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    Old 12-01-2005, 03:29 PM   #1
    Auburn_Phoenix
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    Unhappy Driving myself & my family crazy

    Hello,

    I was diagnosed with anxiety disorder a few years ago, but I thought I had it under control...

    ...until recently...

    I have been going through a hell of a time. First I start this really awesome job as an animator. I was pretty happy with the work and many of the folks were nice. However, there are a few people there who do not want me there, because I "take all the creative work away from them," and they even said so to my face.

    At first I felt it was no big deal. You can't force people to like you and there will always be insecure wieners in the world. I tried really hard to be nice and buckled down into my work.

    Then, something weird happened. One day someone kept banging into my cubicle. I thought it was maybe somebody moving furniture at first, but at the end of the day I took off my earphones and "BAM!" Someone very deliberately PUNCHED my cube. Then I heard two women giggling and one whispering to the other (REMOVED}

    I immediately ran out to see what was going on, but they had taken off. The secretary claimed she didn't see who did it (even though she sits right in front of my cube and I can't see how she missed it) but she gave me two names of women who walked by at that point.

    I was really shaken up and made the mistake in confiding with a coworker (I didn't give names). That coworker took it upon herself to report what happened to management the next day. What followed was a fiasco of me being questioned by 3 different department managers. They claimed to have reported it to HR, but I never got to speak with anyone in HR or file a report.

    Well, after that point a certain person (not one of the people the secretary named, but she and this person are best buddies) has been very nasty to me. She uses a very hostile tone when she talks to me and whispers nasty things about me right by my cube.

    To make matters worse, I started getting artheritis in my entire body--except for my back. This is especially painful when I drive on a regular basis (my job is over an hour away). I'm also lactating for no reason (not pregnant), and waking up with a numb face. I have been having memory loss, uber mood swings (like continuous PMS), and difficulty concentrating.

    The other day I was trying to go to a store, but somehow ended up at home. I've seen 2 different doctors (family & rheumatologist) and will be seeing 2 more (gynocologist & neurologist). I had an MRI for a pituitary gland tumor, but nothing showed up and my bloodwork is clean, too.

    Can these health problems be symptomatic of anxiety? Could I be doing this to myself from worrying too much?

    It is very frusterating the doctors aren't finding what's wrong and I'm beginning to think I'm just a lunatic. I can't stand this at all! I feel like crap and I'm driving my poor husband insane. Should I look into meds?

    Last edited by msmod; 12-01-2005 at 04:39 PM. Reason: Do not use censored words. Ms_Mod

     
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    Old 12-01-2005, 03:59 PM   #2
    SRMom
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    Re: Driving myself & my family crazy

    Hi Auburn:

    Welcome. Sorry to hear of your troubles. It really sounds like anxiety to me. My anxiety and general health was the worst in my life (I've had panic disorder for over 12 years) when I was working in a hostile work environment.

    In my opinion, the only way to resolve your current situation is to go directly to HR yourself, file a complaint, and name everyone that seems to be involved. Jealousy is a huge problem sometimes among co-workers. Usually, in higher level positions, people behave more maturely...but that is not always the case. Whoever is in charge needs to be informed, and if they are involved in the hostile behavior, their superiors need to be informed. There are laws that will protect you and you could have a case against them, and possibly your employers, for causing you this mental anguish if it is not addressed satisfactorily. Do an internet search on hostile work environment, law.

    This health board can be a great support for you while you are going through this. I hope you feel better soon. We'll be here if you need to "talk." Meds might help...keep that info to yourself at work if you decide to go on them. The ultimate solution of course is to change jobs, but that may not be an option for you. I'll keep good thoughts for you.

    Last edited by SRMom; 12-01-2005 at 04:02 PM.

     
    Old 12-01-2005, 04:28 PM   #3
    Auburn_Phoenix
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    Re: Driving myself & my family crazy

    Hi, SRMom-

    Thank you so much for the advice.

