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Anxiety Support
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Sorry to be bombarding this site, but I feel so useless at the moment. I feel weak and ineffectual and filled with dread.

The things that used to inspire me no longer do. I feel totally useless and weak. I've lost a certain spark, and my ability to find distraction and comfort in other things is waning a bit. The tension is always there in varying degrees.

A few days ago I felt so much better, so I know happiness and contentment is attainable. I suffer from agoraphobia, ocd and anxiety, but until recently they were all manageable. I only travel within certain parameters so the agoraphobia was largely ignored, but I'd really tried to challenge my ocd. well, some parts of it anyway. The hand washing was still a factor, but other little rituals were being confronted.

But the anxiety has returned, and with it all the self doubt and irrationality. I'd forgotten how much a panic attack can knock you for six. I feel ill, I'm not eating much, and sleep is at a bare minimum. I hate feeling like this. Its so dehumanising. It dilutes all your confidence, and I want that back.

I feel like I'm letting it in, that I'm punishing myself. When I think I'm settling I come up with another thing to worry about, so reassurance often feels elusive. Its getting better in small ways, but I feel so negative sometimes. I want to stop being my own worst enemy!

My family are so supportive, and I love them dearly, but I can't keep burdening them with this.

Sorry for going on, but I've woken up feeling tense, so I thought writing this might help.

12 Replies
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Hello

Sorry to hear how you are feeling today. I understand, I have woken up feeling so tired and low..my head feels heavy like I've been working in a stressful job and I gabe up work over a month ago due to anxiety so I wonder how can that be...I know it's my dreaded anxiety..it wears you down,,I feel the things you feel uninspired etc

I am desperate to feel well again and keep being told I have to take one day at a time, that's hard for me as I've always been out there and up for anything...you are not alone in this...grab all the help you can get is my advice to you..seek it out on your ok times...not sure of your history but if you have not been you should visit your Dr and if you have done this and have things in place I guess it's just time...things can change by the hour in how we are feeling I know that, see my blog yesterday about my being in a hotel...

I too am filled with dread, so I'm understanding how you feel.

Please keep bombarding the site it's a great outlet don't be sorry for using it. People on here are at different stages of anxiety and have a lot of experiences..keep blogging my friend....

All good wishes to you

Sue xx

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Thank you so much for kind words. I've been to see my doctor, I've filled in the referral forms for counselling, and I've been prescribed 'betablockers' ,or 'propranolol', but I'm wary of taking them because they can cause sleeplessness, and the one thing I do need is sleep.

The less I sleep, the more prone I am, to what I know are, ridiculous thoughts. Thoughts of losing my mind, going totally insane. It unsettles me.

I know these feelings are temporary, and I know in time they will pass, but while I'm in the middle of the storm, I feel so scared.

I also don't wish to worry my relatives. Which just adds to the stress.

I want so much to be the person I was just a few days ago.

I know I can do it, its just the getting there that hurts.

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I totally understand....I want so much to be the person I was, and I think if we are not too hard on ourselves we can get there again...it's a shame about the tablets tell the Dr how you feel , lack of sleep is the worse thing because it makes you feel even worse, I'm lucky, although I'm tired all the time I sleep at night....of course you feel scared in the midst of it who wouldn't....it's ok..normal reaction...well done for seeking that advice it's a big step and a great one to take....I think you need to explain your fears about the tabs to your Dr maybe something can be done....quite often we take what is offered without questioning and if lack of sleep is your problem, perhaps he can prescribe something different...

Sue xx

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Hi, I understand also. We all want to be who we were, or who we are on our best days; all the time. And although in our rational heads we know its 'just' anxiety, when you're in the middle of it, it's so scary and can really unsettle us and lack of sleep just exacerbates this. I agree with Sue, get all the help you can. You've said yourself, you know it will pass, you will feel better, just so hard to hold onto that, but its true.

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Thank you,

Its nice when you get a glimpse of the person you were, or want to be. It can really push you on, remind you that they're still there, waiting to be rediscovered.

Its horrible how bloody loud and obtrusive irrational thought can sometimes be. I think I need to shout back a bit more!!

I hope you're well.

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The problem is, anxiety makes one anxious and depression is depressing. So how do we get past that initial burden to even think with a clear head about getting better?

It's madness isn't it? How many people will tell you that it's all in your head? How many prescriptions will be written? Before you take a pill, please think about the fact that so many people are taking the same meds yet all of us have unique brains/synapses/chemistry, so how can these do anything but numb us out? It's tantamount to following the day's horoscope; every Pisces is not going to have the same day. Okay, not really 'tantamount', but you catch my drift.

Trust me, I don't take any of this lightly. I used to say that I've had so much therapy I wouldn't even need a license to counsel others, and that I was taking so many pills I shook like a maraca. I've been on 31, count 'em, 31 different meds for anxiety and depression, been hospitalized 4 times, and have had 16 different therapists...EEG, EMDR, CBT, and ECG. I've experienced suicide ideation since childhood and can't recall a moment of joy that wasn't clouded by some background despair. Three marriages, 13 addresses, and over 30 jobs... countless friendships lost...

and you know what? There is no help in a bottle. That's right. It's up to us to do exactly what we're doing here, and to get up and get outside. Walk around. Go out in your dressing gown if you have to--so what, just get out that door! Nobody cares what you look like or if you're in rags. What's important is your wellbeing.

