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Incapacitating anxiety


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Years ago I had horrible anxiety but then it turned to such a deep depression its like the depression kind of took over.

Now I feel paralyzed by the constant fear, worry, panic ,terror. I feel like I never want to leave my house again, and then there are scary noises and scary thoughts of what could happen even at home.

I jump every time the phone rings and i have to keep reminding myself to breath.ativan can only do so much.

Is there anything that is helping or helped you to cope with this?

i'm so exhausted from being so scared.

thanks for any help, mrs l

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thought i'd try and post this again to see if any one replies this time. if not at least i tried.

Sorry. It sounds like you need to have some major therapy work. Are you working on this in therapy?

Exactly what are you afraid of, worried about, overwhelmed by? Getting to the root helps. But for now? Self talk, and lots of it, may help a little bit. Planning what you do and sticking to the plan no matter what. The anticipation of something can be much worse than the actual thing for some people.

SO thinking about going outside the house is going to spike your anxiety sky high, while actually going outside the house might raise your anxiety or even spike it initially, but it will level off as long as you aren't constantly running into triggers. [even if at a high point, you might adapt so you can get done what you need to get done].

But you sort of sound like me sometimes. I go through periods where leaving the house is too much. Driving is too much. Everything is too much. I think about what can go wrong, horrible things that can happen, what I'm doing wrong, did wrong.

Sometimes I can self talk into doing something that needs to get done. But it's hard, because while you KNOW that whatever horrible thing probably won't happen, another part of you KNOWS that it probably will. You're fighting a part of yourself.

So, working on it in therapy will help. If it isn't helping, either be more open with your doctor, tell your doctor to try something else, or find a new doctor. [one of those things needs to change]

Also, maybe your benzo isn't the best for you so you could possibly try another to help you out a little.

I don't have any real TOOLS that I can tell you though. I'm sorry.

I hope the situation improves. Iknow what it feels like.

Luna

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Now I feel paralyzed by the constant fear, worry, panic ,terror. I feel like I never want to leave my house again, and then there are scary noises and scary thoughts of what could happen even at home.

I left out your quote about jumping when the phone rings. It's common ( I've read) that we anxiety folk scare easily. I too jump at sudden noises and loud anything.

My husband suffered the type of anxiety you describe above. I hate to tell you but the thing that cured him was baby steps out of the house. Now he's never home!

It took awhile. First we went on short car rides. Then I needed him to demo a kite for me, so he had to go on the beach. He cried all the way there and all the way home. (We live on the coast, I'm talking under 5 minute trips) but when he was on the beach flying the kite, he had a ball.

You gotta start small, but you gotta start. Just a step. It's that way with everything. Even if you depression is still kicking your butt, start out with a short trip somewhere fun.

You can do this. Seriously. He's never home now. He's out the door to our little Internet cafe. There he writes computer music and socializes with friends. He takes 1 mg of Klonopin a day and that is half in the morning and half at bed time. I think they only have him on it because its been so long.

Find the place that is your goal place and start. His was having coffee at this cafe. Now they can't get rid of him!

Breeze

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thanks for replying luna and breeze.

i don't think i'm quite at the agoraphobic stage. mostly at this point the triggers are in my head- i don't necesarily get scared of outside things but scared of the scary thoughts that keep popping into my head. ( for example taking the train i was sure someone was going to push somebody else onto the tracks,and then wondering was one of these students carrying a bomb in their back pack?) or I'm sure people are mad at me for tiny mistakes i've made.

I've had a ton of major stressors recently which have built up to this. ( death in the family, death of a pet, illness, car accidents etc) so i think this is a reaction to all that.

But coping is so hard. I'm scared of being scared, and i'm so tired of being scared. I need a break and a rest.

