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Heightened anxiety since parent's death


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8 minutes ago, RuedeRivoli said:

I'm not in the US, but I'm aiming to book something for next week. Even if I don't click with the therapist, it will be a first step. 

I keep telling myself I'm a strong person and I can handle this on my own, but that's part of my problem. I'd rather suffer than admit I need help because I had this fantasy in my head that I'm a strong person at all times (which is highly unrealistic). 

The strength part is in asking for help, taking steps to implement what is needed -that is the strength IMO.  

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12 minutes ago, RuedeRivoli said:

I'm not in the US, but I'm aiming to book something for next week. Even if I don't click with the therapist, it will be a first step. 

I keep telling myself I'm a strong person and I can handle this on my own, but that's part of my problem. I'd rather suffer than admit I need help because I had this fantasy in my head that I'm a strong person at all times (which is highly unrealistic). 

If you fell and broke your back would you handle it on your own? What about if you were in a car accident? Or what if you got pneumonia or were having seizures?

Health is health. 

I strongly encourage you to see a professional. And to not put it off. Don't come up with excuses to push it off for another week. If you have time during the day to post on here you have time to research psychologists.

And that's not to say I think you should stop posting on here. I hope you continue to post. I'm just saying I think you should make it a priority to get help. I was helped tremendously by working with a professional.

Edited by boltnrun
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***None of what they're doing makes any sense and I'm getting the short end of the stick by being expected to write-off money I worked hard towards to benefit them and drain my mental health in the process. She is literally going to drain me of all the things I worked so hard to accomplish when during these 6 years of no-contact. I'm really worried to be honest. ***

Nobody can take advantage of you without your permission.  Please think about that.

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58 minutes ago, Seraphim said:

Please make it a psychologist or psychiatrist, I am thinking this might need medication as well as therapy and a regular therapist can’t prescribe meds or diagnose anything. 

My brother was a psychologist and he could not prescribe meds, a person needs a psychiatrist for that.

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27 minutes ago, melancholy123 said:

My brother was a psychologist and he could not prescribe meds, a person needs a psychiatrist for that.

Yes, I believe you would have to be referred to a psychiatrist for the prescription. Therapists can treat symptoms of anxiety with non medical therapies and can’t diagnose. I don’t think a regular therapist without medication would work in this instance. She needs her brain calmed down before she can even begin to be receptive to therapy at this point. 

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11 hours ago, RuedeRivoli said:

That it all comes to a halt and the money they're due to get will be left up in the air because I'm the one in touch with the various stakeholders and filing all the paperwork. 

Aren't these the people that you cut all contact with because they are greedy and rude amongst other things? Why are you serving them?

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To be honest, I'm not huge on medication and will certainly refuse it if offered. Taking medication for mental health issues is a big decision which can be life altering. Yes, I'm not doing great at the moment and have a lot of anxiety, but I'm still able to function to some degree. I'm not sitting in bed all day thinking about this. I'm still active, getting some things done, but with the added burden of this anxiety.

I don't think medication is the way because it simply renders the symptoms dormant, but it doesn't solve the issue at its core (the key triggers meaning). Medication is the easy route, but it's not one I want to take. Medication can easily create more damage with dependency and alter your cognitive function to the point where stopping it might trigger an even worse relapse. 

As much as I appreciate medication can help critical cases, I really do not think it applies here. I need to speak to someone sure, but medication, definitely not. I'll certainly be receptive to therapy since I've been thinking of going again since I got back in touch with my mother, so it's a voluntary choice too. 

Edited by RuedeRivoli
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36 minutes ago, Jibralta said:

Aren't these the people that you cut all contact with because they are greedy and rude amongst other things? Why are you serving them?

I think I'm serving them out of fear of repercussions really. If I refuse to help them out, it will turn into a major rift with my brother and mother attacking me right left and centre, the same way they did when they asked me for money in 2019 and I refused.

I simply feel sorry for my two younger sisters who might not turn out so well mentally being exposed to someone like this. I don't think my dad would want me to turn my back on my siblings. I'm really not doing this for her. 

Edited by RuedeRivoli
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🤷🏻‍♀️ I take medications for mental health and so does my husband, both for anxiety . I don’t feel it is the “ easy” way out. There are people who have brain chemical dysfunction . This can not be fixed with talking . Medical intervention is required. 

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10 minutes ago, Jibralta said:

So that's the real consequence, as you see it. You are a hostage of fear.

I thought of this -and am quoting Jibralta as it's related - before I read the latest. I do not mean to spend your money but I know of many families where estate issues are really stressful and awful and people you know just hire someone -outsider -to take care of it.  Could be an attorney or a financial person, an accountant -all three-I don't know but it really might be worth it.  Hire the person, have one of your family members be the point person, maybe you chip in for his or her fee,etc. 

Because of medication -my father had a mental illness and I'm sure anxiety was one of the symptoms - my dad lived probably another 60 years because he was willing to take meds. And get other forms of treatment through a physician/psychiatrist.  He was able to have a successful career, marriage and kids.  It's not about just "functioning" - it's also not about perfection -there's a happy medium somewhere and meds can raise the quality of life above "functioning" -true, my dad likely wouldn't have even functioned without meds but sometimes he would have but he had to be consistent with it.  In his 80s he went off the meds as the benefits didn't outweigh the long term side effects he personally experienced but he also had early dementia/alzheimers by that point (not because of the meds!).  

I'm not a medication person at all.  Partly because I'm very petite and it hits me so much harder I find -don't like it.  But I took an epidural for labor (when so many women at that time were like -I'm such a superhero going unmedicated), I take stomach meds sometimes preventatively (not overdose!) because I simply don't want the distraction and stress if I have work to do, etc etc. 