I actually travelled from California to clean up in the U.K.; it's far too easy to obtain prescriptions there.. the MDs are like Pez dispensers. I have not taken a pill in three weeks. I was hooked on Ativan (please, for the love of God, do not take this med! The withdrawals are HORRIFYING... think 'Trainspotting-esque' detox... evil! Don't even take it for a couple of days! It's a hypnotic barbiturate that is used to assist hardcore alcoholics in detoxing--so they don't go mad--THIS DRUG WILL SCREW YOUR BRAIN UP!!) and wasn't able to tear myself away from Paxil for almost 20 years even though it had stopped working long ago; withdrawing simply made me too sick to function. I've had to withdraw from Xanax and Valium as well. These were only temporary remedies for anxiety, and I may have messed up my chemistry for life. I'm barely able to get out of bed some days, but I will never go on another psych med again!

Why am I stating all of this? Because the worst parts of anxiety and depression are the isolation and the feeling of not wanting to burden those close to you who may not understand. The eye-rolling or the 'get over it' statements can be so frustrating and can also make one panic even more. Know that I get it, WE get it, and we can stick together and learn from each other's experiences. I also want to state again that pills are a quick fix, they are extremely addictive, and they don't deal with the underlying issues. Frustrating, I know, but not as frustrating as taking a pill that your body doesn't need or want every day for the rest of your life, not because it keeps you well, but because the withdrawals won't allow it you to stop.

One minute at a time... you're not alone!

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Thank you for your support, and for sharing your experiences.

Its reassuring that a community like this exists. It can offer a shoulder to cry on, or lend a sense of perspective.

Solitude can be debilitating, and hopelessness can cripple. But to hear the words of good people like your good self can really, really help.

I'm trying to avoid medication. I'm a bit of a control freak, and I'll always hope against hope that these issues can be resolved by naturally refocusing the mind.

It may be a struggle, but hopefully a site like this can ease the pain.

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I'm not sure about the going out in the dressing gown I live in a little village in Berkshire , I think they would call the police hahahahah..but totally get what you are saying..meds are sometimes very necessary and I'm not against that ...I have been prescribed them but have made the decision not to take them..not suitable for everyone to make that decision, but right now for me it is...

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Hi ALittleBrittle,

Wise words, I know about ativan xanax and valium, I'm free of all meds now for three years, loved the day I finally said, I'm not taking them anymore, shame it 30 yrs to get to that stage.

I'm interested if you found a technique to keep you sain, as I did ?

Wishing you well

B

xxx

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A cyber hug for you! This is medicine for me--not feeling so alone with the angst.

Sanity is relative, and all of my relatives are insane... no, really, I have no technique per se, just controlling the high blood pressure, treating the peri-menopause via diet and 'DBT'; Dialectical Behavior Therapy. i.e. talking myself out of what's real and what's created in my poor fear-filled brain. I've been such a 'what if' thinker for so long, I finally ended up with no 'what'. Fear is deadly. I can work up adrenalin over nothing, although it's all so very real to those of us who suffer. A lot of what we FEEL is habitual, I'm sorry to say, and we have to retrain our brains, which takes patience--again, no quick fixes! Anxious people are not patient. As I stated, one minute at a time.

'Go by what you know, not by what you feel' is a good rule of thumb. Easier said than done, but I have no choice. Live or die. Live contented or afraid and angry. Yes, I'd very much like to wrap myself in cotton wool and quiet for days on end, but that's just not possible, nor is it very productive. The drugs took me there for awhile, but the effects always wear off, leaving more dread in their wake.

Again, good for you! Please share your route to breathing steadily...

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If the anxiety has returned then that means it went away for a while or became manageable for a while. Which means you've made progress. Which is a good thing.

I appreciate that as you sit there reading these words it might be hard for you to think about things like that. If you were to realise you've made significant progress and things are changing for you, how would that make you feel?

I'm not a doctor but I do know that lack of sleep messes with your appetite and not eating enough can make a person feel physically weak and feeling physically weak can make a person more anxious then they would have been normally. The mind and body are not separate. Changes in the body affect the mind and the other way round too. Get as much sleep as you can and see your doctor if you've not already done so.

Reassurance often feels elusive. And when you're settling you come up with another thing to worry about. That's understandable. Anxiety is a future pace. People imagine an event in the future. They imagine that event going badly or wrong. They experience the event as if it is happening in the present and they feel bad in the present about something that hasn't actually happened. Over time, that becomes a habit.

A good strategy to deal with that is to say "I'll deal with it" in your mind every time a worry or a "what if....?" question turns up in your head. You've dealt with OCD, anxiety and agoraphobia. You might not realise it yet but you can deal with other stuff too. It takes a very strong person not to fall apart under the weight of OCD, anxiety and agoraphobia.

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There are two things that are available on the NHS free of charge that you don't hear a great deal about. One is 'Mindfullness' and the other is 'Autogenics'. Both can be very helpful, when all else fails. The other thing that can help a lot is the 12 step Al Anon groups, or any 12 step group. You do not have to have a member of your family who is Alcoholic but often in our past of those who suffer anxieties and the like do have one and it is the behaviour of the family unit that we then suffer from. The latter works, although it is difficult to explain how and why. At the very least it is free, except for a small donation if you can afford it and you will find your story is related by others members so you do not have to say anything unless you want to. Meetings are held in secure spaces and they are anonymous. You can just go for tea and some sympathy, but if you hear your story you can speak to those you identify with and I promise things will improve.

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