Social Anxiety: How It Affects Intimacy

Do you fear being judged by others to the point that you avoid social gatherings and meeting new people? 

 

Social anxiety is when you feel that all eyes are on you and fearing that they are negatively judging you.  Such thinking leads to you feeling inadequate, inferior, self-conscious, embarrassed, and depressed.  

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“This is what it boils down to and it extrapolates to any social situation, It can be specific to certain social situations, it can be generalized to all social situations, but the anxiety is about judgement, and ultimately not being approved of and not being liked.” Alicia H. Clark, Psy.D., a licensed clinical psychologist explained. When you are frequently experiencing this irrational anxiousness when in a social situation, but better when alone, social anxiety could be your problem.  

 

Social Anxiety Is A Mental Health Issue

Many people around the world suffer from trauma brought by social anxiety or social phobia.  These feelings can become intense and persistent, making it hard for you to do your everyday tasks, like communicating with people at work or school.  

 

Social anxiety is a disorder that often begins in young people who are extremely shy.  “People with social anxiety disorder experience anxiety when faced with social situations. They do not believe their anxiety is related to an illness or disease, yet have little control over their fear of social interactions.” Charmaine J. Simmons, LPC said. Research suggests that about 7% of Americans are affected by social anxiety disorder (SAD). When social anxiety is not adequately addressed, it can prevent you from reaching your full potential and achieve the happiness you desire.  

 

Social Anxiety Can Get In The Way Of Your Meeting The Opposite Sex

Social anxiety could even interfere with your dating because you fear that others will think of you as stupid or boring, and you fear that you will just be humiliated and rejected.  

 

Just the idea of you going on a date will make you worry even weeks or days before it happens.  During the day of your meeting, you may feel your heart pounding,and you may also feel dizzy and sick.  The fear is so intensethat you cannot control it, not even drinking glasses of water can take away the tension you feel.  Lack of confidence might be too obvious which could lead to you eventually getting rejected. 

 

As a result, it could get in the way of you going on another date. 

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Signs And Symptoms That You Have Social Anxiety Disorder

When having to be on a date or be around other people, a person with a social anxiety disorder tends to: 

 

  • Blush, sweat, have a rapid heart rate, tremble, feel his mind is going blank
  • Feel sick in the stomach or nauseous
  • Make little eye contact, talk with an overly soft voice, and often find a hard time speaking although he wished he could
  • Feels very self-conscious, embarrassed, and awkward
  • Fear that he is being judged

 

Living with the very sooften nagging thoughts in your mind about how not good enough you areaffect the way you treat those people close to you and even those people you wanted to be in your life.  

 

How Social Anxiety Affects Your Intimacy

“Anxiety is the pit in your stomach that you feel the night before a big exam or it can be those shaky legs you experience just before giving a presentation.” As explained by Melissa Berschauer LMFT. The way you get along with people around you can be impacted by your anxious thoughts or phobias just like any other aspect of your life.  Becoming intimate with someone you like can be complicated by the voice inside you creating negative thoughts and worries.  

 

“Does she like me?”

 

“Does she like what I’m doing?”

 

“What if she rejects me?”

 

“What if she’s not satisfied?”

 

These are some thoughts that add to your anxiety and even makes you doubt yourself more.  

 

Your doubts and fears not only affect your first date, but even sexual satisfaction is also said to be affected by your negativity.  Being unable to communicate your feelings effectively and fears of being intimate with your partner aresupposed to have something to do with sexual gratification.  

 

A study has shown that social anxiety is associated with fear of intimacy and has lower satisfaction when it comes to sexual relations and relationship.  Therefore, people with social anxiety may have more difficulties in maintaining an intimate relationship.  

Source: flickr.com

Those people with SAD who are already in a romantic relationship should work on increasing their intimate communication with their partner.  

 

If you are someone with a loved one who has social anxiety, and you think his fears and doubts are interfering with your relationship, it will be useful to talk to your partner about this in an open manner. It is time you should be thinking of seeking help to assist your partner in overcoming his fears of getting close to you and enjoying an intimate moment together.   

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