October 23, 2019 at 2:18 pm #319335
This is my first time posting here and I am really hoping that it can help me out, because something needs to change. There is a lot to unpack here so I will try to keep it concise.
In Fall 2015, I was going through a lot of life changes(i.e. relationship changes, moving, travelling, etc.) I left a toxic relationship and entered a healthy one with a great person. For some reason though, this was very threatening to me. During this time, I developed chronic vertigo. I still struggle with it to this day, and unfortunately, my mind tends to blame my partner for the way I feel. You can look up PPPD to get a better understanding of what I feel. I should note that I have always been a little “off” after having Mono as a kid, but it all got more troublesome in 2015.
Ever since I have been with my partner, I am also scared to fly on a plane. This is troublesome because I want to go places and be free to travel. Again, I used to have flying anxiety before my partner, but it got much worse after a bad flight in 2015 around the same time as all of these changes were happening.
Long story short, I have been stuck in a cycle of anxiety, dizziness, and phobic thoughts for four years. I studied abroad in 2015 before all of this happened, and my dream is to teach English abroad. Every time I think about flying, I can feel this “stopping” sensation in my chest. I feel as if it is impossible. I feel as if all of my friends are living and I am slowly turning into someone I never wanted to be or thought I would be. My mind even tells me to break-up with my partner so that I can go back to the way I used to be. I have gone to a therapist, but have not made any lasting positive changes. I also flew in 2016 but it was bad for me which just confirms for me that I can’t do it. I am honestly very stuck in my life and it is very depressing for me. Any help, inspiration, or advice would be greatly appreciated.October 23, 2019 at 2:31 pm #319357
A possible key 2-sentences: “I left a toxic relationship and entered a healthy one with a great person. For some reason though, this was very threatening to me”-
-the toxic relationship, by definition of toxic, it threatened you. Then you entered a healthy relationship, and that threatened you. Maybe for a different reason, different threat. Any idea as to the nature of that latter threat, the threat in the context of a healthy relationship with a great person?
(I will be away from the computer for a couple of hours)
anitaOctober 24, 2019 at 12:06 am #319435
I think the new relashionship was threatening to me because I finally felt like I was in a good place from the last relashionship and the last thing I wanted was to be in a relashionship. I honestly just dreamed of my freedom. I tried to deny the the new partner but it felt wrong to me so I gave our relashionship a chance. It’s been a few years now and I love that person very much but still have issues.
October 24, 2019 at 12:26 am #319439
- This reply was modified 3 weeks ago by NeedAChange.
I thought about it a little more and I realize the new relashionship felt threatening to me because it was the real deal. I’ve always been kind of a day dreamer and I would day dream about lovers, but it was always just fun and not real. But this person is the first person where it was a real, stable relashionship. And I guess I felt that that went against the person I saw myself as, which is independent. When I was single, I thought of all the possibilities. But when this person came around, it kinda stifled that. I hope that makes sense. The problem is, is that I wouldn’t trade this person for the world. So I am stuck and confused.October 24, 2019 at 9:19 am #319505
I looked up PPPD on Wikipedia: Persistent Postural-Perceptual Dizziness, a “chronic subjective dizziness” condition that is diagnosed by eliminating known conditions, as there is no test that indicates PPPD. It is tightly connected to anxiety.
Your anxiety, that is, a chronic condition of reactivated fear, as I define it here, started a long time ago, when you were a child: “I have always been a little ‘off’ after having Mono as a kid”. By the time you experienced Mono the anxiety took hold.
“I’ve always been kind of a day dreamer and I would day dream about lovers, but it was always just fun and not real”- I too day dreamed. I day dreamed a whole lot. I definitely day dreamed way more than did actual living, actual experiencing of life, that is.
Anxious people day dream, it is a way to relax. We don’t day dream about conflicts, we day dream about what is “fun and not real”- a break from real-life, a break from conflict and anxiety.
“When I was single, I thought of all the possibilities. But when this person came around, it kinda stifled that”- it is as easy to think of possibilities as it is to day dream. When you met this man, as great as he is, life can not be as easy, calm and wonderful as we experience day dreaming and imagining.
In a way, this healthy love relationship is sort of raining on your parade of how much better it feels to day dream.
