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 Post subject: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:46 pm 
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i have had anxiety issues for most of my life, stemming from some childhood trauma. as a kid, and through my early 20's, whenever i would get hurt badly i would pass out from the anxiety. this always scared me because, depending on how i hurt myself, i could easily bleed to death if i passed out while alone. of course, being worried about that does nothing but make me more anxious.

last year, after a hard breakup, i started having pretty regular panic attacks. several times a day. and when they would happen i would have the same feeling like i was going to faint. i started seeing a therapist (who i still see) and i started taking anti-anxiety meds (which i still take). my panic attacks had greatly decreased for a while.

then, a couple weeks ago, my life got very stressful again, and filled with a lot of anxiety. it seems as though my body has learned a new trick, though, and instead of feeling faint i feel nauseated. i have had a hard time eating anything, and when i do eat i often throw it up later. i have been very hungry (to the point that my hunger makes me nauseous too) and also weak from not eating. i don't know what to do!

has anyone dealt with this?

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 2:08 pm 
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I have bad anxiety and panic attacks as well, and I see a therapist regularly and take medication daily. My anxiety gets bad sometimes still, and yes I too have experienced the main symptoms of it changing overtime. I have read about it as well, it's apparently pretty common. It's anxiety kind of tricking you, learning to play up another symptom if you've come to terms with/gotten used to another symptom.

I, too, lose my appetite when I'm anxious. I can barely stomach anything. What I've learned to do is kind of talk to myself as if I were a little girl, and really ask myself, "Now, what do we think we can handle eating right now? We've gotta eat something, because we need food to live." And I can usually get myself to have some soup or something. It works for me!

Ride out the symptoms! My psychologist always tells me to "secure myself to the mast of the ship" when a storm of anxiety is brewing. Eat what you can, and just realize that the symptoms are just that - symptoms of anxiety. <3<3

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 8:17 pm 
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I'm sorry things are rough right now. I've struggled with anxiety since I was a kid. I've been on a couple of complementary drugs for a few years, and they vastly improved things. I've never had fainting or nausea, but know anxiety does crazy things to the body. I would definitely, definitely suggest you see your psychiatrist/doctor about this. Dealing with anxiety takes a lot out of one's body and mind, and it sounds like the nausea/vomiting are preventing you from getting adequate nutrition. That seems like a bad combination! In the meantime, is there anything that sounds appealing, or even if nothing sounds appealing, might sit better in your stomach?


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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 1:02 am 
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I have just recently started experiencing anxiety. I feel like there is a huge knot in my stomach, my palms get sweaty, my heart beats ridiculously fast...My doctor prescribed me Ativan to see if that would help which it kind of does, but it makes me really sleepy and I am already tired often because of low iron and what I think might be depression at times. Then I start to worry about becoming too dependant on it because I have issues with substance abuse. Seeing a counsellor to try and work through things, so far it seems to be helping.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 4:40 am 
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I've been getting really bad anxiety this past year, mostly it makes breathing hard and sometimes it feels like my heart flutters (not in a romantic way). It is mostly related to school, I have no clue what to do about it since I'm just focusing on graduation.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 12:07 pm 
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I have anxiety attacks a lot. They can be over next to nothing, which sucks. I am naturally kind of nervous and prone to worry and that doesn't help.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 12:19 pm 
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I get anxious over the possibility of anxiety. I don't know if that's common, but the idea of doing certain things, and telling people that I don't want to do those things, is way worse than the activity itself. People reacting negatively to my anxiety-driven actions are the worst, though. Sometimes it's easier to just cave and go do whatever, but sometimes I honestly do not want to do certain things for a very good reason (look at this vagueness!), and when I put my foot down, I don't want to forking hear about it!

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 12:34 pm 
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mrsbadmouth wrote:
I get anxious over the possibility of anxiety. I don't know if that's common, but the idea of doing certain things, and telling people that I don't want to do those things, is way worse than the activity itself. People reacting negatively to my anxiety-driven actions are the worst, though. Sometimes it's easier to just cave and go do whatever, but sometimes I honestly do not want to do certain things for a very good reason (look at this vagueness!), and when I put my foot down, I don't want to forking hear about it!


It's common with me. I get myself so anxious about how something will make me feel anxious that's it's almost debilitating at times. It's always so much better when it's over and I actually feel good about doing it, but the getting there is rough.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 3:30 pm 
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My body reacts a lot like yours to emotional stress, takecare. I've never fainted, and I rarely actually barf, but when I get super stressed (like my last bad breakup), I can't get food down, and it sucks.

