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Question
Posted by: L | 2004/01/22

Anxiety/Panic attacks

My husband suffers with one of these, usually when he is driving. He refuses to seek help. He runs his own business and when he needs to see a client he has to take one of the employees with him to drive. It is affecting his business. This has been going on for 10 years now and although it is not getting worse, it has now become an issue between us. I have been with him to our GP, he gave him medication which, in my mind, does not solve anything. He relies on the medication but doesn't take it everyday. I don't deny he does have these attacks but it is now becoming a convenient excuse. What can I do?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Dear L,
Sometimes a genuine illness nonetheles provides us with an excuse not to do something we don't fancy doing.
While I agree with Handy Andy that anyone with an illness deserves understanding, sympathy and support, this does not apply so much to someone who refuses to get proper expert help for the condition, as then the problem becomes self-inflicted --- it becomes too like the guy who killed his parents, and then asked to be forgiven, as he was just a poor orphan boy.
Thanks to Loosing it for such a helpful response --- as you'll see, LI had exactly the same problem, and by working on it himself and taking good expert advice and appropiate medication ( I don't know whether your husband is receiving the right sort of medication, as sedatives of the Valium family would NOT be helpful, especially if taken over a long time ). And notice how LI has found ingenious and sensible ways for distracting himself from the approaching anxiety / panic symptoms and controlling the attack or avoiding it. Well done LI ! Or shoul I say "Finding IT !"

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Our users say:
Posted by: Loosing it | 2004/01/22

Hi, i suffer from the same thing! Always when i'm driving, i go nervous, feels like the air i breathe isnt going into my lungs, i breathe more and deeper, i start yawning, i go dizzy, i start panicking that i'm gonna pass out behind the wheel, i go more dizzy, i go hot, i panick.... its actually quite freaky and disturbing! The doc gave me advice, and i went to a GP earlier this week and has started medication. "Lorien" or something like that.... this morning was the first time i drove to work without an attack!!!!!!!

Other days when i feel an attack coming on i start adding peoples number plates together to see if i can come to 100. Or i get my cellphone and start typing an sms. I know dangerous, but much better to keep my brain busy and NOT pass out!

Or i turn the radio up and sing as loud as i can!!

Most important you have to tell yourselve to stay calm... Very difficult to do, but day by day i feel i'm gonna beat this thing.

I could suggest your husband email me, but dont know how you or him would feel about that....

Best thing he could do is to drink his med or get stronger ones. Good luck

Reply to Loosing it
Posted by: HandyAndy | 2004/01/22

Suffering from anxiety for so many years can't "now become a convenient excuse". Although you dont deny he does suffer from anxiety you do seem to be getting fed up with the situation and have a lack of compassion. Why dont you go for councilling?
Suffering from anxiety is serious enough and your husband should have the support and security of a firm, sound support base (his family)..

Reply to HandyAndy

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