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Does anyone here feel the threat of others' judgement even

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Does anyone here feel the threat of others' judgement even

Postby Frankiefrank » Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:02 pm

...even when they are at home, safe and alone?
Hello, I am new to the forum. I don't have an official diagnosis of AvPD - I am comorbid bi-polar and autistic. What makes me think I am AvPD is this relentless sense of impending, negative judgement from the people I know that spoils my safe, alone time (as well as the time I spend out and about).
I fulfill the requisite number of symptoms form the list - have always been hypersensitive to criticism, socially anxious, and terrified of rejection, for example.
So I am wondering if anybody else goes over and over social interactions - recent and past - trying to work out what, if anything, went wrong; desperately looking for signs that it [I] might have behaved acceptably. I feel this weighing upon me as soon as I wake up. By 4pm, I start to feel nauseas. The only social stuff I engage in is shopping in Lidl and walking my dogs in the park; by 4pm I am as ready as I'll ever be to take the dogs out. Sometimes I can't do it and they have to make do with a lead-walk around the block where I rarely have to speak to anyone.
Fear of people and the general anxieties about rejection and criticism spreads to other parts of my life - I struggle to take part in social media activities like posting my photographs or art-and-craft work. It's like being agoraphobic and finding that all my walls have disappeared.
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Re: Does anyone here feel the threat of others' judgement even

Postby lilyfairy » Sat Feb 06, 2021 4:31 am

Hi and welcome to the forum

Frankiefrank wrote:...even when they are at home, safe and alone?
Yes, definitely. Some of it can be over interactions that have already happened- usually where I have said something awkward and am going over and over it in my head (I also have autism/aspergers), or anticipating outings. The feeling judged thing is a big part of AvPD.

I do find that the longer I put things off, the worse my anxiety about it will get- the obvious thing would be to do it earlier, before my brain runs away with it, but that's not usually how it works out. I do try to set myself a goal to do it by x day, and find if I put it on a list with other things I need to do, it's sometimes helpful. I check things off on my list as I go, and seeing things checked off makes me feel a tiny bit more confident about getting through things.

I don't use social media either- I should, because if I posted photos of my sewing and crafts that I do, I would likely get orders to do more of it (and get paid for it!), but I'm not sure if I can deal with it- my privacy and feeling safe in people not being able to find me is so far more important to me.

Something that can help me sometimes in blocking out the feeling judged thing is to get myself absorbed in a project- my sewing or crafts, music sometimes (I'm a musician). Some days music doesn't work either. One thing that I can block out a lot with is jigsaw puzzles- that seems to use most of my brainpower and focus at one time on one thing- if I'm feeling overwhelmed, it can help me calm down/tune out to things.

Sometimes breaking things down into baby steps help. Would taking the dogs to the end of the street rather than all the way to the park and getting comfortable with that first help? It's ok to have days where you really struggle though. Hugs.
First rule of mental health: Learn to distinguish who deserves an explanation, who deserves only one answer, and who deserves absolutely nothing.

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