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Author Topic: Looking for some advice/reassurance  (Read 157 times)

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Offline Beck101287

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Looking for some advice/reassurance
« on: June 28, 2014, 10:25:40 AM »
Hi everyone - sorry for the long post just looking for some reassurance or similar stories :)

I've had anxiety for about 6 years now. I think it started when I first moved away to uni and I started getting weird symptoms and after (stupidly) googling I convinced myself I had MS. Fast forward 6 years and I've convinced myself I've had about 9 different diseases.. I'm now onto a new fear which is skin cancer. I don't have any moles on my body but i'm very fair and about 3 days ago I noticed what looks like a tiny brown freckle on the bottom of my index finger which just appeared. It doesn't look like anything sinister at all but obviously I googled and now I'm scared out of my mind. Weirdly I'd already made an appt to see the doc just before I noticed this so I will bring it up when I go.

I can't keep living my life like this replacing one fear with another it's driving me mad. All my friends are getting married/buying houses and having children and I'm still sat in my bedroom at my parent's house fretting over any symptom I get and worrying about the future constantly. This might sound really odd to a lot of people but I'm actually scared to start a relationship with someone and allow myself to be happy incase something bad happens.

 I come from a good home, have loving parents and good friends - I don't really know what triggered this way of thinking. I live away for my job but it's not the place I want to end up living for the rest of my life as apart from some friends in London and a few from my job I have no family there - I've never stayed in a job for longer that 12 months because I either get bored or don't like where I live.

Last night I went out for a friend's bday and I ended up drinking too much which has made my anxiety worse today - I even had a stupid little argument with my best friend (she was sober) and I felt so bad about it today - i've apologised to her but i've just spent the day crying about everything.

I don't want to sound like i'm self pitying because I know there are far worse off people than me - I'm really hoping the doctor will refer me for CBT as I've never tried therapy but i'm not sure about tablets - I just want to start living my life properly and not worry over everything!

Thanks for reading - any advice/similar stories/reassurance would be great! x
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Offline kconnors

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Re: Looking for some advice/reassurance
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2014, 11:46:52 PM »
Hi,

I have found from personal experience that until I got to the triggers of my anxiety, I would skip from one type of health anxiety to another and back again . . . and, yes, googling is the worst you can do because anxiety brain loves to have new information . . . it does not care if it is right or wrong for the specific person, it is simply something more to work with to create anxiety . . .

Now, the good thing is that you are going to the doc . . . and looking at CBT which did a lot for me . . .different meds work differently for different people and so too do different therapies work differently for different people, but I do find CBT of great value . . .

You need to stop judging yourself by what your friends are doing . . . you need to deal with you and where you are at this specific moment . . .and I think that you are doing that because you know your anxiety is not healthy and not the lifestyle you want . . . right now, I think you need an outside objective point of reality to help you break out of the pattern you are in . . . . sometimes even a negative pattern can be a comfort zone because change can be scary but it can also the the opportunity . . . so, bottomline for me would be to get some professional help . . .you may need to try a couple of different counselors to find one that aligns with your needs, but remember it is your life so you need to take charge as difficult as this may be . . .and also remember that this is not a quick fix but a process that may have roadblocks, but we are here if you think we can support you . . .

As for alcohol . . . stay away from it because it most often does intensify anxiety and when anxiety comes into play, well, sometimes our judgment is not that great and the effects last much longer than any hangover . . . .you had an argument with your best friend . . .if you are truly best friends, then you apologized so let it go . . . . but if your best friend doesn't need to be drunk, then why do you? Obviously, you have a best friend and that is support that is hard to replace so nurture it . . .

You are not self pitying yourself if you are willing to do something to change where you are at this point in time . . . and you are doing that . . . you have a health issue . . . whether it is better or worst than someone else is really not the point . . . for you, this is a health issue of significance . . . . has nothing to do with self-pitying . . . it has everything to do, though, with taking charge of your live and taking care of your health . . . as for a long post . . .you can make your posts long or short . . .whatever you want . . .sometimes when we write a lot, it helps us to objectify and externalize what is going on inside of us and that often is a great help . . . check in with us whenever you can . . .take care, kc
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Offline NightFox

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Re: Looking for some advice/reassurance
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2014, 09:16:27 PM »
Hi,

I have found from personal experience that until I got to the triggers of my anxiety, I would skip from one type of health anxiety to another and back again . . . and, yes, googling is the worst you can do because anxiety brain loves to have new information . . . it does not care if it is right or wrong for the specific person, it is simply something more to work with to create anxiety . . .

Now, the good thing is that you are going to the doc . . . and looking at CBT which did a lot for me . . .different meds work differently for different people and so too do different therapies work differently for different people, but I do find CBT of great value . . .

You are not self pitying yourself if you are willing to do something to change where you are at this point in time . . . and you are doing that . . . you have a health issue . . . whether it is better or worst than someone else is really not the point . . . for you, this is a health issue of significance . . . . has nothing to do with self-pitying . . . it has everything to do, though, with taking charge of your live and taking care of your health . . . as for a long post . . .you can make your posts long or short . . .whatever you want . . .sometimes when we write a lot, it helps us to objectify and externalize what is going on inside of us and that often is a great help . . . check in with us whenever you can . . .take care, kc

Boy, don't I know it. I'd imagine the majority of anxiety sufferer's can attest to that. For a lot of people, Google is like an endless forest ready to be chopped in order to fuel your anxiety fire. When I'm having an anxiety episode (like I am now) my brain will latch onto seemingly anything negative or frightening. Whether it's a medical site, forum posts, doesn't matter. If something is in there that has the slightest possibility of me going, "*****, what if I have that? What if that's happening to me!" my brain will hold on for dear life. I'm having my first real setback in 6 or so years, but during the time I was more or less anxiety/irrational fear free. Slowly, but surely I retrained my brain to realize what's rational fear and what isn't. Hell of a battle, but I did it. I didn't go entirely down the medicinal route as I'm not too fond of those sorts of drugs, but everyone is different. With that said, I was prescribed a very low dosage of Xanax which I liked to call, "miracle in a bottle." When my anxiety was seemingly unbearable I'd pop a Xanax, calm down and realize that everything is OK. That was enough to help me stay on track in terms of recovery. I didn't take it that often, but it was so reassuring to know that I had something to fall back on if it became overwhelming.

I overcame my anxiety once, so I'm sure I can do it again. And so can you. The fact that you're aware of your problem, want to seek help (CBT to be exact) and are willing to try and overcome this... well, you can't ask for much more on your end. It's a great place to start. I find it's also impossible to try and reason with yourself as to why you have anxiety/anxiety related issues. That's half the reason I'm so frightened right now because I haven't experienced anxiety like this in a half-a-dozen years so I ask myself, "Why? Why now?" This then further fuels my anxiety because I don't have a "logical" explanation so instead my brain finds illogical/irrational explanations instead. Which again increases my anxiety. I can completely empathize with you in regards to latching on to different diseases/fears. Over the years I've been convinced I've had plenty of issues. Tumors, stomach cancer, opiate addiction, I was going crazy/have a serious mental condition, rabies (I remember a bat wandered into my home one evening and I was convinced I had contracted rabies which threw me into anxiety hell), the list goes on and on. So far, none of those things have come true and I first developed GAD in 2006! That's what you have to keep reminding yourself. It's been what, 6 years and you've jumped from disease to disease? Yet nothing has happened. I realize it's much easier said than done, but I've found the more you can hold onto some sort of tangible evidence that you're OK, the more it helps with recovery. That's just me, though. Anyway, good luck with your CBT! You'll make it through.
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