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Letter to the Editor: Life with Social Anxiety

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Letter to the Editor: Life with Social Anxiety

Kennedy Homman

Kennedy Homman

Kennedy Homman

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“Hey Steven, why are you so quiet?” That’s a question I used to get often. I would always answer that it was just the way I am. The truth is that I’m irrationally afraid of the socializing with others due to the possibility of being judged or evaluated.

Life with social anxiety or S.A.D (Very appropriately named) is like a curse. It’s not that I don’t know how to socialize with other people, but that I am irrationally afraid to do so. Social anxiety or social phobia is defined as the irrational fear of interacting with others or being judged by other people. So I usually engage with other people as little as possible. Not of my own will, but because I’m afraid of the consequences of doing so. Ironically, my lack of social interaction is what has really led to me getting judged and cast aside.

Some would argue, “If you want to get rid of your fear, then face it” This doesn’t work for people like me. If I push myself too far my anxiety overwhelms me and I start failing. I know that I have my limits. Even now as I’m writing this article, I’m thinking about how it will be perceived, and how I will be perceived, but high school is almost over for me, so I’ve got room to be genuine.

Some people say that those who talk the least are the best listeners. I can definitely say that this is true, but it certainly isn’t a good thing. Hearing people say terrible things about me has been something I’ve always had to deal with. The only way I actually can deal with it is by remembering that what others have to say about me now is just not meaningful in the long run.

So what keeps me going? The idea that I can still make something of myself. The idea that future opportunities are always out there, and it’s just a matter of whether or not I’m willing to take advantage. Every day I come to school thinking about what I could do, and what I am instead forcing myself to do. My biggest mistakes have always involved failing to take advantage of opportunities given to me. But little by little I’m getting better. Better at pushing the envelope, and taking some of the opportunities given to me. And every time I push myself the right amount, I become better for it.

Why am I writing this? To raise awareness and to make sure that people like me don’t suffer needlessly. This isn’t just about social anxiety. This really applies to all anxiety disorders. Generalized anxiety disorder, OCD, PTSD, and panic disorder, just to name a few. If you suffer from any of these illnesses I cannot stress enough how important it is to find therapeutic or medical help. Some of these disorders can ruin lives if left untreated. I hope that others see the importance of taking the opportunities you get because you don’t really know how valuable they are until they’re gone.

16 Comments

16 Responses to “Letter to the Editor: Life with Social Anxiety”

  1. Sean Lu on May 3rd, 2018 7:26 pm

    preach

  2. Allie Gilbert on May 3rd, 2018 8:13 pm

    I love this so much! I have found I feel much better when I talk about my anxiety and I’m so glad there was an article written about it.

  3. Anonymous on May 3rd, 2018 9:31 pm

    Thank you so much for writing about this. I have anxiety too, and sometimes I feel like the fear of being judged is slowly taking over my life. I’m sure that it took a lot of courage to come out an talk about your struggles, and I respect your strength. Once again, Thank you.

  4. lembergini on May 4th, 2018 7:27 am

    I have anxiety as well. Have you ever thought of metea improv?

  5. darkstripe on May 4th, 2018 8:33 am

    I also have anxiety, which is why it’s so hard for me to trust people. I think everyone is against me (probably not far from the truth here) and I am completely terrified of sharing personal information about myself. To me, everyone is out to hurt me or manipulate me and I can’t have faith in people. Besides, I would bring nothing if I had a genuine friendship anyway (as I have said I’m really an obnoxious wuss with an annoying voice and the mental capacity of a toothpick) so it’s not like there’d be any point in reaching out in the first place

  6. Clay Penttila on May 4th, 2018 11:15 am

    Really appreciated this article and so will everyone else. Thank you for reaching out to everyone.

  7. Raegan Whede on May 4th, 2018 11:56 am

    Congrats on writing this powerful article. It’s appreciated by all and truly inspiring.

  8. anonymous on May 4th, 2018 1:46 pm

    This is great that you found the courage to write about this topic! As someone who also suffers from social anxiety I am proud that you had the guts to speak up. Congratulations!

  9. anonymous on May 4th, 2018 3:05 pm

    This article was truly inspiring. Somtimes I don’t understand how my friends with anxiety feel, but this made me really understand what goes through their minds. Hope you write more about your experiences!

  10. Anonymous on May 4th, 2018 3:06 pm

    I really appreciate your article. Thank you very much for writing this. 😀

  11. Anonymous on May 4th, 2018 3:07 pm

    I really appreciate your article. Thank you very much for writing this. I wish you the best in the rest of the year and in your life. 😀

  12. anonymous on May 4th, 2018 3:08 pm

    This article was really important to bring forward during mental health week. It’s difficult for high school students- especially males- to open up about mental illness. Thanks for writing this!

  13. Anon on May 6th, 2018 9:48 pm

    Thank you for sharing 🙂

  14. A Nice Dude on May 7th, 2018 11:39 am

    You know what gives me anxiety?

    Tom Cruise, he really creeps me out for no apparent reason and he seems like an alien who was taught how to act like a human.

  15. anonymous on May 15th, 2018 7:28 pm

    I was so happy when I saw this article. As someone who also suffers from social anxiety, I know how hard it must have been to post this article. I don’t really talk about my anxiety because I feel like know one else would understand, and it’s really nice to read and be able to relate to another student. Thank you.

  16. kyra on June 27th, 2018 10:14 am

    It gets better. I used to be on 3 types of medications and would freeze up all the time whenever I went out or had to go to an event. Been taking it seriously and found resources like http://forgetmyanxiety.com/isr-method-now which helped me instantly clear my head the first time I tried it. I have been needing it less and less because I do it intuitively. Hopefully that also helps some of you!

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Letter to the Editor: Life with Social Anxiety