Discussion in 'Help Me! I Need to Talk to Someone.' started by Avarice, Mar 24, 2010.

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  1. Avarice

    Avarice Well-Known Member

    Hmm, I don't usually ask people for help, it's not really in my nature, nor do I like burdening people with my problems, `cause they always end up feeling stupid and insignificant afterwards. But I'm going to try, because I do need help and I've had enough of avoiding it. So..

    I am 99.99% sure that I have Avoidant Personality Disorder (see the bottom of this thread for a summary of what AvPD is). I've thought this for two years now, and my symptoms have only gotten worse over these past years. I went to the doctor about it, but because of the way I am (don't ask for help, don't talk much, never share my problems) I wasn't fully able to vocalise the issues I currently had and how it was effecting me, and so the doctor made his own conclusions and sent me on my way. Two years on and it has truly effed up my life beyond all recognition. I no longer go outside unless I absolutely have to, I avoid ALL (and I mean ALL) social interaction if I can help it (I don't take calls, I don't answer the front door, I constantly move MSN addresses to get away from people who talk to me too often), I'm too afraid to go out and find work or go out with friends to meet up and socialize. I can't do anything.. I'm literally house-bound and completely alone. I need a job to get money, as I currently live with my mum and older brother, and my mum is constantly at me pressuring me to go and find a job because she can't afford to keep me here. She threatens to take away our cats if I don't do something, she is constantly shouting at me every day to just DO something, and I really really want to, I am sick of being at home bored out of my mind day after day, but I just can't. I can't take that step and go outside and be part of the world. Socializing scares me, the fear of being embarrassed is too strong, not knowing what to say, being embarrassed of the way I look, or the fact that I have no job. I'd love to work in a library or in an office just filing and going about my job independently, but to get there I have to hand out CV's/job applications, have interviews, travel to work every day, deal with co-workers.. I honestly don't think I'd be able to handle it.

    I began university last September, with a degree in Criminology & Law, but I quit before lessons even began. We had a week of just going in and registering and getting to know other people, and believe it or not, I actually made FRIENDS. They were both like late twenties-early thirties and had kid(s), but they were okay. But then they started talking about going to karaoke nights and going out drinking and that completely freaked me out. Then we got our time table for our lessons and every Thursday I'd have to go in at 9AM and wouldn't get home 'til 10PM.. travelling at night, HUGE fear of mine. So two days later, I quit. Just like that. Made a bunch of excuses about the course not being right for me and it not being in the direction I want to go in and just quit the whole course. That was late September, now it's almost Easter and I've spent sixth months living in some kind of hell where I'm too afraid to go out and get a job, but know that it's what I have to do.. My mum doesn't believe there is anything wrong with me. She came with me to the doctors two years ago when I went, and she put it all down to shyness. And maybe it was, at the time.. but now it's gotten so so much worse. AvPD (avoidant personality disorder) usually begins showing itself in early adulthood (around 18 years of age) and it was a few months before my 18th birthday when I went. The past two years I have gone from happy, friendly, somewhat out-going but avoided it when I could to a total recluse. I haven't seen some of my so called friends in almost a year, the only person I visit is my Dad who lives across the road. The time I spend walking from my place to his is just about the only time I spent outside in the fresh air, and even that I avoid like hell.

    Aside from this, I have become extremely paranoid over the past few years too. I can't sleep at night without a night light on that lights the whole room, and even then I have to have someone else sleep in the room with me and I often don't actually fall asleep until the sun comes up. I am fearful of people breaking into our home, so I check all windows and doors before I go to method bed methodically; I am constantly fearful that someone is following me or trying to hurt me, so I often run from my Dad's and back when exposed outside on my own, leaving me out of breath and scared. I have a huge fear of being outside on my own at night (as mentioned before) so I always make sure that if I do go out that I am home before it gets dark. Because of my irregular sleeping pattern (falling asleep between 3 and 5 am in summer time and 6 and 8 am in winter due to the later daylight hours) I often don't wake until early afternoon, meaning even if I did manage to get a job I'd never be awake for it. My mum complains about my getting up late and going to bed in the early hours of the morning, but she doesn't understand that I literally cannot go to bed any earlier. I've tried taking sleeping pills but they made me feel 100 x worse than I ever could have without having any sleep at all. I have a huge fear of being on my own, but I know that if I keep going to way I am, that is exactly how I am going to end up.

