I'm new here (obviously) and I can't tell you what a relief it was to find this forum. I'm 27 years old and have had problems with anxiety since I was a young child. I've not been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder and I am very lucky that I am able to function normally on a daily basis. However, since I was a sophomore in high school, I have gone through long periods of intense worry about my health. I have spent 9 out of the past eleven years convinced that I had a terminal illness. I've spent the past 3 years thinking I only have a month to live. A small part of me knows this is ridiculous, but I have an intense fear of going to the doctor, so I have been stuck fearing my imminent demise but unable to take any steps to prevent it. I have lost relationships over these issues in the past and have found myself in a place with few friends and little passion for living.
I started seeing a counselor a few months ago to try to get some perspective on my life. I'm not sure how much it has helped, but he did encourage me to do some research on my own to try to put a name to my...issues. That lead me here and, low-and-behold, there are people out there with what sound like the exact same fears as mine. I wish I would have found y'all years ago. I am looking forward to learning from your experiences and sharing some of my own.