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General Anxiety Disorder

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robbie3982

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Lately I''ve been feeling very stressed out to the point of feeling physically sick. I''ve been in tears almost every night for the last week and I know I''m really starting to worry FI. I can''t even sleep through the night anymore without waking up to worry about something and being unable to fall back asleep. Today it was at 4:45am.

I have lots of reasons to be stressed: planning a wedding, fairly new job with new responsibilities being added on daily it seems, every day kind of things, etc, but I just feel like sometimes I get so much more stressed out than a "normal" person would.

Today FI sent me this link about General Anxiety Disorder and it describes me exactly. So, it looks like as soon as my new health insurance kicks in in Feb (no sense in starting to see a doctor now when he/she might not even be on my new plan) I''ll be finding a doctor.

I was reading the page he sent and was wondering if anyone here has GAD and could maybe share your experience with how you''re dealing/dealt with it. The website says that the best treatment is cognitive behavioral therapy. Anyone been through CBT? What''s it like?
 

poptart

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May 23, 2006
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Oh I''m sorry you have to go through this. I know how you feel though, because I have the same problem (not diagnosed, but I''ve read about it before and have always fit the profile). It''s been exacerbated lately by the fact that my husband is on deployment. I used to have panic attacks in high school where I was convinced I was dying because I couldn''t breathe and my heart was pounding in my chest. But what I''m trying to say is, it gets better. For instance, I don''t have the attacks any more. I haven''t gone to a therapist for it since high school, and haven''t gone back because he was no help at all and I didn''t like him. He wouldn''t talk about the fact I was collapsing in the bathroom because of my panic attacks... he wanted to talk about me being adopted because his son was adopted. I didn''t like him one bit. So here is my advice... people often say, "Stop worrying, it''s fine and it doesn''t help anything." Problem is, you can''t shut your mind off. So, what I do is after I have crazy thoughts... like, last night, the communications on the ship were cut off so of course I thought, Oh my goodness, hubby''s in trouble, and I pretty much broke down. Every time I had a thought like that I followed it with, it''s not real, it is only my imagination making up a bad scenario. You just have to keep reminding yourself that YOU are creating a terrible situation in your head, and it''s not real. My grandmother has it too, and she has to take medicine for her nerves because she sometimes panics for no reason. Such as, my mom is late and hasn''t called, she must have been in a wreck (which is what I always think when she''s late too, haha). Also, make sure you get a therapist that will focus on YOUR problem. If you feel at all uncomfortable, find somebody else because it will only make things worse if you feel you can''t express yourself completely. Best wishes!

*M*
 

Mara

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From what I recall...CBT can be a variety of things, but it's basically working on your disorder with behavioral mental therapy rather (typically without medications (or sometimes in conjuntion with I would imagine if it's serious). It can be exposing yourself to things you know are anxiety triggers, then working with the anxiety to try to manage it knowing that you are anxious. It's a very mental process, aka using your brain to help identify, understand, and help your anxiety and triggers. It's pretty interesting because you end up having to really kind of test yourself with your triggers...I mean who really WANTS to trigger something that makes you feel bad? But it's more like you learning to control it rather than letting it control you. And in the end it might help you understand better what is causing it, how to fix it, what you respond to, what you don't respond to etc.

I would definitely seek out a good therapist that deals specifically with anxiety and believes more in doing CBT long-term, than just medicating you!
 

decodelighted

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Hey Robbie ... I wanted to write "don't worry too much about it" but then I realized the irony!
I come from a family plaqued with various anxiety disorders and have sought treatment over the years, both theraputic & medicinal. Here's the deal (from my perspective) -- just KNOWING what's going on & realizing you're not alone & realizing you're not "crazy" helps things alot almost immediately! Therapy will help you start talking back to your anxiety, testing for the legitimacy of the "fear" or "bad thought", learning ways to disengage "rushing thoughts". Once you build up a neat little toolbox of techniques ... life gets way calmer!


