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Alcohol/Anxiety
Hello, this is my first post to this forum. My concerns may seem a little "out there" and I am sorry if this is too much to post, but I am feeling alone and need to express my thoughts.

I was involved in a traumatic situation nine months ago and ever since then I have been overwhelmed by my anxiety/paranoia level. I can't even go out drinking with friends- I am worried that something is happening to me while I am drinking and that I might not know about it, such as sexual intercourse with someone at the bar or what not. It doesn't make sense that something like that  would happen without me knowing about it, because at the end of the night I am always going home alone or with a friend and waking up in my own bed. I know this might sound nuts, but I don't know where this anxiety and paranoia are coming from, other than maybe stemming from my original traumatic situation. If anyone has any advice or thoughts, please do share. I just want to be happy again.
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231744 tn?1189759427
your anxiety (in my beleif) came from the traumatic situation. at least i learned that anxiety is basically roots from something really stressful that has happend in your life or a stressful short period in your life that has occurred(like the 9 months ago you spoke of)....it builds up and then hits you later.. dude i know how u feel about wanting to be happy again. these people on here are smart. they have helped me ALREADY in a matter of just one day and yesterday being my first post. or the day before yesterday. alcohol is actually bad for anxiety(in high doses) cuz i know at least when i have like 3 or 4 beverages i panic easily. but for the most part man your not our there or crazy man. ur in the right place to open up.

hope i helped a little
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231744 tn?1189759427
dude u are soooo far from crazy... and besides that its something u cant really control at first cuz u dont know how to deal with it... hang in there ,man... go look at my post of quick sharp pain in chest and talk to ryan. he rules man
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thank you for your comments. it has been so difficult, always thinking the worst, filled with so much anxiety. i really hope that i can get past this. thank you for not calling me crazy.
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Since you have been overwhelmed by panic/paranoia since the traumatic incident, you are very likely experiencing a form of  post traumatic stress syndrome - you are NOT crazy!  Have you seen a councellor?  Talk therapy to work through your emotions regarding this event will aid in the healing processa and I highly recommend you see someone, if you arent already doing so. They are also many medications out there that can help control anxiety/paranoia/depression etc. etc. etc that may be useful to take during this difficult time in your life.

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thank you for your comments, I appreciate it. I was seeing a therapist and it didn't work out, she immediately wanted to put me on meds and i wanted to think my way out of my situation. PTSD does sound right. I just hope that I can work through this paranoia, it is eating me up. I will try meds if i have to, but i would like to try anything else, any ideas?
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Here is a good link to a website on PTSD that you may find useful.  Note, it clearly states that PTSD often develops months (or even years) after the traumatic event (I substitued . w/ "dot" as posting actual webpages is not allowed).

http://www.ncptsd.va.gov/ncmain/ncdocs/fact_shts/fs_what_is_ptsd  "dot"  html

I think you need to see a good physchiatrist that can accurately diagnose your condition and then get a referral to a good therapist - one that specializes in PTSD if that is what you are diagnosed with.  Even though you had a bad experience w/ your first therapist, there are many others out there that will be able to help you - you just need to "shop" around a bit.  Think of it this way - when you buy a car, you typically dont buy the first one you see (unless you are an impulsive as I am!).... you shop around, test drive a few cars, and find the one that is right for you.  The same should apply to doctors and therapists who are dealing with your health - it is important to find someone you are comfortable with, listerns to you, and will devise a treatment plan based on your needs.

By avoiding the situations that provoke anxiety/paranoia you may develop agoraphobia.  Can you gradually start to expose yourself to the situations that make you anxious/paranoid by doing so in a controlled/safe environment?  For instance, you are worried about going out drinking w/ friends for fear of being taken advantage of.  Is there a specific isolable fear you have, such as someone slipping a drug into your drink or losing control when you drink as a result of the alcohol?  If so, you could try:
1) Going out w/ friends but not consuming any alcoholic beverages.
2) Having friends over to your place.  You can serve you own alcohol and will be in control of it.
3) Going out w/ a trusted friend or family member for 1-2 drinks (rather than a group of people) to expose yourself to that situation in a safe environment.

To sum this all up, exposure therapy can definitely help in situations like yours but you may need help from a therapist or even some medication to help you through the process if you have difficulty doing it on your own.  However, it really sounds like a therapist would be a good idea to help you deal w/ the inital event as well as help you get your life back on track.  If you can isolate exactly what your fears are, you can slowly start working on those in a controlled/safe manner which, in theory, will raise your anxiety/paranoia threshold level to a managable level.
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215289 tn?1253626941
aye meds shouldn't be the first option IMO.  Try find the right therapist and work with it.  Im over my "depression" but stuck with my anxiety and thinking i have brain tumours and whatnot.  swings and roundabouts. :(

In the process of therapy though.  Should be the first step!
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Thank you so much for the link and information. Your suggestions are good ones. I do need to find a therapist that I can work with and I have to start looking now. I was just bummed because I spent so much time with the first one and it didn't work out. You are right, sometimes you have to shop around, even in this situation. I feel like I have lost so much time to this anxiety/paranoia. Thank you for taking the time to answer my post, it helps to know that there are good people out there who are willing to listen and help out.
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I am sorry that you are over your depression but still "stuck" with your anxiety about thinking you have brain tumors. If you need to talk, I am here. Let me know how your therapy works out.
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