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twochicks 11-09-2009 12:08 AM

Re: My boyfriend has Social Anxiety but doesn't want to get help
I am married to my husband for 6 years now. He is extremely anti social. We meet working as waiters, so we worked long hours and had little need for socialising after work. I did not see any apparent signs of anti-social behaviour. After we got married, we moved half way across the world, to live in his home town. So, I left my family and friends. I am not shy and gets on well with his family and friends. However, every attempt of mine to get friends or to socialise is short lived. He prefer to just stay at home or go out only with me and our two small kids. Even though his family members stays about a 5 minute drive from us, we only see them 2 to 3 times a year.

Since my children go to childcare and we are both am working full time, we have regular invitations to work functions and children's parties. He never wants to go to any event. He uses the kids as an excuse for not attending work functions. If he goes he will be grumpy. If I go alone with my kids, he will be grumpy and give some ridicilous ultimatum, e.g. be back in 30 minutes time.

Whenever my family members comes to visit (which entails flying for 13 hours and thousands of dollars), he cannot even be the least bothered to entertain them or to even sit down and have dinner with them. During a recent visit of my brother, my husband came home from work, went to the room and closed the door. And stayed there the whole evening, every evening.

When one of my local friends come to visit, he grabbed the vacuum cleaner and started vacuuming the house, even though I have done so before my friend came.

I am so lonely and sad. I have 2 small kids, but not a single person to turn to for help and support. It feels as if my husband is jealous and thinks that no one is worth his time and effort.

maoc75 11-17-2009 02:01 PM

Re: My boyfriend has Social Anxiety but doesn't want to get help
I know exactly how you feel. My husband is the same way and it can be pretty devastating at times. There is nothing more embarrassing than making excuses as to why your spouse isn't present for almost everything you do. Like you, I use to make excuses too but I'm finding myself staying home and not seeing my friends or family in order to avoid the embarrassing questions and judgmental looks. It has gotten so bad that there are people in my life who I am really close to who do not believe that I am married. I get the "oh sure your husband’s at home, you mean your imaginary husband?" Totally humiliating. If it were up to my husband he would spend every night watching tv and drinking beer, never saying a word to anyone. Please do not allow this to happen to you! Don't wait until you are married and can't do anything about it. Ask him to talk to someone whether it be a counselor or family member. He needs help and he also needs to understand that his behavior is not normal and life would be so much easier if he could get professional help, relax and cope socially. Do it now before your life turns into mine and your Boyfriend, now your husband refuses to do anything about it and you’re stuck accepting the situation as it is and settling on how things are instead of how they should be. Don't sacrifice your own happiness for someone else's refusal to make their life better. I know that sounds harsh but its the truth. I wish I would have known then what I know now. My life would be completely different.

BigRed54 11-17-2009 03:28 PM

Re: My boyfriend has Social Anxiety but doesn't want to get help
I find it admirable that you want to help this man who you love wholeheartedly. However, HE is the only one who can help himself. You have gotten some great advice here, and have lots to think about. But I want you to think about one more thing that no one has mentioned.

You say he wants to have children someday. You need to think long and hard about the entire relationship, what your future may be like, and also what may happen to the lives of these children you would be bringing into the world. Does he really think that he can cope with children in his current condition? Not only the noise and stress of raising kids, but the soccer games? The slumber parties? The birthday parties? The friends coming over to visit? What message will he pass along to his children?

My ex-H had a milder form of SAD and I never felt comfortable letting the kids have their friends over, always felt I had to go down to the basement and tell them to keep the noise down, etc. And I felt so guilty for that, as all my life the only thing I wanted was to be a mother, to raise children. I am now out of that relationship and my kids are so much happier for it, but it was very hard on them during those years. (He wasn't their father, but it took a toll on them nonetheless.)

You have a huge choice to make in your life. I don't envy you that because I know how very hard it is for you. But you do need to think about things seriously. Love will not get you through all the trials and tribulations that you will face if he refuses to get treatment. You will be doomed to lots of arguments; loneliness; alienation from your family and friends; and a lifetime of trying to keep your children happy and emotionally healthy while covering for their father's issues.

Sit down and have a very serious talk with him about all of this, impress on him the severity of this, and then stick with whatever decision you make. Right now he's got it easy - he doesn't have to get help because you're sticking by him no matter what. Sure you argue, but you don't leave. He needs to have some incentive, some reason to help himself.

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