Did Anyone Watch Obssessed?

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-11-2004
Did Anyone Watch Obssessed?
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Wed, 08-11-2010 - 3:01pm

It was on A & E Monday night. Al, Tammy, Jodi - Part 1

Al and his daughters, Tammy and Jodi, each suffer from agoraphobia. Al has been virtually homebound for 30 years. Tammy is afraid of leaving her 20-mile safe zone. Jodi can't go over a bridge she needs to cross to get her son medical care. You can watch it online:http://www.aetv.com/obsessed/video/?bcpid=45697868001&bclid=441556914001&bctid=441675245001

It really struck home w/me. I had a driving phobia & bridges were my nemesis. I didn't have a therapist to ride along, but used small steps to desensitize myself. It was the hardest thing I ever did in my life. Did anyone watch it? (((hugs))) jan

 

 


 



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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-08-2005
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 9:57pm

no jan i did not see it - but what a brave thing you did by conquering your fear. I think of Paula Deen's story about agoraphobia when i need to go out of my comfort zone.

hope all is well today.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-11-2004
Fri, 08-13-2010 - 3:08pm
Yes, Paula Deen overcame her agoraphobia, as did Kim Basinger. What they've accomplished in life, in spite of anxiety disorders gives all of us hope!
Hope you're having a good day too! (((hugs))) jan
 

 


 



Community Leader
Registered: 10-22-2001
Tue, 08-17-2010 - 2:45pm

I wanted to just didn't get a chance...;(


Hi Jan!


Lorie

Nightangel
Nightangel
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-11-2004
Wed, 08-18-2010 - 11:55am
Hi, Lorie! If you can, watch it online. I felt *everything* as those folks approached the 5 1/2 mile long bridge. There's no stopping or turning around on it. Years ago, before I had my troubles, I drove that bridge & didn't give it a second thought. Wish I could try it now. I believe I can do anything, even though my heart will race & my hands will go numb. Just like their's did;) (((hugs))) jan
 

 


 



Community Leader
Registered: 10-22-2001
Thu, 08-19-2010 - 7:32am
~hugs~
I know "exactly" how you feel Jan...
Sometimes it's very hard explaining and making others understand.
People will ask me about ds, what's he worried about?, what's he "Anxious" about?
They just don't "get it"...he says I do "get it", "get him"...
He said at first maybe I didn't but I was willing to listen, and to give him the benefit of the doubt.
It's not like he doesn't want to do things or can't it's about being "Able" in that particular moment...
I have things I struggle with, most recently difficulty sleeping, sleeping in my room and in my bed.
A small victory for someone else but a big one for me, I slept in my bed, in my room last night.
Yeah!!!
Courage comes from within, we have to do things on on own, it's great to have Support but when it ALL comes down to it, we have to be the Ones who actually make up our minds to follow through.
Anxiety is a funny thing.
I don't mean funny...ha ha... but learning ALL of us have it at one point or another and it's learning how to cope/deal with it.
My son got a shower the other morning, got dressed and volunteered to come with me of his own accord.
It was wonderful!
Most people don't get how success for one person can mean one thing and another for someone else.
It was not too bad on the bus we took, fairly empty or maybe even empty, the bus drivers are great, and fairly quiet where we went, we went out for Lunch...but then it got busy, he started to panic a little but managed pretty good.
Baby Steps...
He has come such a long way, I have never given up hope, given up on him but it's his journey, not mine.
He knows that he isn't the ONLY one who is afraid.
I think he was very happy I was able to sleep in my room in my bed last night.
One of things others don't get is "Anxiety" can strike anyone at any time.
My son was out and about as a young kid, and then he was tested and found to have GAD and then SAD (Social Anxiety Disorder) and Agoraphobia...
I can remember him being able to walk to school, go to the store, ride his bike and then they ALL became too overwhelming...he changed overnight it seemed, it wasn't really overnight...
I know that if he puts his mind to it, he can do it, but pushing doesn't work well, it just makes him more anxious, many people are like that.
Some like my son would get up get ready and not be able to leave.
But if you at least try...say just step outside your door or even open it that in and of itself is a victory.
I don't much like driving, not my driving but with someone else, and I know it's because I was in two separate car accidents so I don't fault myself for being scared for feeling the "Panic" set in...I know it will pass and sometimes I don't push myself to get in a car with certain people.
Their driving literally paralyses me.
I like taking the bus.
Freedom and Independence.
My son and I were talking and I said that I was really proud of him, he offered to go with me to the store because he was worried and concerned about me walking he knows how the RA has affected me and he wanted to help me carry whatever I had to get at the store.
He hasn't done that either in a long time.
I believe one day Jan you will be able to cross that bridge again in your own time.
Half the battle is recognizing what's going on...for some medication or therapy or a combination of both but it's Individual...My son says when we have gone out together how small I seem now to him, he has grown quite tall, he said he just wishes people would just leave him ALONE and he probably could handle this so much better but he begins to feel he can't cope with people, for him a crowd could be two people, maybe strangers and he would prefer that they don't stare or try talking to him but it seems we always come across someone usually on the bus like this.
One day I actually asked the person to please leave us alone, my son was really happy, she kept talking away to us and we didn't know her, were trying to be polite but finally I said that we were trying to converse ourselves.
It worked!
He finds it very hard to do that...it's why he got up from our table at the restaurant and went and waited for me, I had to use the washroom, and he explained he wondered when I was coming back , some people sat close and started to talk to him and they had kids sitting in my seat, crawling under the table.
Meanwhile my ds is trying to ignore them.
Wasn't being rude he just feels petrified!
Not really interested in carrying on a conversation with total strangers, he feels anxious and panicky, he just wants to go, sometimes he wishes he never even went there or came out.
He said though in spite of it getting too busy the last time we went out for Lunch he enjoyed it and was feeling okay, was happy, he knew I was happy to have his company.
Victory!!!
Nightangel
Nightangel
Avatar for firstglimpse
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-08-2003
Thu, 08-19-2010 - 3:46pm

