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Frogie

Far from home, horrible anxiety

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Frogie

Four years ago, I packed up and left the city that I was born and raised in to move 200 miles for my fiancés new job. Left all my family and friends.

 

Except one. At the time, our friends moved with us. Thought all was going to be ok, then they suddenly moved to Florida. Boy now I'm all alone.

 

I live in a town of less than 800 people. If you weren't born here, or went to school here, you don't belong here.

 

My fiancé has no problems, he has contact with people all day long.

 

It took me 3 years to finally get into mental health (that's all they have here). And you get a new counselor every few months, because they don't want to drive this far from the city. You are constantly starting over. But it's better than nothing.

 

Anyways, let's get to what I wanted help with. Anxiety. EVERY MORNING at 4am, when my fiancés alarm clock goes off, my stomach is immediately sick. I can actually feel it. The strangest feeling I've ever had. I have anxiety, but I feel it come on and I can do an app on my phone, breathe, or if it gets too bad, I can take a Xanax. It happens in my chest. This is a different kind of anxiety. I feel like I have the stomach flu. It lasts until lunch time or so, then I'm ok.

 

Does anyone have this problem? If so, how do you handle the "sick" part of it?

 

Thanks!

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doggiemama

Yes I understand the feeling I had it for a long time but over time it does get better. Its a very hard thing to except just stay as calm as possible . If there are other stresses in your life it can make it worse. Remember if u in W\D these emotions are haywire and it takes a long time to feel better. I C\t off Citalopam and sleeping pill and its taken me 2 years to feel a bit more normal. So if you are tapering pls carry on as they tell you on SA

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Frogie

Yes I understand the feeling I had it for a long time but over time it does get better. Its a very hard thing to except just stay as calm as possible . If there are other stresses in your life it can make it worse. Remember if u in W\D these emotions are haywire and it takes a long time to feel better. I C\t off Citalopam and sleeping pill and its taken me 2 years to feel a bit more normal. So if you are tapering pls carry on as they tell you on SA

You must have had a really hard time c/t off 2 meds. That takes a lot of courage. Im glad you are feeling better.

I'm doing the best as I can one day at a time.

Thanks for helping me answer my question!

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Frogie

Well, here it is May 1, 2017, and I feel the same way.

 

I miss my oldest son, daughter in law, Uncle, but most of all, I miss my granddaughter soooo much. I used to live 20 minutes from her, now I'm almost 200 miles from her.

 

I live in a town of 600 people. My fiancé took a job here. But if you aren't from here, didn't go to school here, you don't belong here. Very clickish.

 

There is a Shopko (like a tiny overpriced Walmart, 2 dollar stores and a Safeway) 16 miles from us. In our town, we have a gas station with a convenience store, a small grocery store, and an ACE hardware, whoopie!

 

My fiancé doesn't understand. He has communication all day at work. I sit at home all day. I do go to therapy once a week.

 

I'm so miserable, and he knows. He said maybe in a couple of years, we can move home. He's not making any promises though.

 

I cry a lot.

 

If anyone is in this kind of situation, and would like to talk PM me.

 

Take care,

Frogie xx

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JanCarol

Fifteen years ago, I packed up my house and moved in with my husband.  It was a 14,000 mile move.

 

I had made friends online and in the area - but the closest one was about 2 hours away by train.  (at least there were trains, because driving was scary!)

 

I would go to gatherings, in the park, and coffee meets.  Meet-up stuff, based on Yahoo!Groups of similar interests.  But even though they were speaking English, their vowels were all garbled and the consonants were restricted, to keep from letting flies in.  And the lingo!  "A tinny at the Gabba" what does that mean?  (it means they had a beer at the football)  What is a "Sepo"?  (it was me: short for a "septic tank" rhymes with "Yank," and all Americans are called Yanks!).  And just when I learned to say "G'day," Aussies quit using that, and just say, "Hey" or "Hello" (too much American TV)

 

I sat and listened for a year, and didn't say much because I had no idea what these people were saying.

 

And driving the roads - twisty little goat tracks that are carrying more traffic than they were designed for - twisting around the river - endless suburb after suburb and they all look alike.  And driving on the "wrong" (left) side of the road.

 

It took me 5 years before I was comfortable driving anywhere but to the grocery and the library (thank goodness for the library!).  I started to develop friends, and would meet them at the "club" for raffles (like the Elks, but different).  I met someone in my neighborhood.  I met someone else, and she moved away (I didn't care for her much, but - ).  One of her friends moved to my neighborhood and is one of my dearest friends.  She's the first person where I felt I didn't need to "put on" a mask or an air or anything.  I could just be my normal self.

