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Buschmaster
Jun 23, 2009, 08:15 AM
Hey everyone.

Normally I'm not the type of person to do this but between all of the factors I think that it might be the best thing for me...

I've been going through the hardest time of my life and I have very little support for a few reasons. I'll try to be brief but mostly I'm just doing what I can to get these things off of my chest. The reason I'm here rather than all of my friends is because the main issue is that I'm no longer with my girlfriend and we're trying to keep it fairly quiet because we have no idea what's going to happen in the future yet.

But despite not being able to really talk to many people about it, I still need to get many of the things off of my chest. I've started a blog that has helped me deal with this, but also the underlying issue that caused much of this.

I have agoraphobia and social anxiety disorder and these came on in the past year. I'm trying to fight through it and get better and I'm doing a lot of things to get better.

But anyway with any tips for getting better, dealing with frustrating situations or anything, I'd be willing to listen to because this is truly the hardest time of my life and I need all the help I can get.

Thanks everyone.:)

Meecrob
Jun 23, 2009, 09:15 AM
get a change of scene, take a long trip if you can, get some time to yourself and see new things. a fresh perspective can fix almost anything. i know from experience.

Buschmaster
Jun 23, 2009, 09:18 AM
get a change of scene, take a long trip if you can, get some time to yourself and see new things. a fresh perspective can fix almost anything. i know from experience.
Thanks for the tip, and I think it is helping me to be in a situation somewhat like that. I'm away from all of my friends and it helps a lot of the time, but nights like last night where I had a really rough night... It's waaaaay harder.

Abstract
Jun 23, 2009, 09:53 AM
If I want to be alone but not completely alone, I just go to the pond near my house. Or a park. It's quiet, but there are people around, and being around people, even strangers that you won't talk to, makes me feel better.


Being and feeling alone could be the worst situation to be in in your state.

Buschmaster
Jun 23, 2009, 09:55 AM
If I want to be alone but not completely alone, I just go to the pond near my house. Or a park. It's quiet, but there are people around, and being around people, even strangers that you won't talk to, makes me feel better.


Being and feeling alone could be the worst situation to be in in your state.
Thanks for the advice and thought, Abstract. I remember you from when I was very frequently in the digital photography forum.:)

This weekend I'm heading home for the weekend (Gotta watch the NBA Draft with a couple friends! Amongst other things.) and I live on a lake there so I might be able to just go for a nice canoe if it isn't too hot outside. I could even go later in the evening or at night. Could be a great stress reliever. Especially if I bring my camera with.:)

Legolamb
Jun 23, 2009, 09:58 AM
Sorry you're down. Part of what comfort you can take while you get through this (which you will, honestly) depends on how bad your agoraphobia and social anxiety is. I mean, are you totally home-bound or can you go from home to a cafe or movie, anywhere where people are more like a white noise and you can surf or read?

Buschmaster
Jun 23, 2009, 10:04 AM
Sorry you're down. Part of what comfort you can take while you get through this (which you will, honestly) depends on how bad your agoraphobia and social anxiety is. I mean, are you totally home-bound or can you go from home to a cafe or movie, anywhere where people are more like a white noise and you can surf or read?
It's not nearly as bad as it was just a matter of months ago. I was really struggling to even get to classes or the grocery store.

I am now able to go to work, go to the grocery store, and Target and places like that with no worry. Eating out is still a big problem for me and will likely be the last one that I fix. Another problem I have is when I am places that are what I might call "too far from home." Especially inside.

Baby steps, I suppose.

Legolamb
Jun 23, 2009, 10:15 AM
Do what you can and remind yourself that you are actually doing these things. Focus entirely on what you can do and what is giving you even a modest sense of, if not outright pleasure, than at least a sense of normalcy. You'll eventually build on that, eventually find yourself smiling at some random thing, and you'll be ok.

