Posted by: Liza | 2009-04-01

Holiday leave and anxiety

I' ve put in leave until after easter and my sons and I are staying at my sisters'  house during this time. BTW my ex-husband currently has custody of our sons in Pretoria and I live and work in Cape Town. So tomorrow evening I am flying up - everything organised, flights are booked and confirmed, transport to and from the airport has been organised. My brother-in-law is taking me to pick up the kids for the holiday on Friday morning. All organised with my ex-husband too BUT my anxiety levels are growing in leaps and bounds. Besides being anxious that something might go wrong, or that I might have forgotten something, I also have an almost paralytic fear of having another depressive episode when I have to part with my boys to come back to Cape Town.

Does anybody have any ideas about making the parting easier?

I' m also rather insecure since their father got remarried and they now have a full-time step-mom. Its as if they don' t need me anymore. I know that I' m the worlds'  worst mom - my own mother got drunk, had a fight with my ex and then came home and tried to kill me, because I don' t love my boys according to her. The whole fight came about because my boys were visiting me for a weekend and on the Sunday my younger sister invited everyone over for a braai. I was feeling sick (severe dysmenorrea) and didn' t feel up to going, but I didn' t want my boys to miss out on the fun, so I let them go under the supervision of my brother. When my ex found out that I hadn' t gone with, he flew into a rage and took it out on my mother. I still don' t feel that he had a right to do that, since I did ensure they would have adequate adult supervision and they weren' t leaving Pretoria or Gauteng. My mother then got drunk and when she got home, she grabbed a sharp kitchen knife and tried to stab me. Telling me that my boys would be better off if I were dead. If my brother weren' t there to restrain her, giving me time to run away, I wouldn' t be making this post today.

In a way it was a very good thing to have happened, because it caused me to make up my mind and apply for my current job in CT - even though it was far from my boys. Prior to my current job, I was functionally unemployed for almost 3 years after being laid off for health reasons. (My bipolar was completely out of control at that time, and my psychiatrist at the time just continued to prescribe more tranquallizers, making the situation a whole lot worse)

Now I' m just rambling. I' ll make an appointment to see my psychiatrist as soon as I return...

And no - this is not an April fools day joke post.

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Our expert says:
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Don't let an excessive fear that you may feel sad or even depressed AFTER the holiday, spoil the holiday. It's not likely to happen, and if it did --- what a mshame if you had not allowed yourself to enjoy the days beforehand ! And you're not the world's worst mom -- good grief, to you realize the wort of women in even the top 100 for that title ?
You know perfectly well that your mom can't even run her own life without utter chaos, so she's hardly an authority valid to criticize you. And you know that the fuss your ex made about the braai was ridiculous. Tell your mom that if she EVER again threatens you, you will call the police and lay charges against her. And if she again gets drunk in front of the kids, or insults you in front of them, she will nto be allowe4d access to them again.
I'm sure you will manage the holiday excellently --- you clearly care about it more than most people do, so will probably encounter even fewer hassles and problems than everyone does ( holidays are never 100 % joy ). Have a good time, relax and enjoy the kids and let them enjoy you. Bon voyage

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