Anxiety and PTSD

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by TYLERFAN, Feb 1, 2007.

  1. TYLERFAN

    TYLERFAN New Member

    Hi Family:

    I have been spending most of my time on sub abuse forum.....cause of the sub abuse issues of my difficult child. This is about me though.
    I have periods of extreme irrational anxiety. My P-doctor knows this, I am on a combo anti-depressant that works very well and Xanax, as needed. I have irrational fears about stupid things like leaving the house. I have been to Florida by plane 2x in the past 4 months....with absolutely no anxiety going or while there. I can some days leave the house, no problem. Then there are the days when I count how many days there are till I absolutely will have to leave the house....(like for Dr appointment or something). I used to be a fearless driver. My Fiance just bought a new truck for me and Baby J to drive :bravo:.......I have driven it once to the 7-11. :hammer:
    I used to have horrible anxiety as a young teen, didn't know what it was. I had the hyper-ventilation, etc.
    Now it's just an overwhelming fear at times. I have asked myself "what am I afraid of?" and can come up with no rational answer. My only response to these attacks have been either to stay home or to push myself and pull myself out the door.......
    What the heck has happened to me? I also think the PTSD has something to do with it, as during these anxiety attacks, I am usually having one of those days when I am either recounting all the bad things with difficult child and/or all my fears for her future. The two may be related, Yes, I know. But not sure if that is the whole story here.
    I want to live normally. I certainly want the happy and comfortable life my Fiance is offering me and the baby.
    Anyone have any clues, or has this happened to you?

    Blessings,
    Melissa *
     
  2. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    Melissa, I've dealt with anxiety since my mid-20's. I hate it. I have good days and bad. I have good years and bad. I can go along swimmingly, then *something* will trigger the anxiety and I spend the next few hours/days/weeks feeling like I'm climbing an uphill battle. I'm in one of those times right now.

    When I was married I could get away with some of the agoraphobic aspects of it- exdh could drive the car, he could go to the grocery store (for some reason I find grocery stores anxiety-producing....probably because I've had a couple of panic attacks in them over the years), just *being there* would help with the anxiety. As a single person I'm forced to put one foot in front of the other and move forward. I know that's the best way to deal with it to prove to myself that I'M OKAY but some days it is grueling (she says as she pops 1/4 klonopin...).

    I don't know what to tell you. I know, for me, talking about it helps. Having a sympathetic listener helps---folks who tell you to "buck up" are useless during these times for me because it only worsens my frustration that "I'm not okay." I have learned over the years who I can talk to and who I can't during the hardest times.

    A good cry helps.

    Klonopin helps.

    Exercise helps if you can force yourself to do it.

    Positive self-talk helps. (thank goodness I have my own office at work with a door that closes :wink: )

    Re-direction helps....forcing yourself to think of other things...to notice colors, to feel textures, anything to redirect your mind from the anxiety itself.

    A good therapist helps.

    You have my sympathies and an understanding hug.

    Suz
     
  3. KFld

    KFld New Member

    I have never dealt with this personally, but I know people who have. You need to talk to someone who can help you figure out why you are feeling this way. It sounds like you are ready to do that just by admitting that it's a problem and your not just accepting it as the way you are going to live the rest of your life.

    I hope you find somebody good to talk to and can get past this. There are too many good things in life waiting out there for you!!
     
  4. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Melissa, I do know that xanax can have a kickback affect. It helps while you are taking it, but you are more likely to be anxious and nervous the next day or two.

    But also, it sounds as though maybe you get anxious at home because that is where the troubles are. Can you talk to your prescribing doctor or therapist about that?
     
  5. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry, my friend. I would guess that you have absorbed
    the stress of difficult child since you are now talking to her daily and
    having daily reasons to be concerned. Plus...taking care of
    a baby can be wonderful but it also is stress producing. As
    you know I think you need to eliminate the daily difficult child update
    and focus on the good stuff in your life with your SO & baby
    for now.

    It makes sense to reach out for professional help now before
    more issues begin to build. You've had too many years of high stress. It's logical that it is effecting you.

    Hugs. DDD
     
  6. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    [ QUOTE ]
    I do know that xanax can have a kickback affect. It helps while you are taking it, but you are more likely to be anxious and nervous the next day or two.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Witz, do you know if that can be true for klonopin (clonazepam), too? I was trying to research it online last week and couldn't find supporting evidence...but it seemed like it was happening to me. :confused:

    Then, I figured that since my doze is so tiny, I was just goofy. :hammer:

    Suz
     
  7. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    Post-traumatic stress reactions after what we have been through with our kids ~ both the things we would not let ourselves know we were thinking and the things we dealt with, physically and emotionally, are a normal response to our situations I think, Melissa. For those of us with traumatic childhoods, it's worse.