Jan,

I didn't know you had driving anxiety too!

I don't understand how you desensitize with driving. It just doesn't seem safe at all. If I'm hyperventilating, I'm getting dizzy & that is what scares me. I can endure the anxiety when if I fall or faint I simply drop to the floor. I've even convinced myself if I did this in public it's better for me b/c then I'll get help. But driving ... nope, then I can kill somebody.

Darn, I've been thinking I'm no longer agoraphobic b/c I leave my house - but I guess I still am seeing I don't drive outside of my safe zone, which is under 10 miles.

I'll go watch the episode. I'm a bit deflated now :(




"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng



"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-11-2004
Fri, 08-20-2010 - 4:57pm
I had the dizziness too & was scared silly that I would pass out & wreck the car. Nonetheless, I used the small steps driving further away from home & traveling on isolated roads & through bridges & tunnels that were my nemesis. When the anxiety & even panic set in, as I pushed myself, I used the progressive relaxation & belly breathing. There were times that I had to pull off the road & wait until I got myself calmed down. Once, I was in another city about 12 miles from home & had to call my father to pick us up. I panicked & couldn't drive that 12 miles which was a straight shot to my front door. The next day, my dad drove me back to pick up my car & I was just fine! From then on, I was anxious on that road, but I was able to make it ok.
I had no choice, Bonnie. We're on a river w/several other waterways that converge in the center of town. Many years ago when my fear was off the charts, I drove to a bridge that I needed to cross to get to my doctor's appointment. That was as far as I got. *To the bridge.* I had to find a public phone & call to cancel. I did drag others along w/me for moral support. I was so ashamed, that I never told them they were my moral support. In fact, I downright bribed them to ride along w/the *I'll pay for lunch or I'll do this or that for you* to get them into the car w/me. I cannot tell you the lengths I would go to. I panicked once on the road(isolated) to my sister's house. Of course I HAD to visit my sister! So, I began to drive miles out of my way to get to her home. AVOID THAT ROAD @ ALL COSTS! A couple of times I got *caught* & had to come up w/some wild & wooly tales as to why I was where I was, when I was going somewhere else. As I type this, my *inner motor* has begun. Remembering how awful that time was is anxiety-producing): I drive that road daily & haven't gotten anxious on it for years.
I drive ok now. I do get nervous on bridges, especially when stopped. A couple of years ago, there was an accident @ the end of the bridge. In spite of a traffic pile-up, I *made* ppl back up, so I could turn around & go home. I know perfectly well, that it could happen again & there would be NO WAY to turn around. I get literally sick to my stomach when I get on the New York thruway & the sign says 85 miles to the next exit. In those cases, I count off the miles on my odometer. I tell myself I will drive 6 miles & if it doesn't work out, make an illegal U-turn & pay the fine! Then, push for the next 6 miles. I make a lot of plans in advance for *what if this* or *what if that* happens. My mind never stops covering my butt just in case. LOL I also get anxious on expressways when the traffic is heavy & I feel penned in. OMG! I have actually had thoughts that I should hit the brakes & let whatever happens...happen. I have told myself over & over what I have learned about anxiety & panic. I will NOT die & I will NOT act on the zany thoughts that intrude when I'm panicking. It has gotten better over time. The feelings & thoughts aren't as intense & can be dismissed much quicker.
DO NOT LOSE HOPE! If I can do it, ANYONE CAN! I remember dark days when I was discouraged. I recall crying when my kids wanted to go places & I couldn't take them. I will never know where that fear came from. I didn't have an accident or noone that I knew had one. What I DO know, is that it was a challenge to drag myself out of that hole. I became so sick & tired of being sick & tired. The limitations the fear imposed on me, were actually imposed by myself. I could allow the fear to control me or not. I made the choice to change. I never threw in the towel & said I will stop trying. There were days that I *took off* from trying, then began again. If that should ever happen again & it is a nagging fear, I would go to a hypnotist like Suz our fromer CL did. That seems like a quicker way to get a grip. Maybe I'm getting lazy;)
GL & GBU! (((hugs))) jan
 