Here's one not-exact quote that helps me. "My life has been full of terrible tragedies ... a few of which ACTUALLY happened."
 

sumbride

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My FI has quite a bit of anxiety and also OCD issues though I don''t think he''s been officially diagnosed with anything. A doctor put him on Paxil once several years ago, and it worked, but then they took him off of it for fear or dependency, or something like that. They put him on something else and it only made him gain 40 pounds and sleep 12 hours at a time, which then made him anxious about his weight. So he''s not currently on anything and he definitely has some crippling attacks anytime things "go wrong". Like the rat thing I''m dealing with. I almost didn''t want to tell him about it because I knew he would flip, and he did. But I sort of talked him down telling him these things happen and that it will be ok. He''s realizing that, but it''s definitely hard on him. I don''t call him crazy or anything like that, just say "you''re making it out to be worse than it is." and he realizes he is, but he''s still freaked. And the OCD... when we had a problem with a sewer pipe in the basement (the plumber FORGOT to glue it) he wanted to sell the house! I talked him into general steps to fix the problem... like a wet/dry vac, some bleach, and a phone call to the plumber. I helped him find his way out of the mire of his mind to get something done.

I don''t have any "words of wisdom" other than seek help if you feel you need it. With all the wedding stuff, I''m really hoping my FI can get something for his short term attacks that will help him get through the year.
 

poptart

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Reading sumbride''s post also reminded me that talking with your FI about it can help, too. Just as sumbride has calmed her FI down, yours can do the same when you are feeling particularly anxious. I know that my DH has been so helpful because, although he doesn''t understand WHY the worrying occurs, he is able to help calm the anxiety. So talk to him to and explain all your thoughts, if you haven''t already.

*M*
 

robbie3982

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Thanks so much for the replies everyone! I think I like the idea of therapy over drugs. FI definitely knows what''s going on and is doing his best to try and calm me down when I get really worked up, but lately it''s been to the point where even he can''t help and I think that''s really worrying him because usually he can make everything all better.

Sum, your FI actually sounds quite a bit like my dad. I didn''t even think that my dad might''ve had this and gone undiagnosed all these years until I read your post. I think I''m going to send him the link, though I don''t know if it''ll do much good. He''s pretty anti-medicine and anti-therapy.

Thanks again everyone!
 

CrownJewel

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Hey Robbie, I''m sad to hear you''re so stressed. This post is going to include more info than most of my friends know about me...but I really want to help you. I''ve probably had anxiety problems since I was 8 years old and it gradually kept getting worse because I never did anything about it. I finally was diagnosed by a psychologist and psychiatrist 4 years ago. It took about 3 years to knead out all my worrisome habits with a therapist...and I still work on it on my own, using the CBT that the therapists helped me with. It took me a long time because I had a lot of issues stemming from my family being refugees from a genocide, and oh...a zillion other problems. :) It''s important to find a therapist that you actually like. I went through 4 of them over 3 years, and only had one that I liked. I got to meet with her for just 4 sessions, but I learned so much from her. She showed me that many of the worries I have are actually kind of funny...and OVERLY dramatic...so I learned to laugh at myself. This is basically the only thing that works for me. It may not work for anyone else. It''s also essential to give your therapist feedback. I told them that I did''t need them to act like a friend, I didn''t need them to tell me how smart and capable I am. So be sure to tell him/her what works for you and what doesn''t.

The medication is a whole other story that I won''t get into until you want to hear about it. The CBT helped me the most. Some people, like me, get so caught up in the fear of something going wrong that it''s paralyzing. I would tell her something like, "I get nauseous when the temperature goes about 80 degrees F. I can''t talk, I can''t work, I can''t think in the heat. I get so short-tempered in the summer." She would say, "so you''re still alive. How did you get through last summer? If you''re walking around in 90 degree weather and you start to feel sick, what can you do to make it better?" For me, I would get so caught up in the problem that I never even got to thinking about solutions. And usually the solutions are so obvious and simple. So now, I''m actually able to function in hot weather. I just think about getting to the next air-conditioned space. That way I don''t think about how sick I am anymore...now I''m conditioned to look forward to a cool drink or a cold store.

