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 Post subject: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 11:44 pm 
Luna
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My bad for posting such a depressing thread, but I feel that it can be helpful to me.

I've always suffered from social anxiety throughout my life, and ever since I graduated from high school in 2015, it's gotten worse. I haven't had any friends or acquaintances since then, nor have I had a full fledged conversation with someone around my age aside from my brother. Speaking of that, he's the only person that I can talk to coherently (ie - without stuttering or slurring my speech). I can't even talk to my own mom without exhibiting these problems. Because of my stuttering and slurred speech, I have to repeat everything that I say 95% of the time, and this too has gotten noticeably worse since I graduated. Guess this is that social anxiety at work. Even with my social issues, talking to people in high school boosted my confidence and made me feel comfortable. Now that I'm not in HS anymore, I'm not sure where to look for people to talk to, or how I can even initiate a conversation without it being creepy or awkward.

Now here's the thing. I want to have friends around my age (20) since these are the people I had the easiest time talking to. You might be thinking that I can try making some friends at my job, but the problem is that all of the other employees aren't anywhere near my age. The youngest employee aside from me is 38, while everybody else is at least in their late 40s. This makes it harder for me to relate to them as my interests aren't anything like their's, plus it would be more fun IMO to talk to someone closer to my age. Switching to a job that has more young employees might work, but I need to stay at my current job until I find a different place. Any suggestions for how I can grow out of my comfort zone and make some friends?

I've been thinking of streaming game playthroughs on YouTube and Twitch, since talking to the viewers on these sites seems like a rewarding experience to me. I also feel like the general viewer base would be closer to my age and have similar interests to me, which would definitely help. I've only done 2 regular playthroughs for YT, though I need to learn more about streaming before I take that route. Does anyone think that this could help my social issues at least a little bit?

I'm sorry if this post was a bit hard to follow or not coherent enough. I'm not good at writing longer posts, so I hope my thoughts came through well enough.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 11:46 pm 
Solaris Luna
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Have you looked into any groups, or clubs near you? There's a great app called "Meet up" where you can find out about events in your area that might interest you. Seeing a therapist would also been a good option, it might help you overcome some of your issues. :)


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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:21 am 
Luna
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^ I'll look into Meet Up, but the only issue is that if I find a place to go to, it needs to be within walking distance as I don't have my driver's license yet. ^_^' I have tried therapy, though it was more for emotional issues. I need to try a different therapist since my last one didn't help help me out a whole lot.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:52 am 
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Forget the past. Focus only on the present and on the person you want to become.

If you go see a therapist, I suggest to avoid talking about the past. Talking about the past may bring back unpleasant memories and even trauma. Therapy is about exorcising the ghosts from the past, but doing so can be very painful and rather than making you progress, it may make you regress.

I saw a therapist a while ago and she was a good therapist: the advice she gave me was to focus only on the present and on my goals and leave all the negative experiences from the past behind.

In sum, you have to reinvent yourself.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:58 am 
Usagi's Rose
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Clow has the right idea, I had a friend who had bad hangups from the past, obsessed with his high school crush even though she's taken
and always knows how to get into another's skin, heck when I first met him at age 9 I punched him for insulting me


but eventually we did become friends, he's more my brother's friend yet mine too and nowadays he's better than he used to be, he's been bitter about his past for a long time
and all it does is bring himself and anyone around him down


the lesson is don't let your past eat you or define who you are now, regardless of what is is

I hope whatever you do has a good outcome
I genuinely mean that

I admit I'm kind of shy IRL but I'm taking little steps to better myself

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 1:11 am 
Luna
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Clow wrote:
Forget the past. Focus only on the present and on the person you want to become.

If you go see a therapist, I suggest to avoid talking about the past. Talking about the past may bring back unpleasant memories and even trauma. Therapy is about exorcising the ghosts from the past, but doing so can be very painful and rather than making you progress, it may make you regress.

I saw a therapist a while ago and she was a good therapist: the advice she gave me was to focus only on the present and on my goals and leave all the negative experiences from the past behind.

In sum, you have to reinvent yourself.

Prince Rose wrote:
Clow has the right idea, I had a friend who had bad hangups from the past, obsessed with his high school crush even though she's taken
and always knows how to get into another's skin, heck when I first met him at age 9 I punched him for insulting me


but eventually we did become friends, he's more my brother's friend yet mine too and nowadays he's better than he used to be, he's been bitter about his past for a long time
and all it does is bring himself and anyone around him down


the lesson is don't let your past eat you or define who you are now, regardless of what is is

I hope whatever you do has a good outcome
I genuinely mean that

Thanks for the advice, never thought of that before.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 4:58 am 
Lumen Cinereum
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I hate to give you the same generic advice I'm sure you've already heard BUT sometimes you just gotta face what gives you anxiety and see what you feared wasn't that bad. As far as making friends goes, the best way to make friends is to befriend friends of current friends. Trust me this gets even harder as an adult so do these things while you can while you're young.


