Is it my anxiety and depression or is society more superficial than it has ever been?

Everywhere I look, it always seems to be the good looking people that have all the fun. They seem to have many friends, go out all the time on nights out and just in general I feel so inferior to them. I have missed out on having a decent social life due to my social anxiety and it doesn't look like it's getting any better. I have convinced myself that we live in a cruel society that cannot be changed.

I am extremely insecure about my looks, believe I am ugly and despite living in this very politically correct society with so called 'equal opportunities' I am very cynical as well believing that people still discriminate people for whatever reason. Although it is not technically a 'hate crime' to discriminate over looks like it would be in terms of disability, race, gender etc - it still makes me anxious and I feel constantly on edge like it's about to happen to me. I have the evidence of not having many friends to make me believe I am excluded from the all the fun that everyone else is having because I am ugly.

Having suffered from GAD too, I constantly worry about all aspects of my future and feel like I'm going to end up a very lonely man, I keep imagining I'm going to be one of those people you see on TV at Christmas time being picked up by the Salvation Army.

19 Replies

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  • Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Haven't a clue who said it, but I know it to be true. Could it be your insecurities are what's holding you back from forming friendships, and even using this as an excuse for not making friends, and blaming your looks?

    Looks are only skin deep. It's what's inside that really matters. That's not a platitude, that's reality. I've never suffered from GAD, so haven't got a handle on it. But I have hired and fired people, and never because of their looks, but always on their ability or inability to do the job.

    Life is what you make it. If you want to have nights out with friends, why don't you start the ball rolling by inviting them out? Please don't sit on the side lines watching life pass you by, but get out there and socialise x

  • I've wondered if it's just my insecurities. It gets worse as I get older and I thought my depression would get better once leaving my teens. It's slowly changed from social anxiety to GAD. I know there are good people like yourself that don't discriminate, it's just difficult to see the positives when you've convinced yourself that everyone is your enemy. I am taking small steps towards achieving a better social life and your suggestion is a good one - we'll see what happens x

  • You are right that we live in a tough world nowadays (probably always have) ; there is discrimination in many areas and many people struggle. To be sure conventional good looks can help make a smoother path but if you are good person this will shine through to others and that is what matters the most. Try not to worry ; that is easier said than done but if you have confidence then that is also attractive so maybe concentrate on trying to show the impression of that even if it isn't true for now if you convince yourself then you may convince others as well.

    It ain't easy. X

  • Thanks Gemma, I will try not to worry x

  • Hi George I am in a very good position to understand what you are saying about your looks. I had very severe acne as a teenager which has, despite 2 operations, left me with deep pits in my skin (though a lot better than before) and I have always considered myself ugly despite people telling me I am not. I have had lots of 'ugly woman' comments from men which have deeply hurt me (it's worse for a woman because we are judged more on our looks by men than men are by women). To some extent certainly it has had on affect on my self esteem and is, in part, a cause of my depression. Oh and because of my skin men (and women occasionally) obviously think I am so ugly no man would want me and I must be gay! At least you don't get that do you? I have learnt to stay away from people who judge me and to give a sharp retort back. You will too.

    I have over the years learnt to live with it and whilst I still get the odd derogatory comment I have had my share of boyfriends and I do have a good social life. I think because I am more confident now it stops most of the idiot remarks. It is true that most people don't judge you on your looks once they get to know you. It is a bonus being attractive but it doesn't mean you have to stay alone and friendless you know. So get yourself out there and meet some nice people and stay away from the idiots. xx

    I have a good social life and try not to let it get in the way of anything I want to do.

  • You are a beautiful person x

  • Oh by the way this is coughalot! For some reason my details have disappeared! Bizarre... :) x

  • Must be horrible when people say such nasty things. I agree it is worse for women, I think my anxiety would be twice as bad if I were female. I don't mean to tar all men with the same brush but I think boys can be much more cruel and I get on with females more for this reason. Although I am male I would never think about judging a woman by how she looks - we're not all bad! I'm glad you don't let things get to you xx

  • Your observation there isn't necessarily correct. In fact, it's really not, George.

    Why do you think it's only the beautiful people who can enjoy life?

    I was miserable all through my teens up until I was 22. And I'm pretty. People have always told me this. I was miserable for another reason: Asperger's Syndrome. I just didn't know I had it. I only had my suspisions of it about a year ago and was only just diagnosed a month ago (I'm now 24). That was the reason I never fit in. And because I didn't fit in I started to believe there was something repellent about me. I believed I was fat (even though nobody else did) and that's why I wasn't liked by the popular skinny girls. I believed I must be weak or boring and that's why people stayed away from me or bullied me. But now I understand what was wrong.

    It's not about being ugly or beautiful. The most attractive thing in a person is self-confidence. But being kind and funny is also attractive.

    Scenario:

    Am I going to go out with a guy who is gorgeous and has toned skin and perfect abs and perfect biceps, but who will only use me for sex and dump me when he sees another girl he can chase? Or am I going to go out with the quiet guy in the corner who isn't as good-looking but is gentle, patient and kind?