    I agree that this would be the time to access a therapist. Not someone to hold your hand and tell you how normal these reactions are, but someone to help you identify the reactions and an appropriate response to them. What is that kind of therapy called? Cognitive therapy? Does anyone remember?

    I saw such a therapist, and she was a life saver. There was no question that the reactions were abnormal ~ the whole point of the therapy was to give me the tools which would enable me to live my life while I healed.

    Everything that happens to us affects us, Melissa. During those times you were frightened for, or horrified by, what your daughter had done, you ignored your own feelings and your own pain.

    Now, here they are, and they need to be dealt with for you to go on in a healthy way.

    Eventually, I think we all come to terms with it.

    A good therapist can speed that process.

    Know that I am holding you in my thoughts and prayers, Melissa.

    In fact, I had someone tell me this once: Envision youself traveling through a deep woods in the dark of the night. Far, far ahead, glimmering through the trees, there is a light.

    You make your way toward it.

    I am holding the light.

    I have been where you are. I came out the other side because there was someone there, holding a light for me to find my way, too.

    Barbara

    P.S. Am I understanding that you have custody of the baby, Melissa? Much as you love him, that may be part of everything. Again, I think a therapist would be a good resource for you. Anything we can look at, we can deal with (especially moms like us, who have learned we possessed strength we never knew existed).

    Our minds are funny things, though. Sometimes, they don't let us see so clearly what the issues are.
     
  8. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Suz~

    One of the withdrawal affects of Klonopin is agitation. And Klonopin and Xanax work in similar ways. It seems reasonable to assume that it could be so, even in a small dose. I have a xanax rx, but I only fill it two or three times a year. Even so, I have become very aware that if I take it it can make things worse in the next day or two after so I don't do it if I need to be on top of my emotions.
     
  9. OTE

    OTE Active Member

    Melissa, Have you tried tracking these feelings against your period/cycle? It is my personal believe, supported by research, that a woman's hormones can have effects on her psychiatry. It is certainly true for my depression. In terms of it varying from day to day I would suggest that you eliminate the effect your cycle has on this before you move to radical options. Psychotherapy would probably be helpful in general for all you deal with, but at least before you change medications to try to deal with this.
     
  10. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    Oh, I absolutely agree with OTE.

    Barbara
     
  11. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    I wish they would do studies of anxiety/panic as it relates to blood sugar. The hormone thing doesn't apply to me because I had a hysterectomy many years ago and I'm on HRT so my hormone levels remain steady. But I do have issues with hypoglycemia and the symptoms of a sugar crash are almost identical to an anxiety/panic attack. Sometimes it's really hard to tell the difference!

    Edge, you research these things. Have you seen anything about the correlation between blood sugar and anxiety?

    Suz
     
  12. TYLERFAN

    TYLERFAN New Member

    Hi Family:

    The funny thing here is....I have been in therapy for years :hammer:......I have an excellent P-doctor...he knows me well, knows my difficult child well, and is aware of the problem I am having. He put me on alot of different medications at first. I am on Cymbalta now which helps alot. I notice when I take the Xanax on top of it other than to sleep, I feel more anxious....so much for xanax being anti-anxiety.
    Then there are times a small amount helps me.
    Also I think the situation with difficult child and the dealer is making me anxious too. Funny that I can travel 1500 miles with no anxiety and be crazy right here at home. DDD, I think you are absolutely correct, I have detached alot from difficult child but I need to do more. By the way, I am trying not to let my feelings be known too much to Fiance.....I sincerely want to concentrate on him, me and baby J.
    OTE, I think since I am in what they called Peri-menopause, my cycle can be part of the problem. Instead of having less cycles per month, I am having 2 cycles per month.....I do believe part of this is physiological.
    Anyway, P-doctor has told me different things to try to help....different coping strategies. I guess things will get better eventually. I also know that my feelings are residual from my divorce.....the ex was an enabler of me and me of him.
    Thanks for the great suggestions everyone. :bravo:

    Blessings,
    Melissa *
     
  13. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I recently saw an infomercial for a B12 capsule that disolves in your mouth (or immediately upon swallowing) and
    has an almost instant effect. Years ago I got B12 shots when I was drained and it always helped. If the capsules are available locally I may try them to see if that helps
    boost my energy level. Has anyone heard of them?? DDD
     
  14. dreamer

    dreamer New Member

    I had recently posted 2 links re stress anxiety panic attacks and fight or flight on the general board and then parental burnout caregiver stress on watercooler. The parental burnout caregiver stress post has links to some interesting "inventories" or surverys....and that thread also has some info on ptsd on it. I was an agoraphobic 20 yr old....and I had major panic attacks in nursing school, and PTSD from being abused by bio father at gunpoint, gang raped as a teen and later the victim of a psychotic dangerous stalker. My husband has combat PTSD.
     
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