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08/24/2009 08:39 PM

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cococourt
Posts: 4
Member

Hi to all,

My name is Courtney and I have suffered with Anxiety and Panic Attacks since I was 16. I have had Agoraphobia for two years. I had to drop out of college mid semester because I was afraid to go to class. I have lost many friends as a result because I refuse to go out to parties and gatherings. I am not comfortable driving and will not drive five miles from my house. I cringe at the thought of going in and paying for gas. I have to be on the phone. I went on a date a couple months back, and actually had a panic attack. Since then I have not been on anymore. I have been to the emergency room several times for panic attacks. I do not go to the therapist because I am too afraid to talk to anyone in person about it. I now suffer with depression because I do not really have anyone to discuss these illnesses with other than my parents. I am excited to talk with other people who are in my shoes and hope to gain a lot for this support group.

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08/24/2009 09:02 PM
krissy1105
krissy1105  
Posts: 913
Member

Hi Cococourt,

Nice to "meet" you. You are not alone in this at all. There are many people who know exactly what you are going through. It sounds like times have been tough for you lately. I know how hard it can be dealing with all the anxiety and stress. I too have suffered form severe depression at times and it is very consuming body,mind and spirit.

I would highly recommend that you try to see a therapist. That would be a great first move. I know it can seem intimidating and scary but I think it may help you. There is no shame in getting help and that is what therapists are there for.

Have you read any books about the illness? There are some good ones out there. I think there is a list posted on the site. The more informed you are of what is going on with you the better.

I know it all seems hopeless right now. It is not. People recover from this illness all the time if they have the right information and tools. You do not have to feel embaressed about what you are going through. We are all humans struggling with something. Try to have compassion for yourself and know that you are not alone. We are all just "normal" people who struggle with this. We are not freaks or crazy. Our bodies are just over sensitized and react to our catostrophic thinking.

Welcome to the group and I hope to hear more from you! Smile Best, Krista


08/24/2009 09:25 PM
cococourt
Posts: 4
Member

Thank you Krista for the warm welcome. I am in the process on working out the therapist issue because of the importance it can have on recovering. My parents suggested going with me for a group session. I am currently reading Psychological Self-Help by Clay Tucker - Ladd which is helping me take a more positive look on recovering. I will be sure to check out the reading list.

Thanks again for the great advice.

Courtney


08/25/2009 03:40 AM
PinkWarrior007
PinkWarrior007  
Posts: 1302
Senior Member

Hi Courtney,

It is so nice to have you with us, a great big WELCOME to you! I think as you see this disorder does not make us crazy, we are just sensitive people that never learned how to properly deal with a lot of stress. The great news is, we can relearn this and overcome. We are all struggling here right now, but in different places. Each of us wants to get better and therefore we try to be as positive as possible but we also know that reality is sometimes we feel frustrated too. Our thought processes are the biggest things that cause this to get blown up and we can learn skills to deal with these thinking patterns. I agree that you should learn all you can about how this disorder works. Knowledge is power! I would suggest a good first reading to be Claire Weekes 'Hope and Help For Your Nerves'. She was a pioneer of this disorder and makes you feel so much better by explaining what is happening to you. We are here for any questions you might have or to just vent and chat.

Destry aka PinkWarrior


08/25/2009 09:43 AM
dirkyboy
dirkyboy  
Posts: 252
Member

cococourt -

Sounds like some of the stuff I have been thru. I went to the emergy room also a few times with these things. Its good you found this group. I have been suffering for years with agoraphobia symptoms. I first noticed it when I left home and drove across the country. I had suffered panic attacks since 16 also but never knew I was agaraphobic till I was standing in line at banks and "Had to get out of here", or with my girlfriend at the movies I would have to sit on the end seat near the door. I manage to get thru grocery stores or other places like that if I have a shopping cart. The important thing to do is NOT to give up. I have had ups and downs, small victories, shaking episodes, fights with my wife because I had to go.., Etc, Etc.. I can't do malls, I get ill at airports, I have had depression due to panic attacks that would seem to hit when I was just at home sitting in a chair which didnt happen before.

Just last night I tried to challenge myself thinking it was no big deal.. Going to the local taco bell near my house to pick up dinner. There was a couple younger kids in front of me and the register person was taking alot longer to get the order. The couple started bursting out in laughter and made me uncomfortable, at which point I started to feel dizzy. I tried to push myself thru it and stand and wait but the lady was taking so long.. I tried to distract myself by counting money in my wallet.. It just didnt work and I had to leave.

BUT with all this, I know god wants us to have joy abundantly and he designed all things for good so we have got to stay faithfull. We are fortunate to have found each other here.. I previously mentioned to others about my success in getting back to driving a 60 mile a day commute to work and back using half lemons which I will bite into when I feel a panic attack coming in the car and it works. I suggest you dont give up but do the opposite.

I suggest making a schedule for a 1 month period, each day, scheduling yoga, practice driving, excercise etc.. Carry a carb snack when driving as that will calm you down. I take a calcium pill which is a natural tranquilizer. This has got to be a full frontal attack. Spiritual, Physical, Emotional.. I suggest also doing a half hour period of meditation per day where you focus your attention on something you enjoyed as a child. I use images of my grandmothers garden.. A safe place, I remember the smells of the garden.. The smells of green beans.. Simple things to meditate on.


08/25/2009 11:23 AM
cococourt
Posts: 4
Member

Thank you PinkWarrior and Dirkyboy! I will have to try the lemon technique. I have never heard of that before and it sounds like a great idea! I've had similar experiences as you did last night! Instead of counting money, I pretend to text people on my cell phone.

08/25/2009 11:36 AM
TERESAWILSON
TERESAWILSON  
Posts: 39
Member

Hi!!

Nice to meet you! I know what you are going through. I had depression and agoraphobia so bad that for a while I could barely even leave my bed much less the house. Have you ever looked into finding a therapist who will do phone counseling? I did this until I was able to get out and actually go to the therapist's office. Just recently I changed therapist's also and the one I see or talk to I should say is 17 hrs away so there is no way we can see each other but just doing the phone therapy has changed my life completely! Maybe you could look into that, it would be a good way to get started.


08/25/2009 11:47 AM
cococourt
Posts: 4
Member

That sounds like a great idea. I have recently been looking for on-line therapist but I've never heard of phone counseling. How did you find your therapist?

08/25/2009 12:02 PM
AngiePants

Hi Courtney, I think everyone has given some fantastic ideas, and I agree with all of them...LOL. I found myself feeling like a bobble head right now, nodding in agreement to all of it. ahahahah. Anyhow, I just wanted to say WELCOME! and I am glad you found us also. The more we can share on here, the more we can all learn, even those of us that have had it for years. Oh and Dirkyboy, I am soo going to try the lemon trick also. I think I heard that tip years ago, but never tried it. Good stuff!

WELCOME COURTNEY!!!


08/25/2009 12:21 PM
dirkyboy
dirkyboy  
Posts: 252
Member

everybody. There is a great site to goto for help

www.preventyourpanic.com

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