    It's a no brainer! :).

    I'm not saying every good-looking guy will treat you like crap but I find a lot of the guys who know they are good-looking are over-confident and that attitude bugs the life out of me. Every girl gets caught up and flattered when a stunning guy pays her some attention. But we soon realise after getting our hearts broken that it's best to stay away from the vain ones.

    People are always surprised when I tell them my boyfriend's age (he is older than me). But I don't care because he looks after me. I think he is gorgeous and gentle and a real sweetheart. And he is good-looking but he doesn't know it. He may not believe it himself but I see an amazing person when I look at him. That's not because love is blind or anything (he can be a right pain in the arse and he is lazy a lot of the time haha) but there is way more good than bad about him and you gotta take the bad with the good :).

    The guy I lost my virginity to wasn't good-looking. He had nice eyes. But he was quite thin (probably underweight). I trusted him enough to do this with him and I felt safe and secure with him. And that was all that mattered.

    I guess what I am trying to say in a long-winded way is that looks aren't everything. People who know they are good-looking can be vain and it's not nice to be with someone like that. Equally, the guy I first fell in love with wasn't very attractive but then he stole money from me. You can't base anything on looks and I no longer judge a person on that. But confidence is key. And if you don't have cofidence you need to make your other good qualities clear - like kindness, gentleness, generosity, thoughtfulness, patience... The list goes on!

    You need to let someone get to know you. You seem like a kind person who just hasn't had much luck with people. I never did either. I've been dumped, stolen from and my trust broken a few times now. And I have spent most of my life feeling lonely. But I have been lucky enough to meet someone who is good for me. Finally! After lots of blind dates, bad choices and heart ache!

    It'll happen for your too, you are still young remeber. But keep in mind that if you seem desperate it can make people run in the opposite direction. I used to be this way and it's negative and puts people off. I learned that the hard way. I would think way too far ahead and would be quite needy it would put guys off. You just need to learn more about yourself and try to tone down certain things just like I did.

    Have you spoken to the girl in the shop yet? xx

  • Do you mind me asking if your doctor diagnosed you with it? I ask because I've suspected I might have very mild aspergers due to my behaviours etc. I am hoping my confidence will increase once I find a girlfriend. I am not going back to the shop yet, I'm leaving it for two weeks as I felt very anxious the last time when she suddenly disappeared and the security guard kept looking at me. I hope she hasn't reported me as some crazy perverted shoplifter xx

  • Well my brother has it really bad and my parents started recognising traits in me. I have dealt with it better than he has but it has still made my life difficult. If we hadn't learned about Asperger's over the last couple of years, I may never have been diagnosed as my traits are very mild. But I spoke to my doctor as we know it is a genetic condition. And he referred me to a specialist (the man who diagnosed my brother). This man diagnosed me after speaking to me for an hour and a half. He said 9/10 times he can give a diagnosis by the end of the session.

    You may very well have it. Apparently 1 in 10 young people have t. But that is current statistics - I think more poeple then this go undiagnosed. Especially in women because we tend to hide the traits better than men do.

  • Hi Bev I pity those poor deluded idiots who would judge anyone on

    Their looks.

    Racine a French Philosopher said " beauty is just a flower who, wrinkles will

    Devour" . I hate all this obsession with how people look, looks to me are

    Irrelevant. It's what's behind that face, a persons heart and humanity.

    Ignore any idiots who have the nerve to be so rude to make unkind comments.

    They are vacant and soulless, self obsessed fools.

    You are worth everything g because you are you.

    Luv n hugs

    Hannah xx

  • Beautiful and hopeful, Hannah -- feels like good advice. (Have you tried taking the Cymbalta earlier helps with sleep?)

    I'm sorry -- I don't mean to change the subject of the original post.

    Thank you, George, for starting this discussion--awesome , caring comments... heart-touching.

  • Cough I know you did not mean anything nasty about gay people from your comments to this poster and were just repeating what society has said to you but I would just like to point out that lesbians are not attracted to each other because they are too ugly to find a man! They don't want a man!!

    I feel I have to say that lesbian , gay, bi-sexual and transgender people experience a higher rate of depression and suicidal ideation than the population as a whole and LGBT teens and adults have one of the highest rates of suicide attempts .There is a wealth of material available about this if people want to check it out but basically "not fitting into the norm" and either internalising a negative view of yourself and sometimes external bullying can cause this.

    Once again I know you didn't mean any harm and please don't remove your comments but I just felt I had to add my own.

    Gemma X

  • Hi Gemma I am not homophobic but a lot of people where I live are. They believe that any woman who isn't attractive or married etc. is too ugly to find a man. Therefore because they can't find a man they would have to turn to women and be gay. I know that is rubbish but I was just quoting what they believe. I wasn't slagging off gay people at all and would never do that. Bev x

  • I had to look that up GAD General Anxiety Disorder?! Really?

