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  1. #1
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    Impostors Versus Diversity - Fakers Making Others Anxious

    ...so I've joined a couple groups lately, and some of the members in those groups claim to have anxiety, but really don't. I understand that anxiety makes some people talkative, and it compels some people into being active or leaders. Heck, I can be one of those people myself.

    However, these people claim to have social anxiety by default before even engaging others. They claim to have an innate attraction to finding others to socialize with and looking to get involved.

    In the two groups I've joined, these people have dominated the sessions, and some are afraid to speak up about them because of possibly being criticized or ridiculed. On the other hand, others find them pleasant and enjoy their company even though they don't really help. They're just attention whores who are playing the groups like they're popularity contests in order to feel good about themselves rather than really helping others come to solutions in dealing with anxiety.

    Instead, they constantly advocate learning from experience and trial and error, ignoring how they're expecting others to assume the risk of getting hurt in the process. Then, they say experience and getting hurt is just life. It's very dismissive of how we aren't just living creatures, but that we're civilized people with morals and ethics.

    I've seen some people leave the groups because of this. I've also seen some people get flat out kicked out because of this as well. We've had some outbursts of people who are frustrated with them, and they either breakdown or angrily retort in saying they don't deserve to be harshly criticized or ridiculed in the first place.

    I'm rather convinced at this point that the key to identifying impostors is identifying those who don't understand that social anxiety sufferers need to be segregated. Social anxiety comes in many forms, and when those forms are forced to interact, it can lead to conflict from misunderstanding and misinterpreting others' behavior.

    However, some people don't understand this, and they deliberately believe all forms of social anxiety can coexist. They don't understand how they're forcing others to assume the risk of conflict as well as how people don't deserve to have to endure conflict.

    Another sign of social anxiety impostors is whether or not they admit their anxiety comes before or after, to or from, socializing. Impostors will say their anxiety happens before and to socialize such that they would be anxious in advance of encountering social situations. Authentic SA sufferers understand that anxiety follows social situations.

    This isn't to say that SA can lead to a vicious cycle or that anticipation happens, but the question is, "How does it begin?" Another thing that impostors will do is say they can't remember, but just that it's been going on. Authentic sufferers might say it's always been there, but they will also explain how it began such as since they entered school, young childhood while home, entering the workforce, auditioning for a group, or leaving a group they were accustomed to living with.

  2. #2
    L's Avatar
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    Is this group for just social anxiety or anxiety in general!
    life---> <---me

  3. #3
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    There's different levels of SA. Some people have it so severely that theyre scared to leave. Others have "Specific social phobias" (EG-They get on fine in conversations, but freeze up during job interviews or something, and it's having an affect on there lives).Is SA misunderstood? Yes, I do think that. I don't think much of fakers, and I find it hard to believe anyone would fake. Then there's another group-the not quite fakers but the people who exagerate there own issues. Both of them really pis me off. I've seen someone to me who's spoken about her severe schizophrenia, psychosis, EDNOS, depression, bipolar...I hate telling people they're faking, but honestly? I know the mental health services and hospitalization, there's no such service as "Group Six" (And trust me, I'd know) and it's pretty much illegal for them to send in "the heavies with sedatives and straightjackets". That's not what happens. It's never happened to me, but heck, I know what happens if you're sectioned and refuse to go into hospital. But heck, sorry, that was a rant about someone in college who's beginning to Pee me off. And she's saying all this because one of her friends was admitted to hospital with an eating disorder. 4

    Woth the anxiety...I don't know if I'm offically SA or not. So I guess I'm an anxiety sufferer. But the thing about it coming after I get. Years after in some cases. It's annoys the crap out of me when my brain starts freaking out about things I said years ago. Exposure therapy does exists, but exposure's done slowly. Not all at once. Doesn't work that easily. Social anxiety has little to do with socks, and I've already grown up, thanks.
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


