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#189389 - 10/31/07 05:08 PM Something new to talk about
Marinan Offline

Registered: 07/03/07
Posts: 330
I have trouble having a good time in public. More than one person of any gender at a time scares me, as I was done hard against repeatedly. Sometimes even by female perpetrators.

#189415 - 10/31/07 08:21 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: Marinan]
dgoods Offline

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
I hate crowds, i get panic attacks, but i'm also stressed by small groups too, i spend all my time worrying about who to trust, who "the top dog" is, are they all messing w/ me, etc.

Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

#189420 - 10/31/07 08:39 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: dgoods]

Registered: 08/12/07
Posts: 1298
I hate being around anyone, let alone crowds.

#189426 - 10/31/07 09:22 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: SEVEN ARROWS]
MarkK Offline

Registered: 04/02/07
Posts: 2652
Loc: Denver, CO
If I can't be alone, I'd rather be in a LARGE group. So much easier to blend into the wallpaper and not be bothered.

What get's me is that small group - where people notice each other easily. Too many eyes, to many possible bad things.


#191572 - 11/16/07 12:36 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: MarkK]
GateKPR4 Offline

Registered: 10/29/07
Posts: 955
Loc: North Carolina, USA
I too have problems with this. what I have learned to so is at large functions for work I stay with people I have some trust in. I really don't go large functions unless I have to or to be supportive of someone I care about. being behind closed doors with people I don't really know messes with me. Meetings where I have to talk about myself are tough. Although AA did help me with some of these fears it does not mean I have trust, and that is probably why I am the way I am about social situations.

I'm a normal person dealing with abnormal experiences.
The greatest discoveries we will find within ourselves.
|| || || || || || |

#191587 - 11/16/07 04:10 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: GateKPR4]
KENKEN Offline

Registered: 09/25/07
Posts: 762
One of my biggest problems when it comes to people is being around my friends who know I am going through lots of crap from my past, but don't know yet what the crap is. I still can not tell anyone what happened to me as a child. I just am not at that point yet in my recovery. So I am always second guessing what they are thinking about me. It scares me to death. So consequently I try to stay away from my friends as much as possible. My GF doesn't understand this, I guess that is something that we both have to work on.


From the Movie: Antwone Fisher


#193303 - 12/01/07 01:10 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: KENKEN]
alexey Offline
Moderator Emeritus
Registered: 08/16/05
Posts: 1676
Loc: Moscow, Russia

Social anxiety in a small group is not very much a problem for me later. But it was not until I learned a lot about other people, my friends or coworkers. They even help me and I feel good when in group.

In the past I suffered a lot with frustration, feelings of detachment from reality and sweating - all the symptoms of anxiety and panic.

You willbe better with time. I hope you will heal fast. Trust me, this is passing with time.


When you feel all alone and unhappy, turn to you Inner Child and talk to Him.
You will see He can comfort you like nothing else!

#193327 - 12/01/07 05:16 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: alexey]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA

Maybe it would help you to focus on exactly what it is you fear when you are in a group. I went through a stage where had a lot of anxiety in a group setting, and it turned out I was afraid I would dissociate - and then who knows what would happen? But once I had that connection out in the open I could then tell myself that when I dissociated it was almost always when I was alone in a quiet house, not out in public with lots of people making noise.

It's like this with so many issues concerning abuse. It's useful to look at something and ask ourselves what the causes are. Once we have addressed the cause, the behavior that concerns us may well just fade out.

Much love,

Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

#200049 - 01/18/08 10:38 AM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: roadrunner]
Danbuff Offline

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 249
Loc: NY state
Yep I understand the feelings expressed here by hating crowds because I never feel like I fit in. The good news for me is I keep trying to overcome the anxiety and fear. I have to admit I keep trying with a certain determination. My T says it takes practice and that it may be just as hard for many others there too.
I know he is right, at least I believe I am not the only one who has a hard time and there are countless others out there who have had hard lives growing up or even as adults. When I am able to remember that, it helps me feel like I am going to be okay. It does not always work but there have been some really nice times where I felt I was okay and had better control.

There is a lot of comfort in knowing we are not alone. Does anyone else connect with that idea?


When you stumble, make it part of the dance.

