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 The Road to Recovery

We have been on the internet for less than a year now. Initially we questioned whether "another" panic and anxiety site would be needed. There are so many wonderful sites in this area already on the Internet. We did decide that one more resource would be beneficial ... variety is the spice of life ... right? Since we first set up on the Internet we have seen untold number of people move on to recovery. This in itself was worth putting the site on the Internet.

One of the people who moved on to recovery that we have corresponded with gave us their permission to publish the series of Emails we exchanged. We have kept this person's identity as confidential.

To all the people we have made friendships with, to all the people who have recovered ... we are proud to call you friend.

CORRESPONDENCE WITH L

dear paems.
I have lost my life. I once was full of action. Now I am stuck in my home not being able to go to the shops on my own. I put myself in a mental health wing of a hospital. I had to fight to get in. Once in I didn't seem to belong there. The others had the real problems. So if I don't belong there where do I belong ? I cannot hide any more please help me ! I am 38yo with an 11 year old boy and I am scared and I don't know what of. I don't know how to fight this cruel thing inside of me. It has made me cry for ten years and I want to be me again. I cannot do this alone anymore. My son is missing out on the real me. Can you help me? I just cannot stay like this anymore ... L

We spoke briefly on the telephone today but you didn't say exactly which Anxiety Disorder you have. Have you been given a full assesement? Were you told which Anxiety Disorder you have?

L, you can recover from an Anxiety Disorder but you do need to know which one you have so you can receive the right type of treatment. Some people can have a combination of the Disorders so treatment is tailored to the individual person. Medication can be helpful in the short term especially if you are in a crisis situation, but for long term results Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is the therapy which has been proved to be the most beneficial for the Disorders.

Did you ring the Anxiety Disorders Clinic? Were they were able to refer you to a therapist in your area? Don't forget some Community Mental Health Services also have psychologists on staff and you may be able to get assistance from your local Service as well.

Have you read everything on our site. There is quite a bit of info on the site which can assist you and the book 'Power over Panic' will help you 'Take the Power back'. If you go into our links page we have links to other sites which may also assist you.

You aren't alone nor do you have to try and recover unaided.

Don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

You can get your life back.

Kind Regards
PAEMS

Dear Paems. Thanks for your time. I am going to get my life back. I have spoken to my community health centre and have an appointment set. I am looking forward to your book arriving. My disorder started 10 years ago I guess from 28 years of abuse from people that were close to me and I went in to same time panics at 4 am every morning from that it went to depression and from that it progressed to this damn agorophobic feeling I get when I go out sometimes. I am sure I will get thru it with help. It makes me so mad to think how strong and independant I was to what I am now. I will try to convert that negative feeling into a more positive feeling to help myself get over it. I appreciate your time in this and I will let you know how things go if you want. Thanks again . L

The book is on its way.

It is great you have an appointment.

One thing L, you are strong. Everyone with an Anxiety Disorder is. It takes great strength just to get through each day, especially if people are not receiving appropriate treatment. Add to that an abuse background and we are talking super strength. You need to recognise this L, because once you get the book and/or see the therapist you can use this strength in the way we all do to recover.

The only reason why you haven't recovered is because you haven't been shown the right way. It has nothing to do with you not being strong.

Let us know how you get on.

Thank you
PAEMS

Dear Paems
Have read your book and it has helped me a lot. I will read it again, this week. I had my first session at the Community Health Centre and I am so much better all ready. The session and the book has given me new hope. I felt almost free when I was driving home. In fact I felt I could drive for miles on my own. A real change from my secondary Agorophobic condition. I am finding it maybe a little too easy, so I am treading a little cautiously, just in case I put to much confidence into it and then feel bad if I have an attack. I am expecting it to take a little time and patience but I must admit at this point I feel wonderful. I am finding the hardest part is the meditation. Just getting the time to do it but when I do, do it I even find that easy. If this is as easy as it is then I should be drawn and quartered for allowing this monster within to have had so much of my life. Again, thanks. I will keep in touch so you can pass on anything I say that may help your work. When things have had a time to settle and I am sure of everything this end, if you wish I would like to help others who may need it. Talk to you soon. I am planning a trip to the coast as my first big trip out in years and I look forward to the challenge....Bye...... L

Wonderful L. It is really great. Hope you have a great time on the coast.