    Is that like " I went to the shop and got some apples", "I went to the shop and got some apples, some pears and a newspaper", "I went to the shop and got some apples, pears a newspaper and a general anxiety disorder because I couldn't decide which actual disorder I preferred?!".

    Really, labels more labels, is there a regional anxiety disorder that covers county bounderies?!

    I don't know about anxiety something hand in hand with phobias I think?

    Dont limit yourself George, once you label something theres little room for manouver, how about I am George who sometimes gets a bit anxious.

    We all get anxious sometimes, something to do with being hunted by woolly mammoths orginally I think (oh please dont tell me they were herbivores!) .

    I know sometimes a label can give you comfort..."ah ha I now know whats wrong with me!". But what if nothing is 'Wrong' with you, what if we are all Kookie, I mean what a mess if we were ALL perfect, ALL so independent and strong we didnt NEED each other, wouldnt we be up sh*t creek without a paddle?!

    The facts are these young George, you are perfect! I know its hard to hear, I for one can't tolerate it of myself, but thats the truth.

    You are as perfect now as the day you were born. Living up to a gig like that is the problem. Stevie Wonder said we are afraid of the greatness inside us and he's spot on, so we dumb ourselves down.

    Now George you are a man! That means if I place a gadget in your path you can deconstruct it and reconstruct it before I can say Vincent Cable is an arse. Now what does that tell us, A) we want you in OUR corner when things go wrong and B) your smart! This has nothing to do with looks.

    You know what women love really, what they fall over themselves for, brains! Brains and kindness! Oh and a giggle we all like a man with a sense of humour, the rest is all stuffing. I dare you Mr George to go online and look at the sheer number of dog ugly men who have ended up marrying stunning women, oh yes occasionally power and money help but that aside. Look at ole Hawkins, his wife stayed with him despite looks and little hope of a lasting future....it's the brains George, you love an intelligent self possessed gal and we like brainy boyz...:-)

    It's the media who want us to think we care about looks! P.S. DONT ever read magazines they are FULL of complete tosh and none looks like that!

    A little aside, I used to dance, I wasn't harf bad :-) And me and my girlfriends all said the same thing (and they really were stunning); we all agreed that it didn't matter how stunning a man looked if he couldn't dance, it was as if his looks faded to nothing, we weren't interested.

    Also who here hasn't met at least one beautiful, magazine handsome person, who turned out to be an awful inside and within a moment of realising that looked at that person and ONLY been able to see them as dog ugly.

    You have a head start George, you are a kind, generous, intelligent man, dont waste it, beauty isn't all that, it fades and it is and always has been whats inside which is important.

    Someone asked me once which famous person I would like to go out with, without a moments hesitation....Ronnie Baker....what a man!

    Up the Revolution George!

    One final thing and Im off and you can breathe a sigh of relief, in a film this man said to a girl who had anxiety and some form of agrophobia -..........

    "its the small things that make you triumph". "Go for a walk, stop at a park bench, count to 10, ask the next person you see the time, next week walk to the next bench and do the same, by the 10th bench your anxiety will have greatly reduced. "

    Sorry about the earlier rant I myself and somewhat out for sorts.

    Fight Fight George and NEVER EVER give up!

    XX

  • Thanks for your comments, sound advice I will take on board. xx

  • Sorry to hear your so down have you ever heard that beauty is in the eye of the holder or that beauty comes from within ! Why do you think others are having more fun they proberlly have problems they fret about there appearence to but spend there life having plastic surgery to try and keep "beautiful " but still have the same insecurities they had before ! So dont fret about your looks as at least youve got.mirrors in your.house ive broke mine ! Take care and hope all gets better (david)

  • hi george - i think your problem is that you worry too much of what OTHERS think of you - i used to be the same - but there comes a time in everyones life where they have to accept that they are not "popular " and basically not wanted - my "epifiny " came a long while ago when i had a stroke which left me partially sighted - no longer able to drive or work - ( and i had a terminally ill late wife to cope with later ) - and let me be BRUTALLY honest here - MY SO CALLED "FRIENDS " bailed on me faster than the bloody titanic going down - so now i am alone - no friends - whats left of my family dont want to know ( sound familiar ?? ) - so you just have to say "screw them all - i am a worth while person and if they don't want me around - thats their loss " - YES its hard - YES its lonely - but which would you rather have ?? - people who take you as you or those who ( to quote a saying ) "p*** up your back and are worse behind it ?? - sorry but i don't sugar coat things - life can be a bitch !! - but consider this - would all thes "popular " people be so popular if they had nothing ?? - a LOT of friends are "fair weather " ones - only interested in what you have ( money etc ) of what you can do for them - THESE TYPE OF PEOPLE ARE NOT WORTH STRESSING OVER - trust me i have had 58 years of dealing with "faux " people - and they never change - my advice - get yourself a dog or a cat - if you can walk the dog it will give you exercise fresh air and you meet some really nice people with dogs - cats are more for those who have mobility issues ( like me ) but are also good company - and one thing about animals is they are ALWAYS LOYAL !! - all the best and please take my comments in the spirit they are given :-)

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