The only thing you can really do is ride it out. For me, constant distraction was key. I had a hard time concentrating enough to throw myself into work or reading or whatever, so I just watched a lot of movies and things. Maybe it's unhealthy, but it allowed me to calm down enough and keep myself calm long enough to slowly recalibrate myself and get back to normal. During that period, I had to trick my body into accepting food, so I had a LOT of smoothies and (oddly enough) candy, which I found easy to get down.

It took a little while, but I got better and now feel like I have a better handle on my anxiety than ever before, because now I know that even if it gets bad, I have some coping strategies that work, and that I WILL get through it.

Take care, takecare. :)

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 4:16 pm 
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jordanpattern wrote:
My body reacts a lot like yours to emotional stress, takecare. I've never fainted, and I rarely actually barf, but when I get super stressed (like my last bad breakup), I can't get food down, and it sucks.

The only thing you can really do is ride it out. For me, constant distraction was key. I had a hard time concentrating enough to throw myself into work or reading or whatever, so I just watched a lot of movies and things. Maybe it's unhealthy, but it allowed me to calm down enough and keep myself calm long enough to slowly recalibrate myself and get back to normal. During that period, I had to trick my body into accepting food, so I had a LOT of smoothies and (oddly enough) candy, which I found easy to get down.

It took a little while, but I got better and now feel like I have a better handle on my anxiety than ever before, because now I know that even if it gets bad, I have some coping strategies that work, and that I WILL get through it.

Take care, takecare. :)


I agree with Jordan and others that the only thing you can really do is ride it out--but also, don't be averse to the possibility of taking anti-anxiety meds...they're not the answer for everyone but I know when my anxiety gets really bad, I don't have the power to distract myself (even if, intellectually, I can tell myself what to do). My life got so much easier once I finally let myself take meds.

Hugs to you. It gets better.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:19 pm 
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I have transportation-related anxiety, particularly regarding airplanes. I was supposed to fly to Texas in December for my cousin's wedding but had to cancel the tickets this weekend when thinking about it gave me panic attack. I have a therapist, but she's too expensive for me to see right now (I have to pay down my deductible before I can pay the co-pay, and the next deductible payment is $180 and I just can't swing that right now.) She gave me a prescription for beta blockers to help deal with the symptoms, but she wants me to test them before I see her next and I obviously haven't been near a plane, so.

Anxiety: expensive!

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:44 pm 
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Kate wrote:
I have transportation-related anxiety, particularly regarding airplanes. I was supposed to fly to Texas in December for my cousin's wedding but had to cancel the tickets this weekend when thinking about it gave me panic attack. I have a therapist, but she's too expensive for me to see right now (I have to pay down my deductible before I can pay the co-pay, and the next deductible payment is $180 and I just can't swing that right now.) She gave me a prescription for beta blockers to help deal with the symptoms, but she wants me to test them before I see her next and I obviously haven't been near a plane, so.

Anxiety: expensive!


ok, I realize this is a not the average response.... but.....

Have you ever consider to do a (tandem) skydive? could be a expensive as a therapist visit but I noticed that after skydiving classes I felt less "trapped" in an airplane.


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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:28 pm 
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I think I've dealt or failed to deal with anxiety just about my whole life. Then, when I was about 30 I started therapy and did that for years. When I was about 35 I started on meds. I was extremely reluctant. I didn't want to admit I "needed" them. (Should I have not put that in quotes?) I didn't want to be "weak." But I was pretty desperate by this point. I had been diagnosed with agoraphobia and anxiety was colonizing my life. Panic attacks and fear and feeling like the world was just too much for me to handle.

The meds worked wonders. (I assume it was the meds. Or a combination of therapy and meds.)

My triggers stopped triggering anxiety. In the rare cases where I felt anxiety start swelling, it subsided on its on, instead of snowballing and bulldozing me. Life became manageable. There are still situations I have difficulty with, but they don't rule me anymore.

The poem about it (highlight to read; ignore it to, um, ignore it):

Not a burning, but a drowning.
The man in my shadow drowns.

Waves roll on beneath the flag of Empire,
To conquer and claim. To colonize. To kill.

They reel him down on blood-blue ropes
Until air is the unwishable thing.

His solid self is hostage to infinite inrush.
Now he's nothing but a bubble's skin.

The temple's overrun, the altar's been defiled,
They've pried the eyes from masks of gods,

The Good Garden, black from carts of salt,
Offers up only jawbones and boot heels.

Oracles smell the crush of fathoms, the surface torn in two,
Freak elements, and inverted constellations.

His skeleton glued and unglued by panic,
The drowning man is his own dumb anchor, always dying.

The end of the world comes for him on wings and wheels,
Sirens, horns, and bells ablaze.

I'm captain to a flooded carcass.
Friends, the drowning man is me.

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 Post subject: sh-sh-shaking
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:46 pm 
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I love that poem, FF. The end, especially, made me tear up a little.

