Do your family know about your SA?


Hi everyone. I was just wondering about something - do your families know that you suffer from SA? I am asking this because I have been basically living a lie for the past 4 or 5 years while I've been suffering from this condition, so much so that I am starting to realise that I have got so used to lying that I don't even notice that I do it anymore. I feel like I am hiding behind a massive wall and that one day I will just crumble underneath all the built-up lies that I have weaved over the years.

My mum knows that I am not particularly happy and that I have had panic attacks but she doesn't know anywhere near the extent of what I go through. She thinks I lead a normal life, go into Uni every day, have a normal social life and just sometimes suffer from the normal everyday stresses of being a young adult. But the reality is that I have avoided all my seminars at Uni for over a year, my tutors don't know who I am and neither do any of my coursemates. I have realised that I actually hide my entire personality from my parents, which means there is a distance between us that only I am aware of. I am going between several different personalities all the time and it is getting to be too much for me to handle.

The thing is, I know my parents attitude will be one of unacceptance. They will think I am making excuses for poor attendance at Uni, and they will just tell me to dig my heels in and get on with it. But I can't carry on like this, I feel like I need to completely break down all my barriers - with family, friends, everyone i know - and then start building myself back up again, with no dishonesty this time.

So I was wondering if any of the rest of you hide yourselves as deeply as I do? Do your friends and family know of the severity of your situation? My friends just think I'm a bit shy and introverted because I'm not always chatty with new people but they don't know what lengths I go to to avoid interaction with people. They don't know that I get nervous even when I'm meeting up with one of them - my friends of about 15 years! I am constantly lying and hiding from those closest me and I don't think I can carry on like this. Any advice?!!


Well-known member
I don't know if I can help, but I know how you feel, I just decided to try live with it with an upbeat attitude, and day by day try to win over my anxiousness and need to avoid people. Sometimes it goes well,other times it doesn't.

But I rather keep it like that than deal with my parents about it.


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It took me years to tell anyone. I thought I was the only one that had this fear for the first 5 years so I didn't speak to anyone about it. I was really depressed at that time. Once I realized it was this thing called anxiety, up until then I had never heard of it, I managed to tell my friends, and then my family. My anxiety didn't get any better after telling them, but I wasn't as depressed. If you had very supportive family, unlike mine, they would likely do whatever they can to help you. Sounds like you may have to rely on your friends for support. When I say support, I mean helping you boost your self-esteem and confidence, and helping you face your fears. My friends and family didn't do any of that. All my parents did was help pay for a psychologist. We never even really spoke about after initially telling them what was going on with me. I guess they thought it was their fault so they were in denial.
They don't know because I'm sure they won't understand in the slightest, and won't be able to help at all. Also my father would try to bump a bunch of pseudoreligious crap to blame my SA on that and to "cure" it.


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Only my mother and grandmother know. They both have Anxiety themselves, so they kind of get it.


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I told my best friend. It would be pointless to tell my family for a number of reasons. But, given your situation, you can tell them just to get it out there. Sooner or latter, they will have to accept your explanation.


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It's some big secret, nobody in my family is aware and it's been that way since I was a child. They may get the notion I'm shy, but both parents are pretty hermit like and avoidant as well. I was likely conditioned to be this way.

I don't plan on telling them anytime soon either because they'll just brush it off, or probably don't even care. This extends into all aspects of my life. I plan on going back to school by just uping and going without so much as a peep.

If you think it will benefit you to tell them, regardless of their reaction it's going to give you some relief. Do it.


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My Dad knows because he and my sisters have the same sort of thing but i don't think he knows it's called Social Anxiety. My Mum just thinks i have low confidence. She doesn't understand the severity of it and i think that if i tried to explain to her what i'm afraid of, e.g. going out by myself, she'd probably think i was insane. I don't think she'll ever really understand what i go through everyday.


Well-known member
Hi everyone. I was just wondering about something - do your families know that you suffer from SA? I am asking this because I have been basically living a lie

When I had a meeting with a psychological assessor and told her my life at home, i.e that I was secluded of my own volition and kept myself to myself whilst maintaining somewhat of a family profile, she said the same thing I've bolded. I was living a lie.

I haven't told my family and I haven't told anyone. Well, besides one person who I met online and felt comfortable to tell them mainly because they weren't face to face. I can't tell my family because they just wouldn't understand. They'd say: "It's only shyness" or say something that won't resonate with me. Telling my friends would probably get the same response. They don't understand when at Uni with me that as much as I wanted to get involved in group chats, my SA prevented me to.


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My mom does, she blames it all on the computer and tells me to look at the children in the hospital. I understand many people have it worse but she doesn't actually help me.


New member
Sounds almost exactly like Im going through. My parents know that I get anxiety but they are clueless, through no fault of their own, as to how big of an impact it has on me. Theres no advice that I can give you that is going to help. You can always try to explain it to them but if your like me, its simply to hard to talk about. I wish you well brotha, and am always here to listen if you feel like talking. P.s Im new to this so I am still trying to figure it all out.


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My family knows I don't have a normal social life, but they don't know I have social anxiety. I haven't told them because I know they won't take me seriously. Most likely they won't try to help but they'll use it against me and gossip about it to the rest of the family.


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Nobody knows. Every day I live a lie.
Same here! I've never told anyone (except people on SPW). It's nice to be able to talk about it with people who can relate. I'm not sure about SA, but I think my mother knows that I'm depressed though because a while back, out of the blue, she starting telling me about my dad's long history of depression. My parent's tend to keep any issues they have secret too, so it was very odd that she told me all of this. I think she was trying to let me know that it could be hereditary. I unfortunately don't want to talk about it with either of my parents because they will constantly pester me about it.

and gossip about it to the rest of the family.
And this!!! My mother has a very bad habit of focusing on the negative and gossiping about it.
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Likewise here, whenever any of my family start talking and I can sense that the conversation is steering towards my personality and social life, I'll get up and pretend to go to the toilet.

People won't get a mental disorder unless they have it.