I hope that helps somewhat. Planning a wedding is EXTREMELY stressful...esp with your maniac cousin around! Obviously, if you need to hash out some of your worries before you can find a professional...I know there are some really nice people on Pricescope! My FI, friends and family were helpful, but would never have been able to help me in the way the therapists helped me.
 

robbie3982

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CrownJewel, I really appreciate you sharing so openly! I know this is a really personal subject that many people probably don''t like discussing. The reason I said I''d rather do therapy over meds is because I was on anti-depressants for a while. I was diagnosed (mis-diagnosed perhaps?) with depression 2 separate times while I was in college. Now I''m thinking it could have been a part of GAD. When I was starting the meds it made me so much more depressed, when I was on them I just felt really blah all the time like I couldn''t really experience any emotions and when I was coming off of them I was really depressed as well. Over all, not the best experience, but maybe that''s because it was the wrong medicine?
 

cnspotts

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You are really in a stressful place right now, I hope this will help a bit.

Okay, I''ll just put this out here since you want some info. This is definitely an individual issue and only you''ll know what is best for you but don''t rule out medication completely, apparently they''re much better than they used to be. I''ve never been one to pop a pill for anything and I still have the pills they gave me for my biopsy last March.

Having said that here goes...

I''m currently taking cymbalta for GAD, it is an anti-depressant that can prevent anxiety and panic attacks. I''ve been taking it for just over 6 weeks. I honestly can say I feel much better now and plan to take it for the next year while working my way through the things that set my anxiety in motion.

My doc also recommended Ambien to help me sleep since I''ve had years of off and on bouts of insomnia. I will say that this is the best thing ever...I only wish someone had suggested it earlier. I get a full 6 hours of sleep with no grogginess in the morning, it feels like I''ve had a full nights sleep and I''m ready for the day! It really works wonders for me.

This is what was happening to me and why I sought help.

The thing causing my GAD is that my husband changed careers last year; he went from being a nice safe business owner to being a police officer. Though he really loves it and it''s been a great move for him I''m having issues I didn''t realize because of it. A classmate of my husband''s was wounded a couple months ago on a call that my husband earlier in the day had responded to. The events that happened around that caused me bouts of extreme anxiety, and overwhelming feelings of helplessness, panic, etc. I found out that it''s impossible to have a "melt down" and get medication for it so I went through the process of getting help through CBT. Unfortunately this complicated my feelings and left me feeling as if no one understood my immediate needs which was to help my anxiety due to my husband''s new job and the very real reality that he could be hurt or die during work each day.

My first "therapist" wanted to discuss my relationship with my mother and felt we needed to explore that area before we could get to the present. I''m no longer seeing her. The current therapist wants to focus on my reaction response to the things that set the anxiety in motion. I''m learning to recognize these things and not let it "get to me" now which is helping greatly. My husband is participating in keeping those things he causes to a minimum like we thought it was a good idea for him to call me and let me know "he''s okay" when something happens at work (officer related). Well, I wasn''t getting the messages in exactly the right tone, or they forgot altogether then it became "there''s an emergency, call your husband". Now he just leaves messages on my cell phone.

A big part of my "feeling better" was acknowledging that I need a vacation and some time away with my husband. We''ve made some big changes in our lives and have yet to actually change pace with it. I also need to focus less on work (workaholic tendencies) and do other things that interest me. I''ve started scuba diving again, taken a citizen''s police academy class (helped me understand his job better) and signed up for a Spanish class. Just doing these things has improved my day to day feelings that where overwhelming me and creating more anxiety so I can focus on things that I need to do and want to do. I''ve organized our house, files, safe, planning our remodels and landscaping, and starting cooking again. All these things are good things and improve the way I feel about everything and my surroundings.
It''s all definitely a process each day but the single biggest boost has been the fact that I''m actually sleeping at night now. It''s so much easier to get through a stressfull day after a good nights sleep.
 

TravelingGal

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Thanks ladies for posting your stories, and Robbie for starting this up.

I think my cousin has SOMETHING...I thought it was depression but I am not sure. I want her to get help, but I haven''t figured out to bring it up yet. I know people won''t get help until they are ready...but I am sitting here watching her slowly destruct from the inside out. I can''t be her personal advocate much longer...I am simply not equipped to try to untangle a big ball of mess.
 

nejarb

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Hi Robbie,

I don''t think I have GAD anymore, but I was diagnosed with it in 2005. I think it was situational, and now that I''m out of the situation for the most part, my anxiety is not a problem anymore.

