23 October 2018   |  Last Updated 21-10-2014 07:24

      Tuesday 21, October 2014

      BLOG: The realisation

      SOCIAL Anxiety Disorder (SAD) is a constant fear of social situations, and is one of the most common disorders. Summer explains her realisation of how the disorder is affecting her...

      I’ve been with Michael for nearly five years and we have been through a lot like most couples.

      Since the first time we met he has known in his mind that I have issues with social situations, but it was never too much of a deal. As we have gone through the years he began to notice it get worse and worse, all the time trying to make me see that I needed to get help for it.

      It took me a very long time to start listening to him. I didn’t think me not answering the phone, or my need to know exactly where I was going all the time was wrong. I have slowly started to agree that I am more anxious than others, but to me that was just who I am.

      The night I finally said, “you know what; you are right” was at an awards do. We were under the impression that it was a black tie do so we got dressed up. I had a long evening gown and Michael in tux but when we got there every one else was in normal suits and short dresses.

      My mind began to race, I was convinced everyone was starring at me thinking how stupid I looked, I was convinced people had done it to make a fool out of me. I was literally holding back the tears as I ran to the toilets where I hid for a good half an hour before I had no choice but to get out.

      I am not a big drinker; until I feel nervous then I usually have a couple of glasses of wine and I feel better.

      I know it’s not healthy, but it does help for that short period of time. I feel calmer and more relaxed--who doesn’t--but that night I was driving so my usual calming method wasn’t going to work.

      We were sat on a table where I basically knew no one; I said nothing all night. The quieter and more reserved I got the more Michael got irritated. It wasn’t surprising, I was showing him up in front of all his colleagues and clients. I was so upset with myself we had been looking forward to it for ages. I’m not one to take my time getting ready for nights out but that night I had made a real effort and one wrong look (which I doubt no was even a wrong look) had ruined my evening.

      After spending more than half the night running back and forth to the toilets (always my safe place when I am not happy) and seeing the disappointment on my partners face something clicked and I finally after all these years realised that my crippling fear was ruining my life.

      I knew then I needed to change so the next day I finally made the call to get an appointment...

      To read more from Summer click here