I wanted to start off by saying that I hate the holidays. This time of the year is really difficult for me because I have a small family with alot of addictions, abuse, and loss. I lost both of my parents when I was 11 years old, so the holiday season is a harsh reminder of reality. Now that I'm 18, it has become stressful because many of my family members now expect me to step up and buy presents, host family parties, and drop all of my responsibilities to participate in christmas activities. Lately, this has made me stressed out and on edge. To make matters worse, the majority of my family does not understand anxiety and thinks that I just need to "get over it". They think that I'm doing this to myself, which is ridiculous. Who would put themselves through this?
About a month ago, my Dziadzie (grandfather) died. This has caused alot of tension in my family and alot of pressure on me. In my mind, he was the only connection I had to my mother's family, so in a way my family has gotten smaller and smaller. It's very hard going through this when you feel like you don't have anyone.
Any way, I have a family party to go to so I'll probably make another diary post when I get home.
bye guys xx
I sometimes feel as though I cannot breathe. I have had two anxiety attacks in the past year, the only ones I have ever had. But when I get anxiety, my heart beats fast. I begin to flush, and avoid eye contact with anyone near me. I fidget and get sweaty. But more than the physicals, I am so deeply terrified of whatever is giving me this anxiety that I can barely even act rationally. Simply biking though my neighborhood is a stressful experience. I wonder if the people outside are judging me, and whenever a car goes by, my throat closes up. I do anything to avoid crossing the street while a car is waiting. Talking on the phone is terrifying to me, as well as interacting with little children when their parents are present.
I cannot explain any of this to you, or why it happens. But it makes me feel very alone. I've never met someone with G.A.D. before, or talked to someone with it. I have considered going to a group therapy for anxiety as well as psychotherapy but none are around me that I can find. If you suffer from generalized anxiety disorder, or any anxiety disorder at all, you can talk to me. I'd be very grateful. And that really goes for anyone struggling. I've also suffered from major depression and so I have insight and experience into that, although I'm not in any way a doctor or psychologist, I can give my advice.
Anyway, I wish you luck in your recovery, and if you want you can talk to me.
Alright, so I remember about two years ago stupid me met someone from the internet. He had my number, my facebook, and my info from another site. It started out simply enough, going to meet someone you met online for a date. Then I got pressured in to kissing him, and I got caught up in the moment, though it never passed kissing, I let the date go on for far longer than I should have, and kissed more times than I should have. I then regretted it horribly the next day after having heavily mixed feelings. I rejected him....and then the cyberstalking began. Calls every day, repeated texts. I blocked him on the site I had first met him on, then he started talking to me on facebook. I blocked him there. Then the phone calls got more intense, happening more and more often. My ex who I was friends with came to my rescue and told him to back off. My stalker then began to make things seem like they had gone further than they had. I was called a slut, a dirty whore. Names I wouldn't even dream of calling anyone. He tried to ruin my reputation. At the time I was a devout, churchgoing Christian so no one believed him. He harrassed me day and night. I began crying whenever a call came up on my phone. I had told my dad, a retired police officer, who eventually picked up my phone during one of the calls and threatened him with a restraining order. He backed off... enough. I moved states and got engaged, changed my number. I felt safe knowing I was states away from the man who once stalked me. Two years later I moved back to where I had lived during the stalking. I got yet another number and broke off my engagement. I applied and got accepted to a four year university, which is unfortunately a few miles away from where I first encountered my stalker. Already having an anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, did not help as I began getting nervous for no logical reason in my new location and school. I went and changed my drivers license back to the state in which I now lived. In the process, I drove by the very place in which I first saw, and met, the man who ruthelessly cyberstalked me for what felt like years, but amounted to months. I began hypervenhilating and a panic attack hit. I struggled to regulate my breathing as I tried to drive as far away as I could get from the location. I shrugged it off once I got home and was able to calm my shaken self down. I curiously reentered the site in which I first encountered my cyberstalker a few days previously, and had expected his profile to still be blocked. I got a message from him anyway. A simple "hey" was all it took for me to frantically block his profile again, and consider my options. After the panic attack in the car, I have been seriously considering what to do. My choices have thus been: get therapy, take a self defense course, and make sure I have pepper spray at all times. I only feel safe on campus. Unfortunately, the damage he did has been done, and online dating has become impossible. I become terrified of meeting someone to the point in which I would have to take my anxiety medicine to stop the severe panic attack, which prevents me from driving. Meeting anyone of the opposite gender from online has become impossible. I wish time and time again that this had not occurred, that he would have gotten a sentence, something, anything, to make him understand what he did to me. I try to move on and make the anxiety fade on my own, as I have done many times before. Years without needing therapy has boiled down to me needing it worse than I could have ever expected he would have done to my mental state. I know what I have to do, but admitting you need help is often harder than you think.