Buschmaster
Jun 23, 2009, 10:19 AM
Do what you can and remind yourself that you are actually doing these things. Focus entirely on what you can do and what is giving you even a modest sense of, if not outright pleasure, than at least a sense of normalcy. You'll eventually build on that, eventually find yourself smiling at some random thing, and you'll be ok.
The main thing that worries me is that by the time I'm better it will be too late.

I plan on taking it step by step. Maybe just randomly stopping in a bar to say hi to some people when out for a bike ride. Maybe after a few times of just stopping by I'll actually have a beer. Or maybe I'll try eating out by myself at fast food places and stuff like that.

barkomatic
Jun 23, 2009, 11:54 AM
Hey everyone.

Normally I'm not the type of person to do this but between all of the factors I think that it might be the best thing for me...

I've been going through the hardest time of my life and I have very little support for a few reasons. I'll try to be brief but mostly I'm just doing what I can to get these things off of my chest. The reason I'm here rather than all of my friends is because the main issue is that I'm no longer with my girlfriend and we're trying to keep it fairly quiet because we have no idea what's going to happen in the future yet.

But despite not being able to really talk to many people about it, I still need to get many of the things off of my chest. I've started a blog that has helped me deal with this, but also the underlying issue that caused much of this.

I have agoraphobia and social anxiety disorder and these came on in the past year. I'm trying to fight through it and get better and I'm doing a lot of things to get better.

But anyway with any tips for getting better, dealing with frustrating situations or anything, I'd be willing to listen to because this is truly the hardest time of my life and I need all the help I can get.

Thanks everyone.:)

In a general sense, when you feel frustrated or anxious about something its a good idea at that moment to try and figure out *why* you are feeling those things. What about that situation is causing you to feel badly? Then, try to figure out a way that you can rationally deal with or mitigate whatever the problem is *without* isolating yourself at home.

Easier said than done I know--but with practice perhaps you can begin to get control of these emotions.

Buschmaster
Jun 23, 2009, 01:04 PM
In a general sense, when you feel frustrated or anxious about something its a good idea at that moment to try and figure out *why* you are feeling those things. What about that situation is causing you to feel badly? Then, try to figure out a way that you can rationally deal with or mitigate whatever the problem is *without* isolating yourself at home.

Easier said than done I know--but with practice perhaps you can begin to get control of these emotions.
I would love to not have to isolate myself, so hopefully I can find a way to deal with these privately, but in a way that will work in public.

Abstract
Jun 23, 2009, 01:17 PM
Thanks for the advice and thought, Abstract. I remember you from when I was very frequently in the digital photography forum.:)


And I remember you from when I also visited that forum frequently (which I don't anymore), and you were one of the few Pentax shooters. ;)


Lots of good people left that place, although I assume that lots of good new people now post in that forum regularly.

Legolamb
Jun 23, 2009, 01:18 PM
The main thing that worries me is that by the time I'm better it will be too late.

I plan on taking it step by step. Maybe just randomly stopping in a bar to say hi to some people when out for a bike ride. Maybe after a few times of just stopping by I'll actually have a beer. Or maybe I'll try eating out by myself at fast food places and stuff like that.

Step by step is the key, and only you'll know how big and fast those steps should be. I don't know what you mean by "too late" but this will work itself out when it/you are able. Go easy on yourself, don't brood about what you CAN'T do yet. I say this having to make peace with the fact that I'm cooped up at home with a broken leg for the next month or so and mourning for the loss of summer :(

Buschmaster
Jun 23, 2009, 01:20 PM
And I remember you from when I also visited that forum frequently (which I don't anymore), and you were one of the few Pentax shooters. ;)


Lots of good people left that place, although I assume that lots of good new people now post in that forum regularly.
Yes, I am one of the few Pentax shooters. ;)