Did you get any insight as to your anxiety when you saw the therapist you mentioned?
anitaOctober 24, 2019 at 12:02 pm #319547
Thank you so much for your feedback. I don’t really feel that my last therapist was super helpful so I don’t remember any groundbreaking insight I had with her. Do you have any feedback on how I can overcome what I am going through? I truly want to overcome this and live a better life.October 24, 2019 at 12:55 pm #319553
I’d say if your current relationship is a healthy one and your boyfriend is a good man, then protect your relationship from your anxiety, such as your tendency to blame him for what he is not responsible for. A healthy relationship is so very important in the process of emotional healing, it is like the ground you walk on in what I refer to as the healing path.
Second, it is about managing and better, healing from anxiety. Anxiety is very much the human condition but healing, even if not complete healing, is possible. Possible but not easy. It takes a whole lot of work. But with persistence and patience and guidance you can make a whole lot of progress within months, and even more in a few years time.
I imagine you came across a lot of literature about anxiety and suggestions such as meditation, exercise, yoga, walks in nature and so forth. Will you tell me in summary what you already know about anxiety, in particular your own anxiety, what suggested did you already try, and what was your experience with those?
(Take your time answering, no rush. I am okay with communicating with you about this over days and longer, however long it takes).
anitaOctober 25, 2019 at 2:54 pm #319725
Thank you for getting back to me. It has been helpful to talk to you so far.
When reflecting on past experiences with anxiety, my first therapist taught me a bit about scanning my body and making corrections where needed. For example, lowering my shoulders when stressed and even smiling slightly to trick my brain into thinking I was happy and relaxed.
Exercise has also been helpful for me in the past. I used to workout regularly which helped quite a bit, but did not resolve the issues completely.
I have tried meditation, but not for long enough. I find that in the beginning, sitting with my thoughts seems to make me more stressed, so I go into a state of avoidance. Truthfully, I have found in recent years that I feel a lot of resistance in my body as I have tried to overcome the issue we are currently discussing. I think that may be one of the reasons that I still find myself in this space.October 25, 2019 at 5:04 pm #319733
I will be able to reply to your recent post tomorrow morning, about 13 hours from now. You are welcome to add any additional information that occurs to you as relevant to the topic before I return.
anitaOctober 26, 2019 at 6:03 am #319801
As you found out none of these things changed what “Needs To Change”: scanning your body, lowering your shoulders when they are tense and lifted, smiling to trick your brain, exercising, meditating, and seeing the therapist you saw for as long as you did.
That Something that Needs-To-Change is a combination of things that need to take place: insight into the events since 2015 and before 2015, way back into childhood, examining your current relationships with your parents and other people so to see if these relationships are troublesome and need to be changed or ended, becoming attentive aka mindful of your thoughts and emotions and how these two things affect each other, learning your core beliefs about who you are, and what life is about, and practicing what effectively will change over time your existing anxiety-promoting thoughts, beliefs and behaviors.
Exercising, guided meditations, yoga and so forth, that is on top of all that I mentioned here.
That’s a whole lot, isn’t it? If you want to start this kind of work here on your thread, with me, and see if it makes sense to continue- you are welcome to. Let me know.
anitaOctober 26, 2019 at 9:13 am #319849
What you are saying does make sense to me. Is there a space more private we could explore these topics?October 26, 2019 at 9:26 am #319861
I prefer to explore it here and there is no option here for a private exchange. I will consider email but before I do- this site has members from all over the world and as far as I know not many people read it, in this context, if you don’t share identifiable information such as names of people and places, exact ages of people, what is the worry???
anitaOctober 27, 2019 at 7:27 am #319979
You have a flying phobia. Usually simple to treat one single session with the right type of therapist. You need someone to help you remove the phobia. A good Hypnotherapist with NLP training should be a good start. There is no need to go into your past or overthink this. A phobia cure works by pulling apart the structure that hold the phobia in place. Its really just emotional baggage paired to an external trigger. In this case flying.October 29, 2019 at 12:39 pm #320431
I am open to exploring on here, just not sure where to start.October 29, 2019 at 1:18 pm #320435
Start in-the-beginning- the child you, experiences you remember. Again, no need to share identifiable information, including exact ages, approximations will do, places, names, etc.