I've also failed miserably in dealing with anxiety for most of my life. I find myself at some point in an Ouroboros trajectory of abject fear and crippling doubt at absolutely all times. Therapy doesn't work. Meds don't work. So I've just had nightmares every night and random bouts of weeping every day for over 20 years, and I guess that's the way it's gonna be. It's exhausting -- not just to me, but to everyone around me, so I've spent my late 20s withdrawing from basically everyone I've ever known because I know it's such an inconvenience to deal with.
At a certain point, I had to stop caring and just kind of treat anxiety as a very real, almost tangible presence in my life that must be acknowledged and kowtowed to constantly, lest it act up and throw me out of orbit -- it's pretty strange, sometimes, being ruled by a terror I can't pinpoint or ascribe. Why am I so scared? Where would even I start? The whole anxiety to-do has grown into me like a horn or a root would: pure nerves, pure panic, pure exhaustion. That fight-or-flight feeling has worn down my nerves so much that my hands shake constantly, and have for years, and I'm so goddamn tired, no matter how long I manage to remain in a state of arduously chemically induced sleep. But them's the breaks.

Hang in there, everyone.

<3

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:08 pm 
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Kate wrote:
I have transportation-related anxiety, particularly regarding airplanes. I was supposed to fly to Texas in December for my cousin's wedding but had to cancel the tickets this weekend when thinking about it gave me panic attack. I have a therapist, but she's too expensive for me to see right now (I have to pay down my deductible before I can pay the co-pay, and the next deductible payment is $180 and I just can't swing that right now.) She gave me a prescription for beta blockers to help deal with the symptoms, but she wants me to test them before I see her next and I obviously haven't been near a plane, so.

Anxiety: expensive!


I have transportation anxiety too, although I'm usually ok with planes. Mine is much more about public transit and also ties to my IBS. It's terrible. If I really need to go somewhere I can usually do it, but at the same just hearing about someone taking a long bus ride or something can give a sinking feeling in my stomach because I know that if it were me, I would freak out! I am, finally, in therapy now. But we're focusing more on underlying issues so I can't say I've really made any improvement on that front, but on the plus side I can function fairly well (aside my social anxiety, hah) since I don't really need to travel that much. But when I do have to travel it usually helps to tell myself that's OK to feel panic and that it will pass and that I can manage this since I've done it before. Trying to breathe and talk myself through it helps at least most of the time.


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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:17 pm 
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Thessaly wrote:
Mine is much more about public transit and also ties to my IBS. It's terrible. If I really need to go somewhere I can usually do it, but at the same just hearing about someone taking a long bus ride or something can give a sinking feeling in my stomach because I know that if it were me, I would freak out! I am, finally, in therapy now. But we're focusing more on underlying issues so I can't say I've really made any improvement on that front, but on the plus side I can function fairly well (aside my social anxiety, hah) since I don't really need to travel that much. But when I do have to travel it usually helps to tell myself that's OK to feel panic and that it will pass and that I can manage this since I've done it before. Trying to breathe and talk myself through it helps at least most of the time.


Yes. And yes.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 05, 2010 10:52 pm 
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just wanted to send some <3 <3 to you all. anxiety and panic attacks are so overwhelming. i'm having more success than i ever expected, through non-traditional means. it's still a work in progress though.

footface, thanks for sharing that poem.


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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Wed Nov 10, 2010 11:20 pm 
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I was diagnosed with panic disorder during my freshman year of college. I had actually had it through high school, but I had no idea. I used to have panic attacks all day. Now, I've been on meds for 5 years and rarely have a panic attack. Even if I do, they aren't nearly as bad as they used to be.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 11, 2010 1:32 am 
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1.) I am sorry that you are having such a hard time. I hope it gets better soon

2.) I've had trouble with anxiety, particularly social anxiety (and other psychological issues) my entire life. I've been on and off of meds, but I've never had any luck with them. What has worked for me is a lot of therapy. Right now I only have panic attacks about once a week, and I can manage them with breathing and obsessively rational thinking in a repetitive and comforting way. That is, if I don't run in to any of my triggers in daily life (which I don't, usually) but if something happens that reminds me of, triggers, or is one of my issues I have a lot of trouble dealing and will often have horrible anxiety filled days of multiple panic attacks and not wanting to leave my apartment which can last as long as a week.
I'm dealing, I hate it, what can I do?

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 11, 2010 8:34 pm 
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Thanks FootFace for the poem and everyone for being so open. I know we don't know each other, but I understand most of what you are all going through.

I've been diagnosed with BPD, OCD, hyperarousal and Depersonalization Disorder. All stem from extreme childhood abuse; I often feel defeated because I look back on what was done to me and I feel like I never had a chance. It's very hard to not only be initially positive, but also to remain in that happy kind state. A lot of the time I'm paranoid that people are lying and that they're judging me.