It is easy, in fact it is all so simple but..........it is breaking through our previous belief systems and this is the hard part. You are right to give it time and to be patient. There will be ups and downs but this is normal. The downs are only the old belief systems, they don't want to give up so they try and hook you back in. See them for what they are. If you do have an attack or feel anxious don't beat yourself up, it will only make it worse. You will feel angry but turn it against the anxiety thoughts. Use your anger against the disorder. Let it happen and turn those thoughts into so what!!!!

It isn't your fault you have had it for so long. This happens to so many people. If you don't get the right info, treatment etc you can't do it. If you could you wouldn't have had it in the first place!

Re meditation and time : We always say to people how much time does your Disorder take? !!!!

Yes please do stay in touch. There are many people who contact us so there are a lot of people who do need help.

Kind Regards
PAEMS

(After a blank Email was sent to PAEMS from L)
Dear Paems,
Oopps sorry my mistake I was cleaning my screen up and sent it by accident. No I have no problems and I still havn't had an attack. All is going well. I am almost human again. Its been toooo easy. Thanks for your concern. Since reading your book I see in others there trouble sometimes. In fact my own Brother I discovered just yesturday is suffering badly. I have never spoken with him on much at all but I was in a position yesturday to help him and I suggested he get your book. Until then I never knew he suffered from anything. I pulled back a little from getting too involved at the moment because I still have a little ways to go with myself but it felt good that I understood him and that made him feel better I think. You have been a God sent that is for sure and I appreciate you guys more than you know. It is so nice to feel FREE. I have been fishing and all sorts of things. My son has recognised my improvement and appears happier. I felt a little down the other day and just shrugged it off as "You can't be perfect everyday" and just accepted it was a bad day and got on with the job. I just need a holiday and I can't wait to tease the monster inside with my old self and get to the coast. Thanks for inquiring about me, again. I'll speak with you soon. Regards L

PAEMS REPLY NOT AVAILABLE

Dear Paems,
Still going well. I have not had a turn in a time now. I feel so free and alive again. I even went out without my usual adult support and only had the slightest of thoughts of the beast with in. I am so proud of myself and happy that I made contact with you, guys. I had another meeting at the Community Health Centre and I am so cocky that I felt I didn't need to go. I had to remind myself that if I didn't go, I would be then suffering from stupidity as well as a anxiety/ panick disorder. I still cannot believe how easy it has been for me. This is even without doing as much meditation as I should. I have been sort of waiting to contact you with a "Glitch" but I just get stronger and stronger each day. I swear its almost "Miraculous" I'll keep in touch and keep you informed of my progress if your interested. If you feel I have something to offer others, let me know and I will do what I can. See you soon ... L

PAEMS REPLY NOT AVAILABLE

AFTER A MONTH OR SO
Dear Paems,
I don't know if you remember me. My name is L. I suffered panic, anxiety and agrophobic episodes. I mailed you sometime ago for help. You sent me, Power over panic. I have from time to time let you know of my improvements and the success I was having. Well, I have been able to travel all over my local areas with a friend for sometime now but the challenge came the other day when I had to go to a party for an old friend who lives down the coast.

I did it! I did it! I did it with out as much as a flinch. I even stayed in a Motel over night down there. Plus when it was time to go home, I didn't go. I kidnapped my friend and her kids and my son and booked into a resort you need to go to, by car ferry and you have no way of getting off this place until the next morning and I didn't crack a sweat. I felt so FREE I could have cried. How could I have been so stupid to let this monster rule me for so long. I am getting back to the way I was when I would do things spontaneously and do things just for fun. Now, this means that I am one step closer to being FREE'ER because now my problem does not impose itself on others as it did because with them I can do things with out worry. The next step will be to do things on my own. Like going to town for a look or something. But hey, I am so happy that I can do anything at all even if I never get to do things on my own I am miles in front to where I was. However, I will get to this stage and I will be happier for it. I said to you guys before that it all seemed too easy and I was cautious but it has been easy and I will help others if they need it. I am going to the Community Centre the next time they have a meeting and see if I can help in some way. Man, it is great to feel almost a normal strong guy again. I am still planning my Coast Holiday but with out any thoughts of fear. Now, it is Excitement. I'll let you know how I go. see you soon.

