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  • Does anyone have Generalized Anxiety Disorder?



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    Old 11-04-2003, 08:27 PM   #1
    Forrester
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    Smile Does anyone have Generalized Anxiety Disorder?

    .....where they feel low-level anxious all the time, without panic attacks? Just always low-level worrying? (sometimes high-level during times of stress). It sure would help to know that I'm not alone. How do you cope? Thanks.

     
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    Old 11-05-2003, 05:30 AM   #2
    lucyloo6201
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    Yes, I have been diagnosed with GAD. I was anxiety ridden all the time, and it really got unbearable during times of stress. How do I cope? Well, I was on Xanax for about 6 months, and now I am on Paxil CR and am doing MUCH better. Drugs dont cure the problem, but they slow down the anxiety enough, so that you can look at the cause, and work on it. I am in psychotherapy, working on cognitive behavioral modificaiton, and I am doing stress reducing activities like walking, yoga, meditation, baths,.... The thing is, I couldnt even begin to think of doing anything like this until I got the anxiety under control with meds. Once that happened, I was calm enough to try and work through what is going on. I know what you are going through, it was a living hell for me before the meds and therapy, and it was difficult for anybody around me to understand how badly I was suffering. Are you on any meds?


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    Originally Posted by Forrester
    .....where they feel low-level anxious all the time, without panic attacks? Just always low-level worrying? (sometimes high-level during times of stress). It sure would help to know that I'm not alone. How do you cope? Thanks.

     
    Old 11-05-2003, 07:31 AM   #3
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    Yes, I just went on Paxil again (I was on it before). I am debating going on Buspar as well (because of the cost and no health insurance), but I think I had better just go on Buspar as well. I know it has helped in the past. So someone else understands this living hell. This is awful. I hope the meds help get it at least stabilized. Thanks. I also started psychotherapy again.

     
    Old 11-05-2003, 05:34 PM   #4
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    Lucy, I relate so much to what you've said... without my medication I couldn't have driven myself to therapy, but once the panic attacks were gone and the anxiety was under control I weaned myself off meds. I feel that if I had started CBT earlier I could have avoided med completely. I also found taichi and yoga very helpful.

     
    Old 11-05-2003, 05:51 PM   #5
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    Forrester, I have anxiety also, and was on Paxil cr for about 6 mths, but decided to come off of it cuz I felt like I was way to calm to care, it really took my anxieties away. But felt like I didn't have a reason to do anything.
    The anxieties are back strong, it's real alright! In my stubborn little head I thought it would help me more to have the anxieties so that I can feel the need to help myself and maybe do something about it. It really was a Lot easier with the meds. I think I was having an issue with having to depend on meds to help me, but come to realize with the experience of being off of it that I do need it to help me. Another problem of mine is depression and procrastination.
    All my life I always had everything taken cared of for me, so it's really hard for me to put myself in an uncomfortable position.
    Anxiety is awful! And it is a chemical imbalance in the brain. I'm also seeing a therapist.
    Meds, therapy and action plans that you follow through with will help you a Lot. Anxieties can go away completely when you do the work.
    It's important to get yourself a good therapist to help you with the process. Thats where you should start. Without insurance you should check with your state mental health facility, and ask them what you can do without insurance. They normally have programs for people with no insurance.

     
    Old 11-05-2003, 08:05 PM   #6
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    Thanks so much, Pootsi, and all, for replying to me. Although I am sorry you are suffering also, it makes me feel better to have someone else to identify with. No one seems to understand the power of anxiety and what it can do to someone, and they feel powerless to help me. you know, they want to help, but they know i can only help myself. And even helping myself is hard.

    I have an issue also about medication. It's like I want to "cure" or "treat" this/these conditions (anxiety/depression) without medication. I think the main thing is that medications only work for a couple of years, then they wear off. So I hate how I will feel really good for two years, then it will wear off and I am back to square one. And it's so scary to try a new med. I keep going back on the old ones. they help, of course not as much as they did the first time, but they still help now. I just can't accept the fact that I must be medicated somehow. Especially if I continue to live such a stressful, empty life of transitions and broken friendships, relationships, etc. That just exacerbates it.

    I have the opposite problem. I don't depend on people enough. With my anxiety, it causes me to become impatient and intolerable of people sometimes and I drive them away, espec. with boyfriends. Then I end up being alone. I am a loner by nature, and i don't mind being alone sometimes, but not this much. It's just lonely.

