I have SM and I find it really encourages me to text/tweet/facebook message, and is reassuring as I know and build trust with people before starting to speak to them more. However I am afraid it will become a comfort thing, and I could become to reliant on social networking. What does everyone think?
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Absolutely. Talking about what you're going through with people who know what it's like can be a huge relief. I recommend you do find a therapist who you can meet with in person but chatting online is an easy, stree-free option that can really help especially in the hours of the night when friends or family members aren't available. Just be wise about who you talk with and how much personal information you share about yourself. Venting is important and I think very powerful when you're able to do so in a safe, supportive place.
I think both, depending on the individual. Personally, I think it may delay my progress because it keeps me busy and gives me some social interaction without requiring me to be nervous. If I weren't on sites like this and facebook, I'd probably be starved of interaction and I'd head out the door.
I know it helps me specifically this site to have people who understand what I'm feeling but socializing online does make me anxious. I think of it as an intervention/facing my fears. Right now if I did not have social websites I would be crazier than I already am. LOL
I think, like others have stated there are benefits and drawbacks to social media. Out there on the web, you can appear to be whatever it is you want to be. For some of us its confident, well liked and on top of our game. Plus it allows us to feel "safely connected" to others within defined term - i.e. on the internet which I can turn on and off. But in reality I think it a lot of it is smoke and mirrors because it doesn't provide the same circumstances for face to face meetings with other. If we were suddenly put in front a group of people we hardly knew and were in a q & a session, we'd probably combust because the fear we all talk about in these forums is so overwhelming. These forums are helpful but really, their there to help build up a level of confidence so we can get out there instead of being locked up internally.