Step by step is the key, and only you'll know how big and fast those steps should be. I don't know what you mean by "too late" but this will work itself out when it/you are able. Go easy on yourself, don't brood about what you CAN'T do yet. I say this having to make peace with the fact that I'm cooped up at home with a broken leg for the next month or so and mourning for the loss of summer :(
I hope the leg gets better, and if it is any consolation, it's too damn hot anyway.:eek:

toolbox
Jun 23, 2009, 06:31 PM
Sorry to here about that, i too have anxiety + depression. I kind of had it like on and off but since i was put in hospital a while ago for hi potassium levels thats when it started off

I initially just tried to deal with it, but i ended up isolating my self from my family, friends and co-workers and you do not want that. I would barely talk to anyone either. I lost a heap of weight

I eventually went to the doc, he said try some counseling which i did but that didn't work so i am on medication for it. I feel much better but occasionally i still get anxious.

But the most important thing you need to talk with someone about it don't keep it bottled up. I made that mistake. I now have no problems talking with my family, co workers about it. You will feel so much better when you talk to someone i know i did

step by step is the key. I have this thing that i do when i get stressed because i have to go somewhere i keep thinking "I can do this"

Tomorrow
Jun 23, 2009, 06:48 PM
Sounds like you're really going through a rough patch. I can understand how it is not having anyone to go to in person at a time like this.

Several years ago I was finishing graduate school and going through a divorce at the same time. After graduation I took a trip to Vegas - alone. I didn't plan on doing anything once I got there, I didn't want to keep a schedule, I just wanted to get away from "life" for a few days and relax. It did wonders for me.

Not saying you need to go to Vegas, but find a way to "break away" from life for a while, if you can. It can help you get a different perspective than you have by seeing and living it every day.

Hope things turn around for you soon!

Buschmaster
Jun 24, 2009, 12:25 AM
Sorry to here about that, i too have anxiety + depression. I kind of had it like on and off but since i was put in hospital a while ago for hi potassium levels thats when it started off

I initially just tried to deal with it, but i ended up isolating my self from my family, friends and co-workers and you do not want that. I would barely talk to anyone either. I lost a heap of weight

I eventually went to the doc, he said try some counseling which i did but that didn't work so i am on medication for it. I feel much better but occasionally i still get anxious.

But the most important thing you need to talk with someone about it don't keep it bottled up. I made that mistake. I now have no problems talking with my family, co workers about it. You will feel so much better when you talk to someone i know i did

step by step is the key. I have this thing that i do when i get stressed because i have to go somewhere i keep thinking "I can do this"
I'll be sure to use that, and I hope it is useful for me. Thanks.:)

Sounds like you're really going through a rough patch. I can understand how it is not having anyone to go to in person at a time like this.

Several years ago I was finishing graduate school and going through a divorce at the same time. After graduation I took a trip to Vegas - alone. I didn't plan on doing anything once I got there, I didn't want to keep a schedule, I just wanted to get away from "life" for a few days and relax. It did wonders for me.

Not saying you need to go to Vegas, but find a way to "break away" from life for a while, if you can. It can help you get a different perspective than you have by seeing and living it every day.

Hope things turn around for you soon!
I hope they do as well, thanks. :)

103734
Jun 24, 2009, 03:44 AM
I don't know about talking to people about feelings and stuff because I have never done that, and don't see myself doing it anytime soon, last thing I need is someone knowing what makes me tick and I just don't feel comfortable doing that.

Try getting away, tell everyone that you're leaving and don't know when your coming back.

I have been stressed out lately too, I have been overwhelmed by family, friends, and acquaintances, it seems like everyone I know relies on me for everything! I'm only 18 and a college student and it seems like someone is calling me every 5 mins because they need computer help, need directions, want to hang out at some stupid place, need opinions/advice on stuff, need a ride somewhere, need pictures taken of something, need me to help them build a website, need me to fix their car, and about everything else they give up on handeling themselves after 30 seconds. Then if for some reason I can't help them immediately they get mad, I wouldn't bother me as much if they showed some appreciation, I have no idea where everyone around me got the idea that I was entitled to help them!! Lets see how they like it when I'm gone.

