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I need to get my license. I'm 25, my parents work full time, and I have to do nothing but rely on others for rides. I feel guilty about that. I need it to get to work and school. But I am terrified of the test. Like, literally. Just thinking about it makes me almost sick. It's consuming my thoughts. I feel like when I'm in the test I'll forget everything and make stupid mistakes. But it needs to be done. How can I get past this? It is making me sick and not able to concentrate.

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It is very scary. I drive but to known places or routes only. So about 4 places max.

Can you do a community class drivers Ed? Start slow and practice driving in a parking lot. A big one. On a Sunday evening or some day when there will be no other cars. Your parents can help you too hopefully.

I had to stop driving for a few years due to extreme panic every time I drove. Now I HAVE to drive because otherwise I wouldn't have a way to get to dr appointments. My husband and parents work and I have no friends. I don't qualify for the special needs bus and riding the regular bus terrifies me more than anything. I'd get lost or get off at the wrong spot. And the weather here isn't really conducive to bus riding. I'm too paranoid to ride the regular bus too. Can't handle all the people.

I've gotten into accidents when manic because I just couldn't concentrate on the road and was psychotic too. Not fun.

But like I said, I have no choice. I don't have anyone to drive me places. :(

I hope you can start slow and practice til you feel more comfortable.

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Can I ask a stupid question? What if you *do* fail your test? So what?

 

Lots of people fail both the written and the driving part. I failed the driving part (I was 17, and embarrassed, but, as I said, I was 17). In Utah, even open book, I failed the written test the first time. I mean, I held the book with all the answers on my lap, and proceeded to fail.

 

But you know what? I eventually passed both. There is no limit to how many times you can fail before you pass. Here, I would have had to pay $25 dollars to take the test if I failed it 3 times, but still, I could have taken it more. Failure is sometimes necessary for success. How could you magically know how to drive and the answers to the driving test? You can't. If you get one more question, or one more driving skill accomplished with every try, that is still an accomplishment.

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It's reassuring to see that others experience the "terror" of the test or driving. Yes, I hate the judgment and pressure too. Like people wondering why I can't drive. It's very inconvenient for everyone. To answer the question about failing...I'm actually not afraid of failing, like feeling bad about myself. It would suck and I really need to get it soon, but the reason I don't want to fail is because I never want to feel nervous about the test again. I want it over and done with. I hope I don't fail though. I'm glad to hear that some of you guys succeeded after failing a lot though.

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I also agree with crtclms.  If you take the test (driving and written parts) and don't pass, try to think of it as practice.  The 2nd time you take it (if you need to), you'll know exactly what to expect, and you might be a lot less nervous.  But who knows, maybe you'll pass it the first time.  You won't know until you try.

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I passed the written exam, but it took me two tries to pass the driving part and it was entirely because I was anxious. After the first attempt, at least I knew what to expect and where I was weakest. I practiced those parts a lot before I went back. The second time I felt less anxious because at least it's not all brand new, right? The scariest part for me, it seems, was not knowing what to expect. Once I knew that, it worked out. Now I like to drive and sometimes find it calming.

 

So, in your situation I would try to focus on it not being a big deal if you don't pass the first time. Doing the first time will make it easier to do the next, if you have to.

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My son has pretty high anxiety so before starting to learn to drive I took him to a graveyard (where I learned to drive a stick a million years ago) and let him drive.  I gave him scenarios like he'd face on the road.  That was kinda like training rather than him learning.  He got familiar with what I was saying and felt more confident that he intellectually knew what he should do in these situations.  He did great.  

 

My other son is not anxious at all, just a smidge of a regular amount. He refused my offer to train him in some situations.  He was a complete mess when learning.  He failed the driving test twice.  Granted, he was perfectly okay with that, apparently it's a badge of honor in HS now rather than the ultimate shame like it was when I was in HS.  He's a very confident driver now (he's ~17) but I think he might be a smidge too confident.  In short, he worries me while my older son doesn't.  Older son drives to the beach, ~5 hrs away, and I just worry about random things.  Younger son drives one county over and I twitch for hours.  He really is the type to get out after a wreck and tell you you should have done what he wanted you to do.  And he's really tall and big so you might just agree to get him to go away.  He is the sweetest thing tho.  Just thinks the world is his.

 

I rambled.  Sorry.  Hope there's something in there to help.  Or at least amuse.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I failed my driving test the first time, at 16, because of anxiety.  I didn't take it again until I was 19, and then almost failed because of anxiety, but I managed to pass that time.  I don't drive on interstates if it can be avoided because going so fast makes me nervous, and I hate not being able to breathe because of anxiety.  I also don't drive much at night, partly because I don't see as well at night due to a bad astigmatism, but not being able to see as well also makes me nervous behind the wheel.

 

But more practice may help you build confidence.  It's totally normal to have to take the test more than once before you pass, but practicing driving so that it becomes more like second nature to you should make it easier to do even if you are anxious.  It sounds like you have some supportive people in your life who would probably want you to succeed, so if you can enlist their aid, maybe that would help also? 

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Due to rapid increase of bad drivers these days, there used to be such a thing as public shaming, a type of legal punishment where individuals would be embarrassed in public for their mistakes. It's been getting some traction, as petty thieves and other criminals have been getting shamed for minor wrongdoings. There is also an increasing movement to start shaming bad motorists.

What does that link have to do with this topic, or any topic on the boards. If you are here to shame, and are not mentally ill, I suggest you leave. If you are mentally ill, please let us know, because this is a first person site, meaning *you* must be mentally ill, or questioning it at least.

 

Your "shame movement" is ridiculous. And how do you know about shaming bad motorists, but for your having been shamed yourself?

 

Looking you up, I notice you have joined many forums in the last 10 days. That almost makes me feel as if you are a spammer. If you don't want to be blocked, it would be good if you could let us know why you are here.

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