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Anxiety This forum is for seeking advice on anxiety and stress related issues.

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missashlynxo Offline
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Name: Ashlyn
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Unhappy Long Post - Do I have anxiety, or am I making it up? - February 5th 2014, 08:08 PM

Before I begin, I am not clinically diagnosed with anxiety. I believe I do have it, however, I've just not been. To be perfectly honest, I don't believe I'll be given the right help mostly because I think that my parents won't take me serious and that they'll just think I'm exaggerating.

My dad is very shy around people, and I used to be very open and confident - I would talk to whoever and whenever even as a toddler. However, when I was in the seventh and eighth grade, I would skip school A LOT in order to "escape" (not a great word choice) from having to do certain school activities.

Yes, I skipped school. Wow. Well, I don't think that it's the normal. I skipped school because the feeling of having to go to school was horrible. The thought of having to go to school would make me so disturbed and uneasy that I would feel nauseous.

I skipped a whole week out of school simply because I felt uncomfortable and out of place, and also because my mother believed that I was sick. Looking back, I've missed a lot of things from the 'school experience' that I'll probably regret.

Hating to do anything, and I mean anything, with public speaking or appearing in front of crowds, I would skip the days I had to do speeches in school. I skipped doing a national event that would have helped a lot with scholarships, I skipped my eighth grade graduation, I skipped spelling bees. I hate anything and everything to do with public speaking or getting in front a group of people. I hate going to social events, too. I've never gone to a school dance, at least not when I was in public school.

It came to the point where I would cry and cry in my bed, at night because I did not want to do it. This feeling of dread and apprehension. It was horrible. And to be honest, I do go to school online because of this instead of moving on to high school. I did not want to be around a new group of people or give more speeches, or whatever. The feeling of having to be around things like that just horrified me to the point where I could not slept.

Now, I am past middle school and into high school. College is coming up, and for me, it's so important. SO, so, so important. I live in a small, rural, poor community. To become something other than a teacher, nurse, or working in a small business and make no more than 40k a year is extremely rare. I have more ambitions than to stay in this hell. College is very important to me.

However, I am so apprehensive about it. College is expensive, and my parents make enough money to cover the bills, groceries, and a couple hundred for leg room. Paying for college on my own, without student loans or scholarships/grants, is not an option. College alone horrifies me. Going to a new state, without my parents, without anyone I know, and with new people and probably having to do things like speeches or presentations? That horrifies me. I want to do so well in life, but at the same time, going to college and having to do so many things that just make me flinch and squirm?

Not to mention the probability of student loans.

These thoughts have plagued me, and even though it's a couple of years down the road, they're already making me reluctant to do anything. I don't want to miss out on college and a good education (which equals a good job) just because of anxiety.

I'm very confused on whether or not I actually do have anxiety or not.

A good example of something I would classify as an anxiety attack is that one day in November of 2013, my mother had to go to the ER. I'm a teenager, and I'm allowed to stay home when my parents go to the store. On an average day, my mom works from 9 to 5:30 at home in the basement away from everyone and my dad works from 7 to 3:30 at his job. Because I'm homeschooled, I watch my siblings from the moment I get my brother at 1:40 to the moment my dad comes home at around 4. I watch them almost every single day besides Tuesdays and the weekends. However, because my mother had to go to the ER, it was a little different.

After dropping my mom at the ER, my grandmother took me home where I got my brother off the bus around 15 minutes later. That's great - everything is fine. My sister comes home at 2:40, and that's fine. I'm a little uncomfortable because my dad is going to be with my mom, and I don't know when they'll be back. It's now past 4. I'm used to watching them for this long, but my mom wasn't here (in the basement) like she usually is so I was a little perturbed. This is what happen next. In a twenty to thirty minute interval, everything went crazy. I was concerned about my mom and how long it would take her to get back from the ER, and my grandmother was not telling me anything, my other grandparents weren't answering their Facebook messages. Oh, yeah, did I mention I don't have a phone? My cell phone can't call or text, and the only way I could get into contact was via Facebook.

No one was telling me anything. I was worried about my mom, feeding my siblings dinner, and how long it would be until my parents got home. And my dad forgot to tell me that someone would be stopping by, so for around 10 minutes, there was a gray car parked in the front of my house. I had no idea who it was - at all. Needless to say, at this point.. I was horrible. I could not breathe; it felt like I was suffocating. I was furiously walking around from my bed room to the kitchen & I could barely see because I crying so hard. I felt like the inside of my body was frozen. It was horrible.

This isn't the first time and only time I've felt that way, but probably the most recent.

I just want some answers, mostly from people who suffer from this. I don't know whether or not I could just be making something out of nothing, or if I do need to get help.

Thanks.
   
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Kate* Offline
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Re: Long Post - Do I have anxiety, or am I making it up? - February 5th 2014, 09:19 PM

Hey Ashlyn, I can't diagnose you, but I have a lot of similar problems and have been diagnosed. I never missed school, i just hated going if I had to do speeches, presentations etc.


I'm in training to become a mental health professional. In general, we suggest anyone seek professional help if their symptoms are interfering with their life (missing school is an example of that). So I'm going to reassure you that you aren't making something out of nothing and that you could benefit from help, whether you decide to get it or not is entirely up to you.

When you go to college you WILL have to do speeches and presentations, and class participation will likely count as part of your grade, if you have some time before then, I'd say it's worth getting help before you get there. Once there, you will probably be able to see someone for free or reduced cost.

I started going a few weeks ago after my anxiety cost me enough participation points that I failed a class (and withdrew twice after that). Since I have insurance, I don't have to pay anything and for students who aren't insured there's a reasonable self-pay rate (not sure how much it is though).

I've only been a few times, but it's already somewhat better, I don't really connect with him, so I think we might have to work that out at some point, but I don't regret going at all. I'm starting to wonder what took me so long!


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