Stress certainly can increase your anxiety. I am sorry to hear of your sister-in-laws terminal condition. If she is off life support and no further treatment is to be done I am wondering why they do not put her in a private room where her family could be all around her and it would be so more peaceful for all.
I have a nephew that cannot go to hospitals either and when my sister spent 10 months in the hospital with cancer he was not able to come to the hospital even one time. I know many people have phobias of hospitals so don't beat yourself up over this problem. My sister never held my nephew's phobia against him.
Support your wife in all kinds of other ways. Let her know you care. My husband is not crazy about hospitals either as he has had 5 major surgeries so visiting is not easy for him. To help me out he would drive me uptown ( into the big city) and drop me off at the hospital and then come back the next day and pick me up. This was a huge help to me as for the 10 months the stress of the drive was rough especially in the winter months. My neice and I were the only to caregivers available for my sister as she was from out of state.
My hubby also helped by cleaning the house and doing the grocery shopping etc. One night he took me accross the street from the hospital and got me a room at the Radisson so I could have somewhere comfortable to sleep and just unwind as I was spending several days at the hospital. He knew most of the time I had to sleep on the floor on an extra mattress the staff found for us.
Remember that guilt is a wasted emotion and concentrate on the good you can do without being at the hospital. Do not let the "what if" thoughts take over and instead list all the good things you do and include how you have survived anxiety and will continue to fight a strong battle.
I wish you peace,
Moderator: Anxiety/Panic, Osteoarthritis, GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.
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