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Joined: 7/20/2005
Msg: 12
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AgoraphobiaPage 2 of 4    (1, 2, 3, 4)
Be honest about your agoraphobia right away (before meeting), try to date another agoraphobic, to increase chances of lifestyle compatibility, and then find some really out of the way, quiet coffeeshop or restaurant and plan on meeting on a really quiet time. Meeting in public places really only requires one person (one quiet preoccupied shopowner in the place) so that the person feel safe, and not isolated if something were to happen. It doesn't require a crowded, busy room full of people. If something weird happened, the one shop owner could call the cops. The biggest thing is to only date women who already know about the agoraphobia, and still want to date. It's not fair to withhold that info until you meet, and it would be very counterproductive. My other thought is a quiet park in the daytime, or maybe a horse carriage ride for just the two of you and a driver and a horse. In other words, look for somewhat private places that involve just one other person (to make her feel safe). Book a couples massage or some other couples spa treatment where you are basically in a small cozy relaxing room, but there is still the spa staff person around. Or a private dance lesson, with just the instructor.
Joined: 2/8/2008
Msg: 13
Posted: 4/24/2008 6:39:17 AM
Believe it or not OP,,,,there are more people out there who feel the same way you do. I once went to a seminar on quitting smoking many years ago at my work. There were about 20 of us in this small room with the door closed. During the meditation we were doing a huge panic attack came over me and it literally took everything i had in me to not jump out of my chair and bolt for the door. Being in that room with all those ppl with the door closed really freaked me out. I dont even like going to Malls. If i do go to meet someone in a public place i prefer it to be where there is lots of action/activites/wide open spaces like a town festival or some type of amusement park type thing.
Joined: 1/31/2008
Msg: 14
Posted: 4/24/2008 11:05:12 PM
A lot of people here have given great advice and you should all be commended for helping out. Not to often you see a thread like this, but did anyone bother to notice the OP posted that nearly three years ago? I am curious if he has made any progress...
Joined: 2/27/2008
Msg: 15
Posted: 4/29/2008 9:47:49 PM
well, I'm not into all these earthy panic attack stuff; I just read where one of the drug companies wants to make road rage a mental disorder.

Your very limited; talk to the professional that is handling you but not very many people are going to be comfortable with your situation. I've had someone in the same exact situation contact me and I wouldn't meet. I'm not a believer of all these things; rip me to pieces but sorry; not getting it.
Joined: 8/10/2004
Msg: 16
Posted: 9/5/2008 9:54:44 PM
I have that Susan Jeffers book on an e-book.

“I can handle it” is the main lesson. What ever happens "I can handle it"

I use to worry a bit about it. I died in 1998 (revived no one knows how long I was dead - I woke up 13 days later) - a few months later the panic attacks started. My nerves got pretty fried and I think that was part of the panic attacks.

I learned my way out of panic attacks (mostly still get some anxiety sometimes).

I too had a hard time in say a WalMart with a zillion people.

Learning about breathing will stop the hyperventilation. That was a big big deal when I got that learned and how to control that aspect.

Also a Dr. in the ER (panic attack) told me a cool little deal.

He told me when he feels something coming - he just holds his breath. That has the same effect as breathing like you are suppose to (12 breaths a minute) and same effect as breathing into a paper bag. It slows down your oxygen intake and allows the proper conversation to the proper gases it takes to take the oxygen to your brain. Too much oxygen screws up that process.

Too many people think they are not getting enough oxygen and they are actually getting TOO MUCH oxygen.

What added to my potential agro was ..... I work from a home office and have for 20 years. I seldom even leave the house - there is just no reason do so.

Then all of a sudden POOF ........ I was alone in the world. Kids grown and off and married - wife dumped me - my mom died ......... poof alone in the home office.

These days it really don’t bother me to get out and I actually “invent reasons” to get out of here some. Like go to the store for a couple of things I don’t really need all that much.

OP ............ read read read read ......... learn learn learn.
Joined: 7/14/2008
Msg: 17
Posted: 9/5/2008 10:41:40 PM
To those that tell shigogouhou to go get meds and "deal with it" or see a doctor because he/she can help you, you have to understand that agoraphobia is not a cold or something simple that a doctor can prescribe a medicine and that it will all go away. Doctors have yet to understand how the human brain functions. I have a friend that has had it for the better part of 18 years and she still lives with it everyday, and yes, she has prescription pills that she has to take to help the anxiety, panic attacks, tunnel visions, and other symptoms that have prevented her from leading a normal life. From the time of diagnosis, it took her over 10 years to move her life from one side of the city to the other. It was a major achievement for her, but it didn't cure her. It only gave her a new view of the city. But it was a start. From that point on, she has been going to a support group at the university that she lives near and has been able to get somewhat more mobile. Not a lot by the standards of those that don't have this disorder. But for her, it's meant seeing more places and doing more things. She lives close to everything in terms of grocery stores, malls, dance clubs (she doesn't drink because of the strength of the medication), movie theatres and parks. She has learned to live with it as she deals with it the best that she can.

