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Keiths story

Hi just wanted to let other people know about my personal experiences of anxiety.

My anxiety started as from when I was very young. In fact I’ve not really known any different than being anxious all the time. It’s only the last couple of years, I’ve learned that it doesn’t have to control you all the time. That’s not to say I don’t get anxiety because it still causes me massive problems but I now do things I wouldn’t dream of doing 20 years ago

……. I remember at school and when I was around other people who weren’t my immediate family, always describing me as shy. Now I look back, this is possibly the worst thing they could of done for me, as it meant I could use the tag as an excuse for my behaviour. Not that I was a naughty child, but I had massive difficulties trusting people, always felt inferior to people, I avoided places and people where I knew I would get anxious.

This got to the point where I would cross roads, go out of shops and peer round corners so to avoid seeing these people. I had a thing where I would never make eye contact with anyone other than close family. I only knew this to be rude, when a teacher told me off for it. It was like I had to do something I just couldn’t do. By this point my parents were told I should see a child psychologist by the school. Of course I point blank refused to see one, because of the anxiety and the attention it would bring. The irony of it!.

I somehow struggled through school, with a couple of friends I trusted but couldn’t really trust 100%. I was told I came a little out of my shell in
the last couple of years but still was far too shy and lacking in confidence. I avoided looking for a job because I was so anxious of working, instead
did a course at college I wasn’t interested in to avoid looking for one. I somehow managed to get a part time job at a local supermarket and
struggled through that until I left college. I then drifted into a really rubbish job packing contact lenses because I knew my anxiety would
increase if I did a good job. I managed to get a job at a payroll company but even that caused me to go off ill because I had to answer phones and that has been a major problem for me. Whilst I was off, I begged the doctor to let me do something where I could overcome my irrational fears. He recommended CBT but his 6 months I’d have to wait has turned into 18 months and still no start date. I’ve tried to do some work myself but I know I cannot do it all on my own. Its frustrating for me as I want to overcome this.

Keith