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What It's Like to Go to School When You Have Avoidant Personality Disorder

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You wake up every single day stressed, thinking you’ll have to interact with people again. After getting ready, you ride a bus and pray nobody pays attention to you. You arrive at school and you walk in the hallway full of people you see every day, but who you’ve never talked to before. You try to act normal and try not to walk awkwardly. Then you see the one girl you really want to be friends with because you think she’s so funny, but you know you’ll never have the courage to approach her.

You arrive to your first class and sit down quietly. Your teacher arrives and checks the attendance. You panic and you practice in your mind how you’ll say “here” when she calls your name. When you’re done, you feel a little more comfortable. Then she starts the lecture. She calls on you to recite something and you slowly stand — shaking and having cold sweats. You try not to stutter and you want to finish it already, but you end up speaking unclearly so your teacher asks you to repeat it and it’s hell all over again. This time you try again and you still stutter a little, but thankfully your teacher just lets you sit. And now you feel better it’s finally over.

The bell rings and it’s snack time. You walk again in the same hallway that makes you feel scared, but you see your friend and you go to the canteen together. You buy your food and eat together. You’re happy because in the time you’re with your friend, you momentarily forget about what other people might think of you.

Then the bell rings again and you go to your next class. It’s the same routine again and you feel anxious and you just wish the day could end already.

When your last class ends, you’re finally relieved you can go back home and stay in your bedroom again. But before that, you still have to walk the hallway of anxiety and ride in a bus full of strangers again.

It’s tiring to be anxious all day. It’s tiring to care too much about what others think of you. It’s tiring to fear being judged all time. And it’s even more tiring realizing there is nothing you can do to control it. But even if you’re so tired already, you still have to continue because you still have dreams and plans for your life.

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Image via Thinkstock.

Originally published: January 31, 2017
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