I never had ongoing therapy for it, or took meds--except for the 1 time that I went to the emergency room in the middle of the night and told them I was having a heart attack--I was convinced of this & when the dr told me it was just anxiety I was 180 degrees from anywhere close to believing that, and started crying b/c I thought I was going to die, so he gave me a pill and I was fine; but I never filled the prescription he wrote for more of the same.

I went to 2 internists/cardiologists after that saying that I needed EKGs or chest x-rays, and they both told me it was anxiety. Then I went to a (very expensive!) psychiatrist and he said the same. I finally started to believe it was anxiety and not a heart condition, but I still had the anxiety about the problems/stresses in my life. just not so much anxiety about my percieved "heart condition." (by the way, i was 25, vegetarian, non-smoker, healthy weight, etc., so you can imagine how silly these doctors/my fi/friends/etc thought I was)

I won''t bore you w/ details of the situation that caused my panic attacks & anxiety attacks, but I''ll just say that it was extremely difficult, sad, frustrating, and complicated. and draining. and it went on and on and on for a whole year before it started to get better. I''d like to suggest that you try to (1) remove some of the stresses in your life that are draining you and weighing you down, and (2) try relaxing more by finding some sort of meditation or breathing thing that really helps you--to counteract the effects of the stresses that you cannot remove from your life.

Therapy is helpful, and I''ve done it in the past for self-esteem/relationship issues I had in college. I probably would have done it for this anxiety stuff in 2005, but I really didn''t have the time or the energy and I also felt like I was equipped to deal with it on my own if I actually approached it the right way. For example, alot of the problem was being stuck between 2 people who I have good relationships with and care about, but who grew to hate each other--I was sort of a mediator between them and this was time-consuming and emotionally hurtful to me. so I let them know about my anxiety issues and that these conversations were a major source. they were both still unresonable and annoying, but less so than before. another thing is that I enlisted my fi to help me deal with these people. he became an agent of sorts. and he was actually really successful at this. So maybe you can get your guy to help you w/ some wedding stuff. or your mom/sister/dad, whoever. then you can focus more on work and you won''t be so stressed about that. another thing I did that really helped was try not to take on so much stuff--like the night I had the "heart attack," I was up at 3am drinking coffee and preparing to write a legal article for law review. but it was just too much for me, so I didn''t write it. I never wrote it. It was too much for me to take at that time in my life, with all the other stresses, so I just didn''t do it. and I think that that was a good decision. So maybe you can eliminate certain things in your life that are "just too much" for you. even if you think they''re really important, they probably aren''t as important as maintaining your mental and physical health and being a happy person.
 

diane5006

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Hi I posted before...but my post went poof...

As mentioned it can be situational...and intermittent

While I agree that avoiding meds is generally preferred...they are sometimes the best course for some patients...but there are only certain meds that are really apprvied for GAD...but hopefully you can avoid them...since thay take a while to work anyway...

One thing you might be able to do...is get the list of providers from your HR person and go ahead and make your appointment now...that way you won;t have a delay...sometimes there is wait to get in...sometimes just making the appointment helps
 

robbie3982

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Wow, I''m really glad that people are willing to share so much! Thanks for your stories! I''m really feeling a lot better since FI showed me the website and since hearing other people''s stories. I really felt like I was alone in what I was going through. It''s hard when it seems like everyone else is dealing with the stresses of life and growing up perfectly fine.

cnspotts, I think I''d like to try some type of sleep aid. The nights when I can''t sleep are the worst. I don''t seem to have problems falling asleep, but I keep waking up in the middle of the night worrying about something. I wasn''t a big fan of the therapy that I''ve had in the past, but it sounds like CBT is very different from the "so tell me about your father..." therapy I had.

TravelingGal, it sounds like you''re in a tough position. Some people can really take offense if approached the wrong way. I really felt like there was something wrong with me, though, so I was really happy that FI took the time to try and find out what it was. Amazingly, for someone who''s a total hypochondriac and is ALWAYS trying to figure out what all of my different "symptoms" mean I never even thought that everything that I was experiencing was a real disorder. If you''re close with your cousin I''d say you should try to talk to her about your concerns, but really stress that you''re just trying to help. I definitely went through a self-destructive phase in college, however, and refused to listen to anyone about what I was doing to myself. I think if someone had approached me by ignoring the self-destructive things I was doing and focusing more on the cause of it I may have been more receptive, but who knows.

