I've had agoraphobia off and on over the years. When I was younger I could hang out with my school friends and that created a buffer between me and the world.....skip forward decades. Agoraphobia and social phobia poked out it's ugly head during a time when I was laid off of work (I'm on disability now) bought a mobile home and had my Mom move in with me, as my Dad had died and she was alone. I love my Mom (now deceased) and we used to travel together and seek out local places of interest. Best friends in a way. Anyway she was diagnosed with Colon cancer and after 6 months she died. I tried to commit suicide, landed in the hospital for 7 days...became house bound for the most part for two years, only my Sister came by and shopped for me. I could not keep up the payments on the home and lost it. A friend got a trailer and I got dropped into an RV Park, which means people everywhere, no privacy outside, lights on 24/7 and it is now been 15 months of ongoing hell. I tell the doctor my situation is making it worse and worse as I get NO relief from the anxiety/fear. He suggests going to lectures or local cafes where folks gather that have the same interests. Now if I could do those kind of things, would I have a problem? No! It took me over a year to get me meds to hopefully help with the anxiety. I had to literally beg him for them and..all I see the meds as doing, is letting me sleep most of every day away.
My sister more than once has said "Can't you just ignore other people and go out?" Shows she has no comprehension of all the time she has observed me suffering, of what I am going through. Would anyone choose their life to be like this????
I put an ad in the paper hoping to find someone with a bit of land where I could park the RV and then I would have privacy and be able to get outside and hopefully over time with a bit of walking/exercise and just being able to let go and relax I would get better. I had one person call and the place is beautiful and private and I could do all the things I'm yearning to do, walk , get out in Nature and let my poor cats have some peace also, as on bad days they are scared to death of me the poor things . :(
Well the landowner has been really flaky and contacts me and then makes plans for my moving onto the property and then doesn't contact me for days and I told that to my sister and she just blew it off and she knows how desperate I am to get out of this park before summmer (it gets noisier til all hours and of course the heat in a place that is made up of gravel and asphalt is terrible) so I got upset and cried a bit and said the meds were not helping and she couldn't see why they hadn't "fixed" me. Anyone know of a Happy pill? As I'd sure like to try it!! So basically she is not calling me and I am alone each and every day with the exception of an In Home Aid that does my shopping a couple times a month.
I am researching online about suicide as I cannot take being housebound any longer and living in this hell hole. What I would give for a little yard that I could go out in and just enjoy the freedom of being outside. My big fear is what would happen to my cats? I hang on so they don't end up getting dumped in a Shelter (ha! some shelter, they'd be scared out of their minds and most probably killed)
What do other people do that have no support network? I envy those with friends or a spouse that puts up with the 'disease' so at least there is some contact with others. My life has fallen apart and I do not know where to turn, thus the thoughts of suicide to end it all.
OK. Sit yourself back for a second and take a big deep breath. You done that much for me? Suicide? Come on. We don't really want to go down that road. I have had this self same condition for over 20 years now. We all get those thoughts from time to time. I am a lover of self harm. Always have been. The thought that the pain of the cut would be greater than the bad feelings the anxiety were bringing on. Who am I kidding? Myself only. Means having to wear long sleeved shirts in summer. To hide the marking all over my arms. It's not worth it. Look at the other options for a minute. Your doctor made a good point. But you didn't understand it. He was trying to bring across exposure. If we expose ourselves to what it is we fear most of all it becomes weaker each time. That is theory anyway. Does it work? I would say yes. I go out and about now. To places I would never have dreamed of going near. Wasn't easy at first. Don't imagine it to be ever easy if I am to be honest. I see myself as always in a battle against the condition. But for now I see myself as winning. We have to try all we can before we just throw in the towel. I would say that would be the very last ditch option. But I don't think I am the suicide sort of person. But have you tried going out, say, close to were you live. Not talking miles from home. Just close by. Until you get used to that. Then move it a little bit further. You see, some people want to run before they can walk. You just have to things one step at a time. That is outdoor exercises. Indoors you can try help yourself as well. Be it in journal form. Tracking your moods. What thoughts are going through your mind when you begin down or anxious. What symptoms you experience. What is your reaction to what is happening. Build up a picture of what it is you are doing when the worst of the worst hits you. Then see could you have done anything different at all to alter things. Maybe not have thought ' there is no other sollution, I am f*cked '. You could have thought ' these are just feelings, they will pass '. Your reaction to the two thoughts would be different. Thus changing the overall mood as well. Just food for thought on what you could try.
