Facebook Groups for Social Anxiety

Facebook groups can be used to meet others with social anxiety.. Getty / Hero Images

We are in the age of social media. Although standalone forums still exist, most people are gravitating toward using Facebook and other social media outlets to join groups and meet people with similar likes, dislikes and problems.

People with social anxiety disorder are no exception.

While Facebook "pages" are great for following the posts of a particular organization, company or person, Facebook "groups" are best if you want to interact with other people, ask questions, and generally feel like part of a community.

The About.com social anxiety disorder site has an official Facebook page but no group.

There are, however, a couple of popular groups of Facebook where people with social anxiety disorder congregate.

First, there is the group "Social Anxiety". With over 2000 members, the group is geared toward those struggling with issues and looking for answers and support from fellow members. In general everyone is supportive, helpful and welcoming.

A second group is called "Social Anxiety Disorder." With over 1500 members and recent feed posts  this group offers many of the same features as "Social Anxiety".

These groups are a good way for those with social anxiety disorder to feel connected and supported by others who have similar struggles. These types of groups are also generally moderated by administrators who watch out for any nastiness. Kind of like a yard supervisor having an eye out for bullying.

Where these groups fall a little short is in offering answers and solutions. Often a member will ask a question or post a struggle, and others will say "me too" but not have much in the way of advice. Which makes sense; many members are still struggling to find answers and those who no longer struggle probably don't spend a lot of time in these groups anymore.

It seems, therefore, that there is a need for mental health professionals to moderate these types of "groups" on Facebook to offer solutions, answer questions, and keep things moving in a positive direction. Professionals can also help point to resources that might be helpful when it seems like the conversation is going in circles.

The question can be posed to you, the reader—do you see the value in participating in social anxiety groups on Facebook? Have you done so in the past? With the popularity of these types of public forums, there is both much support to be found, as well as lots of controversy.

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