I joined HW be cause my boyfriend has Crohn's. However, I have suffered my entire life with anxiety and panic disorders, and depression. I just turned 52, and I am managing well now on Effexor and practicing 12 steps, as I am also an addict in recovery. You see, I thought I could manage my depression with drugs and alcohol. I believe it is very important that people with mental health issues be acutely aware of the high co-morbidity rate we have for addiction.
I had my very first debilitating panic attack on the Santa Monica FWY at age 19 and leaving the house for the next two years was horrifying. Finally, I admitted my dirty little secret to my fiance. I just wanted to die. But there was a flicker of hope when I read an article in Cosmo about agouraphobia. There was a name for what I had! However, I continued to drink heavily to medicate myself....I have a very long story about drugs and alcohol used to manage my symptoms.
2 1/2 hours outside after acute symptoms is huge! contact me anytime...I see a therapist every other week (for the past 2 years) and I am illegal drug and alcohol free for 3 years.
Life is hard enough, and panic and anxiety is crippling, effects an already low self esteem. You are not crazy....but it is a long process back to feeling okay again. I know you can do it. Stay in touch.