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Question
Posted by: Terry | 2008/07/14

Panic Attacks

Panic/anxiety attacks. Treated in hospital.Widow lives with adult son.
She becomes "clinging". Should I be firm with her and tell her to go out, mix with people etc or do I give in to her fears of "being alone" and "wanting to come and live with me" ? I don't want to be hard, but I am at a loss on how best to deal with her and I dont want to do the wrong thing.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Usually, panic attakcs can be successfully treated, with meds and CBT, without needing a hospital admission. I dont altogether understand your mesage, though I prefer terse to verbose messages. Are you going out wih a widow who lives with her son ? Is it her or you who have panic atacks ? She should be seeing a CBT therapist if it is she who is having the panic attacks, and should there discus issues like her fears of being alone. It doesn't sound as though you want her to move in with you, and that would only delay some of her distress, without solving her problems, for which she needs individual counselling and help

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Our users say:
Posted by: Terry | 2008/07/15

Sorry for brief message.
Person is a close relative living nearby with her son. He naturally goes out and this is an issue for her, altough she wont admit it ,she wants to cling to him. When he is not there she tends to look to me for comfort telling me she would like to live with me and she can't bear the thought of me going on holiday etc. I need to know how to deal with her. Do I encourage her to help herself by mixing with others, going out to movies and maintain a a safe distance, or do I spend a lot of time with her, listening to her complaints, aches and symptoms and generally being sympathetic ?

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