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Anxiety and Depression Support
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Hi. So I'm new both to this site and to anxiety. I was diagnosed with PTSD and put on some Zoloft about a year ago after having panic attacks on a near daily basis. I was in the earthquakes in Nepal in 2015, and I'm still finding ways in which I'm affected by it. Before the earthquakes I was a very calm, peaceful sort of guy and very little got under my skin. Suddenly something as minor as a shakey floor or a slammed door has me nearly in tears.

To cut to the chase, I've been managing well until starting a new relationship. We've been dating about a month, and I'm noticing myself get extremely anxious about the whole thing, which is very unlike me. So I'm hoping for some advice on how to cope with these jitters. Any advice helps.

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Hello. Welcome. PTSD is a complicated diagnosis with anxiety definitely a major part. Relationships are going to be a challenge as you indicate you still are startled even by a door closing suddenly. It actually may be too soon in your recovery for a serious relationship. Perhaps you need to discuss your concerns with your therapist as well as explaining to your significant other the nature of your nerviosness and anxiety. We are always here if you want to "talk". Good luck and best wishes as you begin this stage of your recovery, :)

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I agree. I'm a survivor of abuse and suffer from complex PTSD but I am also a child abuse advocate and coach other survivors of abuse. I suffer from major anxiety attacks but I know they come from me thinking too much or trying to do too much or trying to make other people happy. It also comes when I don't exercise or especially stretch, and even at times due to certain foods, like something very salty or sugary or caffeine so my advice is to avoid those products and try to get yourself as healthy as you can.

I also do all kinds of therapies and maybe you should talk or do with your therapist, but one of my favorite therapies is what I call, "Imagine if"... Type on a word processor if you can otherwise hand write about wonderful things you'd like to happen with your new partner and keep it simple, like, "Imagine if my partner and I go out tonight and instead of worrying I stay relaxed because there's really nothing to worry about and I will try not to let anything upset me as my focus will stay on enjoying myself." And don't just say it, write it out... you will feel the power from it much stronger.

Then when your in that moment if you start to feel panicky place your hand on your heart and take nice normal breaths while you recite those words..."

I now try to do that every morning or at least when I begin to worry -- when I first started I would cry my eyes out but by doing "imagine if" I have really let go of a lot of that sabotaging behavior and it lifts your spirits...

Try it, I hope it helps :)

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