Living with Anxiety
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New here, utterly terrified, can’t function, please help!

Hi,

I am new here, a 26 year old female, and have had anxiety in some form or another for most of my life. I also have OCD and my main issue: health anxiety. Unlike lots of people with health anxiety, I am utterly terrified of doctors and can’t seek help. In my head, seeing the doctor is just a way to find out how long I have left - I am convinced they will tell me I am dying. I am terrified of the process of dying and not being able to lead a normal life - go to work, see friends, just normal day to day stuff.

In the past, my main fear has been that I have a brain tumour. This fear has plagued me, on and off, for over a decade. At times I have been unable to eat, sleep, leave the house. I even wrote goodbye letters to loved ones.

Anyway, my latest fear which is consuming my every waking thought, and has done for the past fortnight, is that I have skin cancer. I have an atypical mole on my back and have done for at least a decade. I remember panicking the first time I found it. I have managed to convince myself it has changed. It has spread throughout my body and I haven’t got long left. I know the only person who can prove/disprove this is a doctor but I am SO SCARED. I have lost my appetite and am doing nothing but trying to make the hours of everyday pass so that I can go back to bed. When I am asleep, is the only time I have any relief from this torment.

I am going to see a counsellor next week but it feels as though it is taking forever for the appointment to come round.

I know no one can tell me for sure that I do/don’t have cancer. But if anyone has any positive stories or anything to reassure, I would be eternally grateful.

24 Replies
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Hello & Welcome EleanorRose :-)

Well I am twice your age plus you can add another 4 years yet when I read your post you could have been writing about me !

I started with ocd and Health Anxiety from a really young age and in my mind I have had every worse possible life threatening illnesses there are to have and I know exactly how it takes every waking hour from you even when you are watching the TV , talking to others it is there in the back of your mind talking to you

You are also the first person I have come across that is like me in the respect that even though you have these Health fears you do not want to see a Doctor because you believe that they will confirm what you are thinking , normally when I have come across people with Health Anxiety I relate to how they fear but they do seem to be able to go to the Doctors to get the all clear , so I know again how you feel and where your thinking is coming from

When I first started out with anxiety there was no help , no one to talk to , anxiety was a hush hush subject and I felt so very alone in the world , this has now changed and you are not alone and have people you can talk to that will relate to you which to me is a great start getting this into perspective

Our minds are now programmed in to the negative thinking and it is about learning how to reverse that thinking pattern , it is not easy I know that but I am so pleased that in a week or so you are taking that first step by getting some Counselling to help and it will help , if you listen take on board what is been said and put it into practice life will get better , it takes time though but you will get there :-)

Again you mentioned the moles and I to have been focusing in on two that to me with my Health Anxiety head tell me there is something not right with them

So many people have moles and so many people get them checked out and the odds they are anything sinister are so slim , I have to ask myself why do I always think I have to be in the odds that are slim when I worry , because my brain is so used to thinking that way because I suffer with anxiety but over the years I have got better and I do and have for some years a great relationship with my Doctor which is what I would advise you try and get , see a Doctor that is understanding , tell them exactly what your fears are and let them check those moles out , I bet you they are perfectly fine but it will be practice for you to combat this fear of seeing the Doctor as well as reassurance :-)

Make a appointment , come on here and let us help you get to that appointment and slowly with the therapy you will start to see progress :-)

Take Care x

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Thank you so much for your kind reply. It is a relief to find somebody else who understands what I am describing - I know other people who worry about their health but people seem to think I am crazy and can't comprehend what I am saying when I say that I can't go to the doctors.

It doesn't help that the doctor's surgery I am registered with has a very difficult booking system and I have heard from others that some of the doctors aren't all that helpful and you have no choice who your appointment is made with.

Just really struggling to get through each day at the moment. Mornings are the worst. Just keep trying to remind myself that I have been here before (utterly convinced I was going to die imminently from a brain tumour) and 2 years later, since the absolute peak of that fear, I am still alive.

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Hello :-)

I know that the Doctors surgeries are like a nightmare to get an appointment with , because I am like I am and will only see one Doctor , I have had to work out how to make this happen

I think most surgeries in the UK must work on a similar basis and what I do is I pre book an appointment on line , this way I can also narrow down what Doctor I want to see , I may have to wait a few weeks but for me it is worth it , I wonder if you have something similar ? if you put your surgery in Google it should take you onto their page and you could have a look maybe ?

Now you will always get people saying one Doctor is not good and so on but that does not mean that will be the case for you as we don't always get on or like the same person , that's life :-)

The one I see I get on with very well and she is very good with me but I have heard some don't see her in the same light , so maybe you need to see these Doctors yourself and make your own mind up you maybe surprised what you find :-)

I think most of us have one time of the day that feels worse than others and I am not a morning person either so that is normal :-)

I know things seem bad at the moment , but hope you have taken some comfort knowing you are not alone , keep coming and talking with us as we understand and trust me things will improve , as I said it takes time but you will get to a better place than what you are at now :-) x

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Thank you for your reply. Anxiety is definitely winning today and I am finding problems in everything on my body. I do hope my anxiety improves and that I don't have skin cancer.

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Hello :-)

If I had a pound every time I thought I had a life threatening illness I would be a millionaire by now :-)

When you have the all clear over these moles you will worry you have something else , in fact if you are like me you may be even focusing on the next thing , because this is how HA works

I have been so bad that at times I have not even realised that in one day I have expressed my concerns that I have cancer but not just one but three different types , again this is HA keeping control of our every thought

If I could put a bet on I would put all mu money on you will be just fine , let us know how you get on :-) x

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Hi there EleanorRose ( what a lovely name) and lovely to meet you!!You have taken a positive step coming on here ~ so well done you. Oh I suffer terrible morning anxiety !! Heart racing etc ~ really awful ! I know what you mean about going to the doctors ~ a couple if years ago I had this big spot in my armpit ~ well you can just imagine!! Went to docs and it was an abscess!!