Nejarb, I haven''t gone to the doctor for anything, but just the other day I was SURE that I had a blockage in the artery in my neck because I could feel it. I was freaking out about the surgery I was going to have to have and about how I might die. FI''s aunt just had to have surgery for that a few weeks ago. I''m 23 in good health, but I was SO sure. I was bawling to FI about how he wasn''t taking it seriously. It was like one part of my brain knew that I couldn''t have it because it didn''t make sense, but this other part just KNEW that none of that mattered because I had it. FI calmly explained to me that I wouldn''t be able to feel it and that it was just tense muscles (probably from being so stressed out!) and he talked me through calming down.

I think medicine might help me, but I don''t want to be on it forever, so I really want to learn how to talk myself down or avoid this thinking all together.
 

diamondfan

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I have GAD...I cannot sleep at night, always feel anxious, worry bad things are going to happen...I always had this tendency but having my father die when I was 15 and then having kids really made it worse. I feel a bit like I am at the mercy of things, and cannot control what happens, and it scares me...I see a therapist and I also very very occasionally take Xanax. I had some health scares and had to have some tests and closed MRI''s done, and needed the Xanax to get through the tests. I use it for flying too...It will get better, but I have major sleep issues and fears...not fun...
 

nejarb

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robbie, i can relate to that episode with your neck that you described. in fact, my fi and i were actually talking a few days ago about one of my episodes, and we were able to laugh about it now (comedy = tragedy + time, right?), but at the time, it felt like the worst moment of my life. i was 95% convinced that i was going to stop breathing if i fell asleep , like my breath was strictly a voluntary process and my diaphram would not contract on its own if i didn''t make it contract, but in case i was wrong (5% chance), i was willing to try falling asleep, but only if my fi would lick his hand and keep it under my nose to make sure i was breathing after i fell asleep. i explained this to him, and he refused. i was convinced that he didn''t care if i died or not. it was terrible. i think i was worried about my lungs b/c my dad had just died and he''d had lung cancer. this was before my "heart attack" episode--after that i was sure that i had heart disease.

i wish i had known what all this really was when it was happening. it just seems so insane now, and so not me. you''re lucky your guy found that info about GAD and showed it to you before you rack up a bunch of medical bills. it was only after i saw 4 MDs who all said it was anxiety that my guy thought to get online and learn more about anxiety. he was like "you''ve been up in the middle of the night on web-MD learning about the signs of a stroke, and you should have just looked up anxiety attack, like the 1st dr said at the emergency room!"

don''t let your anxiety-incudes hypochondria lead you down the wrong paths! and remember, this too will pass. i think abe lincoln said that?
 

diamondfan

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Robbie, I have a master's in psych so I will try to recall some stuff...

CBT involves the theory that if you THINK it, the behavior will follow. Meaning, if you are afraid, your behavior will support this, because cognition comes before action. If you are thinking calm and peaceful thoughts, you will not act in an anxious manner.

For certain distinct fears, such as a fear of flying, a CB therapist would try to desensitize you via different techniques. The two that I recall most vividly are in vivo, meaning in life, and flooding. In vivo means you actually participate in what you are afraid of. You might do it in baby steps, but the goal would be to eventually get you flying. You might start by thinking about planes, looking at photos of them, driving to the airport, etc...it would be gradual, culminating in actually boarding a plane and flying. Flooding is much more abrupt. If, for example, you were afraid of snakes, they might have you hold a snake. It would not a subtle build up to it. CB is not as concerned with historical stuff, what happened when you were a kid, unless a specific thing caused the current fear.

GAD is when certain more specific anxieties become generalized out to other scenarios, and it inhibits you from doing things...you are letting the fear (thought) influence your behavior in a negative way. You try to replace the fear with something else, because fear and calm cannot coexist simultaneously.
 

TravelingGal

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Thanks Robbie...yes, I am in a tough position. I don''t want to hjiack your thread, so I won''t say much more about it...
 

robbie3982

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TravelingGal, I promise I won''t get mad if you thread hijack
 

Beacon

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Oh this is interesting. I can relate to this; I am a very anxious person too.