Kind Regards and Much Thanks, L.
PS I am not manic or anything I am aware of hick ups etc. I am just so light from knowing that I did it and did it convincingly. I played the game and I am winning, no better than that I am beating the Monster.

Hi L
Yes we remember you. This is so wonderful. Congratulations a thousand times over!! Reading your email bought tears into our eyes. To read and feel your joy was great. Thank you for letting us know. This is what this is all about for us, seeing people 'beat the monster'.

Your email was so inspiring. Can we use your email on our website? We will take out any references to where you live and we won't use your name.

Stay in touch L and let us know your journey from time to time.

Kind Regards
PAEMS

Dear Paems,
You won't believe what just happened. My friend who has been so supportive over the years, rang me and told me the school had rang her and said. "Your son is vomitting. Could you come and get him"? My friend said, she didn't know what to do. She had no one to pick him up and she was at a contract miles away. Guess what I said to her ? WHAT ABOUT ME ! She said nothing at first and then said. "What you go and get him" ? What a great feeling to say. "Yeah, sure why not" She couldn't believe it.

I did it, I did it, I did it, Again. One more step towards cure. I felt the slightest of anxiety but I guess that was to be expected and said. " SO WHAT" . When I felt the calm coming straight away, I laughed at the Bloody Monster and as it went I said. " Just P#@s off" and with that I listened to the radio and made my way to my friends little boy at school and took him home. She thanked me when I rang her like I was a hero that jumped into a shark infested surf to save him. It must have been terrible for her to put up with me in the old state if such joy comes from such a normal act. I will never go back there again. I am 90% there and it's further back than forward. Hey! you guys should warn us, that when it goes it goes quick. I wish I could give all of you a great big hug for all the Help and support thru the Mail I got. I will keep in touch. I will send you Post cards and I will never forget your Group. Let me know if it gets thru ( E-Mail) and pass on your postal address, please. Kind Regards Your (90%) L.

Fantastic!!! Isn't wonderful. Yes, L way to go!!! And guess what, you get to live with this joy and freedom everyday for the rest of your life!!!! It doesn't go away!!!

Warmest regards
PAEMS

Hi, everyone. Just a quick mail to let you know all is going more than well. I just purchased a new Nissan Patrol Diesel 4 wheel drive and have been catching up on all my missed life. This week end, all going well, work wise, I have a full day planned, going up the beach etc. There is no stopping me now. I feel the occasional ( Twig ) but I just shrug it off and say " So what " This is more the strange feeling of doing things I haven't done for so long that I feel awkward. However, I havn't had an actual attack .... Well, I truly can't remember when I did have one last. I even go places on my own. I took my son out for a drive in the new car and I haven't done that for so long I felt bad about it. We had a great day together, no support adult. Just me and him.

I want you all to remember something. If ever you feel you aren't doing a good job or feel, is it worth it ? I want you to remember me, my son and the happiness and freedom you helped me get back. I have never met you but feel I have had you as friends for all my life. If you take me and my problem alone. You have helped me, my son and my close friends lives all be better off. You may have even saved mine because I was falling fast. You touch my life every day with your book, your support. I will never, ever forget PAEMS. If, I am the only one (I'm sure I'm not) there is enough appreciation in my heart to last two life times towards you guys. Thank you PAEMS. I'll keep in touch from time to time. I am going to use the chat to. Thanks for sending me the info' on it
Kind Regards, L

We would like to thank L for all of the above. The journey itself was part of the recovery. This is what it is all about ... recovery. I hope L's story is inspiration to all people to walk the path to recovery and to know ... yes, recovery is an absolute option. You can recover. In publishing this correspondence we hope to fulfil L's wish ... to inspire and help others who experience Panic, Anxiety and Agoraphobia. Personally, I would like to thank L. You are truly what this is all about ... Your friend always ... Jasmine and Bronwyn (PAEMS)

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