View Full Version : Social Phobia because of our looks?

11-20-2013, 08:51 PM
Just curious if anyone here has this problem because of how they look. I do and have come to find that it is the main cause of my anxiety,stress,depression.... Anyways if anyone else has this issue i'd love to share our stories because sometimes i feel as if I'm the only who has this problem.

11-21-2013, 12:24 PM
Hi BahamaBlues, I'm really curious about what you mean when you say you think your anxiety is caused by the way you look. I think I really felt that way as a child ( I've had social phobia since my first memory) but I'm not sure if it's the same thing. Do you mean that you think you look weird or that when people look at you they can tell you have anxiety?

11-21-2013, 03:42 PM
Hi guys, hope you don't mind if I share a little. I think it's becoming more evident that in this day and age, the judgement of ones worth is greatly based on appearances. Every sales pitch out there is about showing you what you don't have, and what you need in order to fit in, with great emphasis on cosmetics, clothes and now surgery. If you have TV, you guys know the drill - reality TV with complete makeover shows depicting sad people because of how they look, then transformed with dental work, new clothes, bling bling, surgery and so on, to whence their family then clap and cheer as the new and improved version walks down the red carpet.

Very sad really - It makes sense that if your going for a job, that you should make an effort to neaten one self up and not turn up as if you just rolled out of bed. Perhaps turning up to church in the same manner as having made an effort to do ones hair and iron out a few crinkles should suffice, but unfortunately the same system of judgment to ones status is very much the same if not worse there, than it is out in the street. Hell people go to the grocery store with their Sunday best on these days and how about all those pageant babies. We stopped paying the TV bill because of crap like that - but they have kept it going for us, pleading us to pay less and they'll keep it on ... LOL

Seriously, watching people pray on TV for the baby kids to win a beauty contest as if its the end of the world ... JC ... no wonder people are *&^%ed up! I'm sorry, but I got kids of my own and now a grandchild on the way. It really is pathetic with the garbage people are resorting to for a past time & or entertainment.

On a more hopeful note BamaBlues - Your on the right track identifying as you have done - If you can relate your negative feelings to such, then work on switching off to those influences that play into such stigmatization. For some people it can be as easy as turning the TV off or in our case canceling the subscription to such rubbish - Look to find more down to earth friends that don't "out shine you" - Have realistic goals about basic hygiene and clothing that do not enslave you - look inside yourself and find those traits that make you special and experience the feeling that comes just from that, even if it's a neutral look in the mirror whilst doing so - much more will be gained that will last a life time, as opposed to pasting layers on and wrapping one self up in this and that.
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The more one plays into the presentation, the more one becomes a slave to presenting. I could go on more about this topic, but I think I made my point. We just got to be real with ourselves and stand our ground - It helps not to go to places meant for lots of money and shiny suits if you don't have such means - Hell I know people who don't go to church because of the "standard dress code" LOL - To me, there is nothing more beautiful than a plain Jane that knows where she stands.

We live in a superficial World and that's what make me depressed - Not because of how I look.

forgive the ramble - this topic makes me feel all sorts of feelings ... I needed to share for my own good. Thanks for listening.

Best wishes

11-23-2013, 11:23 PM
i can totally identify with this.I have low self esteem and im very self conscious. I have a big problem with people commenting on how i look it feeds into my anxiety.people alays say positive things but it makes me painfully self conscious and it makes me feel like i am going to vomit and or have a panic attack.my housemate commented on my appearance a good bit andi had to ask him to stop.The councellor i am going to commented on my appearance a few times in a positive way but i had to eventually tell her when i felt comfortable enough to that it made me feel panicky and self conscious.One day she told me she liked my boots for example and i never ore them again.

11-24-2013, 10:51 AM
I'm wondering if people commenting on your looks even in a possitive way has more to do with the fact that it brings that much more attention to you which is something very uncomfortable to us with social phobias. Like even though they are being nice it just feels like they are examining you that much more closely. I get severely panickey and frozen when people even glance my way so I thought maybe this symptom of yours is like an extra level of that. Because good or bad attention on us is just too intense.

11-24-2013, 05:03 PM
i think that's it exactly casstar01 .i am painfully self conscious and i dont like the focus of attention.Iknow it sounds daft but any time i get a compliment i am waiting for someone to laugh or say something mean or contradict it which i know is completely irrational.When attention is focussed on me i can feel my face burning up and i start getting flutters in my chest and an urge to just get out of there. I am sure i also come across as quite rude because i never know hat to say or do in these situations so i just change the subject or try to ignore it.The irony of it is even though it makes me feel uncomfortable to have appearance commented on even by ,say someone i was dating...if they didnt ever comment on appearance that ould make me feel insecure aswell its a lose lose situation lol

11-24-2013, 05:32 PM
Oh I sooo get that!! I am the same way! My face starts burning up and gets red which makes me feel even more embarrassed and freaked out! And I get these really uncomfortable flutterey butterfly's all through my body and I just want to get away!! When I was a kid ( I've had this diss order my whole life) I remember getting really mad or upset when people or my mom would compliment me because I just knew they were lying to me!! Or that's what I thought. And yet if nobody complimented me I would be so hurt!! I totally feel your pain! Lose lose all the way!! Lol!!