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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 5:17 am 
Stella Nova
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Everything that I can say are said already.Good luck. :)

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 7:34 am 
Stella
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i know i too have social anxiety but i do have friends quite a few actually course i think im just lucky that way but i clow said it all :happy:

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 11:47 am 
Luna
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octoberair90 wrote:
I hate to give you the same generic advice I'm sure you've already heard BUT sometimes you just gotta face what gives you anxiety and see what you feared wasn't that bad. As far as making friends goes, the best way to make friends is to befriend friends of current friends. Trust me this gets even harder as an adult so do these things while you can while you're young.

I get what you're saying here, but that's going to be significantly more difficult since I don't have any friends right now. I just need to find some places where I can meet people my age since everyone else I'm around is at least in their early 30s. I turn 21 on the 1st, so maybe I'd have some more luck if I go to a bar or club or something like that. There are some promising places in downtown Cincy that I need to try out.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 3:30 pm 
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GTAB wrote:
I get what you're saying here, but that's going to be significantly more difficult since I don't have any friends right now. I just need to find some places where I can meet people my age since everyone else I'm around is at least in their early 30s. I turn 21 on the 1st, so maybe I'd have some more luck if I go to a bar or club or something like that. There are some promising places in downtown Cincy that I need to try out.


Stay true to yourself, though.

Do you, as an individual, like going to bars, parties, or clubs? Or do you want to do that because you see people your age doing it, and they look "cool"?

During my journey to discover myself as an individual, I do remember that at one point I wanted to do the same things people my age did: I went to a few parties when I was 19, and never in my life I felt so awkward and misplaced. I discovered that there is nothing more unpleasant than forced interactions and conversations.

From there, I decided that I would only do what I liked and made me feel comfortable with myself. I started by switching majors in college: I chose to study literature rather than finances. It made me feel happier.

I also decided that rather than approaching people, I would let people approach me, and if I liked them, then I would let them be my friends. And many people approached me --and I did make friends. Most of my friends are older than me, but I feel comfortable and have fun talking to them.

Here is a video you may enjoy watching:


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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 1:27 am 
Solaris Luna
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@GTAB: Clow has a really good point. You're an individual.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 4:09 am 
Lumen Cinereum
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Some other things I forgot to add:
If enjoy drinking you will find bars and clubs fun otherwise you will most likely be miserable. A lot of obnoxious drunk people but also people that may be willing to converse with an unfamiliar face. I go out by myself frequently and have a good time I try to make myself approachable to others. Not stuck staring at my phone for long periods of time.
My other question is do you work or go to school? These are good places to start meeting new people.


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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 2:20 pm 
Luna
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octoberair90 wrote:
My other question is do you work or go to school? These are good places to start meeting new people.

As much as I'd like to go to college right now, there are some things holding me back. One reason is because I don't want to deal with student loans, another is that I have no adequate means of getting there (still need to look into the bus schedules). This reason may be petty the some, but I also don't want to do stuff like math and English again (I got mediocre to average grades in high school even when I studied) just so I can get a degree in a field I'm interested in (audio or video production); I'd rather just go to a trade school for that. With that said, I do think college would probably be the best place to meet people. Or for my situation, would a community college be a better fit?

As for meeting people at work, it's pretty difficult. I work at a club in an airport, and I have a hard time relating to the other employees. They're all more than half my age and thus would not want to talk about the kind of stuff I like (video games and anime). Maybe music since I tend to like 80s and 70s stuff (fits with their age), but most of it is probably too obscure for them to know about. The clientele mostly consists of old businessmen who are usually busy doing work or talking on the phone.

Whatever I decide to do, thanks to everyone for their contributions to this thread.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 5:24 pm 
Planeta
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Join a local anime club.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 7:15 pm 
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same problem here too, except university is pretty much a graveyard for social, life, as it drains more energy than jadeite's schemes from me.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:28 am 
Lumen Cinereum
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Please do not feel badly about not being in school yet. I am 26 going on 27 and am just now taking community college classes for the first time. Working and supporting myself has been way more of a priority for myself than education has. You seem like a kind and considerate person. People will see that within time. Until then, just keep trying to be friendly and available to others so you appear to be more up to invitations for hang outs.


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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 1:00 pm 
Lumen Cinereum
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Someone suggested to me before that I could join a group or take a course for something I am passionate about. I usually socialize with people I am constantly in contact with, like work, and don't seek others out, not even on the internet, so this advice I found very helpful.


