ON SOCIAL ANXIETY

  1. Social anxiety doesn't mean I don't want to be social.
    I love spending time with people. I just need more time to prepare, and sometimes more time to unwind.
  2. Social anxiety doesn't mean I don't like you.
    A lot of people have suffered me cancelling on them and it's less a reflection of wanting to spend time with them (or not) and more that my panic is so hard I can feel my pulse pounding.
  3. Social anxiety doesn't necessarily mean I'm shy.
    I can be loud, outspoken and all of that jazz... with the right people. My best friends know that I am impossible to shut up. With strangers or even just acquaintances, though, it's easy to assume I always have been and always will be quiet as a mouse.
  4. Social anxiety doesn't mean I don't want to go.
    People think because I'm scared to leave the house, sometimes, that I never want to go anywhere with anyone and it's safe to leave me out. This is not so much the case. I crave human interaction as much as anyone. I fear being left out and feel the sting of not being invited.
  5. Social anxiety doesn't mean I'm an asshole.
    My inability to hold your gaze isn't meant to be rude. I honestly can't help it, and I'll probably go home and beat myself up for being "rude" anyway.
  6. Social anxiety is not an excuse.
    Forgive me for breaking the format but I had to add this in. While it might seem like I am choosing avoidance as the easier path, I am always, always trying. I want friends. I want to fit in. Sometimes, I even want to stand out. I'm not being antisocial because it's easy. It's the hardest thing. It's the loneliest thing.