Notices

Social anxiety and sobriety

Old 06-18-2017, 09:38 PM
  # 1 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Giraffegirl2013's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 147
Social anxiety and sobriety

I'm newly sober and wonder how you go about making sober friends. I am an introvert and often experience social anxiety. It takes me awhile to trust people. Alcohol used to help with the anxiety, but after prolonged use it started to isolate me even more.
Just wondering if anyone else has these challenges with socializing and how they handle it while being sober.
Giraffegirl2013 is offline  
Old 06-18-2017, 09:58 PM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Administrator
 
Dee74's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Australia
Posts: 211,678
I had to accept I was an introvert.
I spent 20 years drinking trying to be an extrovert.

It's much better for me to accept myself for who I am.

I thought I'd have no social life sober at all, but the opposite is true. When you're comfortable with yourself, you tend to be the type of person other people want to be around

D
Dee74 is offline  
Old 06-18-2017, 10:02 PM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 1,667
Yes, I'm an introvert.
Go to a meeting and just open your mouth and start talking.

"My name is Giraffe and I'm an alcoholic" is a hell of an opener.

I have social anxiety too. Alcohol actually made it much worse.
ThatWasTheOldMe is offline  
Old 06-18-2017, 10:18 PM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Member
 
SimplyE's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 63
Originally Posted by Giraffegirl2013 View Post
I'm newly sober and wonder how you go about making sober friends. I am an introvert and often experience social anxiety. It takes me awhile to trust people. Alcohol used to help with the anxiety, but after prolonged use it started to isolate me even more.
Just wondering if anyone else has these challenges with socializing and how they handle it while being sober.
Slowly learning this myself. For me its small steps. Today I went to a new church and just sat and listened. Yesterday it was coffee with a classmate. Probably will try another college class. All very difficult for me but small steps. You will find so much good information and support here.
SimplyE is offline  
Old 06-18-2017, 10:19 PM
  # 5 (permalink)  
Member
 
SimplyE's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 63
Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
I had to accept I was an introvert.
I spent 20 years drinking trying to be an extrovert.

It's much better for me to accept myself for who I am.

I thought I'd have no social life sober at all, but the opposite is true. When you're comfortable with yourself, you tend to be the type of person other people want to be around

D
Oh my, so want to get to this point!
Good advice!
SimplyE is offline  
Old 06-18-2017, 10:22 PM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Member
 
SimplyE's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 63
Originally Posted by ThatWasTheOldMe View Post
Yes, I'm an introvert.
Go to a meeting and just open your mouth and start talking.

"My name is Giraffe and I'm an alcoholic" is a hell of an opener.
...
Good one!

SimplyE is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 02:06 AM
  # 7 (permalink)  
Mini Novel Post Writer
 
LadyBlue0527's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Maine
Posts: 3,649
Exactly what Dee said.

I thought I was a party animal. I really did. A social butterfly who was always in the thick of the party.

Then, I really got sober and found how untrue that is. I am an introvert. I love my home projects and the peace and quiet of being by myself.

When I do hang out with people they are interested in the same things I am and not just what comes out of a container. The conversation is real and we are genuinely interested in hearing what each other has to say.

Giraffegirl, do you attend any recovery groups? Have you checked Meetup.org for sober fun groups in your area? I know we have one around here. Do you like to read? Maybe you could find a good sober book club, or, start one yourself?
LadyBlue0527 is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 03:26 AM
  # 8 (permalink)  
Member
 
aasharon90's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Baton Rouge, La.
Posts: 15,272
As a newcomer to recovery, my awesome
sponsor introduced me to all the folks she
became friends with at meetings. She
introduced me to service work by inviting
me to work in the hospitality room at
conventions.

This opened the door for me to go
home and bake and bring my goodies
to many of my meetings for folks to
enjoy with their coffee.

It was pretty awesome to see from
a distance folks seeing me arrive at
my meetings, standing at the door
ready to hold it open for the "cake
lady" a name they gave me.

That became a humbling experience
for me to help overcome my awkward
shyness and anxiety. To allow others
to see me being responsible and sober
at each meeting.

My sponsor led me by example and
I followed because I wanted a life in
recovery similar to hers and others
and would do what I needed to do
for a long time till I wanted to do them.

