Maintaining friendships can be tricky when you have social anxiety.
(I mean, maintaining friendships can be tricky even if you don’t have an anxiety disorder, but that’s not the point of this post.)
The thing about social anxiety is that it isn’t a personality trait. It’s a barrier to your personality, or at least that’s how I experience it.
So I can love my friends and miss them and want to talk to them and visit them and make plans with them… and that’s the real ME feeling those things.
But social anxiety steps in. Closes the doors. Explodes its party cannon of what ifs.
And so I hold back. I stay in touch in writing, which is less intense. Less scary. Less… invasive and uncontrollable.
But more lonely.
It’s a short post but I wanted to put this out there. If you have a friend with social anxiety, I know it can be hard for you too.
It can be hard to always be the one initiating. To always be coaxing us out into your world, out of our caves, through the anxiety mist and past the what if confetti.
But thank you for doing it. Your socially anxious friend probably appreciates it more than you know, even as she resists your efforts every step of the way.
You’re a little scary. But you’re a lot loved.
Happy end of 2019, and go hug your anxious friend!
Hahaha no just kidding don’t do that being touched is scary too.*
* Being hugged is actually very nice. Having to initiate a hug is the stuff of horror movies though.