It started with fear of flying, but has gotten worse. My mother died from breast cancer. I worry about breast cancer. Since I have cystic breasts they *feel* like breast cancer. It drives me insane. I have had it mammogramed and ultrasounded and the doctors seem to think I am ok. But, since I am such a worrier I wonder - hey, what if they missed it? What if they are wrong? It happens.

I have a fear of the IRS. I don''t do my taxes, my accountant does them. They are staggeringly accurate. But the IRS scares me and I had a panic attack from talking to them once. Lately this fear has waned and new ones, like the cancer thing, have taken it''s place.

I dump a lot of this on my husband. I get very worried and he has to listen to it. He has been really patient, but finally I could tell he was so stressed out by my ranting. He has a stressful job too. I realized that if he were dumping all his stuff on me I would really hate it, so I backed off. I think it is a good idea not to give your fiance all of your stress to handle. It''s hard.

A couple of things are helping. First, I quit all caffeine, alcohol, chocolate and candy. I don''t even take decaf coffee cause it is not 100% caffeine free. I do think I am sleeping better and my anxiety is improved.

Next I ramped up my exersize. I am in the gym 6-7 days per week. I''m not there for hours, just about 30-40 minutes. My goal is to make sure I get a good sweat. I vary it by doing treadmill plus doing group classes. Group class isn''t as active, but I like the concept of the group thing - sort of relaxing that we are all in the class doing what the teacher says - if that makes sense. I also do Tai Chi class which is very helpful. Exersize is really useful for fending off worries. Plus exersize is truly healthful, so it gives me a sense that I am helping myself - that there are *some* things I can control.

All of this made me lose some weight. So naturally I worried about that! (recycle to the cancer fear). I made sure to eat more to keep my weight up.

Sometimes I worry about things before I go to sleep. What I do then is just write all of them down. I write all the things I need to do down on a paper and leave it next to my bed. This way I know it will all be there for me in the morning and I don''t have to think about it at night. Maybe this would help you too.

I still have lots of anxiety. I guess I am a borderline hypochondriac. (Unless I am actually right about this, in which case I am vindicated). This reminds me of the "heart attack" of Nejarb. I can relate to that.

The more you worry, the more you are in the habit of worrying. If you constantly imagine bad things happening your mind gets really practiced at it.

I can conjure up a dozen disasters without any difficulty. I challenged myself, "ok, think of 10 really great positive things that could happen". It threw me. Pretty sad, huh?

We all have our demons. You are definitely not alone.
 

katebar

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Robbie I am a practicing clinical psychologist and certainly it sounds like you are having difficulty controlling some of your worrying thoughts and that these worrying thoughts are at times excessive and disabling. This is often an indicator of GAD.
But you have got a lot on your plate at them moment and these easily identified stressors that occur when planning a wedding are causing you to feel overwhelmed and I certainly think your threshold for coping with all that you have to do is really at its max and that this is making you very anxious.
I urge you to see your family doctor to make sure there is no physical cause to your symptoms then look at getting a referral to a psychologist for assessment. The psychologist should be able teach you skills to manage your anxiety and allow you to take responsibility for change and control over yourr thoughts, and feelings. Most CBT trained psychologists would use a combination of techniques that help you to actively identify and challenging worrying thoughts and to use behavioural techniques such as slow breathing and relaxation training (usually a form of progressive muscle relaxation) to control the physical symptoms of anxiety.
HTH take care



 

TravelingGal

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That''s a very thoughtful post Beacon, thanks for sharing. I can''t imagine what you go through.

Robbie, nah...I think this thread should be devoted to helping YOU.
Thanks though!!!
 

robbie3982

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Thanks for sharing Beacon and thanks Katebar for your take on everything. I just got my health insurance info from work yesterday so now I can find a doctor and schedule an appointment for when the insurance kicks in.
 

diamondfan

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Beacon, are we twins separated at birth?

I am the same way. But, I often base my fear on some obscure thing that will happen, then I start becoming focused on that, since it is now in my head. I worry about my kids to the point that I cannot sleep.