    Unfortunately, my supervisors know about most of what's going on. Two of them (including a VP) believe me, but the head of the department acted like I was a lying trouble-maker when she questioned me about the harassment.

    The thing is 5 different coworkers told me this bullying stuff happens "all the time" there and nothing ever gets done to stop it. It's a temp-to-perm position and feels like a no-win situation so I'm probably just going to quit. As it is I took a leave of absense for my health. The pain really hurts when I drive (1+ hour drive) and I've been having real problems being able to focus or concentrate.

    It really scares me. I've had anxiety all my life, but never had any real health issues come up. The worst was nearly 10 years ago I got so bad I went on Paxil, but that only caused me to get really spaced out and have a seizure. Soooo, I found a better solution was to dump my psychotic fiance.

    Since then I thought it was fine, though I do tend to be a "nervous nelly." I should be happy. I'm married to a really awesome guy and I'm doing something I love.

    Still, this work thing really threw me. I've been in two different offices that had mass layoffs where people were backstabbing left and right, but I never seen anything like this before. It's such a shame... The work there is awesome and the company seems really neat, but this department has serious baggage. It's like going to a garden of Eden, but finding out you are really in hell. I was informed by my bosses that I'm their first animator, but found out through coworkers that I'm really replacing someone who died there from a heroin OD. Now, I'm beginning to think she got hooked from the stress of being there.

    I feel really awful to think and say that, but I've never seen people act so rotten past Junior High.

    I just don't know how to quit. Right now I left them, because driving to work caused a lot of pain in my hands, arms and legs (I thought it was a hormone imbalance or maybe Lyme disease). Even though it's been over a week since I've been there the pain still exists and I'm having problems with my memory where I'll actually lose time.

    I left on a good note... They told me they want me to contact them when I feel better, b/c they want me back. I don't want to go back. But I don't know how to gracefully break it to them or my temp agent (who actually has been really awesome) without coming off as wishy-washy or neurotic, and totally killing any chance for good references.

    Last edited by Auburn_Phoenix; 12-01-2005 at 04:31 PM.

     
    Old 12-01-2005, 04:48 PM   #4
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    Re: Driving myself & my family crazy

    Well...maybe since the drive is not good for your health anyway, you should go ahead and give your notice. These work situations can eat away at you, cause you to lay awake nights, make your family sick of hearing about it (I did that to my family), and IMO it's better to leave on good terms than to suffer and leave under less favorable circumstances.

    I'm sure you will get a lot of other opinions that may help you. The people here are great and no one is allowed to be disrespectful...which is as it should be everywhere. I really feel for you. I hope you can find some peace in your heart soon.

     
    Old 12-01-2005, 06:07 PM   #5
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    Re: Driving myself & my family crazy

    Thanks, SR-

    I'm going to quit the job, but since i'm on "leave" I'm not sure how to go about it. The assignment was only supposed to be until the end of December though they said if I did well enough they'd hire me.

    I am mostlyconcerned with how to break the news to my temp agent who helped me get the job. She was really helpful and I don't want to burn bridges with her, because she can help me get another job or at least be a decent reference.

    This health stuff is really strange, though. I know anxiety and PTSS often cause phantom health issues, but I've never gone through anything quite like this before. I've taken a couple sick days for my mental health, but never have had anything crazy like this happen. I've never even broken a bone.

    After calming down (had a stressful day and been crying a bunch) it's not just stress and anxiety. If it was it would have gone away during the holidays when I wasn't dealing with the work crap and having a decent time.

    It's probably lyme (which I hear can test false neg) or a very small pituitary tumor. I have never felt this way before and I really don't believe that stress can make an unpregnant person lactate, though I could be wrong.

    Both my doctors mentioned it might be a pituitary issue, but it didn't show up in an MRI (which isn't unusual--pituitary tumors can be too small to detect) and my bloodtests have mixed results showing a bit of low thyroid.

    All I can say is thank god for PPOs. I will be seeing a gynocologist next week, a neurologist after New Years, and hope to get an appointment with an endocrinologist sooner. I'm so sick of this--I hate doctors, but I'm praying one can help.