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    whiteman's Avatar
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    There definitely are some people on the internet that are on a social anxiety forum that don't have social anxiety. A women on another social anxiety forum made fun of someone on a social anxiety forum because they had social anxiety then she made fun of their mental health in general, so I asked her if she had social anxiety and she wouldn't say she had social anxiety, even though she was on a social anxiety forum, and there are a bunch of people on that social anxiety forum that never say anything about social anxiety, generalized anxiety, depression or any other mental illness, but they have thousands of posts???
    However, I believe anticapatory anxiety is a part of social anxiety, and I also believe anxiety following an event is also a part of social anxiety. For me I think Social anxiety is a result of thinking about social situations over and over again then fearing other social situations because of those past social situations, but everyone is different so I'm speaking only for myself.
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  5. #5
    Antidote's Avatar Rude & Shouty
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    I know what kind of people you are talking about and I think they do have anxiety. But they tend to have anxiety to a lesser degree, or they're more naturally extraverted / social, so when they see other more withdrawn SA sufferers, they get frustrated and judgmental. And yeah, I think their attitude is a toxic presence wherever they are because I see people at that other place casting judgment and insinuating various posters are cowards and pathetic just because they had a panic attack and where unable to do something. I don't really think they can fathom that other's anxiety could be worse or different to what they've been through. It's due to low emotional intelligence / a lack of empathy, or just bloody minded resentment.

  6. #6
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    Quote Dak View Post
    ...so I've joined a couple groups lately, and some of the members in those groups claim to have anxiety, but really don't. I understand that anxiety makes some people talkative, and it compels some people into being active or leaders. Heck, I can be one of those people myself.

    However, these people claim to have social anxiety by default before even engaging others. They claim to have an innate attraction to finding others to socialize with and looking to get involved.

    In the two groups I've joined, these people have dominated the sessions, and some are afraid to speak up about them because of possibly being criticized or ridiculed. On the other hand, others find them pleasant and enjoy their company even though they don't really help. They're just attention whores who are playing the groups like they're popularity contests in order to feel good about themselves rather than really helping others come to solutions in dealing with anxiety.

    Instead, they constantly advocate learning from experience and trial and error, ignoring how they're expecting others to assume the risk of getting hurt in the process. Then, they say experience and getting hurt is just life. It's very dismissive of how we aren't just living creatures, but that we're civilized people with morals and ethics.

    I've seen some people leave the groups because of this. I've also seen some people get flat out kicked out because of this as well. We've had some outbursts of people who are frustrated with them, and they either breakdown or angrily retort in saying they don't deserve to be harshly criticized or ridiculed in the first place.

    I'm rather convinced at this point that the key to identifying impostors is identifying those who don't understand that social anxiety sufferers need to be segregated. Social anxiety comes in many forms, and when those forms are forced to interact, it can lead to conflict from misunderstanding and misinterpreting others' behavior.

    However, some people don't understand this, and they deliberately believe all forms of social anxiety can coexist. They don't understand how they're forcing others to assume the risk of conflict as well as how people don't deserve to have to endure conflict.

    Another sign of social anxiety impostors is whether or not they admit their anxiety comes before or after, to or from, socializing. Impostors will say their anxiety happens before and to socialize such that they would be anxious in advance of encountering social situations. Authentic SA sufferers understand that anxiety follows social situations.

    This isn't to say that SA can lead to a vicious cycle or that anticipation happens, but the question is, "How does it begin?" Another thing that impostors will do is say they can't remember, but just that it's been going on. Authentic sufferers might say it's always been there, but they will also explain how it began such as since they entered school, young childhood while home, entering the workforce, auditioning for a group, or leaving a group they were accustomed to living with.

    Not sure what you mean by this. I can speak louder and talk more than shy people who don't have social anxiety disorder.

    Mainly I have no social confidence, even in a good mood, it will only last a short while. And if anything minor (I consider it life threatening ) happens, I just stop talking to people and start having panic attacks.

    The anticipatory thing. well if it goes better than I predicted in daydreams, usually there is no anxiety after. If something unexpected happens, I will get anxiety for a long time. Also if I have a responsibility I still remember years after.