I also try to keep up the eliptical and work out, helps create a diversion. I try to let go of the scary thoughts but the mind seems to like to cling to those suckers. You are supposed to, in any cognitive approach, keep supplanting the bad thought with a good one, so eventually the bad thoughts cannot even form, but this is easier said than done, at least to me!
 

Beacon

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2,037
Wow Diamond Fan, nice to meet someone as worry-wart as I am!

My sister is similar to me. I don''t have any kids, but she has two and they have caused her huge worry. In the case of her son, it is justified as he has autism. Until she got him diagnosed she was nearly suicidal cause she thought something was wrong with him, but no one would believe her - they just thought she was over anxious!

She is a writer and lives in the UK. She was in the USA for her most recent book and something went wrong with her daughter in the UK. My poor sister was up for hours diagnosing her by google search. We all know what a *disaster* that is! Bottom line, the child had only a minor, minor problem that easily resolved. But I could relate to her total panic.

She bought a rental property and her husband nearly made her sell it right back cause it made her so anxious. She got a management company for it and it is ok now.

Both she and I make up these drawn out scenarios that have not happened and probably will not happen and then they almost become real in our minds.

My sister recently joined me on my caffeine boycott. Her husband insists she stay with it since she is much less anxious now. She only was tea drinker, but even the tea caffeine made her worse.
 

diamondfan

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 17, 2005
Messages
11,016
Beacon, I like to say that if worrying was an Olympic sport I would be a repeat Gold medalist...I have it to an art form. People who are not worriers simply CANNOT get it. I sort of think of it like an allergy, on one hand, there are things you can do for them, but you cannot help that you HAVE them to begin with. You need to find the proper treatments and avoid the triggers if you can. For me, my kids cause me some of my most intense worries...cannot avoid them, so I have to be very careful around them when I am panicked so I do not transmit it to them. I have had panic attacks on trips, just freaked out about being away from them and worrying about if they are okay...even though I have sitters and a nanny I still wonder if they are being as careful and or watchful as I would be...I worry every pain and ache is a deadly disease (though I do have chronic issues like fibromyalgia, migraines, IBS, etc)...each time I feel unwell I think I need CAT scans and MRI''s...which I have had, and thankfully they have not really found anything of substance, a bit of low blood sugar is all they have found in my bloodwork...but if I hear of someone dying of lung cancer and I have a cough for a while, I think I have it...Got my dog and started to worry about her, was she okay, etc, what did she eat, why did she get sick, great, another live thing to be worrying about...and I really did not want to medicate myself all the time, so mostly I just try to deal with it and find a way to not let it overcome me...much easier said than done!
 

Beacon

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2006
Messages
2,037
Maybe Robbie can learn from us - get on top of it early as possible, cause I do think it can get worse if left alone.

I find the busier I stay the less worried I might be. Even housework is helpful. Certain things don''t worry me at all. Business stuff, stock market, those things are my good buddies. Some people are anxious about those things, but my worry profile is different. Sometimes I worry about really stupid, imaginary things and I just seem to hold onto it for the longest time. I really dislike this.

You do sound like a champion worrier DF. I like your comparison to an allergy - that sounds spot on.

I know if I had kids I would worry about them an awful lot. It is good that you are trying to control yourself around them. I have to say, many of the worries I now possess seem like "gifts" from my mother. Early on she made me very nervous about certain things and they have grown over time. So it will help your kids if you can stay calm (ish) around them.

I am glad all your medical tests worked out fine. Too bad you don''t live in No. California, we could do a support group!
 

