Hello all, I’m posting this because I would like some thoughts on something I’ve been wanting to ask about for a while, but never really had the courage to until I realised someone started a similar thread already - so I thought if they can, I can.
I find social situations extremely stressful and scary. I just want to get through them and go back home as soon as possible during them. If I ever go out, I’ll be clock-watching until it’s time to go back.
At work, in which I am dealing with members of the public - I’m outgoing, bubbly and always making people laugh and I’m in control. Time always seems to go quickly at work and quite often I’m buzzing at the end of it, I love what I do that much.
I love going to Mass and always say hello to everyone I know - but I find it really awkward and scary talking to them. I tend to hurry through the conversation and I’m scared that I’m coming across as rude and unsociable. I’m not - I really want to make friends.
I moved away from home to go to University and I haven’t really been able to make friends. I’ve been with my current boyfriend for almost a year and a half now. When I first moved into my new student house during my first year I kept turning down going out with my new housemates - I found it too scary and stayed in my room a lot - although I did go out a couple nights a week - yet when I was out, I would be constantly thinking about how long it would be until I go back to my room. Eventually the friends I did have moved away/left University, some became distant - which I accept is normal, and I was seeing my boyfriend a lot who lived in a different town. I was being bullied by one of my housemates, and I was eager to spend as little time as possible at my student house. Eventually by the end of the year, I only socialised with my boyfriend and his family.
When I moved into my new place I resolved to change that as I had made myself miserable with no steady friends (none really to speak of back home by this point, as I had even become scared of them) but even with my new housemates I became scared, nervous and would only go out if my boyfriend was with us. I’ve now convinced them I don’t like to drink and that’s why (and being typical British university students, they think that any night out that doesn’t involve getting drunk at the end is boring and anyone who doesn’t want to go out drinking isn’t worth even talking to, so they ignore me even though I make an effort to chat to them whenever I see them). As to when I’m at University, I’ve recently moved into a different group and I’m struggling to fit in there too as everyone’s already friends and I really don’t know how to approach people, I often sit on my own.
I don’t really know where to ask for help - I’ve spoken to my boyfriend about it but he only says I shouldn’t dwell on it and I should just go out and lose my fear. I can’t speak about it to family and I have no friends I can confide this to other than online. I don’t want a diagnosis or medical input - I’m fed up of seeing my doctor - I just want some friendly advice, support and maybe someone could suggest a Saint or a prayer I could use? Or a course of action?
Note: I’ve never been a heavy drinker, I like to dance in clubs but I’m more of a pub person. I think my fear is getting worse - it’s getting to the point now that while I used to enjoy chatting to my housemates (even though I resent the fact they never invite me to anything, even the non-drinking social outings they do) I often go away after a chat worrying that I made a fool of myself. Also, I don’t feel depressed generally - I’m quite happy with my life, I don’t want to hurt myself, this is not affecting my work or university work, I’m still going on with my daily life as normal…