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I've felt how you describe my entire life up until about age 16 or so when I started on meds which opened up my eyes to how chemical in nature (and comparatively unnatural) my anxiety and feelings were. You will likely have to go through a long med-go-round to find one that helps you significantly and (at least semi) permanently. Ive never even bothered with things like ativan or xanax because they seem to just be tranqs which don't address any of the thought/behavioral modifying chemicals which are probably at the root of most anxieties and depression. Ive never ruled them entirely out of the question but id rather save something that just knocks me out for an absolute final option.

There are drawbacks to meds and its very important to do cognitive behavioral therapy while you work on finding a med but its much better than doing nothing and having your issues get worse.

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Thanks for the feedback.

I actually have been on the med-go-round for almost 20 yrs. I've been on every benzo ever invented and a whole slew of APs.

currently i've got the seroquel and the ativan going but i can't really change anything right now as i am recovering from lithium toxicity and can only change one med at a time.

Thanks for pointing out the help from APs- maybe i need to increase the seroquel and that should be my first request from pdoc when other lithium stabilizes.

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You have never been on any ssri's? Diagnosed BP I take it?

If I were diagnosed BP and had tried everything else, I would still try a few ssri's and see if they help at all. Diagnoses and possible effective treatments aren't as cut and dry as they are made out to be. There are exceptions, and there are misdiagnoses. I was labeled as emerging scizophrenic, and that turned out to be bull shit like I knew it was from the beginning. Just my 2 cents on that side track. ;)

Lexapro helped the most for me but most all of them had some beneficial effects (the ssri's). Adderall has probably been the best for my social anxiety, though its every 5 hour 'come down' period makes my depression worse.

I kind of force tryed (under threats of hospitilazation from my doctor and parents) APs many years ago. All I remember them doing is making me feel quite drugged and slow while helping my anxiety slightly, but no where near enough to make the side effects bearable.

I also have tried ativan before (.5) and I feel essentially nothing. Maybe the feeling of not having got much sleep the night before but nothing cognitively or emotionally other than a little slower.

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i don't necesarily get scared of outside things but scared of the scary thoughts that keep popping into my head. ( for example taking the train i was sure someone was going to push somebody else onto the tracks,and then wondering was one of these students carrying a bomb in their back pack?) or I'm sure people are mad at me for tiny mistakes i've made.

Boy does THIS sound familiar. I've learned how to deal with some of these. I also get the catastrophic feelings about stuff like this. I think you have to learn to "watch the thoughts go by". I still have them when in a crowded area, I just don't react. And I refuse to let it stop me. Like I said, I live on the ocean and we had a hurricane this past December. Only I live in Oregon. ;) So after that I had some trouble. But I have a great therapist who has known me for 5 years now.

If you've ever read a post by me and anxiety, inevitably I speak about exercise. This is key. I swim and do yoga. I've learned to "watch the thoughts" through yoga, and to feel stronger about my life with swimming. Both help a lot.

I've had a ton of major stressors recently which have built up to this. ( death in the family, death of a pet, illness, car accidents etc) so i think this is a reaction to all that.

ditto to most of these and the above hurricane. I'm still moving. However I'll trade your car accident for my husband's recurring cancer being back.

You can either do things daily that prepare you for this stuff, or you can lie in wait. Either way, you know you have an anxiety disorder. Meds and therapy are at the tippy top of the list of things to do. Wash, rinse and repeat.

Then move onto the life stuff that can help you to cope. There's no need to live in a fear box.

To happy days ahead

Breeze

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first

Breeze- so sorry to hear of your husband's cancer- that must be so hard.

KG85- thanks for the suggestion though I've been on a long list of SSRIs over the years. Only went off the last one with the revised BP diagnoses (previously major depresion)

I guess my main frustration with myself is that I managed this for so many years really well. Its like all that I knew has evaporated out of me. I'm waiting for it to re-condense or something to settle me back down. I'm concentrating on my breath a lot.

I like the idea of watching the thoughts go by- I remember learning about that many years ago but had forgotten about it. I''ll try it , and yes definately need more exercise!

Thanks

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