 


 



Avatar for firstglimpse
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-08-2003
Fri, 08-20-2010 - 6:56pm

Ugggh, I hate this - it is so horrible. I have gotten to a point where I do so much in spite of my anxiety. My H is an awe of me when we're in public, how I'll even talk to strangers. He'll ask if my social anxieties are gone, I tell him no, I just do it anyway. (His social anxieties used to be less than mine - now mine our less than his - far less!)

But when it comes to driving I just don't know how to get over that lump. It's not that I absolutely won't drive, I've done it. I did it once, 15 hour drive, with two dogs in the back, one that yelped & cried the entire 15 hours (15 hours not including rests, but actual drive time). This 15 hour drive was moving from one state to another - one that I had very limited knowledge of, it's was simply just out of my home town and that was good enough.

Then once I moved here my brother lived 3.5 hours away. He wanted me to come visit once a month (he would come here once a month). I would do it, in rain, sleet & fog. But I would stop at every rest stop to pee (gotta love how adrenaline makes you pee). I would stop & call my H just sobbing & crying telling him I could no further. But I had no choice, I was out in the middle of nowhere in the midsts of thick forests.

I hate to say this, part of the reason I wanted to quit taking my DS to occupational therapy was due to the anxiety attacks I would get weekly driving him into town. How horrible is that?

I would love to drive my kids to the beach for the day w/o my H - like during summer break & Canadian holiday (I contract for a Canadian company). But I cannot bring myself to do it.

We have a friend who own a B&B on a lake. She invites us up every summer & I have every excuse under the sun why we never take her up on it (she lives in town during the school year).

Just taking the kids to dads office I have to pull over & try to breath while the kids are asking why I've stopped. I don't want to make a big deal with it to them, because I don't want them to feel my anxiety. My DS already suffers from anxiety, but he's okay in the car, even AFTER our recent accident. So I don't want to make it worse. Luckily I got smart & thought of parks on the way home so that they thought I was making their 8 mile trip more fun rather than me needing to breath.

I don't read the odometer, but I use the mile markers on the road. Or other landmarks if I've driven that route long enough.

Long past are the days I would drive to calm myself down. Long past are the days I would roll down my windows & look for a windy road up the mountains. Long past are the days I had this American freedom of the automobile.

>> The Obsessed video was only the intro. Need to see if it's on demand, but I doubt it :(

I had been waiting & waiting for an Obsessed that focused on driving & this one had 3 drivers!!!

Wish I could find a self-hypnosis for free. I found it really did help with my smoking - though it took several attempts. I've tried looking with no luck thus far.

But at least I am able to go about a bit. Still with a lot of anxiety, but able to do it well enough the kids don't realize any more. But I stay in my safety zone & hide the fact it what I'm doing.




"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng



"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-09-2007
Sat, 08-21-2010 - 2:23pm

Just curiosity!

Avatar for firstglimpse
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-08-2003
Mon, 08-23-2010 - 12:58am

For me it's the problem of not being able to pull over & stop my car to breath. When my driving anxiety in settled in I'm constantly looking for my escape route. No escape route on a bridge ... have to make it across no matter what or cause a huge scene.

Luckily downtown happens to be on my side of the river... if I were to ever actually drive downtown :) I tend to park & ride the train.

... interesting compulsion though. I used to have one to veer my steering wheel really hard to the right. What was strange, come to find out my brother had the some one???

Weird.




"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng



"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng

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