    And the depression and anxiety don't help out with decision planning. I'm not happy where I'm living (boring city) and I just want to move, but can't quite seem to find another city to move to. I keep fluctuating between moving out of Calif and staying here. i think I just might stay here in CA, because jobs are harder to come by in different states, I think. Well then, if I stay in Calif, I'm trying to think of the best place in CA to live, where I can *settle down*. You know, just where I can rest and relax and start dating again. I feel like I can't do it in the Bay Area because there are not too many straight men. I was thinking of northern Calif. even up to Redding or Eureka or Chico or somewhere like that. And if I can't afford a house on my own, I coudl buy a condo in a few years.

    I just have so many dreams, but most of all, I just want to be content. I'll feel more content when I'm in a more heterosexual place where I have better odds for dating. I don't even want to find a husband (I'm not having kids-don't want any). Just looking for a boyfriend/companion, not really asking for much, you know? so I should pretty much be able to find that.

    Sorry to ramble on. I have just been so very unhappy lately, and I don't like living like this, but unfortunately, I seem to have a "glass ceiling" of happiness, I can't reach a certain level of happiness. I think I am afraid of experiencing happiness. I feel like I am fighting myself to be happy, that there's one part of me that wants to and likes to suffer. And I so much want to overcome that.

    The last time I took meds and they worked, I decided to give the Bay Area "one more try." Wrong idea. I should have gotten out then, but I didn't. The next time I feel better after taking meds (which should be in 2-3 months), I'm moving to another city here in CA pronto. I don't want to live all my life here dateless and boyfriendless. Thanks for letting me vent, I feel so much better. Any advice or comments woudl be appreciated. I wonder if anyone has any good suggestions for CA cities to move to, also. Thanks.

     
    Old 11-06-2003, 07:03 AM   #7
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    Forrester, you sound so normal to me. People with anxiety are more enemies to them selves. Having this war in their own heads.
    Honestly, I have a social anxiety more than anything. I've always been a loner also. Except I do always have to have one person in my life, like a security blanket.
    Haven't really had the opportunity to be independent. Wish I had, cuz thats exactly what I need. I'm co-dependent, that's probably why.
    Too many labels
    When it come's to decision making I'm the worse! even looking at a menu, the pressure! The waiter would have to go back and forth wondering if I'm ready yet. The long ones are hell. Then of course after all the wasted time, it turns out to be what seems to be the worst choice on there.
    My therapist told me that it is Very important as a human being to have connection with other human beings, otherwise Im going to be this bitter, mean, lonely, sad old lady someday, with 20 cats in my own lonely little world.
    Noooo!!! I want to be a happy little old lady with lots of grandchildren and family and friends..
    It is a really sad place to be! I feel sorry for my husband cuz he really deals with a Lot with me, and it's bringing him down.
    Anyway, we moving to Bellingham, Washington in two weeks! We are finally moving somewhere we really want to live instead of following the money trail of his job. Tired of living in cities.
    Being a single gal that you are, you'd probably do just fine in cities, with so much single fun.
    I myself loved San Diego!! So many people into fitness and exercise, the sun worshippers, the beaches and weather. We just liked it there then.
    I don't know much about the other areas of Ca. Watch out for the high crime areas. Isn't Chico one of them? Redding looked pretty with the mountains by the border of Or. What about La Hoya ( I know I spelled that wrong). Coronado?
    About meds, I myself did fine on Paxil cr(controlled release). You don't want just plain Paxil. I also heard Effexor is good. It's really the only way to tell, by trying it, a week or two of hell, then see whether if your body accepts it or not.
    Take care

     
    Old 11-06-2003, 06:44 PM   #8
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    Thanks, Pootsi. I hope your move goes well.

    Yes, it seems like people I know are either like me (avoid relationships) or are "co-dependent" - go from one relationship to the other without being alone. Sometimes I wish I were one who would go from one relationship to the next. Now I have gotten so used to being alone, it's weird when I do date someone. I do see friends weekly (one or two friends weekly), and I make sure to hug them, to get that human contact/touch.

    I think that, quite honestly, I am trying to run away from my problem. Sure, I can move to a better city in my area (that is more "happening" for singles), but I have to be realistic in that staying in the Bay Area is good for me financially. Even though the rent is higher, there are more job opportunities here, and I'd be even more stressed out moving somewhere outside of here and not being able to find work!

    And I think that my depression and anxiety will follow me wherever I go. Luckily I have not moved around too much in the past 12-13 yrs (I think I realized that moving does not solve the problem). However, I do think about moving, still. I might just move to a better place in this area, though. I was only in this suburb I'm in now because it was close to school, but now that school's over, I can move.