Small steps as mentioned above is
a great start. There is no rush to get
it all in one day because recovery
and sobriety is an on going way of
building a strong solid foundation
to live upon one day at a time.

To achieve health happiness honesty.
aasharon90 is online now  
Old 06-19-2017, 05:32 AM
  # 9 (permalink)  
Hears The Voice
 
Nonsensical's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Unshackled
Posts: 7,901
Like anything you want to get better at - practice!

Do you have a trusted friend, sibling, mom who can help? Have them pretend to be a stranger and start conversations with them.

If no one is available, practice in the mirror.

Google "the art of conversation" and start reading. You'll find some great tips for things to say.

You can do this!
Nonsensical is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 05:47 AM
  # 10 (permalink)  
EnjoyingTheJourney
 
bandicoot2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 3,847
What Dee and LadyBlue said!

I spent over 30 years convincing myself I was the life of the party, only to find in sobriety and recovery that I'm an introvert. Alcohol falsely boosted my confidence and falsely calmed my anxiety. It also slowly wrecked my life. It hasn't been easy but I'm learning how to set boundaries, how to be the real me and how to be comfortable in my own skin.

You can do this too. Wishing you all the best Giraffegirl....
bandicoot2 is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 10:09 AM
  # 11 (permalink)  
Member
 
PurpleKnight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Ireland
Posts: 25,826
For me I needed to find new hobbies/interests or rekindle old ones rather than bars or having a party for one on my sofa on my own with a bottle.

With common interests, naturally came new friends, the problem I found though was figuring out what I was interested in, but in time I relearnt who I was and what I enjoyed in life!
PurpleKnight is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 01:23 PM
  # 12 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Giraffegirl2013's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 147
That's exactly where I'm at. I feel like I'm getting to know myself again. I'm no longer numb and I have the energy and motivation to get out and do things. I'm just figuring out what those are. Thank you!
Giraffegirl2013 is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 01:36 PM
  # 13 (permalink)  
Administrator
 
Anna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Dancing in the Light
Posts: 61,660
Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
I had to accept I was an introvert.
I spent 20 years drinking trying to be an extrovert.

It's much better for me to accept myself for who I am.
This was so important for me, too.

I found that getting involved in volunteer work was a great place to make friends.
Anna is online now  
Old 06-19-2017, 01:44 PM
  # 14 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Boston Ma
Posts: 980
Still working on this, my world was full of drinking so people respond a bit differently when there is a sober one in the group, especially me who just drank without question. I am 56 and not in search of new friends so renewed a lot of relationships and let some go based on mutual interests outside of drinking.
Mklove is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 02:14 PM
  # 15 (permalink)  
bona fido dog-lover
 
least's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: SF Bay area, CA
Posts: 99,863
I don't really have social anxiety, tho I sometimes feel uncomfortable in a crowd of strangers. What I do, if I have to 'mingle', is to draw out the people I'm with by asking about their interests.

I read a quotation years ago that I've never forgotten.

"There are two kinds of people: those who come into a room and say ' Here I am!' and those who come into a room and say 'There you are!' "

I try to be the second kind.
least is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 06:29 PM
  # 16 (permalink)  
Member
 
SimplyE's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 63
Originally Posted by least View Post
I...
I read a quotation years ago that I've never forgotten.

"There are two kinds of people: those who come into a room and say ' Here I am!' and those who come into a room and say 'There you are!' "

I try to be the second kind.
This is excellent advice
Used it with my neighbor tonight.

SimplyE is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 06:33 PM
  # 17 (permalink)  
Member
 
SimplyE's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 63
Originally Posted by Anna View Post
This was so important for me, too.

I found that getting involved in volunteer work was a great place to make friends.
Thanks Anna
Volunteering is a good place to make friends
I have started but am still very quiet
It can be slow to get to know people but it does help
Another good idea for those of us with severe SA

Last edited by SimplyE; 06-19-2017 at 06:35 PM. Reason: add words to make it understandable
SimplyE is offline  
Old 06-19-2017, 06:36 PM
  # 18 (permalink)  
Member
 
MyRecoveredLife's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Lomond, Alberta
Posts: 20
An "oldtimer" drew me into service work. He got me involved in an entertainment committee and the next thing you knew, I was fully involved and had a host of new friends. I realize you are introverted, but taking a small step in getting involved might be helpful?
MyRecoveredLife is offline  

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:59 PM.