I have GAD.
That's generalized anxiety disorder. I don't even need a valid diagnosis from a doctor, I just know I have it.
There are 'voices' in my head that always talk and bug me about the future, mixing up my thoughts and making me confused. I always worry about what other people think of me, and I always think that I'm a burden and the kid that nobody likes.
I'm never happy anymore.
I'm always tired and miserable, and I'm starting to become comfortable with it. I'm starting to become comfortable in wallowing in my own misery. It's a double lose, because I don't want to put effort into changing anything because I'm always tired and fatigued, but I always complain about how ugly I am and how nobody probably likes me and how I'm probably just a burden and then I catch myself complaining and I complain about how I complain so much and it's an endless loop of pointless thoughts and I just want to stop. thinking.
But I don't want to kill myself or self harm. I'm not going to lie, sometimes I think of what it would feel like to bring a knife to my skin, but I tell myself to shut up and I tell myself that complaining and wallowing all the time is much better than trying to hide scars from your friends and family.
It doesn't make me happier, but I don't want to cut anymore.
I never understood why people worried about their self complexion and had existensial crisises in elementary school. Now I do. I learned the hard way.
I just really want to be happy again.
As many of you know, I am currently in an intensive group therapy program. Its five days a week Monday-Friday. Tomorrow is the final day of my 10th week. I have come such a long way over the past 10 weeks. During my intake interview for this program I was challenged to set 3 goals. One of the biggest ones for me was opening up to people in order to et them support me. From day 1 I have been completely open with the people in this group. I guess it also helps since I'm there for a reason. In about week 2 or 3, I was doing some anxiety research online and stumbled across this website here.
At first I thought it might be awkward since I didn't know anyone else on here. I thought it would be like facebook where u may have over 500 "friends" but only comment on maybe 3 people's things. I didn't really know if I would stay on here or if it was just a one time thing. The next day, I was reading my email and I had a bunch of notifications from this site saying that people were commenting on my posts, adding me as a friend and messaging me. It was an awesome feeling. I noticed very quickly that it is socially acceptable for anyone to comment on other people's posts here.
A few weeks later, I saw someone post a link for tiny chat. I tried logging in a few times and nobody else was ever online. Fast forward to today and I have a pretty good idea as to when I can expect people to be online.
A lot of people in my therapy group feel anxious after the group and on weekends. I don't have to worry about that because I can come here to a whole other group.
A lot of people feel very nervous when they get past the 6 week mark in the program since they are working on transitioning out and it can be uncertain (also we can't have any communication with any of the others until we have both completed the program). I am ecited about finishing. I had 2 awesome people graduated when I was in week 5 and I haven't been able to see them since. I am looking forward to seeing them. Also I have my ASN people to rely on.
Week 11/12 next week. Time to start getting my life back on track. I'm totally ready for the next 2 weeks :)
Today in therapy, I ended up re-sharing somthing because one of the therapists was away the day that I shared it. She pointed out how every time I talk I sit extremely still and it does not look natural. I explained that that is the result of many years of training myself not to move. I did this because my hands and feet were always moving as a kid. My mom always told me it was a bad habbit that I needed to fix because starting bad habits at a young age would lead to bad habbits as an adult. When I was around 9 I was still moving too mcuh, so I was taken to many doctors to see what kind of disease or disability I had. Years later, I was told that I had a very minor neurological movement disorder, but nothing was serious and about it and it really didn't make any difference in mine or anyone else's life. After that, my mom was pretty satisfied that there was a somewhat diagnosis and I just moved on with life.
