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My biggest fear..

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Old 02-02-2006, 04:24 PM   #1
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Default My biggest fear..

I am not sure why I am sharing this... because it's something that I NEVER talk about. This is totally Off Topic, by the way.

Maybe I am okay with sharing this here because I don't really know any of you.

I can't drive. I don't drive. The whole idea of driving gives me a major anxiety attack. I grew up in NYC and we never really had anything, let alone any money for driving lessons or even a car. I don't even remember spending any time in a car as a child.. we just never went anywhere, and if we did, it was with someone else. My 'mother' (I use that term lightly.. I don't speak to them) never drove because she had some nerve problems with her legs. All I ever wanted to do was drive... it was like this unattainable freedom to me. In high school (I am 23 now), I actually did take Driver's Ed through my school.. I did fairly well, but I didn't pass my road test.. everyone else did. Mainly because I never had someone at home helping me, taking me driving, studying with me, etc. I was always all on my own. I had to work full time all through HS and college (40+ hours) and I was just used to finding work that was close or taking the bus/train/subway/taxi.. like a lot of people in NYC do. I hated that there was something I couldn't do, but it didn't really matter in my situation. Then, I met my hubby and moved here to Louisiana. Well, there ARE no buses, trains, subways, etc. here. EVERYONE drives.. not only that, but they all start from the womb (so it seems, lol). Then, I got pregnant right away and had my daughter.. then I was really sick and had surgery, etc, etc. and somehow life just got in the way. Now, my hubby works an hour away and leaves before 7am and is home around 9-10pm and ALL DAY I am here with my crazy toddler. Even stranger is that I am NOT a 'sit at home, do nothing' kind of person.. I HATE sitting at home, doing nothing. I WANT to go places and do things, I just almost *can't*. This place isn't normal.. there aren't even sidewalks.. no parks.. nowhere to go. I hate it here, but that's besides the point. Everytime I think about driving now, it's just so overwhelming.. it gives me like an anxiety attack. Now, I am a fairly articulate person... I know that I could drive.. I just never had anyone to 'teach' me and I have this mental block about it. I've never understood it.. but I definitely don't want to stay this way! Even the thought of calling the DMV to find out HOW to get my license here makes me SO anxious.. literally sick to my stomach. I have no idea why I am this way.. but I have been procrastinating about it since I moved here two years ago. My hubby and I have a somewhat strange relationship dynamic, and I know he *knows*.. but it's not something I have ever actually told him or we've actually spoken about. No one else here knows though.. it's almost sooo embarassing for me, and I am not sure why. It's something that seemingly everyone does, so I feel like the *only* one who doesn't. Maybe it's naivity. I just have this awful fear now that something horrible will happen to Briley.. and it will be all MY fault.. I only trust her in the car with my hubby driving, which is just plain odd.. I get it. It's almost like I trust him more than I trust myself. Ugh.. sorry for the vent. I have been trying to work up the nerve ALL week to call the DMV, but it's literally made me sick. I wish I could just get on with it!! WOW.. you gals are the first ones I have really shared that with!

(btw.. does anyone want to make a phone call? lol )
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Old 02-02-2006, 04:55 PM   #2
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Don't feel bad, I'm almost as scared of driving as you are. But my one major phobia is calling people. I can answer the phone (though my stomach flutters right before I pick it up), but I absolutely don't like calling people! Even family members. It's so irrational and strange!

I don't actually drive yet (I'm almost 18), but I'm afraid of starting. *shudders* Calling people and driving are my biggest fears.
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Old 02-02-2006, 05:07 PM   #3
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I totally relate. I'm almost 19, and I have only gone out driving twice. This first time when I went out with my dad, it was good... I wasn't too nervous or anything. The second time, my mom scared the everloving crap out of me and I haven't wanted to go out since.

josie, it's interesting that you're afraid of calling people...... so am I. It's sort of a part of my social anxiety. I have more trouble using telephones than communicating in person.
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Old 02-02-2006, 05:11 PM   #4
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I have a driving phobia as well. It is my New Year's resolution...every year...to drive and to buy a car. I am better at losing weight than I am at getting behind the wheel of a car. When people discover that I don't drive, they can't believe it. It has become something shameful...I go to great lengths to hide the fact that I don't drive...change the subject, etc., when the topic comes up.

I am fortunate, as I live in Chicago which has great public transportation. However, my boyfriend lives in the boonies and a car is needed there. If I move out that way, I will have to drive. ~hyperventilate~

But I'm much older than you, Mama. And it is one of main regrets that I didn't drive all these years of my youth. So I would encourage you to do the best that you can to get that license and drive. One thing you might do is look up the DMV information on the internet. I'm sure the rules of the road are posted there. It might be less threatening for you to do it that way than to actually call.

You might want to check driving schools that specialize in nervous drivers. Good luck to you and I wish you only happy days on the road.
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Old 02-02-2006, 05:11 PM   #5
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Sorry, Kim, I'm one of those "from the womb" drivers (actually, I think I started at 9), BUT, don't feel bad about your anxiety.

It's reasonable that you'd have a fear of driving because you've never been exposed. Does your hubby work seven days/week? Maybe you could coax him into taking you for a ride. Also, (if he does work 7 d/w) maybe he would consider taking you out at night to learn to drive. That might even be better for you, as there would be NO TRAFFIC to contend with!

Good luck conquering your fears!

