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Experiencing Extreme Anxiety for two weeks

Community Member

Hi There, 


I’m scared. For two weeks I have had horrible anxiety and can’t sleep and find it hard to eat. I’m a head of a department at my job. I have brain fog so bad I can barely remember things. I’m now on medication for the last two weeks but it’s not working yet. I have a daughter part time and I’m a single parent. I keep scraping through each day trying to just keep making it. I’m frightened and I catastrophise daily. My parents are supportive but not close by. The doctor gave me some sleeping tablets which help a bit. Each day I wake up is the same though. I wanted to reach out to others for support as I could just use it right now. I have dealt with GAD for 25 years, mostly with meds. I cycled down appropriately over many months and was feeling great for 8 months. Then it it just all of a sudden hit me two weeks ago. I will never go off again. 

16 Replies 16

Community Member

Try not to be scared - be patient 😮💨

Antidepressants can take up to 3 months to fully work and you’re in the period where you’ll feel a lot worse before you feel better ❤️‍🩹!

May I suggest you see a psychiatrist for medication 💊 as that's their sole job to know exactly what to prescribe, which can often involve a few different antidepressants and they are a lot quicker at tweaking the doses which saves you anxiety. 
I know you’ve got to pay, but once you’re on the correct dose your GP can refill the scripts and you don’t have to pay a psychiatrist again.

I’ve had GAD for 30 odd years, plus PTSD with a bit of depression thrown in so I feel your suffering.
I can say it’ll get better, but I’m a catastrophic person that overthinks too and until I FEEL better words don’t mean much to me ☹️.

There’s not much else I can say, except I really do hope you start to better 😌

Thanks for that. I really appreciate any input and help. I am taking citalopram for the last couple of weeks. I realise it takes time for it to work. My main challenge is keeping it together until it does get working. Then I will never go off again! It’s apparently just something my brain needs to work properly and I accept this now. I have sought out a therapist to speak with next week. I have something called seroquel to help me sleep at night. Mostly it’s not working well but I’ve only taken it a short time. I’m grateful for the things I have. Mindfulness activities don’t seem to do a lot for me now. I do try everything though. I think just being able to speak with people about has helps to some extent. Every day there is fire in my chest, anxiety and constant catastrophising. I want to just stamp this feeling out and get on with my life! 

Community Member

Hi there! Navigating through severe anxiety, plus the responsibilities of work and parenting, requires patience and an arsenal of coping strategies. You should be proud for reaching out and recognizing how you are feeling. I feel the same in waking up everyday having GAD myself. Having a full on job can prove extra difficult on top of feeling that way. I've found mediating and self care work wonders for me, I just search mediation on spotify/ youtube hope into bed after a warm shower and really focus on breathing and clearing the mind, having those 30-60 minutes of stillness really made a difference and stops my brain from feeling like its inside a washing machine of thoughts, Don't give up! you are already doing an amazing job of being head of a department and s super parent 😊

Community Member

Hi Jon, 

Some things that may help you that help my severe anxiety obviously where possible:

  • getting enough sleep
  • protecting your energy - that could be: being selfish where you need to protect your energy e.g. going to have a 20-minute lunch when you are already at burnout or something else.
  • routine is so helpful and it's one of the hardest
  • allowing yourself space and time from various stressors.

Just wanted to provide some support and hope one small change will bring you some peace.

Community Member

Yes, I’ve found CBT has never worked for me so it’s medication only and I realise I’ll be on or for the rest of my life.
The only thing that helps me aside from meditation is watching so something funny on YouTube, ?Tapping? technique (again go to YouTube) and playing games on my iPad to keep my mind focused on something for short bursts of time?.
I’ve been told I’ve got too accept (says me who’s still trying) it’s a condition that medication alone will never take away and deal with it best you can day by day.
I have a 26 year old daughter that I raised alone and she’s about to give me my first granddaughter- I still have the symptoms of GAD!!!!!! It’s a disease like you’d have in any other part of your body but I have a sort of warped guilt because I’m fortunate that my body allows me to be independent, and so many other people live worse off than me😔.

Strangely I also find a hot wheat pack helps on my stomach area when my anxiety is high as my anxiety causes IBS but even when I do t have IBS it’s a comfort thing, maybe it’ll help you?

You’re a champion  🏆 holding down a good job and raising your daughter, but take some time off if you need too - don’t be hard on yourself 👍🏽

Thank you and that’s kind of you to say. I’m trying a little bit of everything at this point. I’m 3 weeks into the meds but still not feeling well. Every night I wake up in soaking wet sheets with lots of anxiety. I have had a few days where I felt better in the afternoons. I now have my daughter for 4 days and need to be “fun dad.” I made it through another week of work. I want myself to to enjoy life so much and be positive about all I have. My brain wants to be negative and catastrophic. I want to keep yanking it the other way. I have an appointment with a psychologist in a few days. I’ve also had beyond blue recommend someone for me to speak with. Keeping my fingers crossed and trying to be patient. This is the hardest thing I think I’ve had in my life. But I’m fighting. 

Thank you so much. 

Thank you so much for your support. I’ll try a wheat bag. I’ve never heard of that actually. I would try anything at this stage. 

hi again 👋🏽

Don’t forget it can take at least 3 months for medication 💊 to find out if it’s the right one - so you’ll have to suffer  the initial symptoms unfortunately. Yet if they become too debilitating that’s why I suggested seeing a psychiatrist because mine was able to get me into the right medicationS ( I needed more than 1) and it saved A LOT of issues as it was a totally different regime to what my GP prescribed. I’ve been seeing my GP for over 20 years, but even he said he supposed the backup of a more trained physician to monitor and prescribe the cocktail of different drugs that have FINALLY stabilised me.

PLEASE mention all side effects with your prescribing doctor, as he can verify if what happening to you is normal, part of the course for the particular medication your starting and if YOU FEEL WITHIN YOURSELF ( only you know you the best ) then seek a psychiatrist help.

Your’’re GP might be glad of the extra support too.

If alls good with the mediation, like me I’ve had to accept I’ll never be the same person I was before my GAD diagnosis and hopefully the psychologist you speak to can find ways to help you cope.

Your daughter might have picked up on your anxiety, and while she’s probably too young to understand, there’s NOTHING wrong with saying to her that you’re feeling a bit sick - or however you think it best to say. Don’t see anxiety as a weakness and think you have to be “perfect for your daughter 24/7 - kids are more perceptive than you realised!! A lot more  people suffer with it than you think!!

it seems you’ve   become a carer for your daughter more days and it’s best she knows that your not always “well” to help her understand- you’re a loving father, having anxiety isn’t going to stop her loving you more- your honesty with her will help her love and understand you more. Believe me, I grew up with a mother with BPD who refused treatment and not realising she had me to health issues made my life a lot worse than if I’d known from an early age - that’s my take on it anyways…..sorry for the long rant, but you sound like you really help and even if I can give you something, anything from my replies I’m glad I’ve helped as I’ve had DECADES of experience with anxiety- it’s an all consuming disease 🦠- but it is manageable 🙏🏽.

All the best- sending 🫶🏽