I am A 37 year old male who has suffered from panic attacks since I was 18 . My trigger was A crowd of people I did not care how bad I felt alone by myself because no one could see me that way. I have avoidence behavior if it causes panic/anxiety I avoid it If I am afraid i avoid so now my safe place has got smaller and smaller and now agoraphobia. I have lost 1 marrage and 2 girlfriends because of this they all wanted to go out and run around all the time. I am so lonely however I have given up all hope of ever finding anyone who will ever want me untill I get over this.
1woody 1woody
41-45, M
8 Responses Jan 3, 2012

Your problems are your eyes. One eye is higher than the other the condition is called hyperphoria. All agoraphobics have this condition. Look at this blog, agoraphobia

Hi, I have had panic attacks too for 20 years now which got worse & became agoraphobia. I realize that thoughts pop into my head right before I have an attack. I paid careful attention to those thoughts & started blocking them & it stopped the attack. I'm sorry to hear you've lost girlfriends to this disease. I understand what you r going through & I know that people don't understand. I make myself go places even though sometimes I'm terrified, but once I get there, get busy & have a good time, I forget I was scared.

I am getting A little better. I would so love to completely recover and get to comfortably go out and do things I have never got to do before. i am glad you got better and gives me hope if you can do it so can I.

hey man I feel you. I don't have agoraphobia but I do understand your pain. Honestly I just really learned what agoraphobia meant and honestly i think it's terrible that you have to go through that I really do. I have a fear of alot of things that have to do with being in public. I have trouble eating in public I'm afraid of new situations. I do however have anxiety. Pretty bad anxiety. stuff happened and I had panic attacks as well as anxiety attacks that lasted as long as a month. Honestly it ruined high school for me. Stuff happened to me that I couldn't control or understand why it happened. and well as high school goes i told a couple people that i thought i could trust and one of them spread the story around. Rumors were started about it and it followed me all through high school. i got bullied beyond belief. at times I wanted to give up. family and true friends got through it. I've been anxiety attack free for 3 years now and I know that I have beaten it and it won't control my life anymore. I wrote my story on my facebook page yesterday for all the people who knew me and thought I was weird or bullied me or just heard the stories to read. I was amazed at all the support cause really during those years I just didnt think anyone cared. Anxiety really screwed with my life and cheated me out of so many things I want to accomplish by now that I'm 19. but you know what I couldn't then but know I can now. There's nothing I can't do. Anxiety made me as strong a person as anyone could ever imagine. I first thought of my anxiety as a curse but now I look at it as a gift. Just the fact that my story has inspired people or helped them through a tough time is a good enough reason I'm glad I had my anxiety. I learned alot about life through this and am so more mature than any other kid close to my age.

The mind is just an abstract place where people keep thoughts. Whether good or bad happy or sad those thoughts are all in your mind. It may seem like other people decide what you do with those thoughts and how you might react, but really all that matters is how you figure out how to deal with those thoughts and accept them. Don't ever let any of those thoughts keep you down because all that does is control your life and prevent anything you ever wanted to accomplish. The mind doesn't really exist, it only exists in people's minds.

Seriously man I feel for you and understand more than you can ever imagine. I don't even need to know your story to understand. Hope this gives you hope man I really do. Life's too short to worry about anything that's out of your control.

Can someone help me? I'm fourteen, and I think I may have agoraphobia, too... I can't talk properly and present myself properly to people, especially in school. Whenever we have school masses, and in Church even, I can't even get up my chair to take communion because of this. Whenever I'm in large crowds, in front of class, or even when in line when taking communion. it's like my head shivers and stops me from looking at people to make me even more nervous because i can't look at them. it's really hard to explain. :( it's probably because i'm an insecure teenager. I want this to stop. Help me please? But I don't feel nervous in places like malls... usually only in gatherings, where you know people would really look at you. It's kinda sad because I can't do what I want and I'm fourteen. I'm scared for the first day of class, I might panic again and my head would shiver/vibrate and what about graduation when I have to go to the stage? I don't think I would even survive with this :( Please help me :-( It's just like I get nervous when people look at me :-(

Have you seen A doctor and told the doctor these things? CBT and Psychotherapy sometimes with medicine can help you with this.

Hi, to the 14 year old. You are way to young to be going through this. From what you tell me, you do not have agoraphobia but a social anxiety. It's highly treatable with therapy, & more common in teens. I would see a counselor to help you with this so you can feel better.

You have hyperphoria. This is a condition with your eyes that is causing your problem. Go to for more information. I know this doesn't see right but it is.

Thank u for posting your story. I too have had my attacks since 19yrs <br />
and they have ruined my life. So i havent got any great advice but i just wanted to say i know where your coming from . Especially with the lonelliness and feelings of dispare. Your not alone . Sending you a big hug.

