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Anxiety and Depression Support
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Anxiety Disorder

Hello :) I am 40 years old, married with 2 sons and suffer from anxiety. It overwhelms me to the point I push those closest to me away. If I continue, my wife will most certainly leave me. My anxiety causes me to become quite as I go down the rabbit hole and always dwell and think worse case scenario of any situation I am in. I am looking for a doctor to seek help and possibly medication if needed to help manage the anxiety. Its to the point I cannot even talk to my wife as it makes things worse and it's not fair to her that I cannot manage my own issues. Does anyone else suffer from this or has managed to overcome it with a certain routine or doctor?

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Hi have you had episodes of bad anxiety before? I’ve had a few and currently recovering from one, they seem to last for months to a year or so and triggered by major stressful events. I am on Lexapro and Buspar as well as ambien for sleep, these have all helped. I also go to therapy, journal, I have an active faith life, and family support. It takes time to heal but it does it better. I don’t think it ever goes away but goes into remission and then spikes at least for me.

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Wow, I am truly amazed at all the responses in such a short amount of time. It seems like I have anxiety all the time which then leads to panic. I get quiet and tune out everything around me while the anxiety and panic consumes and I don't realize it's happening until my wife brings it up, which is usually by the time I have pushed her so far away without also realizing it. I know I don't do it willfully or die to not loving her, which is quite the opposite in fact. My family is my world and I want that part of my life back. I suffered a traumatic incident about 8 years ago and actually looked into seeing a doctor next week. It's just crazy how I have been feeling like I have been dealing with things so well, when in fact it's the anxiety and panic that are dealing and controlling me. I cannot thank you enough for just responding.

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Seeing a doctor is a good step and I hope he gives you something that will help. I have tried a few different medications and Lexapro works best for me. It’s not a complete cure but it definitely helps lower the fight or flight response so I can be more rational. You mentioned having a traumatic experience 8 years ago so you could be suffering some PTSD. Maybe find a therapist who is familiar with trauma.

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A doctor is a good place to start. A therapist will help to challenge your thinking and give you healthier ways of managing things. Deep breathing and guided meditation help me. I find videos on You Tube. Exercise can get your endorphins going. Reach out to us with your thoughts and struggles. We can offer encouragement and support. You have found the right place.

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Beautiful reply AZ.

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I at first really did not think this forum would be helpful, but I am now certain I was wrong. Until reading some of the posts and responses, I felt like it was rare to feel anxiety and then allow panic to set in. You mentioned meditation videos on YouTube, are there any ones in particular you have found most helpful or did you just do a general search? I have to change my life for the sake of my own sanity and that of my wife and family. They are an excellent support system if I would just allow them to be. I would not blame my wife for ultimately leaving me if I did nothing to get help, at times I do not enjoy being myself at all so I understand how she feels. The fact I have inadvertently pushed her away but allowing anxiety to control me makes me sick to my stomach, and then that leads to further panic and going down the rabbit hole of everything being worst case scenario. One would think I should be grateful they are all happy and healthy and that I am so lucky to have my wife as a best friend, but the anxiety and panic clouds any positive thinking and that is a huge problem. I want to change and get better mainly for myself, if I cannot love myself I cannot expect others to love me. Most days are worse than others, I am going to start by going to a doctor and slowing things down and try to tackle one thing at a time.

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I commend you for the insight you have. Many of us mistakenly believe other people are the problem. I have a few ideas for you. Take and leave what you want.

You Tube: I like Jason Stephenson, The Anxiety Guys, and Michael Sealey. You can also search for Ted Talks videos on anxiety and depression.

Audio books: The Stress-Proof Brain is an easy listen and has very practical trips. Listen to it on your way to work or with ear buds at home or while working out.

Pod Casts: There are excellent pod casts on anxiety and depression. I also use these to distract myself when I am very anxious. You can find comedy, news, how to etc.

If you have a history of trauma/neglect in childhood: Complex PTSD from Surviving to Thriving by Pete Walker. He has a really good website with resources as well.

As far as your wife goes, I would love if my husband left me encouraging notes to surprise me. An encouraging text is also a nice treat. Do a chore that she normally does without being asked. Play with the kids (it is amazing how much women love to see this). Behavior changes are going to mean so much more than telling her how you are changing. Similar to a recovering addict, the loved one learns to believe the behavior, not the words.

I wish you luck with your new journey.

