Social Anxiety, Panic Attacks & Isolation

Dealing with Social Anxiety & Isolation

When one door opens, another one closes. That is what it is like in this mental illness life.

I am coming off a tough depression cycle that lasted over a month. I was ecstatic that this cycle was over. I felt like myself again–and then I started to deal with social anxiety over this past weekend. It was terrible, it came with increased anxiety and the pièce de résistance, the lovely panic attacks that come along with my illness.

The problem that I now face comes from a plethora of issues that I am not dealing with well with the most prevalent being my isolation during the winter months. This is a year in and year out the problem that plagues me, and one that I have been trying to get under control because it feeds into my social anxiety.

The Perfect Storm?

The worse part of the entire process is how panic attacks make me feel. I lose control of myself. My breathing always gets exceptionally shallow, and I can find peace. It would not be so bad, but my panic attacks have been lasting for hours at a time.

When it gets that bad, all I can do is wait, take an extra Ativan, and hope like hell that I eventually find myself again. It always happens, but at that moment it really feels like I am dying. My mind moves so fast through catastrophic thoughts, and it always comes so close to wanting to go to the hospital. That was my default setting for so many when it came to panic attacks.

I remember one particularly bad month during my journey where I went to the hospital 3-4 times a week because of anxiety and panic attacks.

Then it becomes normal–isolation just happens. Before I know what is going on, I am barely leaving my house for days and even weeks at a time. I spend most of my time writing and studying indoors in my comfortable and safe writing corner.

I make every excuse in the book why it is impossible to just take a step to the outside world just outside my door. Even when I do make out in the world, it’s minimal and all that goes through my mind are thoughts about the real reality that at any moment I could have a panic attack. That is my greatest fear.

It is not over. I am a fighter. Ever since my last suicide attempt, I told myself I would never give up no matter how hard it can be in this mental illness life. I want to end this like always–that no matter what fight. That is why we are here. The members of this great community are some of the most exceptional people on this planet. Stay strong.

I am leaving this year to know there is always hope in this mental illness life.

Always Keep Fighting

James

28 Replies to “Social Anxiety, Panic Attacks & Isolation”

  1. Hang in there! I also have a diagnosis of Social Anxiety. Sharing many of your symptoms. Currently experiencing a cycle. Depression feeds the anxiety, and anxiety feeds the depression. You’re doing a great service. Keep up the fight!

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  2. I often told myself that I didn’t have panic attacks because I defined them as only being quick heart racing, troubled breathing and close to fainting experiences. After learning that panic attacks can come in so many different ways, I’ve realized how many I’ve experienced and didn’t realize was my anxiety and not just me. I too often have the urge to go to the hospital, but then feel as afterwards it wasn’t much help.

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    1. I stopped going to the hospital for panic attacks. There isn’t much they can do. They tell me just take extra Ativan and that should help. It sucks in the moment especially when you’re alone with panic attacks

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      1. Yes. The last time I checked in they placed me in a room alone to wait for a counselor for 6 & 1/2 hours. There should be a better process to help those who are experiencing panic attacks in the moment

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      2. My thoughts exactly. I am trying work hard on coming up with better solutions that don’t rely on medication. I do CBT but that doesn’t always help and there are just not enough hours in the day.

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  3. Social anxiety kills. I’ve had just one panic attack till now..and yes they are the most terrible thing! I can’t even imagine how recurring panic attacks would feel. Thanks for being so real and spreading awareness.

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  4. I too have anxiety and love reading posts like this because I am constantly reminded that I am not alone. Neither are you. I’m praying for you, stay strong!

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  5. I can relate to this post so much as I also suffer from anxiety! It is so well articulated and relatable! Keep up the fight you’re not alone!

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  6. Thank you for this! It’s often so hard to explain how social anxiety feels into words. I feel like your description encompasses so much. I really appreciate hearing how others live with their anxiety and depression, and I find that it’s so therapeutic to write about too. Hope you’re doing better. Keep fighting.

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