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Thread: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    I also believe the reason we look for excuses not to go out is because we feel most safe in our home. That is our comfort zone and the place we would want to be if we were to go into full blown panic mode. I'm sure others will relate to this too. Kitti [/QUOTE]

    This is the biggest mistake I have made in 32 years of having this illness. I got into a comfort zone by only ever feeling moderately stable at home instead of pushing myself more.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    , , United Kingdom.

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    Very true ricardo. Graded exposure therapy and 'baby steps' are the way foward. I have been able to extend my small comfort zone using these methods but the key is facing our fears and staying in the situation until our anxiety reduces itself naturally (which of course it will eventually). Not easy at all, but it's how my therapist taught me to face some of the situations and places that scared me.
    "Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn"

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jul 2012

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    I'm loving this thread

    It's such a comfort just to know that there are a few of us about with agoraphobia, it's not quite so isolating then.

    Well my story is a pretty long one so I will condense it down.

    I believe that all my anxiety and panic and fear started off in my childhood, I was a very frightened child for most of the time. The thing is, when I was frightened as a child, I was having no positive input or help from anyone, so I just learned that anything and everything that I was frightened of, was to be avoided at all costs.

    Okay, life went on and I grew into adulthood, a few ups and downs but nothing too terrible. I worked full time and managed to support myself and life was pretty tickety boo

    Fast forward again and I got married and a couple of year later had my first child, a Son. Although I got a bit of the "baby blues" in the first few weeks, I managed and life carried on pretty much normal.

    A couple of years later gave birth to my second born, a Daughter, and, unfortunately, this time I developed severe post natal depression within 8 weeks of her birth and I became so ill that I had to be admitted to hospital where I stayed for 7 weeks.

    I believe it was the post natal depression that kicked off my anxiety and acted as a trigger.

    On the whole I recovered from the depression, but was left with a low level of anxiety, I was aware of it, but on the whole, I coped and managed.

    In the 1990's I, sadly, suffered a complete nervous breakdown and was once again admitted to hospital for a 6 week stay. This is the time that my anxiety really reared it's ugly head!!!!.........but I still didn't become agoraphobic.

    I went back to full time work when my children were teenagers and, once again, all was fine apart from an unhappy marriage.

    I left my marriage, still continued to work full time, I needed to be busy at that time, and I coped with life as best as I could.

    I then decided I wanted to further my career. So I started a computer technology and an administration full time course. I really enjoyed the course, loved it in fact and I made some good friends while there.

    I was just undertaking my exams when BAM!!!!!!! A full blown, terrifying panic attack hit me on the walk home one evening, I have never experienced anything so petrifying in my life.........I thought I was going to die in the middle of a very busy street

    This was the start of my agoraphobia, as the panic attacks kept coming every time I was out, so in the end, I just would not go out any more. The world then became this "big, black, horrid and scary place" I went back to what I had learned back in my childhood......."if something scares just don't do it"!!!!!

    This has lead me to being 100% housebound from 2004 right up until last year. I'm now doing the CBT4PANIC via NMP and I'm happy to say that I'm making steady progress with it, it's a lot of work, really hard work, but it's so worth it, finally, I feel that I might be getting my life back on track once again and it's a nice feeling too.

    I still have a long way to go, but I will get there in the end

    I hope this explains me and my history without boring you all half to death

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Mar 2011

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    I have a mentour who helps me out when I feel really bad and he replys really quickly to me and he is a you lad in South Africa and he has covered in his emails to me most of the feeling that are discussed on this thread.

    And he is studying how anxiety works as he is a fellow sufferer I will post what he has said to me on here it is stuff that we hear from places like cbt but he puts it in a way that is more understandable because he is also using the same advice.

    If this makes any sense
    Last edited by xtremx; 15-02-13 at 23:31.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2007

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by nomorepanic View Post
    Steve - how many sessions for 250

    Who told you CBT wasn't available there? The NICE guideline say everyone has have an option of CBT.
    One session.... Just one. That's the price you pay for private.

    I've lived in Cardiff for years and tried getting CBT several times and every time I've heard the same thing. I did have the option to wait 12 weeks for a councillor. In the state I was and still am in, I needed things done now.

    I think it's awful. I was lying hopelessly on my bed for 5 days, in constant fear and panic, crying uncontrollably, thinking about self harm and suicide. I rang my GP who came out and just told me to keep taking diazapam. I rang NHS direct LOADS and the best they could offer me was details on free book prescription service, I rang anxiety helplines, I rang a panic attack helpline where a woman just told me to breath, I rang Samaritans, who were more useless than anyone.
    There is absolutely nothing available. That's why my 71 year old father has had to come up and stay with me for 2 weeks and my nearly retired mother has had to double her shifts at work to afford for me to get help. They can't see me suffer like this for 12 weeks and I don't think I would be alive if they hadn't intervened over these last weeks.

    It's outrageous. I just thank god I have parents like this who would rather go bust than see me like this. When I'm able to return to work I will make sure I pay every single penny back to them.
    "I'd Rather Live Than Live Forever"

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread


    I live in Spain and the going private rate for CBT (or any other therapy) sessions on a one to one basis for a group of 4 lessons is 280 euros which is approx 235.00 .

    I may add that private medical treatment is extremely expensive but all forms of dentistry is half the price of the UK

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    I think it's nice to have an agoraphobia thread, think someone else started one a couple of years ago, not sure what happened to it!