11-24-2013, 05:40 PM
yeah i have always been painfully self conscious even as a small child.
Ithink part of my self consciousness comes from childhood abuse though. Theres defniately a sense of feeling undeserving of compliments or feeling like..they dont know if they knew me they wouldn't think that.

11-24-2013, 05:47 PM
Exactly!! Even if I did get possitive feedback I just thought the same thing- if they really knew me they wouldn't think that. Or even like once someone looked at me they could see right into me and know how worthless and weird and unimportant I was. I also agree about the abuse, I wasn't beat up really I was mostly mentally abused and greatly neglected. I was shown how worthless and un meaningful a person I was right from day one. Plus it was constantly being reaffirmed to me by kids at school who tortured me and even by teachers. It seemed every kid and adult just knew I was a loser. So now it's so ingrained inside me it's so hard to overcome!!

11-24-2013, 05:56 PM
i can completely identidy with that last message on all accounts. I also have a kind of double life ...on the surface im quite an ariticulate outgoing person who is relitively sucessful and normal socially(unlike when i was a child) i force myself to be outgoing and it pays off but on the other hand theres my private life where i am a wreck.i make loads of friends but keep them all at a certain distance and the ones that get too close i deliberately push away because of this paranoia that if they get too close they will see me for hat i really am and reject me.Icant let myself trust anyone and i know this is because of my upbrininging not only was there physical and a lot of psychological abuse but it was ingrained in me that i shouldnt let outsifers know my business and that people were just nosy and that people couldnt be tusted. Iam in councelling at the minute to deal with the childhood stuff but it seems to be getting worse before it gets any better?

11-24-2013, 06:19 PM
I too am in counseling. And recently began seeing a therapist who used to suffer with social phobia etc.. I'm still pretty early in but it's intense therapy and I've noticed I seem to be getting worse! But she says that's how it works expecially since we are working through all our childhood stuff too. So no worries on that it's perfectly normal before getting better! Hope it happens soon huh? ;) it's very understandable that you are so "suspicious " of others and find yourself pushing people away since that was what you were taught. Oddly enough I should be the exact same way in addition to all that my mother literally abandoned me at a texaco station when I was 13!! And I have been on my own since. I'm now 32 but was on the streets from that day until just a couple years ago!! It was horrible I was so self consence I couldn't even ask for help or ask where I could eat or sleep. I ended up slowly figuring it out but I went through a lot and was very used and abused by others out there. So I learned how to take care of myself out there and yet I have always still been a really trusting person!! It makes no sence!! But it has also gotten me very hurt in life and yet now having an apartment and trying to pick up the peices of the life my mother forced upon me I find myself greatful for my gentle way and trusting ability but I do need to work on not being so trusting-and I'm getting there. Strange huh?

11-24-2013, 06:39 PM
i actually think its admirable that after all you have been though that you can still be open and trusting.

11-24-2013, 06:42 PM
Thank you. That actually means a lot to hear! I've always felt like there was something wrong with me because I wasn't more untrusting! But I'm trying to except this as something good. :)

11-27-2013, 09:52 AM
Casstar01 - I mean because of how i look. although sometimes i do wonder if people can tell im anxious by my actions. Ive always had anxiety but once i switched to public schools in 7th grade it began to grow out of control. when i was a baby i had eye cancer so the eye had to be removed. they gave me an artificial eye. strarting in 7th grade i was tortured daily and it has scarred me. now everytime im in public, or at work, or around someone who doesnt know what happened im always worrying if theyre staring at me eye or if they think i look retarted or weird. i know this sounds silly but ive learned that we all have anxiety inducing things that are hard for others to understand.

11-28-2013, 10:55 AM
That does not sound silly at all!! I completely understand!! I always feel like people think I look weird or ugly and then it makes my anxiety go out of control and I begin to think everyone can see something is wrong with me but since they don't know I have social phobia they just think I'm a freak or weird. It's awful!! I'm really sorry to hear what you went through, I was also tortured in school and I'm still so scarred by it. As well as being treated like crap as a child by family members and my mother who also greatly neglected me and those hurts don't just go away. It may be that no one notices anything "wrong" with you at all but because our anxiety is the way it is we think for sure they are judging us poorly. So while we are all worked up over nothing it most certainly feels very real to is, and we have to remember to be kind and loving to ourselves ( I know it's sooo hard! ;) ) because we are going through so much on a constant basis! It's exhausting !! My heart goes out to you, because I so understand how it feels..