Friday, 31 October 2014

The Fear

Let me start by saying that I know it's Halloween but I'm avoiding it at all cost. Come on, I get scared just walking out my front door so this occasion isn't my favourite as you can imagine.

So I thought I would just have a little ramble today. Kinda like a diary entry I suppose.

As previous readers of my blog will know, I suffer (suffer being the appropriate word) with mental health issues and they have pretty much taken over my life.

Social Anxiety Disorder. S.A.D.  
And the condition couldn't be more aptly named.

I recently made myself a doctors appointment (Very proud of myself actually. Making phone calls are still difficult but I did it) because after months and months, my CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) is coming to an end and I'm still in the same position I was when I started.
Granted I have learnt some really useful breathing techniques and it's really nice to have someone to speak to that doesn't see you on a daily basis. And my therapist Stuart is lovely and really helpful (I'm gonna be sad when the sessions are done actually) and I couldn't have asked for anyone better.

I'm feeling really frustrated and angry about the whole situation.
I remember everyone saying to me that taking the first step would be hard but I'd feel so much better. I don't.
At first I felt really positive and I knew I had made the right choice by going down the doctors.
I still do know it was the right decision because I've personally acknowledged there's a problem here and I have gained a professional's opinion to help with my own understanding.

But I still feel like my GP doesn't seem to understand how severe my anxiety is despite social anxiety being a registered condition and it's so hard not to scream with frustration.

I knew this was gonna be a long process and that there was no quick fix for my problems but I feel like so little is known about social anxiety and it's seriously misunderstood.
It isn't just shyness or feeling awkward around others. It is a crippling phobia that is really complex and hard to explain.
The feelings you experience are intense and painful. Although the problem is in you mind, it's the body that suffers the most. Panic attacks, racing heart, shaking hands and vomiting, aches and pains from being tense all the time.
Social situations should be fun. You should panic about making phone calls or opening the door to the delivery guy...
It's really tough and I don't think people quite realise.

If you feel like you can relate to this then do something about it.
No one else can help if you don't help yourself first.
I know how hard taking the first step can be but your GP wont laugh in your face (I seriously thought mine would...Guess that's a social anxiety thing eh?) and you'll be on the right track to getting the help you need.

So CBT didn't work for me. That doesn't mean it won't work for you.
CBT is the most effective way of treating anxiety conditions and is recommended by so many people.
So try it. Be brave. You only have things to gain.

If you want to learn more about Social Anxiety then visit the NHS website.
For help and advice, you can visit many website including AnxietyBC, SocialAnxietySupport and Mind.

No one should face mental illness alone.

Thanks for reading
Loubee Lou

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