I have this overwhelming sense of doom, like something horrible is about to happen, but I don't know what it is. Like I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. I can't explain it better. I'm terrified. I'm on so many meds I can't really say what's what since I also have borderline personality disorder and am bi-polar. I take celexa, topamax and xanax. i also just started taking abilify which is helping with the racing thoughts, but the doom feelings are horrible.
i've had these before but i had a reason then, like when i knew my ex husband was coming by with the divorce papers, or when i was getting fired from my job.
can anyone explain this to me?
Recovering Borderline - 20 years +
I can totally relate. Check out my post on this board called "We are all logical people", because I posted about exactly the same thing.
I'm not sure if it helps you to know this, but your feeling of impending doom is one of the most common symptoms of a panic attack. I think pretty much everyone who has ever had a panic attack has felt that sense of intense fear about something bad about to happen. I'm not sure what causes that to happen, like what it is about our brain to make us believe that something is about to go wrong, but it happens to so many people. I guess I just want you to know that you're not alone and that many of us with anxiety and panic have exactly the same problem.
I haven't been able to figure out how to stop myself from having those thoughts while in the midst of a panic attack. But when I'm feeling normal and not in panic mode, then I'm not feeling that feeling at all. So.... I'm not sure how to go about making those thought stop.
But again, just know that this is very common among panic attack sufferers, and that you are just one of very many people who have exactly the same thoughts.
I too know that feeling. I still get it every once in a while. The best thing for you to do is battle it. If you are afraid of something do it anyway. You will teach yourself to re learn about fear and what you should really be afraid of. I have been doing this all summer and I have to say it is very hard but no matter what you are going to feel that way so you might as well challenge it. Push yourself. Find someone who you trust with your life and bring them along. To make you feel a little safer. I had trouble driving a few years back. But you know what I did got in my car with one of my friends and told her no matter what unless I am ready to pass out to let me keep going. I drove 5 miles that day. Then the next I did 10. and so on and so on. Now I can drive hours away. The doom starts to fade and you begin to accomplish goals. YOu learn how to live again!
I think the "what ifs" tend to occur naturally during a crisis situation. If a person broke their leg, they may naturally start thinking thoughts such as "what if I can't work; if I can't work, how am I going to pay rent; if I can't pay rent, then......" During a panic attack, we no longer feel in control of things, so the crisis we're experiencing causes us to start thinking the worst.
Try this: Before a PA occurs, already have planned out, one or two positive affirmations to tell yourself. Actually practice saying these beforehand so they will be second nature to you if the need to actually use them arises. One of these affirmations could be; "a PA will only make me feel uncomfortable, but no additional harm will be done." You could follow that one with; "these gloom and doom feelings are only natural and will pass when the PA does."
For me, it's not just during a panic attack, but also occurs normally throughout the day. If I'm not fighting off fear, the "what-ifs", and hypochondria symptoms, I'm fighting off the "impending doom"...and sometimes all of them at once. The doom feeling is most commonly associated with the panic attack (because it's then that it is the strongest and most severe), but it is also a common daily symptom of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) (which is not the same as Panic Disorder (PD), though many people suffer from both--like me. )
For the longest time, I didn't connect the "impending doom" with my GAD, after months in therapy and lots of research on GAD and PD, I've finally connected the two and am not as bothered anymore by those feelings. However, that's not to say I have gotten rid of them...I'm just not as troubled by them anymore because I understand they are part of the bigger picture of GAD.