    I know, I don't want to end up one of those bitter, mean old ladies with lots of cats, either. I've seen those old ladies. I think my grandmother was one of those old ladies. I don't think I am having children, but that is still no reason not to want to have a boyfriend/hubby in my life. I don't mind if *he* has kids (preferably already grown up). I just hope if I do end up alone, at least I will have had at least a couple more fulfilling relationships. i don't want to be always alone. But I know I am the only one who can create that, who can create my destiny.

    I don't know if the anxiety ever really goes away for people with chronic generalized anxiety disorder. Meds only work for so long, 1-2 yrs. and some people are intolerant/sensitive to meds and so can't take a whole bunch of meds, can't keep switching every few years. I know that my anxiety has never really gone away. Sure, at times it has been slightly less, but I've always been "nervous." People have always pointed it out to me. They call me a "spaz." They turn it into a joke. But of course I didn't know them well enough to say "Actually I have a medical condition called Generalized Anxiety Disorder, plus Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Chronic Depression." You know?

    I just wish there were more people with anxiety to talk to. I'm so glad this board is here. Thank you.

    Good luck with your move, Pootsi.


    P.S. Do those lamps work for depression, light boxes? I almost bought one in June but I spent the money I had saved for it on something else when they didn't have the color I wanted. Darn it! I'd like to get one now.

     
    Old 11-10-2003, 02:01 AM   #9
    Nuncy
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    I don't know if it's a gad but I think it might be. My worst problem is derealization anxiety. I just hate the feeling and I'm pretty scared of it. But I somehow believe it's closely related to gad. I just don't feel like I'm capable of anything right now. I moved in with my boyfriend 10 months ago and got my first job. First I had some level of anxiety before going out on friday nights. I was tired after working all week and couldn't easily "switch off". Then there were stupid fighting over stupid things with my boyfriend, then insomnia, panic attacks, complete social disfunction. I even quit my job due to insomnia and anxiety/depression.
    I was trying so much to find the cause and came to the conclusion that it's pointless. I didn't have a happy childhood, always have been somehow different from the people of my age, always dreamt of unreal goals...
    I think that all of it contributed. I was so out of everything that I even went back to my parents, because this feeling of "not belonging" in this part of the town as well as the loneliness was killing me.
    I forced myself to see other people again, started working out and I can say it is a little better. There are actually times when I feel myself again. But it dimnishes as I start thinking about anxiety.

    I have also come to the conclusion that it's very important and maybe the only solution to make that connection with yourself. I've been talking with my boyfriend and he told me that he was in the similar horror for two years. He told me that I have to find out who I am (like it's something easy, lol), what are my limits, what are my expectations...
    He didn't discover me anything new, but it's sometimes easier to hear it from someone.

    What i know is that I really have identity crisis. I am very insecure about everything around me. I don't know what to think about many things around me, as well as how to describe my own self. I also have troubles with decision making because I'm not sure what I want, so I don't know what to decide. I also believe this thing is common in a "growing up" period. I also thought about why some of people have this and some of them don't. We all have to grow up sometimes. All I can say is that I don't know anyone who hadn't have some crisis in their life. But people are different and hopefully managed to sort it out in their own way. Some had to get help, some managed on their own.

    There is hope and I believe it will all pass if I direct myself in some other direction. I believe chemical imbalance is the symptom of anxiety and depression (I have both) but it is not proved that it's the cause. That's why medications give us some relief but not the permanent solution.
    The worst thing for me are memories of my old self and thinking that it will never be that way again. Maybe that's another mistake. Maybe it's supposed for us to change as years go by. The question is only why is it so scary?

    Sorry for the long post. I just needed to share.

    Best wishes,
    N.