Shigogouhou, it's all about one step at a time dude. You've probably gone out of your mind trying to find a way to find a solution. Borrowing from my friend's experience, my advice would be to first off, move from wherever you're living now,even if it means a short distance away. Make sure you have some close friends and family close by that can be your support and will yourself to do it. Make sure all anemities are close at hand; parks, malls, movie theatres, stuff like that. If that works,congrats, try the next level and go for a walk to test your limits and find out how big your "safety zone" is. From there, you will know your limits, then the tricky part begins. Always try to stretch that limit a little bit. If it gets hard, whatever, its ok, just try again tommorow. But don't give up. There's always a chance something might finally 'click' for you and you might spread your wings.

And whenever you meet someone that you will feel comfortable with, take the time to get to know them first. Keep the interactions within your safety zone, but spread it out. Do the mall thing, find a restaurant you like, . But at some point you will have to spill the beans, because after you keep saying no to going and doing things that she knows you like, it will start to seem weird to her and you're better off to tell what is going then to not say anything or lie about it and then you've become an ***hole for being a liar when you're not really being one... But that's all I got,so good luck and hang in there..
Joined: 10/1/2007
Msg: 18
Posted: 3/14/2011 10:26:39 PM
Ok champ heres the go those who havent suffered it dont get it.The anxiety creates the agoraphobia simple as that ha ha .Well mate see your Doc work out your own program to slowly work your way back to a form of normalicy.Meds can help so dont totaly dismiss them but be your own guide take your time for its easy to say you want to be well now,..... it dont work that way.Try and not sit alone and think small things into large ok.So pull your finger out and have a crack you will get well .
Joined: 3/10/2009
Msg: 19
Posted: 3/20/2011 9:49:07 PM
not agorophobic, I just dont care for large groups of people. It significantly increases the propensity for stupidity, violence, and mayhem.
Adjust your schedule and go off peak
Meaning if you go to the gym MWF.... so does everybody f'n else, go T, TH Sat
(notice the amazing emptiness)
Work second shift. While everyone is trapped in office buildings, you practically have the streets, stores, and parks to yourself
Work weekends, take Monday Tuesday off, notice similar dead zones
Outsource yourself, there is enough technology in the world that you can do a job from home, or even further remote.
Avoid public transportation
Avoid concerts, fests, rallies and holidays.
This last week was St Patty's day, I had the Mexican resturant to myself
On cinqo de mayo; I plan to similarily dominate the Irish Pub.
Fourth of July? spend it in canada.
Christmas ? Orthodox Russian Christmas is January 7; Go anywhere on the 25th of December - and you own the place (if it is indeed open)
And when all else fails, go sea kayaking. You get eaten by an Orca and it is natures way of recycling.
Joined: 3/15/2006
Msg: 20
Posted: 3/20/2011 9:55:39 PM
^^^ Clearly you do NOT have agoraphobia. I love your ideas, but they aren't practical for those of us who do have such a wretched anxiety problem. There isn't "forethought" in how we live, there is just getting by day by day if/when we are having an episode. I go through phases. I can be panic attack/agoraphobia free for LONG periods of time, then BAM ~ immobile. No reason, just am. And when it happens? Life stops right then and there. It's not as easy as going to an uncrowded place (at least not for me) it's a matter of actually opening the door to get out to go to any place. JMO
Joined: 7/7/2005
Msg: 21
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Posted: 3/22/2011 5:25:48 AM
I do hope you do find something that works for you. It's terrible to be held back from what you want to be.

In most cases the "just keep doing it" is wrong because the center of your brain that "learns" anxiety and fear is reinforced further each time you're in the experience. It's seldom a just get used to it situation.

A therapist that specializes in phobias can help you to re-train the fear center of your brain because your phobia is learned and remembered. It has to be modified... you don't erase that memory of a fear response but there are techniques to "learn" an alternative to the situation.

If you have one expenditure that you make that makes you have to cut back in other luxuries... such as some people buying a boat or a Harley having to shut off their cable TV... this expenditure in dealing with your situation will be well worth it. Few people can undo a phobia on their own and opt for avoidance which shackles you from living the life you want to live.

Best of luck to you!
Joined: 5/24/2011
Msg: 22
Posted: 5/14/2012 6:37:24 AM
I know this is an old post, but I have the same problem. I haven't gone out on a date since 95.

I wish we could chat privately.
Joined: 5/4/2012
Msg: 23
Posted: 5/15/2012 7:25:41 AM

Do what I do with it, face it head-on and meet at a coffee shop, you get nervous and start saying things that don't make sense tell them your nervous and apologize for it. but keep a drink on you so when your nervous you can take a sip and focus on that and the girl your with whenever your drinking it. imagine yourself by a waterfall or beach alone with just you and her. But, keep her in the conversation, so do what you can to convince yourself your background is differnet. Keep in mind people are going to say negative things about you, that shouldn't matter, shes the only one you need to worry about, and remember here is one of my favorite qoutes that I try to keep in mind when on a date from a movie I once saw and it has worked for me. "if she didn't like you should would have said no, so its not your job to try to get her to like you. It is however your job not to screw it up." Hitch.