 

All through this I had hubby - but he was working.  It would've been easy to slip down an alcoholic trap - especially before we had airconditioning and a cold brew through the heat of the day felt like survival.  It would've been easy to get suicidal (I did).  It's no wonder I got medicated.

 

I did have my 18 year old cat, who I brought from the USA.  She was Queen of the garden, and when she died I was crushed.  

 

I thought before the move, "I am fairly adaptable."  But I found out after the move - that it's harder than it looks!

 

Now, after 15 years, I have a karate club, a yoga studio, and lead a shamanic meditation circle.  I have friends who call me (one just made me some watermelon rind pickles!), and we meet regularly for lunch or trips to the country.  I can drive - my radius of comfort has gone from 10 minute drives to about 40 minute drives (if I have to.  But I prefer to keep it under 20 min).  Thank goodness for GPS!  I have a retired husband at home.

 

It really takes at least 5 years (in my opinion) to establish at a new home.  We did it a lot faster as kids - everything was faster then.  But as an adult, to get my needs met - at least 5 years.

 

Keys are:  finding people who share beliefs (churches, religious groups), world views (activist groups, volunteer work), sports (running, cycling, karate, yoga, tai chi, weightlifting, and from these - you can build a social group.

 

It was interesting because - just before I moved, my Sister came down to my little Indiana town from Chicago.  And I ran her through the gauntlet of "how to establish in a new town."  We went to a different church each Sunday - I let her pick, and we went back to the ones we liked.  We picked out different events and activities to participate in - like the soup kitchen.  Anyhow, by the time I left 2 years later, she had a life in the town.  It was still hard to leave her, but she had the beginnings of roots.  

 

After running her through the procedure, when I landed in a foreign country (don't be fooled, Australia and England are still foreign countries!) I had done a practice run with her.  The church I liked is about 45 minutes (or a train ride, now) into City - but - is so early in the morning that it's a hardship to get there.  But I know I can always go back, and I probably will again someday.  Volunteer work here turned out to be a bust (Australians are early morning people - my delayed cycle sleep is the "laziest thing they've ever seen," even though I am not lazy - just late.) - and in a deep depression, it became harder and harder to reach out for what I needed.

 

So - it's do-able.  But for me, it didn't really start to come together until:  1.  I came off the drugs and could do things, and engage in conversations and stuff, and 2.  about 10 years of "learning the place, the language" and finding people I enjoyed.

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Frogie

Hi JanCarol:

 

Your move sounds a lot easier than mine. At least people are friendly and you have friends.

 

I'm not joking. This town is very clickish. If weren't born here, your parents weren't from here, you didn't go to school here, you don't belong here.

 

People will smile at you, and I will say hi how are you? They look at me like I'm an alien and walk away.

 

There are no classes to go to here.

 

I have tried for 4 years.

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Barbarannamated

Hi Frogie.  I don't visit this site too often anymore, but am having serious family issues and dropped in to look for advice.  

 

I relate to your situation Very well.  I became disabled due to effects of Zoloft (Rx'd for fatigue, not mood) and haven't been able to work since I was 39 (now 55).  Most of my friends and activities were through my job and I lost all in one fell swoop.  My husband is EXTREMELY unsocial, has no need for people, and we had only one couple friend that we saw 1-2x per year.  I forced myself to do things on my own for several years, but when hit with prolonged withdrawal, it became MUCH more difficult.  

We live/d in a small rural town in Southern California where I could have my horses (they helped immensely, but have since passed).  The isolation was horrible, especially after tapering off of Pristiq and being unable to maintain/regain interest in anything, including my beloved horses.  I have volunteered a few places, which has helped for awhile, but then I lose my momentum.

 

Two years ago, I moved back to my hometown, a very depressed area of Western PA.  I have my 90yo father, estranged sister (recently diagnosed with advanced cancer), and a few friends and relatives.  I am the youngest/last of my family.  

I've felt very isolated and out of place in my hometown, also. Most friends have moved away and the few here are busy with career, kids/grandkids. It's a town that natives FLEE and only families are here. I just don't fit in anywhere.  I never had that problem prior to being disabled and withdrawal.  I wasn't a social butterfly, but always had a group of good friends. 

 

All this to say....I DO relate to your isolation.  It's horrible and I'm sorry you're going through this and that your fiance is not understanding.  