Thank you for the hug. I hope your attacks,loneliness, &amp; feelings of despire get better for you soon :)

Hi Woody. Older post, but I wanted to comment anyway. My daughter told me this recently ( I am also single), she said, "Mom, those that matter don't care and those that care don't matter!" Words spoken like a true angel. She is wonderful and although she does not fully understand panic attacks/agoraphobia she is a positive support. I would send you this same message, Woody. People that are truly worthy of you will not mind your condition. Starting out as friends is an absolute plus. Meet people online. I understand fully that there are times, in the deepest depths of our darkness, that we cannot see a "light" at the end of a tunnel, but that is why we have people there (like me, for example, at this very moment) to remind us that there is so we do not forget. :) I am so grateful I found EP. I came across this site by accident, but to be perfectly honest, I do not think it was an accident. I think God brought me here to meet wonderful people like yourself so that we can support and encourage one another into wellness. :)

Aww you are so sweet.. I am thankfull to found thas site and met great friends like yourself.. your are an inspiration and an encouragement to me :) thank you.

Thank you Woody. You are very kind yourself. :) I only hope that I can some day overcome my disorder..rise above it, coming out on the other side feeling proud of having healed so that I can truly help others. I have to learn to help myself first, but I can be of assistance in the meantime. I hope anyway. :)

Agoraphobia is a life altering condition but.....very treatable and liveable. With the right supports, people who understand your condition and can talk you through those attacks, regular visits with the doctor to monitor and manage your symptoms, and learning about your own conditions through therapy. <br />
<br />
I know and have supported many people along the way who live with this and its not an easy thing.<br />
Part of that was attending and participating in cognitive therapy sessions. I learned a lot about the condition and the power of the mind in those sessions. In simple terms you basically have to re-train your brain how to react to stimulus. And you do that by first discovering all those triggers and catching those attacks before the stimulus causes those signals to go haywire. It takes time and practice and it never really goes away but you learn how to manage it much better. One activity we did, the therapist, the person I was supporting and I was going on an outing to a busy place. I just observed. But what basically happened is they triggered a panic attack and the therapist showed them how to work their way through it, through self awareness, positive self talk and soothing techniques. The mind is rather fascinating in how it works and with some vigilance and determination you can learn how to confront those things and work with them and greatly improve the quality of your own life.<br />
<br />
This condition is also heredity.......,my oldest daughter came home last night amidst a panic attack.<br />
She was at a friends and started feeling rather claustrophobic. She tried to work her way through it but it overtook her and she came rushing home, shaking and in tears. I met her at the door and just held her for a moment. She kept saying she didnt know what happened. I told her not to think about it at the moment as her mind was racing to much to focus on that. I gave her some easy tasks to do, go change, wash your face, grab your blanket and a book and come back downstairs. Easy tasks like that served as a distraction to get her mind off of that and to focus on small things. She was much calmer when she came downstairs. At the moment, her attacks don't happen very often, her last one was four months ago. My focus with her at this point is teaching her how to work through them and monitoring it to make sure that it doesn't affect the quality of her life and being prepared to take further steps if and when it does. <br />
<br />
Its a long process. But in a positive light, there is nothing wrong with getting to know yourself really well and learning how to live and cope with these things. In the end you are much more self aware and stronger because of it. An admirable quality indeed. <br />
<br />
I wish you the best of luck on your journey. Take Care.

interesting that just may help me

You are right when you say this condition is hereditary. It is caused from your eyes. One eye is higher than the other and causes head spins and everything else. Look in the mirror at the line over your eyes and you will find one higher than the other. Look at this blog for more information.

Your story is sad, I have had agoraphobia but not to that extreme. Only because i am a single parent and I have to get out, I have to work, i have to take my kids places. If I didn't have to do these things to live i would be stuck at home. I don't see how you will be able to have a relationship if you can't widen your safe zone. My advice is this: when the anxiety attack comes, accept it, live it, keep telling yourself that it will pass. Because it will pass. This is what I do when I have to drive out of my comfort zone. It's horrible, if I know My daughter has a cheer event in another city coming up I will ocd about it for days. Please believe me, I am not making light of your situation. I wish you the best of luck . I am sure there is someone out there that will be be ok with not going out of the house often but You will have to find her. Maybe an agoraphobia online group? oxoxo, Calm

Well I am trying to figure out what makes me feel worse the way the meds make me feel or the anxiety itself

For me, it was the meds. I hated feeling like I was not really there. In a deep fog. It sucks. You just have to decide for yourself.

yea the meds make me feel doped up and numb I am not as careing on meds