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Hi Gobee,. I also am guilty of thinking the worse case scenario in any situation. Even when my counselor who I love doesn't reply to a text or email I think ..."maybe I wrote the wrong thing" etc. and stress myself out. Only to find out they were just busy. Family parties (lots of new family through divorces etc) are so different now and I imagine the worst and it's never as bad as my imagination can get. Aside from working in memory care and hospice, I do daily exercise, eat healthy, keep as busy as I can, breathing and/or meditating, walk dogs, listen to music and positive encouraging people, practice daily gratitude for things we take for granted like seeing, hearing etc, reaching out to others and sharing etc. The thing that helps the most is my naturopath Doctor. Yes I see regular docs too but my naturopath is the most intelligent , helpful person. He goes through all vitamin and mineral deficiencies and even helps with neurotransmitter deficiencies. So basically replacing things we are lacking naturally helps me without meds at this current point. And he does phone consults so I don't have to drive there all the time. A few people in a group I attend take lexapro. Every individual is different but it sure helps to try different docs until you are truly comfortable. It's so important 😀😀😀😬 But I get the worrying about your wife leaving. You know what?? Just try to keep reaching out and taking care of u. If you put in 110%you will start to feel better. Baby steps . And when the smoke clears either she will stick by your side or u will be so strong u will be able to handle whatever may be. You can do it! 👍

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That is almost exactly how I feel. I think worse case scenario with just about everything. I used to be able to be around people and have zero issues, but it now seems like when people are around my anxiety and panic settles in, I feel as if everyone around me can see I am in a state of panic and are judging me. While I am pretty sure this is not the case, the anxiety consumes me and my defenses go up and I get quiet. In essence, I think that is how I am pushing people away. I am going to go see a doctor next week as I can no longer stand like I am not in control of my life. My wife and family mean the world to me and are a great support system if I could just allow them to be. I am mainly embarrassed and felt alone having such anxiety or would think I could do it alone, which has ultimately led to where I am now; not in a good place. You are right though, I need to focus on the little things of being thankful for what I do have and I also think exercising daily may help. I don't exactly feel comfortable going to a doctor just yet, but the thought of further hurting or losing my family scares me to death and makes me feel horrible at the thought they do not enjoy being around me. My biggest problem is that the anxiety will settle in, which leads to panic, I then feel like I can deal with it but thinking of how to overcome it. During that though, I get quiet and push those who mean the most to me away as my normal reply to me being asked "if I am okay" or "is something bothering me" is "I am fine." I will be like that all day until my wife has rightfully had enough and gets frustrated with my attitude of being short and quiet. This will usually lead to an argument and me trying to back track an entire day when I should have just told her what was bothering me and why from the start. It has turned into a pattern of behavior and to a point I don't even like being me or inside my own head if that makes sense. What I do know for sure is, I do not want to continue my life allowing anxiety and panic to take control and I need to make a change and now.

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Hi again Gobee32.,. I just reread some things that you wrote and saw that u went through something tragic 8 years ago. For sure things like that that have happened can change a lot and for sure why therapy will slowly help u. But also so great that u are so open about things. Unless we allow ourselves to be vulnerable it is almost impossible to do better. I am so sorry you are going through this as I can hear the love u have for your wife and children. That is a great place to start. I think that you guys will make it. You know for now don't worry about overcoming things. With a good therapist you will learn to accept those uncomfortable feelings. I've met so many people in hospice and so many people have shared all their worries or anxieties with me and think that I am strong and normal lol. You would truly be surprised how many feel like yourself. You know my brother never could understand my anxiety. Come to find out my nephew (who I thought was the most confidant 24 year old on earth) has major anxiety and can't hold down a job which believe me I've been threre but I was shocked because of how confidant he seems. Funny my brother called me and was at least a little more understanding of all I went through since I was 17 (now 50).,. There are breathing exercises that can help slow u down. Just like breathe in for 4 hold for 8 breathe out for 8. There are guided meditations with voice and some just music , some on assertiveness some on anxiety and hopefully therapy will give great ideas. It really is hard to deal with wandering thoughts during meditation but u get better at just allowing things just to happen and just be. Remember to keep looking for a therapist who gets u and that u like. I still hurt those I love through my social anxiety etc. Some days are good other days I may have a hard time walking into a gas station. Which weirdly one thing like that could ruin a day and make me think how not normal I am. I just have to remember to accept things and just keep going. So you will learn to hurt them less but I think we all hurt each other anxiety or no anxiety. My boyfriend of 10 years has no anxiety but anger problems and dishonesty issues. So everyone has their issues. Let me know how u liked the doc. I hope u do. Good luck 👍

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I just wanted to mention a few things you can pick up at the drug store: GABA, a natural neurotransmitter that promotes relaxation and eases nervous tension, and magnesium powder that you stir into juice or water which restores your body’s optimal magnesium levels. And take a good quality men’s multi vitamin and a b complex every day. Also, try acupuncture. It’s a total miracle cure. For so many things.

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I must say that finding ways to not feel anxiety and panic has not been an answer for me. I’m learning to feel these feelings, to allow these feelings to happen. Exercise, meditation and other forms of relaxation are good to practice but not to do with the intention that these things will remove anxiety. I liken dealing with extreme anxiety as this: someone is attacking me violently and I’m protecting myself by blocking these blows, with no intention of hurting the attacker. It’s like knowing the attack is coming, I don’t run from it, I just block the blows until the attacker becomes exhausted. Trying to stop the attacker is like trying to jump in the ring against mike tison. The cure is when the anxiety no longer has any power. I used to have terrible panic attacks, now I have them and they don’t bother me, I don’t give them any power, I know the fear will just pass.

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