     
    Old 11-10-2003, 11:37 AM   #10
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    Hi guys,
    I am glad I found this board and heard about all of your problems...I have recently come to terms with the fact I defintely has some sort of anxiety disorder. I have always been an optimistic, adventurous, happy and outgoing person. Although I have always been a DEEP thinker, thinking about things and analyzing far beyond what it seems my peers do. I have developed some sort of anxiety that is hard for me to define. I get anxious about going places that never would have been a problem....such as driving to a familiar bar to meet longtime good friends. Sometimes it seems leaving my house is a problem. Luckily, this anxiety hasn't gotten to the point that it has actually prevented me from going somewhere, but it is very annoying and stressful to have a knot in my stomach very often. My symptoms are as follows...i'll feel light-headed, hot/cold feelings, feeling like I have to lie down, I get quiet ( and that's not like me!), feeling like I'm going to faint, knot in my stomach, not wanting to eat. It's weird because often I'll have this anxiety about getting somewhere but when im actually there I have a good time and I'll be ok. I just hate these feelings, and I fear they are not getting better. I am a psych minor so I'm forever trying to self-diagnose...I was wondering if you think my life situation has created this problem: I am finishing up one class in order to graduate college.
    After living away at school with my friends for four years in a NYC suburb, I now live back home with my parents in a VERY rural town in CT. It is surrounded by more developed towns, but in effect i still have to drive like 30 mins to any decent bar. I have gone from living with my friends and feeling carefree to living with my family, basically isolated from any kind of major happenings. I am waiting to graduate in December so I can get a good job and move in my friend back in a town close to the city. I'm hoping I will be better then. I think that my deep thinking also is not helping the problem, I often wish I had about 10 pts off my IQ and feel a little bit more light-hearted about things. What kind of disorder might i have? generalized anxiety? Alot of what I'm feeling is just what you guys have talked about. Will a daily pill help me, when alot of the day I'm ok? Do you think this change in surroundings is adding to my problem? the anxiety started shortly after I began living home again. Like one of you said, Ive always been kind of a nervous person, and people did make a joke about it. I do to, but now I feel its getting serious. I dont think I can go to a doctor to talk to her about it, because I'll freak out! What do I do if i can't even get there! thanks for reading my ramblings. Any feedback would be great.

     
    Old 11-10-2003, 05:36 PM   #11
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    Oh my gosh, those physical symptoms you were describing sound just like mine. I have a constant knot in my stomach, feel hot and cold, don't feel like eating. I don't even feel like doing anything (like even showering, but don't worry, I do-I don't want to smell).

    My anxiety is even more heightened today. I have been constantly anxious all day. What about when I start my new job? I don't know when that will be, but it's scaring me. What if I can't perform on the job because of this anxiety?

    When are the Paxil and the Buspar going to kick in and start working? I started the Paxil Oct. 10 and the Buspar Nov. 6. Could someone please tell me how long I have to wait in this agony? I feel like I can't do anythign. I'm going to see my therapist now. What I really need is a good psychiatric consult, but I can't afford it. Please, please can someone say some words of support. I'm so scared. Thank you.

     
    Old 11-10-2003, 07:38 PM   #12
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    P.S. I also wanted to make a few more comments I also wish a few points could be taken off my IQ. If I weren't so darn smart, I wouldn't realize how unhappy I am! Sometimes I think that people who don't realize it are better off. Plus, smarter people think too much about things. Of course, these are just generalizations. And to the post-er who wonders if the depression/anxiety will get better when they move back into the city-yes, yes, yes! It should at least get a little better. If you're a 30-minute drive to civilization, I'm sure being stuck in the 'burbs and isolated can worsen depression. I'm stuck in the burbs, but if I want to go to a grocery store or to a coffeehouse (of course, not the best ones in the area) or to some "civilization," it's a 10-minute car drive (that is, if my car is working)!

     
    Old 11-10-2003, 08:13 PM   #13
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    wow forrester, i cant believe you feel the same way, i too believe that a higher IQ relates to anxiety...not that we will end up this way but just to prove a point, look at all the brilliant, talented people who have actually led tortured lives? chris farley, van gogh, sylvia plath, emily dickinson....highly intelligent unique people who couldn't handle themselves. I especially agree that smarter people think too much, i so think that if i was a little less aware of everything that i'd lead a charmed life...does anyone feel that intelligence relates to your anxiety? I overthink things to the point that i worry and have a hard time relaxing and letting myself go. I had a coworker who was very intelligent and highly philosophical, etc, and she suffered social anxiety. I really find they are connected. Oh Forrester, what type of anxiety were you diagnosed with, if you share my symptoms? just curious, thanks!

     
    Old 11-10-2003, 08:35 PM   #14
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    I don't mean to jump in here, but for what it's worth the Psychologist I went to once told me that people who suffer with panic disorder and OCD tend to have very high IQ's.
    I don't know how true that is but that's what he told me.

     
    Old 11-11-2003, 08:09 AM   #15
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    So it probably is true, then, that high IQs can equal anxiety.

    Intheforest, I suffer from generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, and chronic depression. My symptoms right now are tightness in chest, can't breathe, stomach cramping, arms feel tingly, constant worrying thoughts, and don't feel like doing anything (that could be the depression part). Feel like I can't work, play music, do anything.

     
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