did not go over well. She couldn’t understand why a) I couldn’t have asked somebody what the price was or b) said I didn’t want the item when I found out the price. For a), I don’t know why I didn’t, I could have, and I don’t think it would have triggered the anxiety very much, but b), b) is pretty much impossible for me. I can’t even explain why, embarrassment perhaps? It might make me look cheap (which I am haha) or poor (which I am haha). Anyway…tomorrow I get to go return said item. We resolved things, by the way. She doesn’t have much experience with social anxiety, and she’s still getting used to it.

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5 Comments

  1. I can understand your Best Buy experience. In fact, in general I try to avoid Best Buy because they have like 50 employees just standing around and they ask if they can help you any time you pass by them. This triggers my social anxiety. Also, I will walk around a store several times and do my darndest to find what I’m looking for before asking an employee. And when I do, I get so nervous, and I just . . . ugh.

    Reply
    • Yes, I also will walk a store over and over trying to find what I want/need on my own. I’m okay with talking to an employee if they approach me, but it bothers me approaching them. At least we’re not alone in this!

      Reply
  2. That is the same with me and returning things, my wife had no problem but I always feel terrible like I am insulting someone and making their life harder. After awhile I am able to return something, but it has to be extremely defective…if it is the wrong meal from a fast food joint I will usually just eat it.

    Reply
    • “I always feel terrible like I am insulting someone and making their life harder” this summed up how I feel exactly. It makes me feel like a pain in the neck even if it is something like a wrong meal where the error was not my own (which happened to me recently…my friends sorted it out)

      Reply
      • It is great that we have out significant other to compliment our faults, I sincerely hope that we compliment theirs.

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