Thread Tools
Old 02-17-2011, 08:48 PM   #1  
Big Miss Sunshine
Thread Starter
MissKoo's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Outside Onederland
Posts: 489

S/C/G: 280/See Ticker/175

Height: 72.5"

Default I'm scared and don't know if it's okay to ask for help

I'm starting a new job next week. I'm thrilled because it is a big upwards move from my previous position. Here's the problem:

My main office is in a lovely building on the first floor with a window (again, I'm thrilled). While I am in the orientation period I will be shadowing someone in another facility. It is much further away, but I can stand the longer drive for a month. The thing is . . . it is a very old, tall building and there is a creaky, dark elevator I have to use. I am SCARED TO DEATH of elevators and I can't ride in one alone. I can't even ride in one unless there is someone I trust with me (that is because with panic attacks there is the fear one may "go crazy" or pass out). I asked about the stairwell and was told it is for emergency egress (what, no ingress?).

I want to tell the person I'll be working with that I have pretty bad claustrophobia and I'd just like her to help me out by coming with me in the morning and evening from the office to the lobby. I did this for years when I worked in a very tall building in my 20s (the security guard was a sweet guy and after a week I didn't have to ask - he'd see me coming and ask if I wanted company!)

I have a lot of shame in this phobia. I say to myself "what is wrong with you! You're abnormal and fat and why would anyone want to help you!" I don't know - if someone asked me for that kind of help I wouldn't think twice. I would do it.

Is it possible to be a professional, competent woman and still need to ask someone for help like this? I am so torn. I have been living with panic attacks (living in spite of them, actually) and I have overcome a lot in my life. I went from being pretty much home bound to graduating college and getting (and keeping) pretty good jobs.

Any advice or opinions welcomed and appreciated.
MissKoo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2011, 08:54 PM   #2  
Senior Member
angelskeep's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Cody, Wyoming
Posts: 982

S/C/G: 243/190/150

Height: 5'4"


Hugs to you! I don';t have any great advice, probably, but you know no matter how much anxiety it causes, a panic attack can't make you die. Lots of people have a terrible fear of riding in elevators. And skinny people are afraid of stuff too, so being a fat chick is irrelevant. Have you tried to work on the issue by immersing yourself in the middle of the thing that casues the fear? Supposedly you can only stay in panic mode for a certain amunt of time and then your body just kind of poops out and you start to feel better. How far can you get before you get that super anixous? IN the building? Next to the elevator? IN the elevator but not with it moving? Can you work on each step of the way until it's comfortable? Maybe have the lady (or a friend on your day off) meet you on the first floor and then the second etc. until you can get to the top? I wish you luck...and I wish I could be more help. If there's a way for you to not get so worked up over it now, then you jight be in better shape to deal with it on the first day you actually have to go there. Right nowl you are spending time worrying about somehting you don't even have to do yet.

angelskeep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2011, 09:16 PM   #3  
Le geek, c'est chic
Nola Celeste's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Metairie, LA
Posts: 1,213

S/C/G: 232/see ticker/150ish

Height: 5'2" and change


I'm so sorry you have a phobia to deal with. It's absolutely amazing how many times elevators (or in my case, roaches or vomit) come into daily life. Please don't feel ashamed; you are far, far from the only person with that phobia or with a phobia in general.

It seems like a perfectly reasonable request to ask your co-worker to help you out with this. You would be amazed at how understanding most people are, especially when personally called upon to lend some assistance. You're smart to realize that if someone asked you, you wouldn't hesitate; sometimes turning a situation around in your mind like that provides clarity. In this case, I think you've seen correctly how your co-worker will react.

As for whether it's possible to be a competent professional who occasionally wants help dealing with a phobia, you might want to Google "famous people afraid to fly." Isaac Asimov, John Madden, David Bowie, and Whoopi Goldberg are just a few famous phobics whose careers were not derailed in the slightest by their phobias.

I admire you for wanting to take the absolute best course of action here and ask your co-worker for a little assistance directly instead of trying to cover it up.
Nola Celeste is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2011, 09:33 PM   #4  
Tamsin78's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Eastcoast
Posts: 63

S/C/G: 314/283/135

Height: 5'2"


The previous ladies have given you great advice. Let me congratulate you on that new, great job, and all the obstacles that you have overcome in life ! I never really had a fear of elevators until I went to a convention and 12 people in a group decided to jump up and down at the same time; since then I get palpatations when it stops short or gets stuck for aminute. So let me say that If I was the co-worker and you told Me, I wouldn't think it was strange at all. Perhaps other folks will be getting on when you do. Best of luck!

Last edited by Tamsin78; 02-17-2011 at 09:36 PM. Reason: typo
Tamsin78 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2011, 09:36 PM   #5  
emaline29's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Norwich. Norfolk, uk
Posts: 276

S/C/G: 226/202/154

Height: 4'11"


All the very best in your new job and hope you get some help with your anxieties as well....
emaline29 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 12:11 AM   #6  
astrophe's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,855

Height: 5'8"


Does it help at all to talk to someone on the cel phone while going up in there? Or does it have to be an actual person in there with you?

Either way -- reach out for the help! There is no shame in that!

astrophe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 10:15 AM   #7  
Hi From Canada, eh?
Trazey34's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Canada, eh?
Posts: 2,369

S/C/G: check the ticker :)

Height: 5'8


Congrats on the new job first of all !!! Secondly, is this phobia an insignificant nuisance to your life, or do you feel it really gets in the way? THere are some pretty simple treatments for phobias, a little CBT program might be all you need??? I wouldn't hesitate to ask for help -- people are just as nice as you are you know If you'd help someone, chances are other people will too!!

p.s. now i feel queasy because it takes me back 3 or 4 years when i was stuck in a GLASS elevator on the OUTSIDE of a building in Vegas LOL for 4 hours!!! Needless to say my entire vacation was comped! score! I treated it like a ride at a crappy amusement park to help me get thru it!
Trazey34 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 10:28 AM   #8  
If you wanna Rock It . .
Coondocks's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Winnipeg, Canada
Posts: 1,246

S/C/G: 248/164*low*/145

Height: 5'4"


No shame at all, in the office I work in we have plan members come in for appointments that have phobias about elevators and I've never thought it odd or abnormal when they have asked for some one to accompany them in the elevator. Same when I worked in a hotel, we had a regular every week that LOVED the 14th floor rooms, hated the elevator - so we always had a bellman or other staff go up with him. No one ever thought it unusual.

On the flipside, if a co-worker came to me and let me know they had a legit phobia of elevators and wanted help I'd be impressed. Takes a courage to ask for help and shows you are serious about being on the ball in your new position.
Just throwing that out there.

Good luck to you
Coondocks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2011, 06:03 PM   #9  
Big Miss Sunshine
Thread Starter
MissKoo's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Outside Onederland
Posts: 489

S/C/G: 280/See Ticker/175

Height: 72.5"


You guys are awesome. Every one of the responses made me feel better! I'm going to ask for help. And I'm going to enjoy my new job!!!

MissKoo is offline   Reply With Quote

Related Topics
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
I Need Help. I'm Scared. redreine 100 lb. Club 48 02-06-2010 04:18 PM
WLS doesn't work on it's own, Its how you work it! KO Weight Loss Surgery 11 12-06-2007 03:08 PM
I'm back and looking for a buddy or two! emjay71 Support Groups 247 03-21-2007 12:00 AM

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 06:48 AM.

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.
Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.