View Full Version : I'm trapped

02-03-2010, 09:56 PM
I've always been shy and quiet. I've never been comfortable in crowds and I'm very introverted. I barely talked when I was in school when I was younger and I didn't talk at work (except to a select few in certain circumstances). I finally left my job and became a stay at home mom. I now have 3 little boys and I love being home. I thought that my severe social anxiety had gone away or that I had outgrown it... but I'm coming to realize that the reason I wasn't feeling it was because I was never in social situations anymore since I became a stay at home mom. Last year my family and I started going to church. We are very involved, but now my social anxiety is eating me alive. I belong to a church group for young moms and tonight I've decided that I just can't go back. I didn't even have to talk, yet I sat in fear for 2 hours. I didn't hear a word of what was going on because I felt stupid like everyone was looking at me and I had things I wanted to say, but they were trapped inside me. Then they were going around the room reading... I was scared to death!! A million times worse than ever. Thankfully they stopped before they got to me. It is a horrible feeling. Over the last few years we've learned that our 7 year old son has Selective Mutism - a severe social anxiety disorder where he goes completely mute in certain situations. As I've been trying to help my son, I've come to realize that I'm pretty sure that I have Selective Mutism too... and I know for sure I have severe social anxiety.

I hate being trapped inside myself. This is the first time I've ever seriously considered seeking help. I just don't see myself seeing a therapist due to my schedule. I am home all day with my 3 little boys (ages 2, 5, 7) and I work from home and I just don't forsee it. I'm wondering now about medication, but I don't know if it's worth being drugged up all the time just to deal with going to church functions (which is primarily when I'm in a social group), but at the same time, I want to be active in my church. It's hard because most of the women in my church group are VERY loud, confident and outgoing and they barely know I exist. I hate feeling like a nobody. Yet after my group lets out, I can easily talk to 1 or 2 people. If I did want to try meds, would I contact my family doctor or do I need to contact a therapist?

Anyway, that's my story and I just feel so lost and confused. I don't have any close friends and I just can't handle any kind of social situation. I just want to not be scared. I feel so sad that my little boy has such severe anxiety too. I just want to feel confident and carefree. I've been in this church group for a year and I still can't even speak out loud. Last winter I was kinda pushed into going to the overnight church retreat, it was SOOO hard! My skin never breaks out, but after that one night, my entire face broke out in acne that took a month and a half to clear up...all from one overnight trip! The stress must have literally protruded from my body. This years trip is coming soon and they are going for TWO nights!!! It's such a nice retreat, but I just cannot get over this anxiety. I'm already freaking out about this trip and I'm very seriously considering not going. I just can't handle it. I want my heart to be filled with all the wonderful things that my church offers and I just can't break down this wall that is standing between me and all these great things I could be enjoying.

I seriously feel trapped. I want out.

Thank you for listening.

02-13-2010, 07:47 PM
Well I haven't been here long but I don't think avoiding the situation is the answer. It would really only be caving into the fear, which may seem better in the short term, but long term it's worse. Probably most of your anxiety is from the anticipation more than the event itself.

I read a post on here that sounded weird but figured what do I have to lose. The poster said that they basically dared the anxiety, kinda like saying "give me your best shot". My anxiety has given me hot flashes, tension headaches, neck pains, heart palpitations, shortness of breathe, dizziness..the list goes on & on but I'm still here. It really changes your mindset. Just try it. It's kinda a confidence booster.

Your general doctor could certainly give you meds if you choose to go that way. I have adivan if I needed it but I find my attacks don't normally last a long time & I would rather not be on meds if I can help it. But personally I believe everyone needs to choose their own path.

I say go on your church trip. You yourself stated that it's a nice retreat. Instead of thinking of all the things that "could" happen, think of all the good things about the place. And I promise you, no one is looking at you in a negative manner. We (the anxiety challenged) do that to ourselves. People are generally pretty nice when we give them a chance. :)

I hope you have fun & come back & share with us.

03-11-2010, 05:36 AM
I just wanted to say your story touched me. I too, face similar fears with regards to having to participate in group conversations. I freeze. The whole time I'm trying to think of something to say but can't or end up saying something stupid and wish I'd never spoken at all. I can relate to the "trapped" feeling.

03-15-2010, 12:42 AM
Whatever it is, focus on that. The fear may not go away entirely. But you'll shove it so far in the background that you can ignore it. If you fear something, give that a try.

Quoted from:

08-17-2010, 12:20 AM
I know that when one gets the bends, nitrogen eeks out of your cells and blood and gets trapped in your joints....maybe its something along those lines. I imagine any blood gasses can do it. Youre right, sounds painful.

08-17-2010, 07:07 AM
That feeling you get when you realise you will have to read out infront of strangers, I get that, sometimes really bad. Iv avoided most situations like that since I left school, not deliberatley just havent been relevent etc.

Other month I was given jury duty, had to stand up infront of an entire crown court and read out my vows, I was sat in a position where I was near last so was just sat there feeling almost terrified for no real reason, everyone else was doing it without issue, luckily it was only a paragraph and I did it without a shaky voice but still, its very unpleasant feeling like that.

the thing you will find is, yeah ull be scared, yeah you will look+act nervous, maybe mess up lines, have a shaky voice etc, but once you sit down you will immediatley think, why the hell did I feel so bad about it? it was easy, I got all wound up and looked a fool for no reason.

One thing iv realised, when I was working fulltime and around people all the time it was all good, since I lost my job i have a social night maybe one a week, and that involves aload of alchohol, the longer I leave it the more I start getting this tight feeling in my stomach before a sober social encounter with strangers.

I think the best thing to do is confront your fear untill it is no longer a fear, next time they have a discussion, be the first one with an answer, the longer you stay quiet the harder it is to voice up.