 

Have you been back to your hometown and family or do they visit you?  Do you feel better then?  

 

I've been wondering for several years if this feeling is accentuated by withdrawal and being unable to connect with people and feel a sense of purpose and belonging.  I DON'T have a good family picture, so that's very different from your situation.  

 

The morning anxiety is still with me, much of it due to feeling so alone and not knowing where I might live that would possibly provide more stimulation and purposeful activities.  When I do get out among people, I'm MUCH better, moreso with strangers.  Not sure what to make of that.  

 

Sorry to ramble on.  I just wanted to say hi and offer my experience.  

 

 

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Frogie

Hi Barbarannamated:

 

First off, I want to thank you for picking me to write on my thread about small towns. They s**k BIG time. You can't sneeze without the town knowing it. I live in a town of 600 people. We have an Ace hardware, NAPA, small grocery store and a gas station with a convenient store. That's it. You have to drive 16 miles to see a dr, small 17 bed hospital, a small Safeway with no deli or bakery, 2 dollar stores and a Shopko. It's a very, very, very small overpriced Walmart. That's it. It's a farming community. My fiancé is the master electrician for the co-op. All I see is corn, wheat, and occasionally a few cows.

 

I've had people tell me that they walk every morning and go right by my house. They say they will knock on my door and I can walk with them. It's yet to happen. And I'm not the kind of person to invite myself.

 

I was born and raised in a city of 80,000 people, never left. Never thought I would either. But my fiancé was offered this job after the company he was working for closed their doors and filed bankruptcy.

 

I miss my oldest son, daughter in law, but most of all, my granddaughter. She will be 10 this month. I've seen her 3 days this year. She's busy with swimming, friends and camping a lot. I used to be 20 minutes from them now I'm 2 1/2 hours away.

 

I've called community centers and every place I can think of to volunteer just a couple hours a week to get out. They all tell me they don't need me.

 

I have an Uncle that comes out for holidays, but that's it. 

 

I have 1 friend that lives across the street. She is whacky. She cries a lot and takes more meds than I thought no one could take. I see her once in a while, I don't talk to her or see her everyday.

 

I watch a shopping channel and game shows all day. I have no motivation to do much at all. Are you like that?

 

I'm sorry to hear about your family. I'm an only child. Lost my mom 7 years ago, she had a massive stroke and my dad 4 years ago, so I really am alone.

 

How did your tapering go? I hope you did well. I'm working very slow on Lexapro. I was told that it was like pulling a tigers tail and I believe it. Then I have Xanax to taper off of and hopefully be "normal". Whatever that is.

 

I really appreciate you stopping by. You and I can talk anytime. That would be great.

 

Take care,

Frogie xx

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FarmGirlWorks

This is a great thread, thanks. I moved to a very small town in central Washington from Seattle for work and, wow, did it do a number on me. I was soooooo lonely and the work was alternately boring and stressful (funeral director). By the end, I found myself talking to stray dogs. I am single and aside from my roommates, who were the only ones I had any kind of connection with, there was no one. As soon as I finished work there, I came straight back to Seattle but it was a rocky landing (rented a place when I was in the small town and it was so filthy that I left after a few miserable days and then couch surfed for two months with my newly-acquired dog). Frankly, I think it was PTSD from an extended traumatic experience. Then I found out that my disability from a brain tumor I had might be going away. Well... I lost it. Painful anxiety and depression for two months. My pdoc put me first on Wellbutrin -- almost immediately made me suicidal) -- then Zoloft as I didn't want Prozac again as I thought that WD was awful (hahaha.. nothing compared to Z). I started that, got a job as a cashier (low stress), and slowly recovered. I have tried a few times to get off this crap but the WD were too rugged and I had no idea that it  was not a relapse.

 

Small towns are not to be taken lightly. I wish I could give you some good advice but I am friendly with strangers and neighbors and have a harder time with deeper relationships. Sending you good vibes and know too well of what you speak.

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Frogie
On August 11, 2017 at 1:42 PM, FarmGirlWorks said:

This is a great thread, thanks. I moved to a very small town in central Washington from Seattle for work and, wow, did it do a number on me. I was soooooo lonely and the work was alternately boring and stressful (funeral director). By the end, I found myself talking to stray dogs. I am single and aside from my roommates, who were the only ones I had any kind of connection with, there was no one. As soon as I finished work there, I came straight back to Seattle but it was a rocky landing (rented a place when I was in the small town and it was so filthy that I left after a few miserable days and then couch surfed for two months with my newly-acquired dog). Frankly, I think it was PTSD from an extended traumatic experience. Then I found out that my disability from a brain tumor I had might be going away. Well... I lost it. Painful anxiety and depression for two months. My pdoc put me first on Wellbutrin -- almost immediately made me suicidal) -- then Zoloft as I didn't want Prozac again as I thought that WD was awful (hahaha.. nothing compared to Z). I started that, got a job as a cashier (low stress), and slowly recovered. I have tried a few times to get off this crap but the WD were too rugged and I had no idea that it  was not a relapse.

