Why do you think you have become anxious p... - Anxiety Support

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Why do you think you have become anxious person and fearful of dying?

star68 profile image

I first experienced anxiety and fear of dying when I was seven years old. My mum told me one night I woke up thinking that I was dying and couldn't breath at 3 o'clock in the morning so my mum had to take me to the local doctor and straight away he said I had anxiety. This anxiety attack followed many more. When I was a child I was always listening to adults conversations all the time, and paid especial attention when someone died and what they died from. Normally a child wouldn't worry about these kind of issues, but I did, I will listen to every detail how the person died, the symptoms, what he/she was doing, the words he/she said before dying. Then I would keep all this information ,analyze it, and then I will feel all the symptoms of the person that died. My mum didn't want to take much notice of the symptoms I was getting, and my sisters were not willing to listen to me, and would tell me off about feelings and fear of dying. So I didn't get much support, I felt very alone, until I met a friend at school suffering with the same symptoms, and felt much better about it and had great support from her. What I don't understand is why my sisters that grew up in the same family environment as myself, same mother and father, never developed anxiety, they don't have health fears or fears in general, and why am I so different to them? In my case I still don't know what influence me to became an anxious person.

Do you know why you have become an anxious person? Did any of your close family members suffered from health anxiety ? What do you think triggered your anxiety and fears?

12 Replies

star68, My sister is nothing like me at all. She goes with the flow of life. I was born with a Type A personality. I was always nervous as a child so it didn't take much to instill some fears. I had stomach aches as a child which should have been a sign of anxiousness. Some people are just more sensitive than others. This is something that a therapist could help you with in answering your questions and alleviating your fears. It is what it is and no matter what caused it, it's still there. xx

Star68, it's hard to say what caused your anxiety disorder all those years ago and in a way it doesn't really matter because anxiety once established can become self perpetuating. What happens is this, something causes you to become anxious and your nervous system becomes super sensitive. This nervous sensitivity gives you physical symptoms and/or strange thoughts which cause you anxiety and fear. Over sensitised nerves are kept sensitive by you constantly generating fear which causes more symptoms which causes more fear which causes more symptoms which causes more fear and so on and so on in a perpetual vicious circle that can last for years if not properly understood and addressed.

Your major symptom is the fear of death, it is a very common symptom of anxiety disorder. When our nervous system is over sensitised it magnifies all our fears and anxieties many times over. A headache becomes a brain tumour, a few missed heartbeats become heart disease and an ache in your side becomes liver disease.

In your case your mind has latched on to the thought that you are dying because the normal instinct for survival and to avoid early death has become magnified many times over into fear of imminent death. But of course your not in danger of dying, Star68, or if you are you're taking an awful long time about it since you've been dying since you were 7 😊. A quite normal attitude has been exaggerated into an irrational fear.

There are three things you can do:

1. Nothing, just put up with it for the rest of your life.

2. See your doctor and start on anti-anxiety medication and therapy.

3. Read a good self-help book like the one that Doctor Claire Weekes wrote called 'Self help with your nerves' (u.k. title) and also called 'Hope and help with your nerves' (u.s. title) both available from Amazon new or used and as cheap as chips.

I recommend the book, as you will see from the hundreds of reader reviews on Amazon it has helped many, many people to recover from the physical symptoms and strange thoughts associated with anxiety.

star68 profile image
star68 in reply to Jeff1943

Thank you for your reply. I have a clearer picture about why I have this constant irrational fear of dying. I would like to find out what triggered it, I had two family members dying at home when I was a young child, my grandmother's brother and my grandmother, they lived with us. I remember very well the events. I read Doctor Claire Weeks book and it helped a lots when I become agoraphobic a few years ago. My mother died 6 months ago and I had all my fears come back to me with vengeance. I supposed I have to start with baby steps again the anxiety has taken over my life at the moment, but I will work hard to overcome my fears of dying. Thanks again.

Nicki1984 profile image
Nicki1984 in reply to star68

Sorry for your loss. Your mums death probably triggered those childhood anxieties off again. You can work through these. Get a good therapist. Good luck x

star68 profile image
star68 in reply to Nicki1984

Thank you, I will do.

this post might help


I can relate to everything about your childhood thoughts and fears. I too can remember being very young and afraid of death. It all started when my aunt passed away and my mom took me to see her at the funeral home and she let me touch her and all. Ever since then i could never really get the thoughts of death off my mind. I can even remember how id be laying next to my dad and i would be up all night checking to see if he was breathing still. I would stare at him just to make sure he would be breathing before i could even lay back down to try to sleep. And yes i was only 8 or 9 years old thinking like this. Its was even for me where i was so afraid and thinking about death as a young child i would even be afraid to lay in a certain position that remind me of the way dead people are laying in a casket. One time as a child i saw my dad asleep with his hands crossed over him i literally moved his arms around because it reminded me of death. And that still follows me til this day. I will not lay with my hands crossed while im sleeping on my back, or with my hands straight down by my side. I would literally arrange myself so i will not ever lay in a position that dead people lay in. As a young child these were all my vicious thoughts and i never once told my parents about my thoughts or how i felt. I dont even have siblings so lucky to the folks who do. But as a 8 year old ive always been afraid and i believe it started with my mom taking me to a casket. Ever since then if anyone who dies im always wondering how they died and why and then id get scared thinking i may day the same way. I can also say ive always been a nervous person socially too. Hmmm. I appreciate you bringing this topic up. It is definitely something that i myself just wouldn't mind responding about just to even get things off my chest.

Thanks Icanbeathis2016, you made me laugh with about the positions. I am exactly like you, I will never sleep on my back with my arms cross or down my side neither, because of the same reason. Yes, it's good to hear other people so one doesn't feel so alone with our fears, I can give you a big list and I am pretty sure we will have a few in common. Thanks for your comment.

Lol we may have it all in common. Im glad we can both see that others are out here feeling the same thoughts and fears. Lol. Yes. I do not play about my sleep positions. Lol. And the funniest thing is it seems those positions i hate to lay in are probably the most comfortable. Because i get sick of laying on my side or laying with my arms in wierd positions(on purpose) or my legs in wierd positions just so i dont feel like im laying in a casket.

I'd say you were a sensitive child and this was not noticed by those around you so you were not nurtured in the way you needed. I had a similar experience. I have found various things helpful counselling, self help books and meditation. X

Most posts I have gone to on this site just go straight to prescription drugs as their first recomendation.. its literally most of the first replies you see on new comers oh go to a therapist or get on some medications.. i get it they help but why not promote natural trial runs first?

Wow it felt i was reading a page from my life. Thats exactly how i was and am. I fear i have some type of cancer or some dying illness and my time is approaching. I fear death and even reading or talkimg about it. My healthy anxiety is so bad lately and its annoying.

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