Anxiety Disorders

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Ask Dr. Dombeck
Psychotherapy and Mental Health Questions

Unable To Keep Eye Contact

My problem is that I am unable to directly look into people's eyes when I am trying to converse with them. Embarrassingly, I find my eyes tend to indirectly look at people's sexual parts, for example, breasts, thighs, penis and so on. This condition occurs with whoever I am having a conversation with, i.e., men, women, young, old, work colleagues friends and relatives. I have no real control over this and I have suffered from this condition for the past 8-9 years. It has generally got worse over time. I am 41 and in a stable and happy marriage and I do not believe that I have a sexual problem. I have, however, suffered from anxiety/stress/worry since I was about 28 or so. I am gradually bringing my anxiety under control but I would very much like to treat this problem as it would help treat my anxiety and enable me to socialize with people without fear. I would like to know what the problem is and how it can be treated. Thank you.

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