P.S. I feel you on the lack-of-sidewalk issue. Ich!
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Old 02-02-2006, 05:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
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I have more trouble using telephones than communicating in person.
So do I, definitely.
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Old 02-02-2006, 05:15 PM   #7
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My only advice is to start practicing. Most states only require driver's ed if you are under 18. Take it slow and startin an empty parking lot. My sister was the same way, but we took it very slowly and now she drives everywhere. Good luck!!!
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Old 02-02-2006, 05:18 PM   #8
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If not your husband, how about a friend to take you out to learn? So here's the weird dynamic that many of us lived with going into driver's ed in high school: driver's ed is supposed to teach you to drive. But you were a total GEEK if you got into driver's ed and didn't already know the basics of driving! Almost everybody in the country had someone who took them out to some road in the middle of nowhere and let them get behind the wheel and go 10-20 mph and slowly learn.

So...is there a driving school there? You could skip the DMV and call a driving school. I would guess that they would file the paperwork for your learner's permit with you (or tell you what to do) so you could drive with someone else until you get your license. My GUT feeling is that your husband may not be the person that you want to have teaching you. Either a friend or a driving school could give you that emotional distance that would help your comfort level. Like....my stepdad taught my sisters and I; we all know (including her) that my Mom would just get a little too....uh...."tense"

And don't freak out about telling/admitting to people that you don't drive. I think if you just said "I know it sounds silly, but I don't know how to drive. I grew up in New York City." And just leave it there. People know.
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Old 02-02-2006, 05:31 PM   #9
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To be honest I thought lots of people didnt drive in New York City, I thought that was the norm, so since Im in texas your neighbor, I dont think we think that different than the people around you, so all Im saying is Im sure no one would think anything of you saying Im from New York I dont drive yet. Trying the internet is a great idea, and I drove around parking lots forever to learn, but once you learn you will wonder why you waited so long!! :-) Good Luck, and congrats on opening up about your fear, thats a huge step!!
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Old 02-02-2006, 06:05 PM   #10
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Thanks for all of the support girls. My husband works 5 days a week... but he works about 55 hours a week, plus a good 12+ hours of commuting time. He hasn't exactly offered to teach me and I think I'd feel really stupid having him teach him. Does that make sense? I feel like an idiot, basically.. and sometimes he makes insensitive comments which make me feel even worse. I am the kind of person that wants to not only know how to do everything, but also strive to be the best at it, so this is REALLY hard for me. I don't have any close friends here, and I despise my IL's.. I really hate it here.. did I mention that? lol But, dh is losing the last 15 lbs he needs to go into the Air Force as an officer.. so with the prospect of him being gone A LOT, I really need to learn. I actually have a letter all written out to him (which involves a lot of other issues) and I have a whole chunk in there asking him to help me.. but I just can't get up the kahunas to give it to him. We don't have the best communication. I have looked, but the closest driving school is like 45 minutes away. We can't really even afford another car right now, but I still want to be able to LEAVE and get away from my daughter, LOL... that sounded awful! She is amazing, but having her with me 24/7 is making me quite insane.
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Old 02-02-2006, 06:10 PM   #11
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I also meant to add that I have anxiety about doing a lot of things lately.. and I have never been this way. Like, for example, my daughter has a ped. appt. next week I need to cancel, and I haven't yet because I have all of this built up anxiety about it.. for NO reason!
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Old 02-02-2006, 10:21 PM   #12
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sorry to hear about your driving phobia, I wished you lived out in the southwest and might actually find out that driving can be fun.I would gladly teach you I had a friend that was scared to death of cars. It took awhile and she is a regular speed demon. She just got her first car and she is in her 40's Never feel like an idiot because you don't know something, it simply means you were not taught yet. It is never ever to late to learn gosh I'd even teach
you to ride a harley now thats fun. Life is short conquer your fear I wish you the best
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Old 02-02-2006, 10:49 PM   #13
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sorry to hear about your driving phobia, I wished you lived out in the southwest and might actually find out that driving can be fun.I would gladly teach you I had a friend that was scared to death of cars. It took awhile and she is a regular speed demon. She just got her first car and she is in her 40's Never feel like an idiot because you don't know something, it simply means you were not taught yet. It is never ever to late to learn gosh I'd even teach
you to ride a harley now thats fun. Life is short conquer your fear I wish you the best
you are VERY sweet!! thank you!
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Old 02-03-2006, 07:11 AM   #14
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Don't let your husband try to teach you to drive. It's the surest way to hard feelings. Talk you neighbors, people at church, anyone that has a car and is willing to let you drive in an empty parking lot. Tell them you are from New York and haven't learned to drive yet. I grew up in Missouri and we all thought that people from the big cities don't have cars, nobody will think anything strange about it.

The phobias/anxiety , did they come up after you moved? Do you need to see a doctor for medication yet?

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Old 02-03-2006, 08:35 AM   #15
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I know how it is, though my fear is that I will kill a person. I didn't want to drive... but we moved to the boonies, no sidewalks, no transportation... I have to drive 5 minutes to get to a gas station and another 5 to get to an actual grocery. I was 25 before I got my license. My husband was very little help. He is a nervous person, and i don't ask questions the way he understands them. I finally just started ignoring him all together and just drove. LOL I did fail my driving test because the officer was a prick. I don't say that often, but he was. He was in a pissy mood and I failed because I didn't back up properly. He said back up and I backed up... he didn't like the way I did it. When I retook the test (same guy) he was all laughing and happy, he stuck his head out my sunroof and yelled to everyone in the parking lot that I was kidnapping him. I pulled out into the street turned around, backed up and he said you pass. I was so mad.

I haven't killed anyone yet either. LOL If I can do it YOU can do it.
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