Depathologize Shyness Now!


In this piece for Medium, Jenny Karlsson makes the case for depathologizing shyness by removing “social anxiety disorder” from the DSM.

“Shyness, under the label of, ‘social anxiety disorder,’ has unnecessarily been built up as an ‘unhealthy,’ or ‘suspicious,’ state of mind for people living in modern Western societies. Its behavioral ‘symptoms’ suggest a failure to achieve an arbitrary set of Western cultural values, such as chattiness, individual expression, and assertiveness. Shyness is more and more defined as a problem for which people can, and should, be treated, usually with drugging.”


  1. Another pseudo-diagnosis hits the streets. The only way I can immediately think of having shyness being diagnostically significant is if I enquired further and found you were shy, because you thought (knew?) others were constantly watching you or talking about you or laughing at you, which would suggest dysperceptions that I could treat, if I knew they were occurring.

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