 

Small towns are not to be taken lightly. I wish I could give you some good advice but I am friendly with strangers and neighbors and have a harder time with deeper relationships. Sending you good vibes and know too well of what you speak.

You are sooooo lucky to be able to go home. I sit and cry a lot because I've been here 4 years and only have 1 friend. She lives across the street and I don't talk to her but maybe one time a week. I live in a town of 600 people and everyone is very clickish. If your parents weren't from here, you didn't go to school here, you don't belong here. My fiancé doesn't quite understand, I'm going through WD and he interacts with people everyday, even though they aren't true friends.  I've have trouble with some dental work that originated out here, and now I've been driving 5 hours round trip (that's how far my home town is) to see my dentist to get it straightened out. Two more trips and I should be done. (Let's hope). My fiancé is the only electrician for the company he works for . It's almost harvest so he is working 7 days a week starting this week, so I'm really alone. He does try his best to make me happy as he knows what's going on. He has been to many therapy sessions with me and been with me at the beginning and now through tapering and WD. I really wouldn't know what to do without him. I also have  a 16 year old chihuahua that my fiancé says the umbilical cord is connected between her and I.

 

Small towns are are not to be taken lightly. I've tried to make friends. They all say yeah let's do this or that, but then stab you in the back when you aren't looking.

 

I'm happy for you. You got to go home. Hopefully in a year or a little longer, I'll get to go home to my granddaughter and other family and friends where I was born and raised.

 

Thanks for letting me vent.

 

Take care,

Frogie xx

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Frogie
On August 4, 2017 at 1:39 PM, Barbarannamated said:

Hi Frogie.  I don't visit this site too often anymore, but am having serious family issues and dropped in to look for advice.  

 

I relate to your situation Very well.  I became disabled due to effects of Zoloft (Rx'd for fatigue, not mood) and haven't been able to work since I was 39 (now 55).  Most of my friends and activities were through my job and I lost all in one fell swoop.  My husband is EXTREMELY unsocial, has no need for people, and we had only one couple friend that we saw 1-2x per year.  I forced myself to do things on my own for several years, but when hit with prolonged withdrawal, it became MUCH more difficult.  

We live/d in a small rural town in Southern California where I could have my horses (they helped immensely, but have since passed).  The isolation was horrible, especially after tapering off of Pristiq and being unable to maintain/regain interest in anything, including my beloved horses.  I have volunteered a few places, which has helped for awhile, but then I lose my momentum.

 

Two years ago, I moved back to my hometown, a very depressed area of Western PA.  I have my 90yo father, estranged sister (recently diagnosed with advanced cancer), and a few friends and relatives.  I am the youngest/last of my family.  

I've felt very isolated and out of place in my hometown, also. Most friends have moved away and the few here are busy with career, kids/grandkids. It's a town that natives FLEE and only families are here. I just don't fit in anywhere.  I never had that problem prior to being disabled and withdrawal.  I wasn't a social butterfly, but always had a group of good friends. 

 

All this to say....I DO relate to your isolation.  It's horrible and I'm sorry you're going through this and that your fiance is not understanding.  

 

Have you been back to your hometown and family or do they visit you?  Do you feel better then?  

 

I've been wondering for several years if this feeling is accentuated by withdrawal and being unable to connect with people and feel a sense of purpose and belonging.  I DON'T have a good family picture, so that's very different from your situation.  

 

The morning anxiety is still with me, much of it due to feeling so alone and not knowing where I might live that would possibly provide more stimulation and purposeful activities.  When I do get out among people, I'm MUCH better, moreso with strangers.  Not sure what to make of that.  

 

Sorry to ramble on.  I just wanted to say hi and offer my experience.  

 

 

Thanks you sound just like me. I'm not a social butterfly. You read my thread. I'm miserable. I just want to go home. And now my fiancé is working 7 days a week, so I'm really alone. 

 

I wish we lived closer. Everyone I meet lives back east or in California. I'm really out in the boonies.