Joined: 1/8/2012
Msg: 24
Posted: 5/15/2012 7:54:54 AM

Please, just skip these Public forums altogether and head straight to private chat. Or better yet, stick to email, it's safer.

Joined: 5/7/2011
Msg: 25
Posted: 5/15/2012 10:39:22 AM
Then suggest private quieter, less busy places to meet. In the meantime, work on your agoraphobia. You probably already know it is going to hold you back in a lot of areas in life. There are books you can read on the subject on how to desensitize yourself to anxiety-provoking situations until you eventually become more comfortable . I don't think a first date is an appropriate time to go to a busy place to work on your agoraphobia, because it's already too much pressure and you don't want to overwhelm yourself and cause a panic attack. That's why I suggest staying with quiet venues until you get more control over your agoraphobia.
Joined: 7/3/2011
Msg: 26
Posted: 5/15/2012 4:37:03 PM
Well I think you are going to have issues because if I was a woman, I dont care what the excuse; I would not meet privately. how can you expect NOT to meet in a public place when so many women are kidnapped and murdered each year? Some from dating sites. They dont know you from adam.

You can do two things; get some counseling and deal with this issue or be more patient in your dating life. For most, that would be hard to overcome.

I hope all things go well for you.
Joined: 7/3/2011
Msg: 27
Posted: 5/15/2012 4:40:39 PM
I'm in the medical field and I think all this anxiety stuff is not a mental disorder in the least. I think it's about people who can't cope with certain situations or don't have the tools to deal with certain circumstances or situations. Going on drugs isn't the answer.

Talking to a counselor to realize these fears and how to deal with them is the answer. Most anti anxiety and antidepressant meds are taken by one country; the U.S.

It's the in thing in hollywood; almost all are on multiple medications; and many have died from them. Anti Anxiety and other prescription drugs now kill more people than coke, heroine, and meth combined.

Everyone gets nervous or anxious; but if it's to the degree you say, get some help and learn how to deal with it and cope. I hope things work out.
Joined: 1/13/2012
Msg: 28
Posted: 3/31/2013 6:57:08 AM
How could you expect to maintain a relationship of all things, if you can't go out in public if by some miracle you manage to date at all without leaving your house? I mean, come on, is this a real question?
Joined: 1/27/2010
Msg: 29
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Posted: 3/31/2013 7:31:05 AM
Damn Op, sounds rough. I suggest avoiding any romantic relationships until you can sort out your anxieties.
Joined: 3/30/2014
Msg: 30
Posted: 5/28/2014 8:35:34 PM
You're sincere, honest and human. Kudos for that. I know how you feel. I stopped drinking coffee before first dates or phone calls.

I've worked with men only my entire life. Military and now equipment maintenance. Women? They intimidate the shi& out of me.

Treat your condition as others have said. The rest will fall into place.

Oh...don't get drunk before the date. That doesn't work:)
Joined: 4/14/2015
Msg: 31
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Posted: 5/19/2015 1:55:38 AM
Hello, I too have phobias and anxiety, but can manage to go out some locally when I'm with someone who understands me...I feel a little better then.. Would you like to talk more? Its so hard to find other people who understand our unique problems..thanks, Brian
Joined: 5/1/2015
Msg: 32
Posted: 5/19/2015 7:45:40 AM
I have anxiety and a bit of social anxiety/social phobia.
Joined: 3/13/2015
Msg: 33
Posted: 5/19/2015 12:53:38 PM
What can I do?
Seek psychological help before you start trying to date.
Joined: 4/17/2015
Msg: 34
Posted: 6/13/2015 9:00:29 PM
So much bad advice from normals in here. You can't understand it.
Joined: 5/18/2015
Msg: 35
Posted: 6/21/2015 5:00:54 AM
Underlying psychological issues and a history of severe trauma need to be dealt with -- with real, therapeutic options -- for most people with a level of a debilitating anxiety. Willing oneself to feel better is good and getting out to take chances on life is certainly commendable; but it's a plaster for a symptom and not medicine for the cause.

It's a delusion that all will be better, now -- until it reoccurs -- and it's not because one fails, it's because there's an underlying issue that needs to be dealt with or there is an organic component to it that needs medicinal intervention.

PTSD, for example, is one one of those tricky **stards that can lead to a whole host of other disorders and things just don't go away.
Joined: 3/7/2014
Msg: 36
Posted: 6/21/2015 10:00:37 AM


Fear of sweaters?

No, wait, that's ANGORAPHOBIA.


What can I do?

Find another agoraphobic, and be agoraphobic together?
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