Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by pirtpain, Jan 30, 2006.
DOES ANYONE HERE HAVE AGORAPHOBIA? I think I may be developing it? Any advice?
like and it's no fun! I started out in the 80's with panic attacks. They got to the point where I had several a day and wasn't able to ride in a car or leave the house for a full year. Mis-er-able time. I did the usual going from curtain to curtain peeking out..for what? Who knew! I'd have to check both ways before going to my mailbox to make sure noone was going to drive past and "see me". Why? Didn't know that either.
I did go see a therapist and did get the diagnoses and at that time I'd never heard of it. Sounded really goofy to me though. I did a lot of reading up on it and got some self help books. The thing that rang out from everything I read was that you
had to face your fears and go "through" them. Sounded easy, wasn't.
When I'd all I could endure of it I just decided to fix it if I could at
all. I started by sitting in the car
in the driveway alone. Made myself get mail when one car was going by. That was ALL for awhile. Then my husband would back the car up to the
back of the driveway, I did this for
Then I had him drive me just to the
corner for several days, and soon took on going around the block. THAT was harder! But, every time I conquered sp? a task I got myself some little reward..anything, a cookie or a lipstick. Since he had to
go buy the lipstick for me, I have a huge supply of bright fire engine red lipstick I've worn one ONCE.
From there it was the neighborhood, then the streets nearby, then the streets for a mile etc etc.. The next BIG step was the freeway..UGH! The first time he had to get on and get
off at the first exit. I was having a panic attack from Hades! But I refused to let it set me back. All in all it took me about six months to face all the things and especially places I had been avoiding for so long. I never did get back the ability to get on a plane but I don't
care..if God wanted me to fly he'd have given me wings. LOL!
So there IS hope if that's what you are developing and the sooner you catch it and work your way out of it
the better..it only gets worse with
time. SO my advice would be to go see
a therapist to at least get a diagnoses and then either work thorugh it with him/her or do what I did..it worked for ME but I don't know if that's common or I was just
extra special. Haha. Kidding totally!
But I KNOW it's not funny and it's painful to feel your mind and body being taken over by something you can't understand. In comes the self help books and there are scads of them. And you can order those online!
Try their search for "books" and then go from there. Ebay also had Half dot com that sells books new and used cheaper.
I wish you luck and you CAN beat this thing, I promise you! Keep us posted.
I have agoraphobia..It started after I began having symptoms of this DD..At first my dx was anxiety/depression which I did have but knew there was something more..
Of course with anxeity/depression the doctors say go and do, which I did..Thats when my agoraphobia started..I would go and feel so darn bad I didn't think I could make it home..At that time I think it was more my cfs than agoraphobia. I just felt horrible, physically and kept pushing because thats what the doctor told me to do..Then one day I got in wal-mart and got so tired I didn't think I could walk out of the store and get home..I think the not feeling well and afraid this would happen every time I went out is when the agoraphobia began..It didn't began with panic as most do..
My doctor that I was seeing is out of town
when I would go I would feel anxious, weak tried etc. and have trouble going and getting back..So I began avoid traveling out of town, then it was large stores like walmart, we do not have shopping malls so I would have to travel about an hour to one, got there and couldn't go it. Could not take the noise, lights etc..My leaving the house and going to my local grocery store became harder, and so on..I finally got that I couldn't go anywhere partly was due to agoraphobia but it was the fact that I felt so bad..
The first thing I did was rest and more rest..I only left the house when necessary which was to a local doctor or for grocries..I did not push myself for almost a year..With rest I bagan to feel better and slowly started going out on my on..I live in a samll town so it wasn't as hard as a large city..I can now travel about 30 minutes from home by myself..and able to go about 50 or so with someone but am still anxious and think "what if" I get dizzy, tired and on and on..I haven't been on a vacation or more than 50 miles from home in about 3 years..
It depends on what is causing the agorphobia with me I think the DD triggered it..and I don't mind feeling bad but afraid to go..I want to go but so scared..So I think mine is partly the DD and partly anxiety..I do take xanax which helps some but I am still uable to even get back to my outtown doctor..
My only advice is slowly make yourself take baby steps..which I think I am dragging my feet with my baby steps..
My grandson is in college 3 hrs away and my goal is to go to see him..I have been going since Aug. haven't made it yet.It will have to be on a day that my CFS isn't bad and my anxiety isn't in overdrive..
The agoraphobia is a horrible thing it keeps me from doing things that I would enjoy but I can't seem to overcome the fear...I would see a psych but they are 69 miles away...
My advise is to get help, don't let this get out of control like I did..This has affected my family in so many ways..I use to travel and fly with my job and loved going to different places...
Please update me on how you are doing..I have posted about agoraphobia before and I am very interested in what my help you and your progress..
[This Message was Edited on 01/31/2006]
I have also had an experience with Agoraphobia. How scary and awful it can be. I also started out with panic attacks and then became afraid to go out because I was afraid I'd have a panic attack in public and I was sure that I was going to end up in the state mental hospital.
I tried to learn as much as I could about what was happening to me. The thing that helped me the most and that I would recommend to anyone who suffers from panic attacks and Agoraphobia is a book called: Hope & Help for your nerves by Dr. Claire Weekes.
This book literally saved my life and got me through this terrible time in the mid 1980's. Everything in the book still applies. She explains everything about what is happening to you and why and how to stop it. I highly recommend it to anyone who is suffering from these things.
You can get through this stronger than you've ever been.
My doctor put me on valium and sent me to a pychologist. After a year it was getting worse instead of better. I used to teach sunday school and sing in the choir. I could no longer even go to church. I did'nt shop alone, the only time I left the house alone was to go to work where I isolated from everyone else. Then one day I couldn't go to work. We fired my pych and saw someone differant. I couldn't even go to see him alone. After 3 months he said he didn't think he could help me because I didn't need counseling I needed a specialist on chemical imbalances. I saw the specialist and it changed my life! I was on imiprimine and am now on Celexa. It has been 20 years and I would not dream of going off my medication. My daughter is also taking Celexa and tends to go off of it when she is feeling "good", only to end up with panic attacks all over again.
I was reluctant to go on a medication for life but my doctor gave me great advice. "If you were a diabetic, would you deny yourself insulin just because you need it every day? Well you have no more control over a chemical imbalance in the brain than a diabetic has over his need for insulin." TRUE WORDS OF WISDOM
Thanks so much from all of you! I am not sure if I am starting to have it or not, but your advice will certainly help me to do something now vs. later. THANKS AGAIN!!
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