    Like many others I think I've been anxious all my life but thought how I felt was how everyone else feels, little did I know.

    I was 15 when my anxiety began to interfere with my life so I always use that age as when it started. I had my first panic attack when I was 16 and that was back in 1971 and I can still remember it vividly.

    Despite developing agoraphobia around that time I managed to be what I can only describe as a functioning agoraphobic for quite a number of years. I could get the tube into the centre of London to get to the office, but was unable to walk from the tube station to the office as there were no places to seek help if I had a panic attack

    Somehow I managed over the years to get married, have a child, ended up divorced and then spent about 7yrs hardly leaving the house.

    I'm now living with my partner of 15yrs, who I have to say is very understanding of my agoraphobia. I can get out but not really on my own. However it's nice to be able to do some of the things that people without agoraphobia take for granted, like just being able to go round the supermarket and pick my own groceries.

    I haven't had a holiday since 1973 and it still makes me sigh when I hear people go on about how much they "need a holiday" when compared to most of us their lives are blessed as they don't suffer with this awful condition. I'd love to just be able to go out for the whole day, never mind go away on holiday!

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    you bring up a number of points that I can associate with very well.
    Firstly I have been lucky that my wife has stood by me for thirty two years and it has restricted her life and our life and our children's lives as we have never really done anything outside the home together.

    It would be nice to just do normal things that others do without even thinking, like go for a walk, just get in a car or just go out on impulse anywhere.

    Where I differ is that I have had bouts of this condition. We moved over here for a number of reasons and one was the weather which is meant to lift depression and also to give us a quality of life which was completely different to London. That move in itself was like a military operation and was done in stages.

    I play bowls have done since I was thirty on and off and my wife would take me and collect me a couple of times a week and I enjoyed it and am also quite competitive.

    Last march I had a major panic attack on the bowls green and had to stop playing during a league match. Someone phoned my wife and it seemed like an enternity until she "rescued" me.

    A few days later our daughter got ill with numerous problems and to this day even though she has seen countless specialists she is not much better and it had a dramatic effect on me that I haven't left the house (bar doctors and dentist). for 11 months.
    So I seem to have spasmodic agrophobia .

  9. #29

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    My agoraphobia kicked off when my first son was born and I got post natal depression,I couldn't do the normal day to day things that a mother would usually enjoy,I couldn't leave the house without having a panic attack,I had no idea what had happened to me,my mother also passed away whilst I was pregnant,so when I finally gave birth all sorts of emotions just took over me,I thought I was going crazy,I was put on medication but it didn't seem to help my partner at the time was a volatile person also and I had no one to talk to,so I turned to alcohol..biggest mistake of my life!,I found the alcohol cured my fear of leaving the house and curbed my anxiety..short term relief!,I ended up drinking every day and functioning for a while I had 3 more children which was selfish of me really as I obviously had developed a drinking problem,any way to cut a long story short I couldn't no longer manage looking after my children under the influence I wasn't drinking to get drunk the alcohol just took the edge off my panic and I was able to go out as long as I had a drink,people started to smell the alcohol on me,social services got involved as I was also being physically abused by my partner also..9 years later I lost my children as they were put Into care I was now an alcoholic,my drinking spiralled out of control for one year after that,and it was to late to get my children back,they got put up for adoption,except my eldest son who was placed with a guardian,I am now 7 months sober and fighting to get my son back,my agarophobia is still here,I can only leave the house with my new partner,I'm taking 100mg of sertraline and on the waiting list for c.b.t..hoping this helps me!,thanks for listening guys! X

    ---------- Post added at 12:25 ---------- Previous post was at 12:13 ----------

    I totally admire people on this site for coping with anxiety and phobias,as I took the wrong route probably the cowards way out by turning to alcohol,it was the biggest mistake of my life,as at the end of the day I've lost everything and all I'm left with is my anxiety and agoraphobia,if I would of known then what I no now,things would of been so different!

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Jul 2012

    Re: 2013 Agoraphobia Thread

    Ricardo I agree with you about our "comfort zone's"

    The thing you have to watch though with that, is that I found that my comfort zone became smaller and fact sometimes, I wouldn't want to leave my bedroom to go downstairs I found I was becoming more and more restricted, my world was getting smaller and smaller

    The common thing with all the agoraphobics that I know, is that we all make that fate full mistake, and that is, we all "stop doing" and we all "stop going" That plants the first seed of the "big, black and bad forest" that we end up trapped in

    My advice to anyone who suffers with panic attacks or anxiety while they're out is......please DO NOT stop "going" and "doing" to take this action is to just confirm to ourselves, mistakenly, that there is something to be frightened of

    impulse.....I'm so sorry that you've suffered so badly with your agoraphobia.
    I can see how turning to alcohol, for anyone who suffers with panic and anxiety, is a very easy route to go down, many have fallen into that trap in order to try to relieve themselves of the awful symptoms of panic. Trouble is, you then end up with yet another problem which will need to be addressed.......alcohol is a short term fix for a long term problem I will freely admit to you all now, that several times, I have been tempted to have a drink in order to be able to go out......thankfully, I chose not to do that, but I really do understand just how easy it is to go down that route when seeking relief.

    Thank you to everybody that is taking part in this most interesting thread

    It's sometimes really hard to talk openly about our issues and it takes some bravery to do that

    I think we are going to all learn a lot from this thread, I know I am already

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