    So you see, I just want to get out of this horrible dark rut I am in. I want to do something with my life, but this thing is holding me back. I can't go and get help from a doctor because I've already tried that - and got rejected (the one thing people with AvPD fear most). My mum doesn't believe me, I don't have anyone close by to turn to for help. I'm basically just stuck like this until my family get sick of me and throw me out. Then I won't even have a computer or internet connection to be able to come here for help. I just don't know what to do. x___x

    And yet, all I can think about whilst typing this is; "What if nobody replies? Why should anyone care about me? What if the thread is too long and they can't be bothered to read it? I can't expect these people to find a solution that just doesn't exist. You should just man up and go outside and talk to someone, you stupid wuss. People do it everyday and they just get on with it, so why can't you? You're just being over-dramatic and making something out of nothing. Leave these people alone so they can help real people with real problems." >_<

    Summary of AvPD from Wikipedia:

    (I experience all of the above symptoms possibly aside from agoraphobia. I avoid and fear going outside on my own, but if I'm with someone I'm usually okay. I don't believe it's as bad as actual full on agoraphobia, but then again, I'm not doctor).
  2. foreverYoung180

    foreverYoung180 Well-Known Member

  3. foreverYoung180

    foreverYoung180 Well-Known Member

    and i forgot to add..you are not a wuss..:console: you are brave for even admitting your feelings. and i and im sure everyone here wants to help if they can
  4. Avarice

    Avarice Well-Known Member

    Hey, thanks for the reply. I don't have a psychologist or counsellor or anything of the sort and never have. The only time I ever really thought to seek out someone like that was firstly when I visited the doctor and got turned away, and secondly just after I finished college, so I couldn't use the free counsellors they had there anymore. Unless you get diagnosed and referred to someone by a doctor, I believe you have to pay for such sessions. I'm not sure if my mum really would throw me out, but she threatens it a lot. I know for sure she'd take the cats away though, because she's done it before for no real reason known to me. She knows that they are the one thing I love most, they're kinda like my best friends, so if she took even one of them away it would just make things ten times worse...

    I'm sorry to hear that you have similar problems, foreverYoung180. I hope for your sake that it isn't the same thing as this. If you do find yourself in a similar situation, or having to face something like this, then I wouldn't mind trying to help you deal with it (even though as you can see, I'm not all that great at dealing with it myself). I recently joined a forum specifically for people with AvPD, and so far it's been interesting. So many people that are exactly like me, all of their life stories are like stories that I could have written about myself.

    Thanks for your reply, anyway, foreverYoung180. I'll be sure to drop you a PM at some point.
  5. weevil

    weevil Well-Known Member

    Your Mum may come round, I don't know what you were like during your childhood and teens but there was a big change in me in college when I started to "break down". I was never a rebellious teenager, I went well out of my way to make sure my Mum didn't have any trouble to deal with when I was growing up. So when I suddenly was doing badly in college, not going in, sleeping all day she had no idea how to act. It didn't help that we were never emotionally close, my Mum has never been close like that with anyone. She does get it more now, tho can STILL come out with something horrible to say out of the blue. Just, try to think of it more that she's frustrated that she doesn't understand and doesn't know what to do and is unfortunately taking that out on you. It might help you feel less attacked, as that's how I felt.

    Having no one on your side can really stall you getting any help as it's hard to trust your own judgement. Do you think you might have better luck getting anyone else to help support you and fight for you? How are your Dad and brother?

    It's horrible when doctors arn't understanding, I don't like going to them either but I think it might be your best route at the moment. See a different doctor, they don't all have to act the same way. What I did last year was write down in bullet points how I was feeling and handed that to him as I knew I wouldn't be able to say it. You can ask for free counselling on the NHS from the doctor as well, I have this.

    As for jobs, are you on any benefits? I recommend trying to get on ESA, it's what there is instead of incapacity benefit for people too sick to work. Easy for me to recommend of course, hard to persue, as well as you need medical notes from the doctor. But I have learnt that trying to do too much at once just makes you worse. You could do without the extra pressure of feeling like you're meant to be working.
  6. Avarice

    Avarice Well-Known Member

    I was the same as you in my teens, weevil. I was always good, I never stayed out late or did anything remotely rebellious towards her or any of my other family. Like you and your mum, we've never been emotionally close, though I think that was more my fault than hers; I feel embarrassed talking about anything personal, even women's monthly problems, shaving, the 'birds and the bees' or underwear. I didn't even start using tampons until I was sixteen because before that I had no idea what they were (not that you needed to know that!) We've never spoken about anything remotely like that, so I've pretty much grown up working everything out for myself. I understand that she is most likely frustrated, however a little understanding wouldn't go amiss, especially when I've already tried telling her I have problems but she decided not to believe me.

