Our expert says:
Sounds like you may well be right in your self-diagnosis ( though a proper session with a shrink could confirm this ) and proper treatment for social anxiety, both medications and CBT-style counselling, could help greatly. And, as you realize, you have a marvellous opportunity, through your bf, both to use him as a role-model --- notice how he functions, how nothing dreadful hapens when he is socially bold, how he handles it when his approaches to some people don't work out so well ) and it'll also make it much easier for you to get into social situations to test out your new approach to being unafraid socially, and with a trusted support right next to you !
And explore, also, your interesting and insightful observation about how well you function when you have a role to play, rather than being "only" yourself, and when you don't focus so much on yourself. Maybe find other roles to play, not wholl foreign, like "me being comfortable in company", choosing to act AS IF you are already comfortable meeting people --- and find how well you can actually do that !
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