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this is embarassing. - July 16th 2011, 05:41 PM

I'm 20 years old, and still can't drive in big places,such as a major city. I get a bit nervous in the car when a big city when someone is driving as it is. I panic in the car a lot, most of the time is when I am in the front seat. I always have mom or fiance' to take me to chattanooga( a packed, city) when I need to go. I can drive in small places and small towns just fine. I don't get it because I want to move out of marion county soon and If I want to be a psychologist we are going to have to move to somewhere I can work and If we move to a new state, I don't think I'll ever adjust. any advice?
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Re: this is embarassing. - July 16th 2011, 10:12 PM

Out of curiosity, how often have you actually driven in a large city? I used to be TERRIFIED of going on the freeway... until my dad sat down in the passenger seat one day and said, "Drive." I spent a solid three hours getting on and off the freeway, changing lanes, etc. It got dark during those three hours, so I also gained experience for nighttime driving. That one session wasn't enough to get rid of all my anxiety... but it gave me a great deal of confidence, and eventually, I was okay with going on the freeway alone. The more I drove, the more confident I became. Now, I can drive from my small town to Los Angeles (about a two hour drive) and back, by myself, without feeling stressed (well, the traffic bothers me... but that's normal!).

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Re: this is embarassing. - July 17th 2011, 03:38 AM

I have the same exact problem as you!
I'm not sure whether you're afraid because you're worried about your own driving or others' driving on the road, but
Driving is child's play. A fearless seven year old with really long legs could successfully drive across the country. All you have to do is follow directions. When it's red, you stop. When it's green, you go. When you need to get somewhere, follow the signs. The only thing in the city that you need to watch out for are pedestrians. But you can go very slowly on city roads and no one will think twice about it. People are more concerned about staying alive than hurrying to get to their next destination. The only way you'd crash into someone is if the pedestrian was a drunk idiot and decided to run in front of your car as a practical joke. Again, people are more concerned about staying safe and alive, as are you. Nobody's going to be stupid on the roads, especially on a busy city street.

Ultimately you're going to have to learn how to drive, perhaps even alone. Just know that on the road there will be at least 10 other drives that are more inexperienced and more panicked than you are. The best way to confront a fear (the only way, at that) is to confront it head on. The longer you wait, the more crippling the fear will become.
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