Anxiety can make our minds go into overdrive and we always think the worst!!And no you ain't crazy at all ~ don't think that !!

Come on here and have a chat whenever you feel like it ~ you will be made welcome!!

Look forward to hearing more from you ~ try and have a peaceful day 🙂xx

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Thank you very much for your kind reply.

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You are welcome ~ hope all well with you 🙂xx

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Hi there.

I also feel exactly the same about visiting the doctor. If I need to visit for tonsillitis I can not stop thinking that they will find throat cancer or something else. I get how you must be feeling and it’s not a nice place to be. It is torture and feels like there is no way out.

I also had a weird looking mole on my back since a child and it has changed over the years and despite people telling me to get it checked I wouldn’t go in fear. However I had to visit the doctor as needed antibiotics for my throat and whist she examined me she saw the mole. She told me I needed it checked urgently and referred me. I cried all the way home and convinced myself that was it for me and that I was going to be told it has spread.

The hospital didn’t have my correct address so the waiting process was 5 weeks and in that time I obsessed over being told my life was over. It drove me crazy day and night.

In the end I went to get it checked and I was a mess - but the doctor took one look at it and told me it’s fine and not cancer as it had a hair growing out of it. She said cancer can not grow hair. I then had the mole removed a month later and all ok. I felt so happy and couldn’t believe how I had tortured myself.

The worrying I caused myself lead to me being off work for 3 months but since being back I’ve taken control and been to group counselling. I do mindfulness meditation daily and I did CBT a few times. I also did and do self help books.

It’s not easy to get anxiety of any form under control and I have off days but doing these things daily in the end really does help.

I hope that you will be able to get the mole looked at so you can give yourself some relief.

It’s not easy I wish you all the best. X

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Hi there Ellie34 ~ love the picture of the dog is it yours?You have some great strategies to help with anxiety!!Also given some good advice to EleanorRose.

All the best to you also 🙂xx

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Hi kittykat28

Yes it’s my little doggy. She is a little cutie. :)

Thank you, I have suffered with Anxiety since I was 19 - I am now 35, so it’s been 15 years of some very very bad times as well as lots of good.

I am very big on self help and being pro active - as no one else can do it but me. It’s not always as easy as that sounds but so worth it in the end.

Hope you are well. Xx

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Hello Ellie34 & Welcome :-)

I love your dog to :-) x

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Hi lulu-1

Thank you.:) she is a little cutie and a little mischief☺️x

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You can see she could be in her eyes :-D

She must be therapy in herself , I bet she gives you a lot of joy :-) x

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she is called Missy so we call her Missy the Mischief. ☺️

Yes she is great therapy for any bad day. She is mine and my husbands world and she defiantly rules the house☺️🙈 xx

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A lovely name for her and you can see just by looking at her she is the boss :-/ but who could not spoil her she is a beautiful dog :-) x

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Ha ha yes she is the boss☺️

Thank you 😊

Hope you are having a lovely Sunday xx

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It could be better but it could be worse as I always say :-)

I hope yours is a good one and now you have come and spoken to us you will feel you can come and chat more often , you are always welcome :-) x

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Oh she s lovely ~ so sweet ~ I have 2 Cats . Just lost one a few weeks ago ~ I was heartbroken and still am the

Pets can give so much comfort and also they rely on you so much too.

I am a great believer in holistic therapy to help overcome anxiety.

I am going to Reiki this week and believe me I need it lol!!

Not having the best of days today and I'm afraid anxiety is winning.

Have a peaceful day also 🙂xx

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I am so sorry to hear such sad news about your cat.

It is truly heart breaking, they are a huge part of the family as well as being best friends.

They do give lots of comfort and they don’t solve the bad times but they certainly can make a bad day seem easier.

I’ve not heard of reiki, I just googled it. I hope that it helps you.

It’s so difficult - unfortunately it’s easy for anxiety to win. It can take a lot of hard work and time to control it and only minutes for it to take its hold back again.

I hope that your day improves and you are able to have a better week next week.

Hugs xx

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Oh Ellie that is so very kind of you ~ it means so much ~ Thank you!!Oh yes I love Reiki along with EMO therapy ~ a week after losing Poppy ( my cat) I went to Reiki and it was so soothing.

Hugs back to you 🙂🙂xx

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I will have a look into those, anything that can help I am open to trying. 🙂

It takes a long time to overcome the loss of a pet. We lost our family dog a couple of years ago and I still miss her every day.

I hope that the Reiki will help with how you are feeling xx

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Thank you for your reply. I have to admit your story turns my stomach and is my absolute worst nightmare. I can't imagine how horrible that must have been for you but so glad it turned out ok.

I feel like my mole looks different every time I look at it and I know it can't be changing THAT quickly! I have now started to notice weird things about other moles and patches on my body. Hate to say the anxiety is winning at the moment :(

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It wasn’t nice , I had a few other personal issues going on at the same time and all Of my worrying over and over thinking I was going to die from this mole , it completely beat me and it took months and months for me to re gain control.

But it was all fine and I did all that to myself for no reason at all.

I hope that you can get your mind put at rest to stop your suffering.

Anxiety tends to win quite a lot:(

It’s not easy to do but it’s worth trying mindfulness mediation’s if you haven’t already,

If you try to train your mind to live in the present moment as much as possible it takes some of that time away that you would be focusing and obsessing about the not so nice things.

It doesn’t sound that great and it’s hard to get your mind to adapt to it but can help quite a lot and give you much more headspace for the nicer things in life.

Easier said than done I know.

Hugs ❤️

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