I Had Agoraphobia

For those who don't know what Agoraphobia is ; It is an extreme panic disorder . I could barely walk out of my house to take out the trash. After I had lost my husband to suicide and gave our second son up for adoption, I totally lost it. I tried so hard to be normal, having a childern to take care of . I remember one time I need to go to the store for diapers and formula ; I couldn't find anyone to go for me.That's how I got by most of the times ,was having people enable me to be the way I was. I even had a therapist come to my house

. Anyway, I had to go to the store for myself. I remember just the thought of walking to my car to get in was so scarey, I just was so scared would some one see me ? Would somebody no how fricken stupid I was ? I got the babies together and we made it to the car, where I sat with them for at least 10 minutes before I talked myself in to driving to the store. Once I got there I had to struggle with the horrible feeling of going in, I wanted so bad to leave my childern in the car so I could run in and not have to be slowed down by any means.  I got my boys in a cart and in to the store; Whew! ( I can still remember what the feelings were like as if I am feeling them now!!!)  As I walked into the store Everything seemed so surreal .The lights seemed as if they were as bright as the sun , I could hear the carts wheels as if they were amplified 10x, I couldn't breath ....  My body felt as if I were floating and not really even there.( Disassociating was what I was actually doing) I got what I needed and got out of there. I threw up as soon as reached the car . That was the beginning of my healing. I did it without dying , without falling down or making a fool out of myself.

It took baby steps; But, Now I can go  to mall ( not around Christmas or on the weekend) BUT I can actually shop for my childern . I also know when I am about to have a panic attack I can feel it , I have learned how to use breathing technique . I still take meds and they have done alot of good as long as stay on them. I sometimes feel like I am better and I don't need them , that's when things go bad. I can't do that and I know better. 

tigeress1970 tigeress1970
36-40, F
3 Responses Apr 25, 2007

i have the same issue and i cant even go outside my house, when i go to smoke a cigarette even on my porch which is secluded with screen i think people are outside in the dark watching me waiting for me to be at my weakest even if i am just digging for a lighter in my purse. i cant go outside without some sort of protection. i just got back on my meds but even those don't help when the sun goes down.it sounds funny but nobody seems to understand except the people who put me on this medication. the store situation i have always had to deal with the people and the lights are what brings on my panic attack. even being around family and poeple i know cause me to get so anxious i feel like i am going to pass out. it took me to calling the police becasue i thought people were waiting to break into my house to realize things have spiraled down again. im on treatment now and unable to work because of my problems. any advice?

its like reading about my life, always planning ahead to find the quickest root, thank you for sharing.

I too am agoraphobic but I am doing better. I consider certain people as safe. I can go to the store with my daughter. I can drive to my Mom's house if I concentrate on her. I can go to small stores that are not too busy by myself. I am now driving again but in smaller increments. Driving used to be how I calmed myself down. Not now. I have had a panic attack that landed me in the hopital because my blood pressure went up so high I nearly had a heart attack. I was treated at the hospital for one an dthen kept overnight and the next day I had to have astress test. Luckily I was okay. I know how scary panic attacks are. I am living proof.