Join Date: Apr 2009
| | It's Time to Share...Finally!
My story may get a bit long, so I appologize in advance. I would also like to thank anyone in advance for taking the time to read this. This, is a first for me, and it isn't easy.
My parents tell me that I've suffered from anxiety from infancy on. I used to rock my crib around the room, I broke several couches, potty chairs and highchairs due to my habitual rocking. It has always been my way to ease my nerves. To this day, at the age of 35, I still rock in a rocking chair every night. Things got significantly worse during the 4th grade. I began to stay up all night long, plagued with panic attacks. This lasted for about a year. Then, in the 8th grade, I contimplated suicide for the first time and actually cut a bit. My freshman year in highschool, the eating disorders began and did not stop until I met my husband at the age of 22. During college, I learned how to purge. My anxiety was so bad that I often stayed in bed all day. I think I skipped 62 classes my Freshman year. I also attempted suicide again by cutting my wrists, however, I stopped myself before it became too serious and told no one.
My sophomore year was even worse. I hated myself. I hated the way I looked. I felt that I was disgustingly ugly and fat. In April of that year, I finally managed a real suicide attempt. The ambulance was called, the bathrooms had to be bleached out, and I was an in-patient for two weeks and an out-patient for five. Throughout all of this, my parents took me to counselors, vitamin clinics, and psychiatrists. I have been diagnosed with anything from anxiety to bipolar disorder. Unfortunately, no one seemed to get it right.
I eventually went back to college and earned a teaching degree. I met and married my husband, we have two children, and I've been teaching for 9 years. After the birth of my second child, my mother read an article in a magazine about GAD. She encouraged me to seek professional help again because although I had made a successful life for myself, she could see that I still struggled on a daily basis. I was fortunate enough to get an appointment with the leading anxiety disorder specialist in this area. Within minutes of meeting me, he diagnosed me as socialphobic. I bowed my head and cried. All of those years, over twelve psychiatrists, three hospital stays, three suicide attempts, eleven years of eating disorders and Lord only knows how many medications and no one could figure this out until now? Thank God I didn't wait any longer, but boy did I greave for the lost years. Since then, I have read books, taken a class, attended a support group and have been seeing a psychiatrist. I took just Klonopin for about two years and felt much better, but I was not quite there yet. I still had trouble with my appearance. People have often told me I am pretty. People say that I am thin. Rationally, I know I am not overweight and I am not ugly, however, I feel like I am fat and ugly. Sometimes, I look in the mirror and if I do not look "right," I will look in all the other mirrors in my house. I feel compelled to constantly check mirrors. I always have. It isn't that I like what I see, either. It's that I am hoping to like what I see and that I am constantly disappointed. I'm sure you probably realize by now what my secondary diagnosis is: BDD. Finally, I feel like somebody understands me! I have a good doctor who finally told me what was wrong! I now take LuvoxCR and less Klonopin. I have also been doing exposure/response therapy. But, here's the thing. Here is the reason I am sharing any of this. I still fight, every day of my life, to feel okay. I'm exhausted most of the time, and although life is so much better, it is a battle that I'm sure will come and go. Quite frankly, this week has been a bad one and I guess I'm just wanting to share this with people who really get it. Even my closest friends and family don't get it. I feel so completely alone and misunderstood. It's kind of like I am walking around with this hole in my chest that no one can see, and at times, it sucks the air right out of me. And I'm sad about that. I'm sad that I'm alone in this battle. I'm sad that I'm sick and that life is hard. I know it seems like I'm feeling sorry for myself, but I just had to put it out there...somewhere.
Thank you for reading my story.