  7. #7
    Otherside's Avatar
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    Just thought I'd add this. Shyness and SA are so so similar, only a doctor can tell the difference. This is my problem with self-diagnosis. I've come across people who say "well, I can tell somethings wrong, and it's obviously SA" and who tick off a list of symptoms they find online, but the problem is that SA and Shyness are so similar, and can both have such a severe effect on a persons life, that it can be impossible to tell the difference, and as I've lately learnt, we ourselves are the worst judges of our own mental state at times. The physical symptoms of shyness can be the same as the the physical symptoms of social anxiety. I'm not saying that everyone without an SA diagnosis is probably just shy...but I do wonder how many of them are, and why you would brand yourself with a psychiatric diagnosis. If you look at the DSM criteria, then it's kinda vague as to what SA is. It could be argued that anyone in the world could be diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder from the DSM. You'd hope that psychiatrists would have some sense when they diagnose, and most do, I believe. However, this is the danger of self-diagnosis.

    Can SA stem from Shyness? Yes, but it doesn't have to. Most people have some sort of childhood shyness-Eg) They can shy around strangers. This is probably a good thing, some sort of safety measure. A lot of people get over this childhood shyness, but some don't, and some have shyness that reoccurs in there life. 40% of adults would describe themselves as being "shy". Shyness can also lead to social withdrawl, just as SA can.

    The difference between shyness and SA? Shy people panic before a social situation, but are genereally able to enjoy it once they're there, and aren't constantly judging themselves and there behavior. A person with SA, however, will panic before, be constantly judging there behaviour, supress parts of there personality that they feel people would critisize, not focus fully on there surroundings becxause they're too busy judging themselves, and then panic after the encounter that the person believes that they made a complete idiot of themselves and come to the conclusion that they're never going to be able to speak to that person ever again.
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


  8. #8
    whiteman's Avatar
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    Interesting, I've been diagnosed with SA, but I never knew there was a difference between shyness and SA. I just thought everyone who was shy had SA. It's hard to explain, but thinking about it, I have SA but I'm not really that shy. For example, I can talk to someone if I know I'll probably never see them again, but if I know I'll see someone over and over again I'll have SA. I also get SA when I'm around an authority figure. That's why I have to have my own business because I can't function around authority figures.
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    I didn't realize the many forms of SA until I joined forums and met some people. I know of people with SAD who are actually extroverted. I also didn't realize how narrow-minded some people are in their own definitions. For example, someone posted that you can't have SA and a job.

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    I was surprised how SA affects different people differently. For example on that MTV show, True Life I have social anxiety, both of the people on the show had no problem eating in a resteraunt. I can rarely eat in resteraunts, but the girl was terrified of ordering. I don't have much trouble ordering it's eating around people where I have trouble.
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  11. #11
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    SA does seem to affect everyone differently. In restaurants, I'm fine eating/ordering so long as I'm with other people. I can't even sit in a cafe or somewhere and order food. I don't like eating on my own in public for some reason. SA can affect anyone-Introverts or Extroverts. It's probably harder for an extrovert with SA...SA plus the need to socialize with other people and be around other people and yet being terrified of other people. But I dont know, I'm an Introvert, most people with SA seem to be introverted, or the ones I've met are anyways.

    Shyness can be as much as a problem as SA though. It can cause social withdrawl, social avoidance, if the shyness is very severe. I suppose that would begin to lead to social anxiety, but shyness on it's own is not SA. Then there's also people with "Specific Social Phobia" who could be fine in normal social situations, but freak out and panic when it comes to talking on the telephone, or something.

    People with SA being unable to have a job though is pretty much a severe example of how bad SA can be. I wouldn't be to hard on them. What they said was incorrect, and maybe slightly belittling of people who have milder forms of the illness (And I'm not in anyway saying that what she said is right, just that I can kinda relate), but I can see how hard it is if you have problems that other dont and you wish you had what seems to you to be easier to deal with and you see people complaining about it, you can say things like that. It's not excusable, and I dont believe in the whole "I have it worse than you" competition thing.
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


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    Quote lasair View Post
    Is this group for just social anxiety or anxiety in general!
    That's a good question because I've seen and heard impostors take general anxiety as an excuse. They'll say their general anxiety in advance of socializing drives them to socialize.

