Hi there ... I read your post and want to share with you what has recently helped me. I would suggest that you share with your family how difficult it is to explain to them why you have certain behaviors when faced with social situations. Have them read as much as they can, especially THIS website ( I had to just recently, do this ... I had to "INSIST" that they do this ) ... I wanted them ( my wife and 2 adult children) to then compare what they had read with my behavior traits ( i.e.: my wanting to always avoid social situations ... you know, my always dreading going to a family gathering or restaurant or for that Matt... dreading anything dealing with being sociable .... the possibility of being put on the spot ... etc ) Anyways, they all read ... then compared ... and realized ... I was ACTUALLY struggling with something that is REAL. This was huge... I FINALLY had validation. Now that they are aware, they each committed to help me in any way they can in dealing with this daily struggle. I now have a team ... I'm not dealing with this ALONE anymore. This was like a 10 ton weight being lifted from my shoulders. This just happened 3 days ago and I can't tell you how much more positive an outlook I have on life ... and the future I have now.
I've also begun, when asked to do ( small things for right now ... like going with my wife to the grocery store, etc) to tell myself "yes ... I'm excited to do that " ... I recently read where the "feelings" of being anxious and being excited are very close on how they work in our brains. I've concluded that feeling "socially anxious" takes me to very negative behavior whereas being "socially excited" ( even if I have to keep telling myself many times over until I feel it has sunk in ) ... the excitement aspect is a very positive feeling. It's been amazing to me to be actually looking FORWARD to things ... instead of that old standby of dread and avoidance.
I'm 62 years old ... you are still young. Please, try everything and anything that helps you stay in a positive mood about life. Life IS wonderful and you deserve to be as HAPPY as you can possibly be. So best of luck and hopefully this helps. Let me know how you're doing, ok ?