It really doesn't seem like a huge life event to me so I don't really think about it much. I was telling the psychiatrist in my group about it and right away he says "the reason you weren't getting anywhere with medical docotrs is beause that isn't a disease or disability. That's a very common way that children show anxiety". That totally makes a lot of sense. It's a scary thought that I could have possibly had surgery, taken drugs, or who knows what else for something I didn't have. I am very thankful that the doctor's back in the day basically gave a "we couldn't think of anythng else" diagnosis and left it at that. Imagine how much worse things could have been if they had tried to go on treating me for something serious when there's nothing there.
It also feels pretty good to know that I did not have a bad habbit, or anything else that I was told I had. Its also comforting to know that this is yet another aspect of my life that is going to get better as I get more control over my anxiety.
Today was a bit rough in terms of anxiety. Tomorrow is the start of my 8th week in therapy. I decided to take some time to look at the handouts I have accumulated over the last 7 weeks. A lot of these handouts are CBT related. For those of you who do not know Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is one of the best and most popilar types of therapies out there. It can also be applied to almost anything. It can be used by someone witha severe anxiety disorder or even someone who just wants to eat healthier. There are also many variations of it specific to different situations.
One problem with it is that it takes a lot of work. There is usually homework every week.Getting people to do homework is difficult, and therapists do not want to make it like school so the homework is not mandatory. You can get great success from just going through different exercises during the sessions, but to get the full long term effects, you should really do the homework. I have decided that since this is week 8 I need to be more serious about this aspect of the program. Tonight, I am going to write a mock letter to my boss in my journal. I am also going to make photo copies of some of the worksheets so that I have enough copies to do the exercises this week as well as in the future. I am also going to set a goal to do that this week so that I actually do!
Why am I telling you all this? Well because as a person with a degree in psychology I know that if you really want to do something. You need to tell as many people as possible that you are going to do it. This provides extra incentive to do it since it would be embarassing not to do something that you announced publicly you were going to do.
Hey guys, quick update from my last post. I brought my doctor's note to my boss today and she was all like "i've noticed a change in you recently, you are not bubbly and friendly like you were you are very abrupt and I don't want you treating custoemrs that way". Bleh, if I noticed a dramatic change in someone i'd automatically think depression, anxiety, or just stress in general. Nope Ms uncaring pretty much told me I had to stop. But, the thing is, I'm not like that at all to customers, infact I've been told many times by the customers themselves that they appreciate how I do things rather than how my pushy boss does things. The only person on the planet I've been "abrupt" with is her. While I agree that it may not be the best way to handle things I do it because I know I'm not going to be there much longer and rather than fight her on it I just smile and nod. Anyways I said I want my old hours back, she asked me a million questions that had nothing to do with anything, but I really hope I get them back!
As of yesterday I am halfway through my group therapy. we meet with one of the facillatators at teh 6 week mark. I had my meeting yesterday. Apparently all of the facillitators have said that I am doing great. I agree with them. I feel amazing and I'm much happier. I have learned so many new things and I know the next 6 weeks will be just as full. I have started job hunting again. Had a few interesting positions that I applied for this week. I am also meeting with a case manager who is helping me with job searching. He signed me up for 2 workshops next week.
I finally have a doctor's note for my boss. I am really thinking of just asking for my regular hours back because I don't plan on staying in this job for long and my current hours feel like a waste of time. I can't plan naything on days where I have to work because I'm supposed to just play it by ear. That would be great if I had nothing to do but work, but I'm in therapy Monday-Friday and work Saturday and Sunday so my free time is very limited and it would be nice to do something with the small amount of time that I do get. Hopefully the doctor's not will make my boss take me seriously.
On another note, I am currently complaning about my boss through 3 different agencies. The first one says If I wait 13 weeks, I will be paid for all the hours I would have worked which would be awesome. The second one I called yesterday and the guy was kind of rude to me. I did not like the way he spoke to me at all. The third one has said nothing which is very odd. That reminds me i need to fax some stuff to the rude guy so I will cut this off here so I can do it before I forget.
I am starting week 5 of group therapy tomorrow. Next week I will be halfway there :) This week is going to be interesting because it will be the first week without 2 people who I became pretty close to over the last 4 weeks. They both graduated last week. 2 new people are starting this week and I always look forward to meeting new people when they come in.