#200114 - 01/18/08 07:50 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: Danbuff]
LandOfShadow Offline

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 684
Loc: Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Not feeling like you are the only one in a situation helps a ton. Definitely know this, but I have trouble feeling this.

Like Larry, I've sometimes realized after the fact that I am afraid of having a kind of excallating anxiety leading to dissociation and a terrifying feeling of being out of control in (what feels like) a dangerous situation. (Sound familiar?) It can happen quickly and feeds on itself (fear of the fear) like a panic attack. What helps is to quickly take action to calm myself, and learn to trust myself to do that.

Et par le pouvoir d’un mot Je recommence ma vie, Je suis né pour te connaître, Pour te nommer

And by the power of a single word I can begin my life again, I was born to know you, to name you

Paul Eluard

#201541 - 01/26/08 06:23 PM Re: Something new to talk about [Re: LandOfShadow]
Lazarus Offline

Registered: 07/01/07
Posts: 851
Loc: Below the radar, USA
I know where you are coming from, guys. The 'old' me would never feel comfortable in a crowd; not a bar, not a dinner party, not a concert, not even Mardi Gras. But the feeling were completely different between huge crowds like Mardi Gras and small, intimate groups like dinner parites or clubs.

My husband is just the opposite; he LOVES crowds. He's very outgoing and sociable and loves meeting new people. He can start a conversation with a complete stranger and within a couple of minutes they are old best friends. I've never quite figured out how he does it, even after watching him for so many years.

I'm not much of a conversationalist in the mundane. I have a very hard time makeing 'small talk' because I think it is boreing and innane. I know that the intent is to meet someone you know nothing about and exchange pleasantries, and to break the ice to learn more about the other person. Truth is, I don't really care to do that. I don't care about meeting new people, I don't care if I'm the life of the party or ever get invited back. To me, it's all a boreing waste of time.

Now, on the rare occasion where I meet someone and am able to have a 'Meaningful' conversation, I'm all for that. I do like deep conversations that require intellect and sharp wit. It's usually one-on-one and the rest of the crowd fades into the background; 'don't bother me, kid... can't you see I'm BUSY here?" But it's not easy to exclude the crowd when you're at a party, or in a club, or certainly not at Mardi Gras... So most of the time I just stand there like a wallflower and let my husband do the talking.

Over the years, however, I have gotten more comfortable with people. Maybe that means I've gotten more comfortable with myself. Now I go to 'functions' with my hubby (I still don't know if I'd go alone, even though I do crave the excitement of a crowd, as an observer but not a participant.) The difference is not in how I act (although I am a little more comfortable than before) but in how I view the whole thing. I know upfront that I'm not going to be the social butterfly, and if anybody doesn't like that, too bad. I will go, I will be somewhat reserved, but I will enjoy myself. I will especially enjoy watching my husband either 'WOW' the crowd or make a complete fool of himself. I don't hold it against him, either way. I'm just not like him.

So, I think the whole 'uncomfortable in a crowd' issue has very much to do with one's self-conficence level. If you are worried that you will embarrass yourself, or that people won't like you, or that you will dissassociate and freak out, you are not likely to be comfortable around new people who don't know you. Once you get old and cranky like me, you won't give a sh*t about what strangers think, and perhaps you can go out and have some fun. Seriously, everybody makes a fool of themselves once in awhile. As CSA survivors, we don't do it any more or any less than other people, but it seems to bother us more when we do. The younger we are, the more it is likely to bother us, probably because when we are younger, social accpetance is much more important than it is later in life, I think.

I could be wrong on that. If I weren't in a LTR, with a family and lots of people who know me and love me, I'm not sure my perspective would be the same. All I know is that I've felt what you are feeling and I know how sad that is. Whether I mamaged to move past that because of my age, or because I'm healing from my CSA, or because of the influence of my gregarious husband, I cannot tell. It may be all of the above. If I knew why, perhaps I could help some of you younger guys (as MOST of you are younger than me) to get past this more quickly than I did. But I don't know why; I'm hoping that by explaining it all to you that maybe someone else may be able to figure it out.

Respectfully submitted,


"That which does not kill us, surely makes us stonger." - Neitsche

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