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Author Topic: Worst. Semester. Ever.  (Read 365 times)

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Offline breathefree

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Worst. Semester. Ever.
« on: May 16, 2014, 01:06:48 AM »
I haven't been on here in a while so I'll start with a potted history of my anxiety (ha, it sounds like some kind of pet). Diagnosed when I was ~12 after bullying at school set off huge panic attacks at the thought of going to class; taken out of school at 13 and homeschooled through to university. Did one degree extramurally, then decided it was time to get my act together and got counselling - now 4 years into a second degree in Law, feeling a lot better and way more capable, though still with a tendency towards panic attacks in times of stress and high levels of anxiety.

Anyway, this semester started out okay but has been basically full of triggers, one after the other -- having to read stuff out in class every other day, having a horrible lecturer be consistently unhelpful and mean, an awful group project in which I did more than my fair share and exhausted myself -- and I've been waking up with what seem to be panic attacks every morning. My mum convinced me to go to the docs today to check it wasn't anything physical (which has sent my HA spiralling off gibbering about leukaemia and diabetes...just what I needed) and I'm going in tomorrow to get some blood-work done, plus I've seen a couple of counsellors at my university's health centre but they have limited long-term appointments available per student and you basically only get whoever's on duty, which is not really what I need. I have three major assignments coming up that I just don't feel capable of working on, which is fuelling my anxiety and stress, and I don't feel like anyone gets it; one of the counsellors I went to essentially told me to stop being silly and just deal with it, and the doc heard the word anxiety and proceeded to give me a lecture on how I shouldn't be there and should go and see a psychiatrist and I just needed to calm down. I'm scared I'm going to fail everything because I'm too upset and distracted to get any work done but there just doesn't seem to be anything I can do about it. I know I should pull my socks up and just keep plugging on, as there are only a few weeks left in the semester, but all I want to do right now is sit in a corner and cry :traurig001:
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Offline AcousticDad

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Re: Worst. Semester. Ever.
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2014, 09:11:05 AM »

I can relate.  I don't know that my attacks or anxiety feel the same as yours, but I have been in that same situation.  My last year of college was filled with lots of work, stress, and pressure.  I really pushed myself.  Of course, in addition to my degree...I was diagnosed with Crohn's disease.  Takes the fun out of finishing up.  But it taught me a lesson.  You can push yourself to far.  And sometimes putting on a brave face and digging in won't always make things better.  We aren't machines.  We are humans.  And unless your a soldier in battle, the only life you risk is your own.

It's easy for people to say not to worry or that you are being silly.  They don't understand.  Ignore them.  Listen to your gut. 

My opinion (and only that) may be trying one of these ideas I have used to get past trigger areas:
1) See if you can break down these assignments (or worries) into smaller chunks.  Set small goals that are attainable.  Don't look at it as a overwhelming challenge, but a series of smaller ones.

2) In regards to classroom issues, imagine you are an actor in a movie.  Play the role of a confident and courageous hero.  This sounds silly but it worked for my wife you had terrible social anxiety. And remind yourself that everything that happens was part of the plot.  Do not let any of it get to you.  When you leave class, try to leave those events there.

3) You sound like an intelligent and determined person or you would have made it this far in your education.  Give yourself more credit. But remember, it's okay if you do not ace something.  Sometimes we put some much pressure on ourselves that we cannot possibly reach our expectations.  You are so close to the finish line.  You can make it.  W are all rooting for you.  Do what you need to do to get there.  You do not need to win (metaphorically), just finish.

Hope that helps.
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