Let’s Talk about Addressing Social Anxiety through TikTok!
You are hanging out with your friend Matthew in the city and browsing the shops. You aren’t buying anything because you both have no money, but it’s still fun because you love meeting up with your friend. You missed meeting him during Covid-19 so now you use any opportunity to meet up. When you finish looking around the shops, you go to the town square where all the young people hang out.
Strangely, you haven’t seen Matthew in weeks. Every time you arranged to meet up, he was busy, but you are glad to catch up with him today. It’s like old times; lots of talking, joking, and laughing. It’s been a great day and you both had lots of fun.
When you get to the town square you notice that Matthew becomes very quiet. He stops laughing and joking and looks anxious. His breathing increases, and his face goes red. You ask him if everything is okay, but he runs off suddenly. You run after him and eventually catch up. He seems really upset. You ask him what’s wrong, but he doesn’t reply. He suddenly says that he must go home. You are really shocked, he has never acted this way before. What could be wrong with him?
That night he texts you to apologize and tells you something that surprises you. “I’m really sorry, but I get really anxious in big crowds. It became a lot worse during Covid-19, and when I went to the doctor, he diagnosed me with social anxiety” You have never heard of social anxiety and are surprised that Matthew doesn’t like big crowds. He was always really outgoing, and never had a problem with crowds before.
You do some research about social anxiety and discover that many young people experience it. You also learn that the number of young people experiencing social anxiety has increased dramatically since the pandemic. Some people are unable to even leave their house. You are shocked! You love meeting people and socializing and had no idea that it was so difficult for some people. You text Matthew and tell him that you have done some research on social anxiety and want to raise awareness about it because it affects so many people. You both decide that you should make a TikTok video. All your friends use TikTok, and it could be a great way to share important information about social anxiety with young people in a non-judgmental way.