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Dr. Olsen
Dr. Olsen, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2336
Experience:  PsyD Psychologist
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I have severe depression, anxiety attacks and am terrified

Resolved Question:

I have severe depression, anxiety attacks and am terrified to leave my house. I've tried going to psychiatrists in the past, but I run into three kinds - 1) they think they're gods and act like they're doing me a *huge* favor to allow me into their presence or 2) they try to "bully" me into better behavior by telling me to shape up, stop complaining and get over it or 3) they don't really seem to understand I'm having a problem. It's been months since I left the house. I don't sleep and I'm tired of living like this. Is there any hope?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 3 years ago.
Hello. Welcome to JustAnswer. I am sorry to hear about your situation. Let me ask you a few questions before I offer an answer. When did this start? Are you open to weekly psychotherapy?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I'm sorry to be so dense, but I'm not exactly sure what psychotherapy is - I've been to psychiatrists, psychologists, and was in weekly counseling for a couple years before my fear of leaving the house became so intense that I just couldn't make it. I feel frustrated because I feel like in order to get any help I have to go to someone's office, but I can't get there unless I have help. It's the old "can't get a job without experience; can't get experience without a job" syndrome. I don't mind talking to someone on a regular basis about what I'm going through, but I'm not at the point where I feel safe going outside. I don't know what caused the change. There's nothing that I can pinpoint and say, "This is what made me afraid." I majored in English and Theatre - I've spent a lot of time on the stage and am reasonably attractive, intelligent, and funny. There's no reason for me to be like this, but that knowledge doesn't make any less afraid. I hope that answers your question.
Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 3 years ago.
Hi, I can imagine how worried and anxious you must have been about your condition. It sounds like you may have anxiety and phobia. Perhaps, your intense anxiety may have to do with some stress. You may try some or all of the following to reduce anxiety - 1. Exercise moderately, but regularly, 2. Eat healthy but delicious meals, 3. Regularize your sleep cycle, 4. Don't drink to excess or abuse drugs, 5. Spend some time every day in play, 6. Develop recreational outlets that encourage creativity, 7. Distance yourself from destructive situations or people, 8. Practice mindfulness meditation, or walk, or an intimate talk, every day, 9. Allow yourself to feel pride in your accomplishments, 10, Listen to compliments and expression of affection, 11. Build and use a support system, 12. Pay more attention to small pleasures and sensations, 13. Yoga, meditation, Acupuncture, Guided imagery, Creative art therapy and massage therapy may help. The book "The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook by Bourne" may be helpful for you to work on anxiety at home.

If you are open to counseling,
you may benefit from having a Cognitive-Behavior therapy (CBT). CBT is a most effective therapy for anxiety. CBT for anxiety consists of Self-Monitoring, Relaxation strategies, Exposure treatments, Cognitive therapy. The book Worry Trap by Dr. Lejune may be helpful to manage your anxiety. You may also check the link from ANXIETY DISORDERS ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA(http://www.adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/social-anxiety-disorder) for resources. You may find a specialist in your area from the link - (http://www.adaa.org/findatherapist).
I hope you get well.
Please let me know if you have more questions or I have overlooked any. Warm regards,
Dr. Olsen, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2336
Experience: PsyD Psychologist
Dr. Olsen and 2 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you. I guess it's one of those easier said than done things. For a while I was working through the book, The Courage to Heal by Ellen Bass and XXXXX XXXXX. My therapist recommended it. I'll check out Worry Trap. I appreciate your time.

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