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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:29 am 
Luna Nova
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I also have some social anxiety, but at least to me it is not that much of a trouble. It even has some benefits, beside the obvious drawbacks.
And at least in my case, placed in a medium sized group to work on something (like a class, course, training, project), while initially very reserved and shy, I'm pretty fast to make initial socialization. Yet allowing people in my inner friend circle is another (and much more time and trust demanding) matter.
About one unexpected benefit I noticed, observing myself and other people with SAD, working in an environment rich on stress and extreme/dangerous situations - people with SAD perform much better facing dangers. We could say they are much more likely to demonstrate what we normally call "bravery". I would say this is caused by the fact that people with SAD need to control and subdue their fears/anxieties on a daily basis and in pretty trivial situations just in order to deal with the day-to-day life. As a result, when facing a real danger/challenge it is much easier for people with SAD to trigger the familiar patterns of fear/anxiety suppression and act accurately (and bravely), in situations where their counterparts may freeze in terror or fall in panic.
There was one ad for some sport equipment store, stating "The bus is faster than you, because it practices every day!". It is the same with people with SAD - they practice "bravery" on a daily basis and thus are much more used and likely to be brave in more uncommon and extreme situations, where what the other people consider as "bravery" is needed.
I am not psychologist, these are just my speculations, based on several years of observations. And I have been at places where such observations could be made.
So, having SAD is not such a bad thing after all. :)


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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 7:06 pm 
Columnae Creationis
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^ So they've been self-programming themselves to be brave, or more technically speaking, reinforcing a particular pattern/state of "wirings" of their neurons which facilitates their brave behaviors in adverse situations. lol

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 5:37 pm 
Solaris Luna
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GTAB wrote:
octoberair90 wrote:
My other question is do you work or go to school? These are good places to start meeting new people.

As much as I'd like to go to college right now, there are some things holding me back. One reason is because I don't want to deal with student loans, another is that I have no adequate means of getting there (still need to look into the bus schedules). This reason may be petty Or for my situation, would a community college be a better fit?


I would love to go college myself, too. You're right about student loans.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 5:54 am 
Luna
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I've been thinking that since I'm not having much luck making friends at work, joining an anime, gaming, or music club is probably the best bet for me. Having a common interest would make conversing with people a bit easier. However, I wouldn't be able to get to any meetup spots since I don't even have my driver's license yet. The problems here are that my family is always too busy to do some practice drives with me, while driving instructors are too expensive and make me feel anxious. I did try a local driving school 2 years ago, but the instructors were mean, which made me tense and nervous. Having a family member or a mutual family friend teaching me to drive would just make the experience easier as I'd be more comfortable around them, but again, they're always too busy to take me. My brother said he could teach me to drive when he gets his license, but he hasn't done any practice in a while. Any ideas? Maybe I should try to find a Skype or Discord group to talk with for now?

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 6:28 am 
Stella
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GTAB wrote:
I've been thinking that since I'm not having much luck making friends at work, joining an anime, gaming, or music club is probably the best bet for me. Having a common interest would make conversing with people a bit easier. However, I wouldn't be able to get to any meetup spots since I don't even have my driver's license yet. The problems here are that my family is always too busy to do some practice drives with me, while driving instructors are too expensive and make me feel anxious. I did try a local driving school 2 years ago, but the instructors were mean, which made me tense and nervous. Having a family member or a mutual family friend teaching me to drive would just make the experience easier as I'd be more comfortable around them, but again, they're always too busy to take me. My brother said he could teach me to drive when he gets his license, but he hasn't done any practice in a while. Any ideas? Maybe I should try to find a Skype or Discord group to talk with for now?


well ive always said we're a big dysfunctional family on here with Mara as the cranky grandfather lol but i think joining a facebook group is a good idea im apart of two of them myself its great

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 7:31 am 
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It might not be much to add but I wouldn't put off learning to drive, it makes you so much more powerful and able to pursue your needs.

Piggybacking, how has meetup gone with anyone else here? I'm ashamed I haven't used it yet.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:52 am 
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Well, this has gotten to the point when I cant even sleep anymore at night as a few people from the US are basically the only daily friend-like connection I have with others. And I'm going to parks, but I'm alone, dog is not really allowed in the more frequented one, and most of my day is busy trying to find a job or with other family related chores/de-littering the house. And even if I find people who look sympathetic I have no clue how to approach them. Especially true to seeing groups of girls.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:58 am 
Solaris Luna
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^ I understand how you feel, Boro.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 2:03 am 
☽ Crescent Moonie
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Oh, how did it happen to you?

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 2:13 am 
Solaris Luna
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^ I do have friends, it's due to certain circumstances that I feel more depressed during the summer.

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 2:27 am 
☽ Crescent Moonie
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Oh, that's good (that you have friends). Too bad about that depression.

Anything I can do? I'm trying to install meetup, but... IDK if it has anything in my language. Since I'm hungarian, and I don't really have the "popular" interests of drinking, pubs, and night parties, but also cant afford to eat out at all, I'm not sure if it has anything good. Sports are also a no-no because of my weak heart, and computer gaming, my last refuge is again crippled because my pc is weak and can't run the modern games. at all.

And the smaller game r population has a smaller percentage of gamers who don't go for modern games. I mean, why would people talk about diablo 2 when everything is heroes of the storm and overwatch?

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 Post subject: Re: I've got social anxiety and no friends - how can I fix this?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 4:36 am 
Luna
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Boro, I really understand where you're coming from. I'm in a similar boat, except that I really need to work on getting my license before I can attempt trying out Meetup. This might not help much, but most bars and restaurants I've been to let you get water for free, so you could always try that. Meetup does have some Hungarian options here: https://www.meetup.com/topics/hungarian/. Whatever you decide to do, I wish you the best of luck.

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