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  1. #1

    can you develope agoraphobia?

    hi, new. sorry this post is so long--


    so, it seems that i am developing some sort of onslaught of varied agoraphobia.
    i have been dealing with a lot of changes in my life over the last few months--changes that have left me UTTERLY depressed and just generally messed up.
    i think the best discription is that i am a car-crash of a human being lately.

    anyway, i've been seeking treatment for the depression. i am hooked up with a shrink (is that a derrogatory term?) and i have been recently prescribed meds.

    during the intake session, we lightly touched on my fear of crowds.

    it's been a life-long thing. i am an artist, a loner, INFP personality *i tested 89% introverted--wow*
    i've always had a pretty accute fear of...like being in front of a crowd, giving speeches or presentations, and i generally avoid being in large crowds.
    i've always considered it more philosophical than phobic--

    that is, a large group in public just seems like the loneliest place in the world to me--an ocean of people all acting like they dont notice each other. sad...makes me feel awful to be there.

    so i've always generally eschewed being around places like that, and if i have to go, it was usually an in-and-out asap type thing...

    well...since i've fallen into this seemingly death-trap of a pit of depression, i have noticed that fear becoming more and more prevalent--so much so that i become a sort of generalized angry at everyone i see--like overtly defensive to the point of actually being OFFENSIVE--

    like "what are you looking at?!"
    i mean, of course i dont say it, i only think it--
    i get really paranoid about why someone would say "hi" or even look at me. i think i have a scowl on all the time.
    i realized this last week when i was at the library...

    since november i have really avoided going outside...i am in college and i've not been to school in 2 weeks...

    mostly i only leave if i have to go to the store. i live alone and NEVER have company...ever.

    the reason i am writing this is because i havent left the house since tuesday--i left that day ONLY to get my new medication then came home.

    before that--the last time i had left the house was the previous tuesday for my intake session.

    i thought at first i was just trying hard to be "in my happy zone"...my haven where i control things.

    i noticed that i've become increasingly concerned about coving the windows and keeping light out (if light can come in, then someone could see in, too. i really dont want that.)

    i NEVER answer my phone and get really paranoid if i get calls from numbers i dont know....i dont answer but check online with reverse phone search services to see who was calling.

    and, finally, tonight really has we wondering what's going on.

    after a LONG period of thinking about it, i decided i was hungry for a hamburger. i really really hesitated going out to get one (drive through ONLY of course)...but eventually i thought " you know what? you are sad and miserable. you OWE it to yourself to go get a burger...it'll be a treat."
    so i went but the place was close. i decided since i was out, i'd hit walmart to buy stuff i need.

    while i was there, i got really flustered and anxious to leave. i hurried very much to my car and sped home.

    i had every plan to go to campus to discuss my issues with the health services, but as i drove home so fast from the store, i was like "ok, body, chill out, we're almost home--i promise not to leave again for a long time."

    when i was here, i locked up the door tightly and started to relax.

    i avoid turning the lights on because i dont want people outside to see the light on through the window. if i have to turn one on, i quickly do what i need then quickly shut it off.


    at the store, i got really dizzy and felt lightheaded.


    i dont normally have panic attacks...i think i've had just a few and all recently.


    so....what the heck's going on with me?? i'm 25 and all this is new to me.

    thank you all in advance. sorry for the length.

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    2

    there's hope!

    you're not alone....i did the same thing too. i've left my house probably three times in three months! my therapist said the longer i stay in and avoid the problem...the worse i will get. i would go places and panic and drive home as fast as i could. needless to say...i'm not getting any better. meds may help but the best way is to understand that you're not cazy! learing to cope with the uncomfortable feelings such as breathing and relaxation...you'll learn to stop the feelings before they start. expose yourself everyday to the outside world...whether it's the mailbox..or driveway. Reward yourself! I promise you'll get better! Keep faith!

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Round Rock, Texas
    Posts
    9
    I have had agoraphobia for the past year and never really new what it was i just got afraid to go anywhere it was horrable i stayed in on video games constanly and im currently at the point where im afraid to do ANYTHING as much as go on a bike ride or walk to the end of my street. i take meds they dont seem to help i dont have much advice other then find help asap ; ;.
    Chris
    I know I don't have Agoraphobia, but the man of my life does, only I understand him, and I want to learn more. Help me.

    Sonya

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    9
    Don't worry there is a lot of people who go through this, even I'm starting to figure that out since reading this forum. I too am a college student, I'm 24 and I have been skipping too many classes this semester. I have always had anxiety problems but it's only in the last year and a half (when a lot a problems occured) that it's begun taking over my life. So I guess the answer to your question is yes people can develope this problem later in life. Right now I'm freaking out because I have to go to class tommorow morning to hand in a paper and I know that there's no way I can skip it. I've already stayed home for four days this week and last week I stayed home for six. My heart is pounding and I just want to throw up at the thought of going out tommorow. I don't know about others with agoraphobia but my fears stem around my lack of control I have when I'm out of my house, more than the idea of open spaces. When I leave the house I get so scared and so stressed I usually have to go home. I'm not sure if I have any advice for you, this being the first time I've really shared my anxieties with someone but I thought that maybe writing to you and letting you know you're not alone might help just a little. Hang in there and good luck.

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    utah
    Posts
    8
    I totally know what you are going through. I am starting to develope agoraphobia. Ive always had anxiety....Ive been dealing with it on and off for about 8 years now...and im only 21. Recently though, I can barely leave the house by myself because I live really close to the hospital and I dont feel safe if I cant go there when I have a panic attack. I feel like if I go out with people I dont know...or even my friend...they cant take me to the hospital if I need to! Ive had this fear of my car lately. I have an old mini van...but lately I feel like when I drive im going to enhale all these toxic fumes and Im going to die driving or right after driving. So I can barely drive my car. I used to borrow my boyfriends car. Or I would drive to work and feel anxious about it the rest of the day at work.... so I stopped wanting to go to work. Ive had a few panick attacks at work and found it hard to get out...so Ive been slacking a bit at work. Today I almost quit because I was so anxious about going. So I was late...and I got suspended for a week without pay. Now Im still dreading next thursday when I have to go to work. I stayed inside allll day! I cancelled my counseling appointment because I didnt want to drive there in my car alone because it is far from a hospital. And I cancelled my doctor appointment today because I didnt want to drive there alone and get my blood taken and have some kind of bad reaction happen. I have no idea what I should do!!!! Nothing seems to be working...Im scared of everything...Im even scared to eat because I dont want to get an allergic reaction or get poisoned or something.

 

 

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