jesterjigger

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Apr 14, 2006
Messages
274
I''m not certain I *did* have it, since I seem ok now, but my first six months in Korea were torture. I''d cry myself to sleep everynight, feel overwhelmed and attacked every day at work...and that things were hopeless and my leadership would never do anything to back me up. I was depressed, and diagnosed with a heart murmur for the first time in the 25 years I''ve been alive. Then I started to feel dizzy. It started out that I just felt dizzy after eating large meals...but quickly spiraled into feeling dizzy all the time, though it was much worse when I was stressed out more than normal. The doctors didn''t know what was wrong with me. I didn''t know what was wrong with me, and just got more depressed as the dizziness moved in to the fourth week. I had EKG and ECG''s, nothing specific was found. Then I went back to the states for a total of three weeks, I still felt dizzy for the first week, since I was taking a class that just made me realize how bad things were in my current job. Then the next two weeks the dizziness subsided. Then I came back to Korea, and got a cat a week or so after returning. I haven''t felt nearly as dizzy or stressed out since (I also had one person leave right before my trip and his replacement is 1000000% better than he was). I guess I''m saying I understand. Something else that seemed to help me, though I didn''t start it until coming back, so I was already feeling much better, was Bach''s Rescue Remedy...it''s an herbal tonic that you use a dropper and put under your tongue. I would seriously check it out and try it...take it every day, twice a day if you want, that''s what I was doing...just make sure the herbs don''t react with medication you may already be taking. I''m not completely better...I still don''t really like going out and doing stuff after work, but I''m not as miserable when I do as I used to be. My first six months here I didn''t leave the room unless pried out by my fiance...I hope you find something that helps, but I think a lot of it will come with fixing the big issues in your life, or dealing with them, or working through them. Good luck!
 

Beacon

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2006
Messages
2,037
Jesterjigger - first let me say that I wish I had a poster of your avatar. It is so lovely!

Two different friends of mine went through dizzy spells. They were persistent and very disruptive to their lives. It turns out they had aquired some sort of infection in their middle ear which did not make fever or anything like that, but did give them terrible feelings of vertigo.

It does sound like your move to Korea was hard. Situational things like that can be very bad, especially when they are sort of pushed on you, like for your work.

I hope you are feeling better. Sorry to hear you have a heart murmur. Just be sure to let any dentist know about it before they do anything to your teeth, even a simple cleaning. Aside from that, a heart murmur is not too dangerous or even very uncommon.

I hope you situation in a foreign country improves. I am sure there must be some decent and interesting things in Korea to see so hope you can find some positives. I know it must be hard in a place where it is easy to feel isolated and you don't have all your support network. Hang in there.
 

katebar

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 20, 2006
Messages
1,566
Date: 1/13/2007 9:21:05 PM
Author: Beacon
Maybe Robbie can learn from us - get on top of it early as possible, cause I do think it can get worse if left alone.

I find the busier I stay the less worried I might be. Even housework is helpful. Certain things don't worry me at all. Business stuff, stock market, those things are my good buddies. Some people are anxious about those things, but my worry profile is different. Sometimes I worry about really stupid, imaginary things and I just seem to hold onto it for the longest time. I really dislike this.

You do sound like a champion worrier DF. I like your comparison to an allergy - that sounds spot on.

I know if I had kids I would worry about them an awful lot. It is good that you are trying to control yourself around them. I have to say, many of the worries I now possess seem like 'gifts' from my mother. Early on she made me very nervous about certain things and they have grown over time. So it will help your kids if you can stay calm (ish) around them.

I am glad all your medical tests worked out fine. Too bad you don't live in No. California, we could do a support group!
Beacon DF and any other posters who have shared their experiences of this disabling condition my heart goes out to you. I too had GAD as a child and teenager and know for certain my mother had it till they day she died. My son had it till he was 12 years old too. It was probably one of the reasons I did psychology because I wanted to find out why I felt the way I did.
Twenty years later I don't have GAD I don't panic and most people would I think assume that I am pretty laidback but I have worked very hard to acheive this. In fact there are still occasions where the old me comes back (For example my 18 year old has been Overseas in Canada and not contacting us at times) but I am able to quickly return to a rational and realistic and importatly accepting and living in the moment type of thinking.
I have seen psychologists myself over the years and this has certainly helped. I also believe that destressing tools such as meditation and exercise are so helpful for me in reducing the physical effects of anxiety so that one can really believe in the rational and realistic ways of thinking.
I also am a great believer in the use of Energy Psychology which involves tapping certain accupressure points when thinking about negative issues. I have seen some very impressive results with this form of therapy in particular the Emotional Freedom Technique of Gary Craig. I use this technique on myself and my family and some of my clients who are open to alternative ways of treatment.
Anyhoo I thought I would share this with you I know how dreadful it can be but I totally believe we are not destined to stay this way and can live the fantastic and non anxious way we are meant to live.
 
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