How do I deal with anxiety about my discrete social groups interacting with one another?
I tend to avoid hosting parties at my place, but it's important to my boyfriend to have people over now and then, so we can maintain our friendships. I sympathize with this - so we're having a party at our place. (We live together.) This always provokes the same dilemma: Who do I invite? My friends bunch up into clusters, depending on where I met them: I have a couple of friends from high school, some I met in university, and some from work. Having people from these separate groups interact with each other makes me very nervous, for two reasons:
A) Will they get along? (I'm aware that, to some extent, this is out of my control, and not a concern I should be burdening myself with, but it still bothers me. Some of my friends have unique or strong personalities that not everyone would appreciate.)
B) Will people from separate groups share information about me I don't want disseminated? This one is kind of irrational, but it bothers me the most - I am very sensitive to embarassment (this
question was also posted by me), and there are a lot of things I have done that I (justifiably or not) feel ashamed of, and would not want widely known. Rationally, I don't think any of my friends are gauche enough to do this, but it scares me.
Both of these things basically break down to anxiety over being unable to exert control over how social events unfold, which is a theme that plays into my larger sense of social anxiety, so suggestions on how to deal with that would also be appreciated.
I don't feel comfortable just inviting people from one group. There are several plausible avenues that people from the remaining groups could discover the party, and I would hate to alienate any friends or leave anyone feeling excluded. For several of these groups, there's just one or two people with whom I remain close, so it's not like I can do distinct parties for each group. Also, I have already invited people from these separate groups to the party.
Is there anything I can do about this?
For the record: I have GAD and social anxiety and I am in CBT.