Hello everyone, I'm new here and to be honest, I've got to that point where I haven't a clue what to do anymore.
I'm only 18 and my anxiety started about a year and a half ago now, started off just to do with eating, anything from eating myself as I have emetophobia (phobia of vomiting and being ill), to eating around people, to watching others eat. It was very difficult as I regularly eat with my partners family around his house, and they also regularly go for meals. The debilitating anxiety I suffered before even going to his house, going to a restaurant or even just eating, led me to eventually stop going, barely eating and I ended up at 7 stone.
At this point, my family and his were so concerned I went to the doctors, explained the symptoms and was prescribed citalopram 10mg, at first I felt absolutely awful, sick, tired I couldn't drive nor function, after around 6 weeks they started to work but I was consistently tired I missed my last half of my A level studies (still awaiting the results). I was also having CBT throughout the medication, which personally I felt did not help at all, so I tried an emetophobia specialist who did hypnotherapy. The lady I saw was absolutely brilliant, not to mention expensive. But really, she was worth every penny, I improved so much over the 6 months, was eating at the table again, in front of others and at restaurants, I was also managing to eat a pretty normal amount, which was pretty good for me considering I could barely manage a few mouthfuls before.
But to the point, it got so much better and I finally thought I was rid of these horrible anxiety and panic attacks, I finished sixth form and now have a brilliant job as a student veterinary nurse which I love. I was absolutely fine for the first month which I was surprised about as its a 45 minute drive on big roads every day which also make me anxious incase of being ill and not being able to stop the car (weird I know). Also, the extremely stressful hospital environment and the amount of people I thought would make me anxious, but I was absolutely fine.
A month and a half in, since last Monday I have been consistently ill, panicky, panic attacks, unable to drive home and sitting in my car for 3 hours after my shift, and its awful. I'm now also getting extremely anxious in social situations, for example my boyfriends work BBQ, it was outside, I know a lot of the people but I simply felt like I couldn't breathe, like I was trapped, so scared I'd be sick in front of them and embarrass my boyfriend, ridiculous scenarios like that. Also at work, in the hospital, I'm constantly searching for places where I could throw up without causing any harm or embarrassing myself, which in turn is making me so ill, I'm feeling constantly panicked, constantly sick, tired, and im unable to eat a thing, its worrying me so much, and those around me, who I feel terrible on.
This is such a good opportunity for me, especially due to the lack of employment but its got to the point now where I'm considering giving it up due to it making me ill, everything about it, the driving, the traffic, the stressful environment, the people. I don't know. Im just stuck. I've been to my GP and first was given sertraline, which like the citalopram is an SSRI, so it was awful again, I went back, and shes given me propranolol for my anxiety and ranitidine (for my stomach), but I'm too scared to take it in case it makes me too ill too work and im even more anxious than I was before.
I forgot to mention, I've been through quite a rough time recently also with my parents almost breaking up, then my dad lost both of his sisters (my aunties) and his nan in the space of 3 weeks, so ive also had to basically look after him, as my mum is so depressed and not getting on with my dad very well at the moment. My younger brothers ADHD is depressing them both on top of this (which is the main cause of my mothers depression I think). I also found out my mum is also on citalopram and she has been for a while, I haven't told her I know but I was hurt by the fact she didn't give me any help or advice when I took them before. My mum also works 3 evenings a week so my dad has been quite lonely other than me while he's been going through this hard time, he believes the answer is in the bottom of a bottle, despite how much we tell him its not and the amount of times I have to look after him or help him when hes drunk and so upset. It breaks my heart to see my dad cry as we are so close, but he's terrible with advice. Also, due to my mums depression, she doesn't really speak to me much nor make me feel any better, she was telling me I was going to get the sack when I go in tomorrow, so I don't really have much hope or help from her either.
I don't know what to do as I've already taken 3 sick days which looks terrible on me. I really enjoy the job but im making myself so ill and anxious, the social phobia has got to the point where im struggling to breathe when im walking around a supermarket in case I embarrass myself by being ill in public. Im also considering whether my heart is in the job, or its just the anxiety making me not want to do it. Because not knowing what to do with my life also scares me, I know I'm only young but I really want to do well and make something of myself but its not looking promising. I just don't know what to do, im dreading going in tomorrow already. None of my family, friends or boyfriend can help me either as they just don't understand why I feel the way I do
If anyone could give me any advice on what to do about the job, or any advice if they've taken ranitidine or propranolol for anxiety that would be very, very much appreciated!!
I'm just so down and upset. I'm sorry the post is so long, I just needed to let it all out in hope that someone can help me in some way, as of course you understand how debilitating anxiety can be on your life.
Thank you for any replies