Subway Panic

During a particularly stressful point in my life, I remember that taking the subway became a battle. 

I used to take the A train in New York from Dominican Harlem to classes I was taking downtown.  From 125th to 59th street, the A train travels for about 10 minutes nonstop.

I have taken that trip in between those two streets countless times.  However, towards the end of my time in New York -- with my money and friends dwindling -- somehow that trip became a nightmare. 

I would be sitting on the train and then suddenly I would feel hypervigilant, as if I was going to become ill.  Then, it would feel as if some floodgate burst open, and I began to become irrationaly worried about falling sick on the subway, passing out, or vomiting.  I would become extremely nauseous.  I felt I had to leave the train car immediately.

At least twice, possibly three times, I experienced these attacks.  Upon reaching 59th street I would emerge from the car and then head up outside for some fresh air.  At the time, I had no idea what motivated me to leave the train, especially because I would never be sick; now, I realize that I must have been under some incredible stress to have an attack like that.

Panic attacks are more common than people realize.  They are yet another symptom of a lonely and out-of-place existence in a world with few companions and little understanding for the problems of another person.
Seraph1m Seraph1m
26-30, M
5 Responses Jul 23, 2006

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Maybe im developing them then.

Same here! My first official panic attack was on a subway car in Chicago, but all of the sudden I became terrified that I would puke all over people. The subway car was incredibly full, but someone noticed what was happening and told people to give me room. When we finally got to the next station I just panic cried for a couple minutes, pulled myself together, and got on the next train. It sounds identical to your experience.

i suffer from panic disorder, have most of my adult life. i've been on and off meds. at one point the meds were the only thing that allowed me to live a "normal" life. my doctor at one time tried to explain it as our brains weren't meant to cope in this busy hectic world, so theres more stress. and our brains cant keep up. oh to live in the times of "little house on the prairie" lol. my phsychiatrist told me that 1 in 4 people at some time in their lives will experience a panic attack. very common indeed!! how have things been for you lately?? take care

I had the same experience. I almost passed out for no reason. I couldn't stand the crowd. I couldn't stand on my feet. <br />
When these things happen you lose the sense of self.<br />
<br />
Did you?