In the next few weeks, depending on when I get some money I need for a trip, I am going to post on my blog/facebook that I'm leaving and not to bother contacting me because I'm leaving for a undetermined amount of time, I would leave my phone at home too but my mom has kidney failure and is on dialysis and she needs to be able to contact me. I think I might just go for a drive with me and my camera, and stay out as long as I can with whatever budget I have at the time.

Rocksaurus
Jun 24, 2009, 04:40 AM
I just went through this (a major breakup) just over a month ago. 4 years suddenly tossed out the window. Here's how I've approached it over the past month+:

1) Despite what some are saying I'd really recommend against being alone. I'd recommend reaching out to the people closest to you who you can trust. Good friends and family really come out of the woodwork when you need them. Everyone's different, but this really helped me, especially during the first 1-2 weeks.

2) Keep yourself busy. Friends, hobbies, work. Whatever. I found friends to be the best distraction. They help remind you what a valuable person you are!

3) Get exercise. This is one I didn't pick up on 'til about 2 weeks into it. You won't feel like it, but trust me it helps a lot more than you'd think.

4) Try new things. I know with the agoraphobia/social anxiety disorder this might seem daunting in some areas but as others have said, take babysteps. It's just about discovering new things in life, it doesn't even require going out. Listen to new music. Read new books. Do things you wouldn't otherwise do. Discovery is the spice of life.


I really hope these things will help you. I know how you're feeling. As my Dad advised me a month ago - just take it a day at a time. The goal at hand is to get through each day. Time heals all.

fimac
Jun 24, 2009, 06:16 AM
I have been stressed out lately too, I have been overwhelmed by family, friends, and acquaintances, it seems like everyone I know relies on me for everything!

It seems to me, these days, that people are *so connected* that they rarely have time for themselves.

Perhaps you might consider 'rationing' your connectivity, in order to get that all-important breathing space and thinking time.

Remember: when people get mad it is a reflection of THEIR character flaws, not yours. (Assuming that you have not made promises that you could not keep.)

To the OP: writing is very therapeutic. Good luck with the blog :)

Buschmaster
Jun 24, 2009, 07:15 AM
Thanks for the help everyone. I really hope this do turn out well, I'm still just taking it a day at a time. The crappy thing is, today I think I just made it worse.

I started off the day by not bugging her and she approached me first. When we talked I asked her what she thought the chances might be of us ending up back together after we both take the time to help ourselves out. I was expecting like a 50/50 type answer. She said 95%. I should have just quit while I was ahead. I had 95% and she was happy and everything. Then I feel like I annoyed her all day. Now she is probably mad at me at a time in which I can't afford that. So now I'm just hoping that I still at least have 50/50.

It's been such a roller coaster, but today my goal is to not annoy her. So I'm doing my best to not say anything to her in any way. No email, no text, no phone call, nothing. It doesn't sound like that should be such a daunting task, but we were so close we were talking all the time, and now that we're not talking all the time, and barely at all, it's suddenly a lot harder to just not send a text or an email. Maybe if I do my best to not annoy her today, I can get at least close to that 95% again, and who knows, maybe even get to see her this weekend just to talk about everything.

The difficult thing is, I am trying so hard to help myself get better and trying so hard to make sure that I'll get her back that it's hard to do either to the fullest extent.

mscriv
Jun 24, 2009, 08:16 AM
The difficult thing is, I am trying so hard to help myself get better....

This should be your priority. Focus on being the best you can be and it will draw people to you, especially her. If she really cares for you then she will be encouraged and motivated by the positive progress you are making and she will want to be a part of it in some way. I would say take almost all of your focus off of her and instead focus on your own personal and mental health. Don't be mean or cut her off, but just give her the space you would give any other friend and respect any boundaries she requests. I understand this is not easy since she has been such a support for you on a daily basis. But, you have to learn to stand on your own. We must take care of ourselves before we can give or contribute to others. This will ultimately make any relationship you have better.