You are on disability. Is there no sort of welfare groups that could help you out with the housing situation? Given your medical condition and the likes? I'd be more looking up that on the internet, rather than suicide. See the sollutions that are out there.
We only get one chance in this life. it may seem like a bum deal that we have both gotten, along with thousands of others, but give it a go. Don't give up on it. Find a new doctor even. Search out charity counciling. People you can talk to without having to pay at the end of the day. You might even end up working for them. As you have a full story to tell. A story that others might learn a lot from.
Mr. Green has some really good suggestions for you and some great advice. He knows what he's talking about. Agoraphobia is a terrible disorder to live with. I've had it off and on for over 40 years. But there IS a way out. But it's you who has to do the work, and it's not always easy, especially in the beginning. But if you keep at it, you'll eventually find the freedom you're looking for. One step at a time, one day at a time.
Please let us know how you're doing..........
I found a place to move my RV. Was thrilled, as the property is beautiful and I tried, really tried, to take walks, interact with the others that live on the property and even worked weekend yard sales for several weekends, even tho' I'd be exhaused at the end of the weekend. Yep, I interacted with many folks, but no lasting contacts. I do grit my teeth and go to the store to shop (at the slowest time of the day to avoid the crowds). I can do what I have to do, but the fear and anxiety are still there. Sadly I've discovered the owner of the property is in financial straits and is now allowing people on the property to partake in unlawful pursuits to make money and the two long term men frequently drink and smoke marijuana. (self medicating is my take)
So yay! I've (partly at least) jumped from the frying pan (RV Park) into the fire. Sure the surroundings are beautiful, but I have to dodge folks I wouldn't interact with, even without agoraphobia. I was given the boot by my last doctor due to medical care cutbacks in the U.S. and had to find a primary doctor that would be willing to prescribe my meds. The problem there is he wanted to have at least 2 monthly visits and try some New Age type interventions on me. I had to literally write him a letter and tell him my financial constraints and ask for what I had previously, 3 months of meds and then a doctors visit to obtain 3 more. This is going to be more costly, what with the aforementioned medical cutbacks, than with the previous doctor.
My sister now generally only deals with me via phone and occasionally we visit. She has told me "We only learn through suffering." ummm OK...thanks for the support.
As far as "housing help" I'm on the Section 8 waiting list, and what with the economy there are more and more folks on the list and they make women w/children a priority. So right now I'm living in a trailer in a horse pasture.
I try and work on the agoraphobia, but when you have no outside support, it is difficult and yes, at times I can't wait until the time comes and I draw my last breath in this world and it can be all over. (perhaps seemingly dramatic, but I am not feeling that way or stating such to obtain attention, I'm just really tired of the downward spiral my life has taken and has been doing so for years.)
I sometimes get myself through the day with day dreams of having enough money to buy a small house with a little land and having the privacy to wander and putter in the yard or watch movies I get through the mail. I figure it is better than others that turn to drugs of some form or the other to buffer the pain etc.
I do feel betrayed by my sister. I know if the situation was reversed I'd try and help where I could and at least study up on the agoraphobia so I'd understand it better and then perhaps get an inkling of what she was going through. (I know I won't get that from her realistically).
So it is day by day for me and it certainly isn't any way to exist.
Life for life's sake isn't for me. If there isn't something to get up for, why bother?
Again, thanks for your replies.
I put my first post on my watch list, but received no alert that you two had responded to it...so sorry so much time has passed and such a belated reply.
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