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04/23/2012 02:35 PM


jayjay41Posts: 457

I have been quietly reading posts in this forum because I needed to see that there were others like me.

I have not been diagnosed, by a doctor, agoraphobic because I haven't brought those symptoms to his attention. There are many other things in my life that he and I are working on. I wouldn't even know how to tell my doctor what I do to avoid people.

My mail came like 4 hours ago and I do not have the courage to walk across the street to go and get it. I keep telling myself the story of "The little engine that could" but its not working Tongue

My neighbors are very nice people but I see their lawnchairs sitting outside so I am waiting for them to go in, before I can go out.

I cannot sit alone in my car without making sure the doors are locked. My husband just shakes his head and chuckles Grin He is a very good man.Smile

I keep all my doors locked in my house...not a clue as to why I do that, but I do Unsure If I see someone drive up to the house, unless it is somebody I know, I will not answer the door. I take my dogs and go into my bedroom until that person goes away.

I was not always like this. As a matter of fact, I was just the opposite.

I loved to be around people and socialize. I truly did. But then things changed after I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004. I was only 34 years old and I think a part of me died, even though I survived. After treatment, I returned back to work and did pretty good until the day my

husband was hit by a car crossing the road to come and see me at work. I

have NEVER felt such pain in my life. His lifeless body just laying in the street. The man who hit him never even apologized and no tickets were issued because my husband was not in the crosswalk...needless to say, Karma

will bite him in the butt someday. By the grace of God, my husband survived

and he is back to being the strong healthy man he was before the accident.

Three days after my husbands accident, my daughter was in her car and was

hit by a drunk driver!!! No, I am not making this up, seriously, this was

what put me over the edge. The woman who totaled my daughters car was drunk

and under the influence of marijuana and prescription drugs (that were not

prescribed for her) It was at that time that I totally lost it. Both of my

sons had to hold me back because I was going to literally hurt this woman.

And I am NOT a violent person but I couldn't handle anymore. The police officer told my children to have me back up because I was going to get in trouble if I didn't. Fortunately, the only damage was to my daughters car and not her.

Because of all of this, I feel that is when my agoraphobia started. I just dont want to go out, it isn't safe. Well, I know it's safe but something keeps me from taking that step.

I was wondering if this sounds like agoraphobia or just fear?? I will take any and all advice you can give me. I want to go outside, I really do but I don't want anyone talking to me, except my family of course.

Sorry for the storybook writing on here but I needed to get that out.

Thanks for reading and I hope to hear some advice soon.



04/23/2012 03:10 PM
damselndistressPosts: 17408
VIP Member

Trauma trauma-you've been through it girl!

I'm so glad you are feeling good except for the agoraphobia issues.

A good person here explained one day that our minds can only handle so much and then we can experience things like nervous breakdown. I think he called it catastrophic load.

Welcome to the group-yes there are others of us here with similar stories.

I'm not sure my case is psychologically based but no doubt anxiety and fear were triggered and presented themselves along with my mystery illness.

04/23/2012 03:12 PM

Hey Jayjay!

Welcome to the agoraphobia group. It's nice to meet you! I am sorry to hear about how much trouble you've been having lately. You know, you don't have to be diagnosed with agoraphobia to be agoraphobic. You seem to be having some agoraphobic tendencies and apparently you have a firm grasp on as to why. I am so sorry to hear about the breast cancer back in 2004. That must have been so hard. I'm glad you survived. Smile As for your husband and daughter, that is really awful. Luckily everyone is okay. It looks like your family has some guardian angels on their side. Smile

I can see why you'd be developing such tendencies but it is important to know that you are safe. It would be to your benefit if you worked each day at nipping this fear in the but. It's okay to be afraid. You can handle yourself, you are safe.

Agoraphobia can present itself in many different forms. I've noticed most people are agoraphobic due to social anxieties. Others, like me, are agoraphobic because we fear panic attacks and avoid having them. People are also known to become agoraphobic due to PTSD. There are many different reasons people experience this disorder. Confidence is key to overcoming this, practice exposing yourself to your irrational fear and you will succeed. Smile

Good luck to you!