As far as the social anxiety and agoraphobia, go rent "What About Bob" sit down with some popcorn and laugh/cry yourself silly. There's plenty of other "crazy" or "mental" movies out there and you could pick any of them as well, but I would avoid the heavy drama's and tragedies. The point is to slightly adjust your perspective and open yourself up to seeing truly how silly some of our idiosyncrasies and self thoughts are. We all have them, the goal is alter your perception of them to the point that you understand you can have control over them.

No matter what, don't give up. We believe in you. :)

Buschmaster
Jun 24, 2009, 08:18 AM
This should be your priority. Focus on being the best you can be and it will draw people to you, especially her. If she really cares for you then she will be encouraged and motivated by the positive progress you are making and she will want to be a part of it in some way. I would say take almost all of your focus off of her and instead focus on your own personal and mental health. Don't be mean or cut her off, but just give her the space you would give any other friend and respect any boundaries she requests. I understand this is not easy since she has been such a support for you on a daily basis. But, you have to learn to stand on your own. We must take care of ourselves before we can give or contribute to others. This will ultimately make any relationship you have better.

As far as the social anxiety and agoraphobia, go rent "What About Bob" sit down with some popcorn and laugh/cry yourself silly. There's plenty of other "crazy" or "mental" movies out there and you could pick any of them as well, but I would avoid the heavy drama's and tragedies. The point is to slightly adjust your perspective and open yourself up to seeing truly how silly some of our idiosyncrasies and self thoughts are. We all have them, the goal is alter your perception of them to the point that you understand you can have control over them.

No matter what, don't give up. We believe in you. :)
That means a lot.:)

Everything is so much easier to say than do, unfortunately. I would like to find a way to just avoid all the times that I want to say something to her, or ask if I can see her, and I can say ok, I'm just not going to bug her today. But like I said, I can say those things until I'm blue in the face, it's another thing to do them. It's only 8:19 and I'm already going crazy.;)

Buschmaster
Jun 27, 2009, 11:17 PM
Just wanted to post an update. My girlfriend/ex-girlfriend and I are probably no better or worse... still just drifting. That's really really hard for me, but the good news is, I seem to be getting much better. I have gotten to the point where today I was able to be all over the place, and almost never at home and didn't feel sick or panicked once.

I'm really happy about that. Unfortunately, I'm also sitting home alone and feeling pretty depressed on a Saturday night.:(

spaceboots06
Jun 27, 2009, 11:27 PM
I have schizoid personality disorder and used to smoke marijuana to "self medicate" and to combat it. I would go outside often, start conversations and have interest in other things besides myself. (Although for some this drug can be even more isolating) People didn't like that though so I was forced to stopped. My therapist suggested pharmaceuticals but I never went through with them. Although this seems grim I feel the only way to deal with my "problem" is to use a substance. Without any sort of drug I can easily stay in my house all day, alone.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schizoid_personality_disorder

"Schizoid personality disorder (SPD) is a personality disorder characterized by a lack of interest in social relationships, a tendency towards a solitary lifestyle, secretiveness, and emotional coldness.[1] SPD is rare compared with other personality disorders. Its prevalence is estimated at less than 1% of the general population.[2] It is not related to and should not be confused with schizophrenia."

Buschmaster
Jun 27, 2009, 11:29 PM
I wouldn't say I want to avoid social situations, I just didn't feel good in social situations. I wish more than anything that I could just go out and feel good.

spaceboots06
Jun 27, 2009, 11:46 PM
I wouldn't say I want to avoid social situations, I just didn't feel good in social situations. I wish more than anything that I could just go out and feel good.

Ah, we don't have the same exact type of case then.

Buschmaster
Jun 27, 2009, 11:47 PM
Ah, we don't have the same exact type of case then.
Well, I hope that we can both improve into people who others will love.

spaceboots06
Jun 28, 2009, 12:01 AM
Well, I hope that we can both improve into people who others will love.

Ah yes, very true. There's always room for improvement in everything!