     
    Old 12-02-2005, 07:27 AM   #6
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    Re: Driving myself & my family crazy

    I can definitely relate to you here. I too have severe anxiety caused almost directly from an unnessarily stressful work environment. 5 cent version - I was hired for a "dream job" as well (sports) by a very Sr. person in the organization to be one of the major faces of change, a former colleague. Within 3 months, that person was no longer involved in my department, and I went from becoming the solution to the problem (the person was hated b/c of the change that was trying to be implimented). Anyhow, sports tends to be filled with cliques...you are either part of the club or you are not. Well, since I am not part of the club, I get given a hard time from everyone, and no support from my superiors. Very stressful. I am working on removing myself from the situation.

    I would recommend leaving the job. Don't worry about the burned bridge, if handled properly, it will not be an issue. You can't do the commute b/c of health reasons, so explain this to your temp agent, and let him/her know you are interested in something more gepgraphically favorable. Working with this person again, she has the opportunity to make more money on placing you again, so hopefully this should not be an issue for him/her.

    Good luck!

     
    Old 12-02-2005, 11:45 PM   #7
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    Re: Driving myself & my family crazy

    It's a shame the working world is usually just an older version of high school. Same whispering, back stabbing, conniving, jealousy, etc... I think women in the work world are definitely more evil to their female counterparts. I recently left my job of six years because I two years ago my job description got swallowed by another department and I was forced to work for two evil she-devils. My main manager was tight with the other female coworker and she basically let her manage me so I had two managers. Every time I would make a mistake or she even thought I made a mistake she'd go running to the manager and tell on me. They sat in cubes adjacent to mine and often I'd hear my name and then whisper, whisper. It made me paranoid and was distracting, so I did start to make mistakes. The final straw was when they pulled me into a meeting and basically took turns berating me. HR was aware there was a problem with these two and they had given other people before me trouble, but it's a relatively small company and issues like these are pretty much ignored. I quit and they probably pulled in somebody's friend or family to work there. I was an abberation that I was hired and didn't know anyone. I don't know how companies continue to function with all of the high school antics that are ignored. Productivity goes down when there's unrest like that. Anyway I couldn't sleep at night, felt like crap, couldn't hardly remember my own name since I was so keyed up and paranoid, I drove all of my friends and family crazy too with my "complaining". I use quotes because when you're in these shoes it's not complaining but a validation that your work and living environment sucks and you're not so far away from taking the bridge. I quit. No back up job. Just quit. I'm still not back to normal because it feels like a defeat and I know I'll need to return to the corporate world at some point and I NEVER want to go back. People in work environments need to grow up and stop with the high school BS. Even if I didn't have an anxiety/depression problem it would still tick me off. I understand completely what you're going through.

     
    Old 06-09-2007, 06:44 PM   #8
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    Re: Driving myself & my family crazy

    Hi, new member, 1st post. I know exactly what you mean about all of this. I was a sports photographer for a pro team for 5 years and never felt like I fit in. It was exactly like high school in the front office. The VP's felt superior cuz they felt like their position gave them celebrity status like the players. The other's in the department all went out together and had their little gab sessions at work. I have social anxiety and major panic attacks so I probably did it to myself by not trying to fit in but it all felt so gossipy that I didn't want to get involved in all of it. I thought I had my dream job and felt I was right where I should be but at the same time being in front of 30,000 people nightly can be very brutal. Eventually my contract was not renewed cuz the mew boss hated my media director so he took down the whole staff (but they were just demoted a bit, not outright let go). I was told I had nothing to do with it and my work was great. Well, I then went into a deep depression that I still am having trouble getting over. I sat around for 1 1/2 years feeling sorry for myself and had no confidence in my work. I take .5mg clonazepam and took myself off Zoloft just to see if my sex drive would come back. My anxiety is under ok control but am not confident at all to go for the big jobs again.

     
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