    The problem is they're dismissive of how their release of general anxiety spurs social anxiety in others. It makes you wonder how conscientious they really are over the issue at stake.

    Another problem is these groups prohibit you from accusing someone else of not having social anxiety, so it lets impostors get away with not being conscientious.

    When their victims respond, they simply blame the victim.

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    Another thing is some of the counselors don't take initiative because they say the victims can speak up. One, anxious people are anxious. They can't speak up. Two, people shouldn't have to speak up when they're violated by misrepresentation, fraud, duress, intimidation, harassment, negligence, or provocation. The people in charge are supposed to be responsibly upholding authority. This is even after some people get kicked out for speaking up.

    I get the impression that these groups are set up just so the people in charge can get paid by the government. The counselors who actually care are outcast for trying too hard.

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    Otherside's Avatar
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    Quote Dak View Post
    That's a good question because I've seen and heard impostors take general anxiety as an excuse. They'll say their general anxiety in advance of socializing drives them to socialize.

    The problem is they're dismissive of how their release of general anxiety spurs social anxiety in others. It makes you wonder how conscientious they really are over the issue at stake.

    Another problem is these groups prohibit you from accusing someone else of not having social anxiety, so it lets impostors get away with not being conscientious.

    When their victims respond, they simply blame the victim.
    I had a GAD diagnosis before an SA one. Technically, GAD could include SA problems. Whether or not that would be SA or not, I don't know. Can you have both GAD and SA? I hadn't even heard of SA before I came across them on the internet sometime last year.

    Do you mean online or in real life self help groups? Faking anxiety and going to a self help group is taking a bit to far. Online...not much we can do about that. I dont think it's okay to ever say to anyone, "theres nothing wrong with you"...only because I've had that said to me, I do have anxiety, and it didn't really make me feel that great that I was being outted as a faker. That's the only reason though. We're online, everyones different, and theres no way we can tell from a couple of forum posts who's a genuine anxiety sufferer and who's just taking the monkey.

    Quote Dak View Post
    Another thing is some of the counselors don't take initiative because they say the victims can speak up. One, anxious people are anxious. They can't speak up. Two, people shouldn't have to speak up when they're violated by misrepresentation, fraud, duress, intimidation, harassment, negligence, or provocation. The people in charge are supposed to be responsibly upholding authority. This is even after some people get kicked out for speaking up.

    I get the impression that these groups are set up just so the people in charge can get paid by the government. The counselors who actually care are outcast for trying too hard.
    Never been to group therapy, so I can't talk much, but I have to agree, this is the problem. The ones with really bad anxiety are the ones who are too terrified to go to the doctor or end up being dragged along, and are convinced that as soon as they open there mouth, the doctor will tell them to stop wsting his/her time and grow up.
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


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    Quote Otherside View Post
    I had a GAD diagnosis before an SA one. Technically, GAD could include SA problems. Whether or not that would be SA or not, I don't know. Can you have both GAD and SA? I hadn't even heard of SA before I came across them on the internet sometime last year.

    Do you mean online or in real life self help groups? Faking anxiety and going to a self help group is taking a bit to far. Online...not much we can do about that. I dont think it's okay to ever say to anyone, "theres nothing wrong with you"...only because I've had that said to me, I do have anxiety, and it didn't really make me feel that great that I was being outted as a faker. That's the only reason though. We're online, everyones different, and theres no way we can tell from a couple of forum posts who's a genuine anxiety sufferer and who's just taking the monkey.
    General anxiety is an object-oriented condition where stuff just makes you anxious. Social anxiety is a subject-oriented condition where being around people doing stuff makes you anxious.

    Some people with general anxiety are considerate in understanding that it's important to control themselves, but others aren't. Then, after their release of general anxiety triggers social anxiety in others, they just don't care and get others into trouble. The counselors sometimes say that nobody's anxiety is superior to anyone else's, and they actually end up sympathizing with the triggering instead of the triggered. They say the triggered have to deal with it instead of the triggering controlling themselves. It's very dismissive.

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