Driving: My parents think it's a good idea... - Anxiety Support

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Driving

Valorrian
Valorrian
15 Replies

My parents think it's a good idea for me to start driving again and gain some independence. If I start driving I won't have to stay home all day long and I could go out when ever I want. I am 20. Both of my parents work all day and brother is at school. I am the only one home. I get very bad anxiety and have panic attacks a lot when I have to go out. Lately, they are much better and I am doing deep breathing and meditation. I'm also working with a therapist.

When my parents first told me that they think driving would be a good idea my heart started racing and my tinnitus kicked in full force. Now, that I've had some time to think about it. I don't know how I feel. I'm scared to drive and I wouldn't know where to go.

Sunday is going to be here in a few days. Last Sunday I went to mass, I hadn't been in a very long time. Maybe this Sunday I can drive myself to mass. I am not sure though. I'm still uncertain. My church is about 5 to 10 minutes away from my house. It would be a safe place to go since I wouldn't have to talk to anyone and can pray there.

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I've been having driving anxiety as well. Just point me in the right direction and I'll go to a few trusted spots. Church is one of those spots. It sounds like a safe place to go with less anxiety than other places. I say, go for it!

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b1b1b1

Start with a very small drive - maybe just around the block, or even just to the end of your driveway.

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Michael8072

How do you feel about driving to places close by and at times when there isnt a whole lot of traffic and get yourself comfortable behind the wheel? And then expand your driving range a little each time you feel like you can do it.

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Valorrian

Yes, I could practice driving around the residential streets in my neighborhood before I go out onto the main highway. That is a good idea. I planned on going to the 6:30 a.m. Mass in Latin. I am sure that Mass won't be crowded.

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Healedone

Take your time hun. God and His angels are with you. I send you love peace and light.

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Findingme

Valorrian, I hope you don't mind me asking, do you think it is a good idea to start driving again? Do you feel ready?

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Valorrian
Valorrian
in reply to Findingme

I don't mind you asking me. Well, it's been two years since I've driven. Yes, I do think it's time I try to drive again. I cannot imagine having to rely on a service (Uber or Lyft) or my family forever. Where I live you need to be able to drive to get around.

This morning I actually got in my car and sat there for a while until my anxiety stopped. I gave myself a pep, talk. I told myself that deaf people drive every day and I have nothing to be afraid of. I also told myself that at any time I could go back into the house. I was in my car for about 30 mins. before I turned it on. Then I sat there again until I calmed down. At that point I was happy with myself and got out and went back in the house. I didn't go anywhere today, but there is tomorrow. My brother said he'd go for a drive with me. If it's not tomorrow maybe the next day. I need to keep trying and moving forward. If I don't then I won't have anything to look forward to and I'll go back into my black hole.

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Findingme
Findingme
in reply to Valorrian

That's great. Hope it goes well, but I understand why you are hesitant.

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ktuf

I've been dealing with the same problem. I stopped driving for a while but now I've been starting again. I noticed the distance from my house is what really bothers me. I can drive for hours as long as I'm always within 5 minutes of my house. If I drive out any further its full blown panic mode. What I've been doing is slowly trying to push myself a little further every couple times I drive. Just remember you can always pull over to take a breathe or turn around... hope this helped

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Valorrian
Valorrian
in reply to ktuf

Yes, a short drive at first would be a good idea. I plan to go on side streets in my neighborhood and I can pull over if it gets too much.

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ktuf
ktuf
in reply to Valorrian

It helps me to make a playlist on my phone of some of my favorite songs and artists to be able to play in the car. I also bring things that make me more comfortable like a water bottle, ibuprofen (if I get a headache) and other things that I feel I may need.

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Valorrian
Valorrian
in reply to ktuf

Thanks for the suggestions. I'm glad that you have found things to make your drive comfortable. I stopped driving when I got really sick and lost my hearing. I haven't driven without my hearing yet. I know deaf people can drive but for me it's a challenge. I'm scared. I also have tinnitus and when I get anxious it's like this roaring noise in my head takes over and it's hard for me to focus and concentrate. I am learning to control my fears little by little and the anxiety is not going to win. One day I will be driving. I for sure will bring water and a bottle of meds for headaches. Thanks again.

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Findingme
Findingme
in reply to ktuf

Hi Ktuf,

I get that feeling of anxiety when I get over about 15 miles from home. I think in my case it was because I was afraid of not being able to get home to see what was happening when my mum was sick, and before that when my ex was threatening suicide when our marriage was breaking up (later found out he was attention seeking whilst having an affair, and he wanted me to feel insecure). That sick feeling of being in the wrong place. I want my freedom back. Why does it not stop happening when the reason for it goes away?

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ktuf
ktuf
in reply to Findingme

I think it keeps continuing because our minds have trained themselves to think poorly, even if you're consciously telling yourself everything is fine. I believe our minds are always thinking the worst even when we're not aware of the thinking, almost like in the back of our brain the thought is always there telling us to be worried.

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Findingme
Findingme
in reply to ktuf

For me it is a learned response which is very hard to deal with. I think the only way os to force myself to actually go out there, but it is hard.

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