04/23/2012 03:25 PM
jayjay41Posts: 457

Thanks for your reply... I have been diagnosed with PTSD due to childhood molestation and attempted rape. I also suffer from depression and anxiety, which I take daily meds for.

I am in the process of filing for disability but I am afraid to go to my doctor because I don't want him to think I am like a weirdo or something. It was never in my life plan to become this person who is fearful of the outside world. I have been seeing a therapist and I will go places, if my husband or children are with me. I just don't know how to handle this anymore. I want my life back ya know.

04/23/2012 03:28 PM

You are not a weirdo. You are normal! You just have some things to work on. Everyone in life has issues to be addressed. Your doctor won't think anything less of you. Be upfront and open with him, he's there to help. Smile

04/23/2012 03:37 PM
damselndistressPosts: 17408
VIP Member

I am filing for disability also.

It's very good to get your doctor on board with where you are.

Their notes will help back up your claim that you are unable to work.

It's a difficult thing to go through emotionally or can be.

I've gotten my first two denials and i need to fill out a long form explaining why i cannot work.

Well i have done that and they keep writing that they believe i can do something...

So i have a mental block where i just don't know what to write any more i pretty much laid it out the way it was and it seems to just not be good enough for them. It's difficult for me to keep repeating the same thing when they are turning me down.

Post edited by: damselndistress, at: 04/23/2012 03:39 PM

04/23/2012 04:19 PM
Posts: 10505
VIP Member

Hi Jayiay! Welcome to the group!!

I think Whitney (Etherealgirl) put it very well. Agoraphobia happens for all sorts of reasons. Basically it is an avoidance behavior. Although only a doctor can diagnose you, you most definitely seem to exhibit signs of the disorder. Some people will avoid only certain places, some will be OK as long as they are with someone else, others do not leave their homes at all. I myself have gone through many different stages in the past 16 years. The avoidance is usually based on some kind of fear or feeling of discomfort. The important thing to remember is that we have not caused this. We are not lazy, irresponsible or weird. Nobody wants to be this way. Instead of feeling guilt you should have compassion for yourself. Don't be ashamed, don't worry about the opinions of others. You are the one whose life has become limited, you are the one who should be your biggest supporter. Those who judge have never felt this irrational fear and it's power. Lucky them! Be open with your doctor, seek all the help you can get. I am glad you have found us and posted!


04/23/2012 04:54 PM
jayjay41Posts: 457

You are all awesome. I wrote to my attorney, EXACTLY what I told all of you. I couldn't even build up the courage to tell her how bad it has become. I do much better through emails or regular mail. I am not a face to face person, I tend to speak very little when put in that situation.

I want to go to my doctor and let him know how this is spiraling out of control, I haven't even opened up to my husband about it. He has no idea how hard it is for me while he is at work. He has a stressful job and I want him to come home to a house of smiles and hugs. I didn't even tell him that I quit my last job due to my doctor suggested that I tell him, so about a week later I told him the truth. My husband was so understanding and kind. I am very blessed to have him as my soulmate.

I am glad to have joined this group because now I can vent here and not lay it on my family.

04/24/2012 03:52 AM
jayjay41Posts: 457

I love how you all can find a way to take a negative and change it into a positive! I have never thought of myself as "Brave"...I will have to try to think that way when I need to go somewhere that makes me uncomfortable. Maybe today, I will walk out to my mailbox even if my neighbors are outside. The thought of it is scary and the mail isn't coming for atleast 6 hours yet! I will not think about it! My mother in law is coming for a visit today so I look forward to that. She is a wonderful woman but has no idea what I go through on a daily basis. I am always hiding this. Do any of you do that? People think I am just fine, when they see me in person. It's amazing how well I can put a smile on my face and fake my way through the discomfort of being outside.

04/24/2012 04:24 AM
jayjay41Posts: 457

Your advice is absolutely fantastic!!! My biggest challenge is letting my husband know how bad it has gotten. He is a correctins officer at a Maximum Security Prison and there is alot of stress involved and that makes it harder for me to tell him.

Now, to get my day started and not start worrying about walking to the mailbox :o) Lots of cleaning to do today, I always like my mother in law to see a nice clean home.


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