I've taken antibiotics when there was sort of an option not to and blood thinners which weren't fun.  I didn't go "natural" because natural sometimes has its own awful side effects.  Just sharing. 

I get not being a med person. Please find a health care professional you trust and please be open minded.  It doesn't have to be forever.  At all.  I am not a professional but have friends who needed it short term.  Please you all chime in if that's true -I think so!

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I'm not a meds person either unless there is no other option.  I saw what too many meds did to my MIL, she was off the wall wired to a drug store's worth of drugs for real and imagined illnesses.  My husband's half sister is also wired on a myriad of pills for all sorts of things, many of which are not real.  Watching how they were both affected really helped me be not in favour of meds but I do see they can be useful in certain circumstances.

I am no shrink, that was my brother, but the OP seems to me to be someone who really needs a professional to listen to her and help her sort out her feelings and life and make a concrete plan to move forward.

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I took medication for about a year, then weaned off of it. I did not become addicted to it and I was able to function much better when on it. Once I was feeling better with a combination of medication and therapy I stopped the meds.

So now you are only "thinking" about getting help? Why? You are still allowing guilt and fear to steer your ship. Do you want to permanently remain feeling as you do now?

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19 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

I took medication for about a year, then weaned off of it. I did not become addicted to it and I was able to function much better when on it. Once I was feeling better with a combination of medication and therapy I stopped the meds.

So now you are only "thinking" about getting help? Why? You are still allowing guilt and fear to steer your ship. Do you want to permanently remain feeling as you do now?

I have an appointment booked for next week. So yes, in essence, I thought about getting help the moment she first re-entered my life because I knew it was going to lead to emotional turmoil. That's what I was referring to, not the actions I've since taken. Trust me, the last thing I want is to permanently remain feeling as I do now. 

Yes, I am held hostage by fear. Two fears:

  1. As I said before, the fear she and my brother might attack me
  2. This irrational fear that "God" will punish me if I don't help them out and I will lose everything I've ever worked for.

The second one is completely irrational and I fully acknowledge it, but that's how my thought-process works. I lose all sense of logic or reason. 

She used to threaten me with beating me up, emotional blackmail and God. I once was the victim of racial slurs on the street and when I told her, she said it was God punishing me for not being "obedient" (yes, because I'm also much more liberal and not as religion obsessed as she is). So, there's A LOT of work to do. 

Edited by RuedeRivoli
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I'm glad you have an appointment booked. Hopefully it's with a psychologist and not a "therapist". I believe you need more advanced care than simply someone who sits and listens.

It feels really good to tell someone what's going on and how you feel and think, particularly when it's someone who is trained specifically to help with those kind of issues. I see a psychologist who specializes in anxiety (she has a PhD in anxiety disorders). I look forward to my sessions with her. We're starting to dig into the root causes of my extreme anxiety now that I'm out of crisis mode. It's been liberating. I'm able to do things that would have literally been impossible a year and a half ago. 

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13 hours ago, melancholy123 said:

My brother was a psychologist and he could not prescribe meds, a person needs a psychiatrist for that.

When I was in therapy, my therapist simply reached out to my regular doctor for meds.  And I only took antidepressants to help control the anxiety.  When the anxiety lessoned due to the combination of therapy and the effects of the antidepressant, I found myself more receptive to therapy and with a calmer state of mind I was able to make better decisions.  Once I got to the other side, I stopped the medication.

Edited by reinventmyself
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I had to tell my family (including offspring) that I was mentally ill. Think that was easy? It wasn't. But in order to get well I had to acknowledge I was ill and needed help. I wanted to get well more than I wanted to hide or avoid my illness.

The alternative was to pretend it wasn't happening or that I could just deal with it myself. My attempt at self treatment resulted in me being on my couch literally in the fetal position, too afraid to go anywhere or do anything. The panic attacks were horrendous. Obviously trying to deal with it myself was failing miserably. 

It was such a relief to put myself in the hands of trained professionals. Working with them got me to where I am today, much healthier and able to go out and do things instead of huddling at home terrified and alone. Meds went a long way to get me there too. Just for about 14 months or so. I've been off them since last August (I think). No physical or psychological dependency ever developed.

Wishing you the best in your journey. Hopefully you will realize you do not have to keep toxic people in your life, no matter who they are or what the circumstances are.

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To Bolt's point and not based on direct personal knowledge what I see with people who attempt self treatment/self help is resort to other forms of "medication" like illegal drugs, food, alcohol.  Or woo woo natural supplements that aren't all that natural - certainly those approaches work beautifully for some -it's not all woo woo and I use natural stuff to help me in life (essential oils, magnesium - the essential oils are more a placebo for me to help me sleep -part of a "ritual" to get my mindset to -time to zzzzzz) - but I often see people insisting no meds and then really messing themselves up in other ways.  

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2 hours ago, RuedeRivoli said:

Yes, I am held hostage by fear. Two fears:

  1. As I said before, the fear she and my brother might attack me
  2. This irrational fear that "God" will punish me if I don't help them out and I will lose everything I've ever worked for.

The second one is completely irrational and I fully acknowledge it, but that's how my thought-process works. I lose all sense of logic or reason. 

I totally get it and have been there. I still go there sometimes, but not as much as I used to. I think I've worked past a lot of it, and I'm also in a good place in my life where things are happy and balanced. Being in a good place helps a lot. You will reach a good place, too. Keep your goals in front of you and don't give up. These dark times will pass. 

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Just now, RuedeRivoli said:

I think medication can help some people for sure. I'm not saying it's all bad, but for me personally, I really do not think my situation is bad enough to the point where medication is required. 

Don't worry. It's a personal choice. You don't have to justify yourself and nobody can force you (unless you're committed and I don't think that's likely). 

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