Are a selective mute around certain people?

  • Nearon

    Posts: 56

    Mar 14, 2014 9:34 PM GMT
    Sometimes I can't speak at all when people try and talk to me, but I'm comfortable talking to others. I do have severe social anxiety but I have these spells where someone can ask me something, engage in small talk etc. and I clam up and get super-nervous. I cannot explain it...
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    Mar 14, 2014 9:43 PM GMT
    No, but I wish I could selectively mute other people.
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Mar 14, 2014 9:44 PM GMT
    This has happened to me a couple of times where my mind just drew a complete blank. A couple times it has happened where I was going to introduce a bf to someone else I knew and I drew a complete blank on their names. This happened with two different bf's. Very embarrassing. Another time I was going to introduce my mother and my brain drew a complete blank on her name.
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    Mar 14, 2014 9:53 PM GMT
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_anxiety_disorder

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Selective_mutism

    Which came first your mutism or your anxiety?
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    Mar 14, 2014 10:10 PM GMT
    eagermuscle saidNo, but I wish I could selectively mute other people.

    +1
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    Mar 14, 2014 10:13 PM GMT
    Not to downplay or de-value your situation but it just superficially sounds like your social phobia just makes you selectively mute because you may fear being negatively evaluated by people. So you might clam up when a hot guy talks to you or a very polite receptionist.

    It could also mean a severe pattern of negative thinking you incorporated from childhood, adolescence or you recently learned where you have developed 'trigger-people' (certain people who have traits that remind you of whatever you fear or makes you anxious) and as a result, you clam up.

    *Meh, I tried*
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    Mar 14, 2014 10:37 PM GMT
    Nearon saidSometimes I can't speak at all when people try and talk to me, but I'm comfortable talking to others. I do have severe social anxiety but I have these spells where someone can ask me something, engage in small talk etc. and I clam up and get super-nervous. I cannot explain it...

    I had it until my 20s, and am really still basically shy today, and can go virtually mute in some circumstances with strangers who intimidate me. Though fewer do with each passing year.

    I was so shy (how shy WERE you? - old comedy line) that I couldn't even pronounce my own name. When I had to introduce myself I could barely speak, and would mumble "Robert" as "Robber".

    People would ridicule me: "You say you're a robber? Like a thief?" And then I'd be unable to speak at all. It's a reason I started calling myself Bob, because I couldn't mispronounce it.

    What changed me was the US Army. I found myself in positions where I had to speak to groups in public. It was my job, so I forced myself to do it, my duty if you will, an order that couldn't be disobeyed. But I still wasn't good 1/1.

    Later I became an Officer, with all kinds of glad-handing social obligations. Once again I forced myself, because my career depended on it. Plus naturally I had to stand in front of my troops and be forceful and in charge. Over time it became easier and more natural for me.

    So for me it was motivation, and determination. I was able to "go against type" because I was made to.

    You can do it, too, we all can. But you may be lacking the compulsory incentives, as I had. Minus that, consider college courses in public speaking, as I took. If you can speak in public you can speak in almost any situation.

    Does having a wing man along help you? A kind of social bicycle training wheels, until you gain your balance and can take them off. Do that.

    If your problem is more serious there are professionals who can work with you. But your issue is resolvable, be certain of that. Good luck! icon_biggrin.gif
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    Mar 14, 2014 10:40 PM GMT
    ART_DECO said
    eagermuscle saidNo, but I wish I could selectively mute other people.

    +1


    I find those bullies amusing who give themselves the right to free speech, yet want to repress those who disagree with their views.icon_redface.gif
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    Mar 14, 2014 10:44 PM GMT
    having to deal with strangers in my daily life with work I have to say no. Having had to speak out from a young age, to people who wanted to bully, intimidate and abuse me from a young age for talking out about same sex love and attraction. I have to say no. Yet I was born shy and reserved.