I rarely leave the house mainly because of my hyperarousal. The muscles in my body are almost constantly tense from the chemical release of the flight-or-fight response. Essentially, this is killing me. Everyday I overload my body with stress and it's not being metabolized correctly. I have had an incessant eye-twitch for the past 3 years. And this is why my husband believes I'm going to die prematurely which makes me so so sad.

I also don't like leaving the house because I'm afraid something is going to catch on fire or someone will break in. I check locks and appliances over and over again [especially the oven] and I'm on guard most of the time I'm awake.

When I do leave the house, it's with my husband who knows he can't leave my side. If he does, it takes a lot for me to feel like I'm going to be okay long enough for him to go pee. It's painful and I'm ashamed of what kind of control it has over me. We live four blocks from the beach and I can't leave our little cave [that I've created] by myself to go and enjoy it.

Luckily, I married well. Before the husband, there was a lot of self-destructing I did including substance abuse. When I met him, things changed. He saw in me what I never realized about myself and has been able to [slowly over the course of 7 years] help me break ties that needed breaking, get into therapy, start reading and learning about how we are wired and why my brain is reacting this way. Traditional meds don't help. Meditation has been working wonders. So it's all personal.

Sorry this is long...I'm just happy that I'm posting and not lurking on this thread like I would have done a couple of months ago. I learned that it really helps to talk about things honestly.

Thanks and much love to all.

Edited for spelling.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 6:52 pm 
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Veg_Eric wrote:
ok, I realize this is a not the average response.... but.....

Have you ever consider to do a (tandem) skydive? could be a expensive as a therapist visit but I noticed that after skydiving classes I felt less "trapped" in an airplane.

I have never and would never consider that.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 9:14 am 
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oooh, this week I had a panic attack in class (which hardly ever happens) and then I sort of mildly freaked out at the symphony last night (but got it under control and enjoyed myself finally). I feel like I just need to get my baseline anxiety down again and these random issues will stop. I'm hoping lots of yoga and then acupuncture on Sunday will help (and then bringing it up with my therapist next week). Seriously, sometimes it feels like as soon as I start to figure out one form of anxiety then another one pops up. What are you doing, brain! Knock it off!


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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 10:41 pm 
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Thessaly wrote:
oooh, this week I had a panic attack in class (which hardly ever happens) and then I sort of mildly freaked out at the symphony last night (but got it under control and enjoyed myself finally). I feel like I just need to get my baseline anxiety down again and these random issues will stop. I'm hoping lots of yoga and then acupuncture on Sunday will help (and then bringing it up with my therapist next week). Seriously, sometimes it feels like as soon as I start to figure out one form of anxiety then another one pops up. What are you doing, brain! Knock it off!


I totally understand this. I've been trying to use yoga more as a way to calm down. It seems to be working. Good luck with yoga and acupuncture! I hope it helps...

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Mon Nov 15, 2010 4:08 am 
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I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety and panic disorder the summer after my freshman year in college. The attacks started happening a few months earlier and I just remember the night of my first panic attack was the most terrifying night (and subsequent days...I couldn't calm myself down) of my life. I was with some friends in one of their rooms and I started feeling really....off. I couldn't put it into words but I told them I needed to just get some fresh air and "walk it off". Well, that didn't help so I ended up going back to my room and having a full-fledged panic attack. I had NO idea what a panic attack/anxiety was so I was freaking out and thought I was either dying or having a mental breakdown. I called my mom in tears and was trying to explain what was happening to me but I couldn't find the words. Both she and my dad have battled with anxiety for years and she recognized the effects in me right away. I'll always remember how she and my dad stayed on the (extremely expensive long distance) call with me all night and didn't hang up until I fell asleep. I really started panicking when I woke up the next morning and didn't feel "normal". I didn't understand why I couldn't just sleep it off.

The next few months (until I went home for summer and finally got the help I needed) were seriously the most exhausting and terrifying days of my life. I had serious transportation anxiety and could barely coax myself into getting on the subway to go to class. I had to take buses to feel less trapped and, even then, I was anxious. None of my friends understood what was happening to me so it wasn't until I got home, and was around people who knew what I was facing, that I could get the help I needed. I've been on medication (Prozac) ever since and it has seriously been a lifesaver for me. I also have Flurazepam, which I take on an as need basis. I rarely get full on attacks anymore, but it's such a relief to know that if I do, I can just take one of the pills and wait it out for 15 minutes until the drugs kick in.

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 Post subject: Re: the ANXIETY thread
PostPosted: Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:01 am 
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helsinki wrote:
I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety and panic disorder the summer after my freshman year in college.


It seems like you've found something that works for you. Kudos on getting help as well!

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