 

I hope you are doing well. :)

 

Lets keep in touch, if you would like.

 

Take care,

Frogie xx

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Frogie
On May 8, 2017 at 10:04 PM, JanCarol said:

Fifteen years ago, I packed up my house and moved in with my husband.  It was a 14,000 mile move.

 

I had made friends online and in the area - but the closest one was about 2 hours away by train.  (at least there were trains, because driving was scary!)

 

I would go to gatherings, in the park, and coffee meets.  Meet-up stuff, based on Yahoo!Groups of similar interests.  But even though they were speaking English, their vowels were all garbled and the consonants were restricted, to keep from letting flies in.  And the lingo!  "A tinny at the Gabba" what does that mean?  (it means they had a beer at the football)  What is a "Sepo"?  (it was me: short for a "septic tank" rhymes with "Yank," and all Americans are called Yanks!).  And just when I learned to say "G'day," Aussies quit using that, and just say, "Hey" or "Hello" (too much American TV)

 

I sat and listened for a year, and didn't say much because I had no idea what these people were saying.

 

And driving the roads - twisty little goat tracks that are carrying more traffic than they were designed for - twisting around the river - endless suburb after suburb and they all look alike.  And driving on the "wrong" (left) side of the road.

 

It took me 5 years before I was comfortable driving anywhere but to the grocery and the library (thank goodness for the library!).  I started to develop friends, and would meet them at the "club" for raffles (like the Elks, but different).  I met someone in my neighborhood.  I met someone else, and she moved away (I didn't care for her much, but - ).  One of her friends moved to my neighborhood and is one of my dearest friends.  She's the first person where I felt I didn't need to "put on" a mask or an air or anything.  I could just be my normal self.

 

All through this I had hubby - but he was working.  It would've been easy to slip down an alcoholic trap - especially before we had airconditioning and a cold brew through the heat of the day felt like survival.  It would've been easy to get suicidal (I did).  It's no wonder I got medicated.

 

I did have my 18 year old cat, who I brought from the USA.  She was Queen of the garden, and when she died I was crushed.  

 

I thought before the move, "I am fairly adaptable."  But I found out after the move - that it's harder than it looks!

 

Now, after 15 years, I have a karate club, a yoga studio, and lead a shamanic meditation circle.  I have friends who call me (one just made me some watermelon rind pickles!), and we meet regularly for lunch or trips to the country.  I can drive - my radius of comfort has gone from 10 minute drives to about 40 minute drives (if I have to.  But I prefer to keep it under 20 min).  Thank goodness for GPS!  I have a retired husband at home.

 

It really takes at least 5 years (in my opinion) to establish at a new home.  We did it a lot faster as kids - everything was faster then.  But as an adult, to get my needs met - at least 5 years.

 

Keys are:  finding people who share beliefs (churches, religious groups), world views (activist groups, volunteer work), sports (running, cycling, karate, yoga, tai chi, weightlifting, and from these - you can build a social group.

 

It was interesting because - just before I moved, my Sister came down to my little Indiana town from Chicago.  And I ran her through the gauntlet of "how to establish in a new town."  We went to a different church each Sunday - I let her pick, and we went back to the ones we liked.  We picked out different events and activities to participate in - like the soup kitchen.  Anyhow, by the time I left 2 years later, she had a life in the town.  It was still hard to leave her, but she had the beginnings of roots.  

 

After running her through the procedure, when I landed in a foreign country (don't be fooled, Australia and England are still foreign countries!) I had done a practice run with her.  The church I liked is about 45 minutes (or a train ride, now) into City - but - is so early in the morning that it's a hardship to get there.  But I know I can always go back, and I probably will again someday.  Volunteer work here turned out to be a bust (Australians are early morning people - my delayed cycle sleep is the "laziest thing they've ever seen," even though I am not lazy - just late.) - and in a deep depression, it became harder and harder to reach out for what I needed.

 

So - it's do-able.  But for me, it didn't really start to come together until:  1.  I came off the drugs and could do things, and engage in conversations and stuff, and 2.  about 10 years of "learning the place, the language" and finding people I enjoyed.

Thanks JanCarol:

 

But you have towns with shops, restaurants and such. I have nothing basically.

 

I'm happy you are happy.

 

I guess you make it what it is. I have nothing here. I'm miserable. 

 

But I really enjoyed reading your story. It has a lot of meaning.

 

Hope you are doing well. :). I miss talking with you on the forum.

 

Take care,

Frogie xx

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