So I came across this video a few days ago:
It’s a very good metaphor for what having social anxiety disorder is like. The difference being that overcoming SA is not as simple as just telling ourselves not to worry. I wish it was. Though I think we do have to accept it as part of ourselves and be gentle with ourselves in order to progress. What I like about the video is that it shows SA as something tangible, which may help other people understand it.
In other news, I tried to talk to my mum last weekend, which didn’t go very well. She says she doesn’t understand why I don’t give things (i.e going along to groups and interacting with people) a chance. I explained to her that I went along to loads of meet ups with the old SA group, and I’m now going to start going along to a new one (I also went along to another meet up yesterday but I’ll mention more about that in my next post). How is that not “giving things a chance”? She then said that she meant more to do with giving myself a chance and not beating myself up about things. I explained that I’m trying to work on that through CBT but it’s definitely not something that’s going to change overnight. Neither of us really said much after that because mum went to bed, and I needed to go to bed anyway. I haven’t tried to speak to her about my SA/ depression since then. Sometimes I wonder if there’s even any point in trying to get her or any of my other family members to understand. Maybe I should just forget about it and only talk to people who do understand what it’s like. My family’s lack of understanding about mental health issues means that I feel extremely alone and isolated from them when I’m going through depression, or when my SA prevents me from doing things. To be fair to my mum, she did try to comfort me this week when I got upset over uni coursework. And she did try to comfort me a couple of times when I mentioned that I felt really depressed. She understands that I’m finding coursework very difficult because of how I’m feeling at the moment.
Depression has been kicking my ass over the last couple of weeks. I’ve been massively stressing out over coursework but have gotten barely anything done yet, even though I’ve been sat at my laptop almost all weekend. University is the bane of my life right now. I find reading quite difficult some days. My mind is a bit hazy at the moment. I don’t know how I’m going to get through this semester. I don’t think I’m even cut out for uni; it’s just getting me down. I have no motivation whatsoever. Even doing quite simple things is becoming difficult. On bad days, I just want to lie in bed and waste my life away. I don’t want to do anything. Sleeping is currently my favourite activity. I just want to hibernate. Getting out of bed on time is becoming almost impossible, and I often sleep 45 minutes to an hour longer than I was supposed to, even with multiple alarms set. This means that I’m often rushing around like a headless chicken to get to uni on time, which only increases my anxiety. I can’t deal with life very well at the moment. Some days I can’t deal with it at all. At least I don’t feel actively suicidal or like hurting myself at the moment. But I feel miserable and useless. I am getting a little bit better at self-compassion though. I haven’t been able to use my lamp as much (the family car is getting scrapped because there’s so much wrong with it and my parents don’t want to waste any more of their money getting it repaired, so we have no car at the moment. The lamp is too large to take with me on the bus to my grandparents’, along with a suitcase and rucksack). I just ordered omega 3 capsules with a high EPA and DHA content (both are thought to help with depression, particularly seasonal depression) earlier today, so I’ll see if those have any effect on my mood, cognition or motivation.
Also, I’ve just found out that I’ll have to withdraw my application for working at the mail sorting office because I have an exam during the first couple of hours of my first shift, which I’m really pissed off about because (what with driving lessons, paying for my phone, and buying my family Christmas presents) I’ll soon have no money left. My uni could have arranged any other date for the exam, or even made it later or earlier that day, but nope, it had to be during the only TWO HOURS of the entire 2 week contract that I absolutely could not miss. Nice one, uni.