Is Social Anxiety the Latest Trend?

Over the past couple of months there have been so much talk about social anxiety. To be honest, before the past couple of years I didn’t know that social anxiety was a mental condition that people faced. I knew people that were shy or uncomfortable in social situations but I thought that it was just a common thing that everyone felt sometimes in passing.

There have been many people like prominent bloggers and Youtube personalities that have revealed that they suffer from social anxiety which is a good thing because it has brought awareness to an illness that people have to work through every day of their lives. However, it also caused a wave of attention and all of it wasn’t so positive. Tons of people began to make claims of having social anxiety and although there were many people who supported their admissions there were also many who were highly skeptical that they were suffering from anything except self-indulgence. Some people went as far as calling these people “fake” or “liars” on their social media and perpetuated hate towards these individuals.

Their reason for not believing that these people don’t have social anxiety is because they have social media feeds full of pictures of them going out and with their friends. But I think that what a lot of people are missing is that you can’t judge someone’s life based on what they display on social media. Someone’s life could look so glamorous on social media and be completely different. We pick and choose what we share on social media and most people only share the good side of their life.

One person that has been targeted by the public is Acacia Brinley. I really don’t know much about her or her Youtube channel but she is huge on Tumblr/Instagram as well. One day I was going through my Instagram explore page and stumbled across her profile. I clicked on one of her pictures and was shocked by the overwhelming amount of hateful comments, most of which were about her claims of having social anxiety. I immediately thought to myself, why do people hate this girl so much? I looked up her Youtube channel and just by scrolling through the comment section I found out that it is because she has a lot of provocative photos on her social media and attends a lot of high profile events in LA and her viewers don’t believe that someone who has social anxiety would be able to do those things. But the comments were horrendous, they aren’t just calling her names but there are people saying that should disappear and even die.

I don’t know if everyone who is claiming to suffer from social anxiety actually has a mental condition or if they are just think that they are because it’s trendy to say things like “I’m only cool on the internet” and “I have no friends” (which if you don’t believe me just scroll around Tumblr blogs and you’ll see what I mean). But that’s thing, I don’t know. As I’ve gotten older one thing that I have learned is that you never know what’s happening in someone else’s mind, home, or life. They could be suffering from a mental illness or maybe some people who make this claim are just crying out for attention, but I don’t feel like it’s other people’s place to decide which one it is.

What do you guys think about this?

24 comments

  1. As a genuine sufferer from Social Anxiety I see the point, people claim it because they’re a bit shy or they think they’re ‘anti social’. I just hope it doesn’t take anything away from people who really do suffer from it because suddenly everyone thinks they have it and then don’t actually fully understand it.
    But at the same time, social media is easy for people with SAD, I have tons of pics (although not with other people) it’s social situations I get anxious in but that doesn’t mean I can’t have friends and can’t hang out with those people.

    I’m on medication and have started CBT (a type of therapy) and as much as I’m hoping it will help, the anxiety will never fully go away and people need to remember that whether things are for attention or not – there’s clearly something wrong there if someone needs that attention. It doesn’t mean they should be insulted and told to ‘go die’ ect.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for commenting and sharing your perspective Charli. I agree, even if someone does or says extreme things on social media bullying has no purpose or justification. When I see mean comments or posts like that I wonder how someone could get satisfaction from saying such horrible things to other people.

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  2. I teach teenagers health and one of the big things we talk about is communication and relationship skills- I do think that social media has made some of the parts of talking in real life seem more intimidating to some. We get so comfortable with people online that it feels like we’re put on the spot in person when we can’t polish everything up perfectly before sending. Thought provoking post- I dig it!

    Xoxo K
    http://peeledwellness.com

    Liked by 2 people

    • I think it really is genuine for a lot of people, but for some they are just jumping on a bandwagon especially youth who are still figuring out who they are and are more easily influenced.

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  3. I think people are confusing social anxiety with the need/want to be liked. I have feelings of insecurity when I have to leave my flat sometimes but I’d never say that is social anxiety, that is my own self doubt. I don’t know what is going on in someone else’s mind but we need to be very careful when labelling ourselves with titles we do not fully grasp. On another note, it’s never right to be nasty just because you disagree/disbelieve someone. Good article x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Great point Ana, a self diagnosing can be dangerous. I think we can definitely assume the worst case scenario at times and jump to conclusions. But then again some people may jump to the right conclusion. Which is why I would suggest going to talk to a professional or even reaching out to a hotline. Sometimes saying things out loud can change how you see them.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. You never know what people are going through. The lives that are depicted on social media platforms is probably a small percentage of reality. Naysayers should be more careful about leaving negative and harmful comments, especially ones that could push people to inflict harm on themselves because of others peoples opinions of them.

    http://laceandpearlsblog.com

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I definitely think that social anxiety is a true state of being and that not all social media feeds are “what you see is what you get”. I think it is important to take a breather from social media and just enjoy life — talk to friends, go to events, watch a movie and unwind, anything to take the mind off of what other people is portraying through the screen. Thanks for bringing up an important thought Lauren! šŸ™‚ xo~ Lena
    http://www.felinecreatures.com

    Liked by 1 person

    • I certainly can relate to that, there have been times when I’ve deactivated social media accounts for a week just to take a break from them. Social media outlets can be wonderful tools but it’s easy to get caught up in them and all of the likes, followers, and drama that is ever present on them. You also made a great point that you can’t accurately judge people based on what you see on their social media.
      Thanks for stopping by! Have a wonderful weekend Lena!!!! šŸ™‚

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  6. If someone says they have social anxiety, I tend to believe them. Especially in the case of Youtubers. Even if you have social anxiety, we all still need connection with other people and that might be their outlet.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. If they didn’t have social anxiety before, I can understand how they would develop it, after receiving hateful comments and death wishes. But I agree that you can’t really know what’s going on in people’s lives. And you can’t read minds.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Interesting article. I have no idea what to think about it. I do think it’s wrong to have such hateful comments for people weather or not they are telling the truth. People really do feel too comfortable saying anything online, I think that’s the bigger problem.

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  9. Reblogged this on This Hilarious Earth and commented:
    Interesting observation. How much of what people do is motivated by fear or shame rather than creative inspiration or a need to create? There is a theory that people tend to feel more fulfilled and happy in a smaller community, and that the larger reach expands the more difficult it is to be satisfied.

    I’m no psychologist but given my own experience with the subject there seems to be some truth in it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m no professional either but I think you’ve presented an interesting point of view on this subject. Maybe people feel more fulfilled in smaller communities because it’s easier to see your impact on the people and things that are around you. In larger communities you can start to feel like a big fish in a huge pond.

      Liked by 1 person

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