    My Dad is in his late-sixties and is extremely forgetful and often times drunk, so I don't believe he would be the best avenue for me. My brother was diagnosed with schizophrenia three or four years ago now, so he's not in the best position to help me out with my problems. There is one person who can help me through this, but they live in another country, and my mother refuses to let them visit me until I am able to get a job of some sort (which is obviously not very helpful at all).

    The bullet points idea could help, and when I get around to visiting the doctor, I will definitely try this. The only problem here is that I don't believe doctors are all that knowledgeable on the condition and may not understand the symptoms or warning signs.

    I am not currently on any benefits, no. My mother thinks that if I were getting benefits every week that it would discourage me from trying to find a job to bring more money into the house (which is what she ideally wants). I've never heard of ESA but I'll look into it. The only thing that worries me there is proving that I am too sick to work. The only thing they'd have to go on, is my word, and it's not like people can't lie. :unsure:
  7. weevil

    weevil Well-Known Member

    You might have to persue help on your own for now then, it's harder but leaving it and letting other people convince you that it's your fault and you could easily change will make you feel worse. This happened to me so much, and still does sometimes, and I just wanted to make those people happy so much that I believed it. But when you set yourself impossible goals and don't reach them it makes you feel so much worse, and those people that made you do it in the first place are not there to pick up the pieces after it's not worked out.

    Of course my experiences don't necessarily apply to you (I go off tangeant sometimes trying to relate myself to others) but I think it's very important to not let other people force you to think certain ways. This leads into what you said about your Mum and benefits. It's not up to her whether you get them or not, it's up to you. I've talked myself into the theory before that "benefits will make me lazier in getting a job" but this isn't about laziness. You already have the stress of wondering what's wrong with you, you could do without the stress of not having enough money to live on as well.

    Even if the doctors you see arn't too familiar with this condition it doesn't mean that they can't help, even if they can just send you to a counsellor, it's usually very helpful to have that someone to talk to who isn't a part of your life.
  8. Avarice

    Avarice Well-Known Member

    It's okay, I often go off on a tangent sometimes myself when replying to others threads. I understand what you mean about those impossible goals, but I hardly even have the motivation to accomplish the little goals, like exercising a little more every week. I just have no motivation whatsoever.

    I'll do my best to get onto the benefits, and try and get myself to the doctor and get a counsellor, though this stuff may take a while for me to get round to. As the condition suggests, I tend to 'avoid' things a lot. It takes a lot for me to trust someone though, so hopefully whichever counsellor I end up with is nice enough. :smile:

    Thanks for all the help you've given. :hug:
  9. weevil

    weevil Well-Known Member

    No worries, it's a lot easier when it's me saying it to someone else and not doing it. I have a lot of things I should be sorting out but am not.

    Don't beat yourself up if it takes a while to do these things, even if you're going slowly you're still going forward.

    This might be really hard to think about at the moment but was wondering, do you think you would want to try Uni again sometime in the future? I'm going back to uni this year, it took me a long time to work out what I really wanted and that it wasn't too late to go for it.
  10. Avarice

    Avarice Well-Known Member

    I'm not really too sure. I applied for the student finance loans, and then I quit and cancelled them, and apparently doing that kinda thing can make them refuse to give you any student loans in the future if you decide to re-apply. Nor do I know what kind of course I'd want to do. I guess it's an option, just not a very likely one, at the moment.

    I'm glad you managed to figure out what you wanted and decided to go back there. Did your quitting before (I assume you did) affect your chances of re-applying for loans?
  11. weevil

    weevil Well-Known Member

    If you did have a problem getting the loans again you should be able to claim extenuating circumstances.

    You'll be in a better situation than me as you haven't actually recieved any years of loans. Yeah, I have been to uni before, I suffered a lot of anxiety there but also realised my choice of course/career would never work for me. I intended to change course but lack of A Levels meant that not happening straight away. In 2007 I was all set to go back and I was going to get the loan that time but I freaked out at the last minute about being in a new town all on my own and being too old so I never even enrolled.

    I am worried about not getting it this time or not getting it for all the years, I'm hoping my conditions will help me with that. I haven't looked into it too officially yet as I just couldn't take any bad news at the moment. It would litterally kill me.
  12. Avarice

    Avarice Well-Known Member

    Oooh, I see. Well then I wish you much luck with enrolling to start again this year. Please let me know how it goes. =] Luckily I do have some A levels, though only enough to get into a basic course that doesn't require any maths or science.
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