Panic Disorders/Attacks/my anxiety
QUESTION: I suffer from severe anxiety, panic attacks, major depression and PTSD. I have such severe anxiety that I cannot leave my home.
I have a therapist. She does nothing to help me. I see a nurse practitioner who will not change my meds. I have an Internist who just keeps taking my blood and tells me there is nothing wrong with me. My two brothers have caused all of my mental illness problems. They sexually abused me, verbally, physically and mentally abused me. To this day, I am 49 years old, they want to control me. They want ground rules and want me to be submissive to their demands. I am living with a lot of emotional trauma from age four to the present. I had a miserable job where they laughed at my anxiety and bullied me.
I am grieving from the death of my mother five years ago. I was extremely close to her. My brothers have her ashes. I get neither respect nor kindness from my brothers. They treat me like an outsider. They show me no love. One brother blames me and shames me from past years of separation. They say inhuman things to me about my mother. They are deceivers. Why should I be obedient to them? What can I do to confront them without showing any anger?
They make me feel like I am invisible. My middle brother is horrible to me. Please advise me how I can become stronger and stand up to them.
ANSWER: Hello Gwen,
PLEASE REMEMBER THAT I AM NOT A DOCTOR AND AM ONLY GIVING YOU MY OWN OPINION.
I must say that I almost sent your letter to our "pool" where others can try to help you. My heart goes out to you though as you must be and have been in a hell of a world :(
It is so hard for me on this end, (not really knowing you and knowing nothing about you really) for me to give you a good answer. That is why I need to ask you a few questions, if you do not mind.
Do you have your own place to live or, do you depend on your brothers, in any way????
Does anybody in your family ex: (Aunt, Grandmother etc.) know about the abuse?
Give me a little more back ground on your situation so I can look at it. More of the present situation.
It does not matter how many times you write me. I am here :)
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: I live alone. I rent a one bedroom apartment. All of my disability goes to my rent. I do not have to pay for utilities. I pay for cable TV and my middle brother gives me a check to pay for my Internet provider.
My other brother, I am on his family plan for the cell phone he gave to me.
Once in awhile, my middle brother and his wife give me a gift card to shop for food. My mother, before she passed away, knew of the abuse. I told her in the 1994. My father never knew. I brothers tell me that our mother abused us. That is a lie. They tell a lot of lies about her. I adored her. She was the only person who ever accepted me as I am. She never once harmed her children. My father was abused by his mother, my grandmother. She baby sat for us. I feel she abused us as children and my brothers know that is was never my mother. I see a counselor for my past history and the trauma. I recently had a job in a grocery store where I was sexually harassed, bullied and taunted by the employees. They made jokes about me to one another. I have no other family besides my brothers, and their wives. They do not like me. They never talk to me. I live three miles from my middle brother. My older brother lives twelve miles from me. I rarely see him. They blame me for the past. They continue to mentally torture me about my mother. I have a very severe panic disorder. Just three days ago, the middle brother repeatedly hung up on me because he wants to talk to my counselor about my job. He is always trying to find out things about me. He lies about my mother and father. He is a horrible person. He makes me feel guilty about the past. He will not talk about the abuse. He just wants to make our mother at fault and me. He is a doctor. My other brother is a politician. I feel they are afraid of being exposed to the world. I find both of them too much to bear for me. I suffer each day with the trauma of losing my mother. They want me to let things go. They want me to be a good little girl and shut up, sit down and remain silent about our past. I won't.
I was discriminated against at work. I told them I made a complaint about the manner I was treated. The middle brother and his wife were helping me, now that I told them, they do not want to have any sort of obligation to help me out any longer. Only if I give in to their ground rules they set up for me to follow. What can I do? I have not support. Can you give me some advice? I really need help.
I know it is hard on you. If you are seeing a counselor and you are open with her/him then, have they gave you a direction to go in? Have you been diagnosed with anything other than panic disorder or anxiety?
One thing I want to ask you is, why would people at work, make fun of you? By your email, you seem like an intelligent woman.
From what I am hearing from you. It seems like that maybe you need someone that you can trust to talk to in depth about all of this stuff.
Are you willing to help yourself to get through life?
I would like you to tell me what the solution is to this problem of not getting along with people.
Something needs to change in your life to get you on the right track. One of those things is going to be Happiness.
You need to be around upbeat people with a positive outlook on life.
We all have family that we do not get along with.
Sometimes, we look at ourselves different than they look at us.
Life is just that way.
As far as being sexually harassed by someone at work... What do you think happened there?
Can you forgive your brothers for the past???
If that is possible, you can move on with life. I have had people in my past that I had to forgive in order for me to move on with my life.
I refused to let them mentally drag me down.
As long as you know that you are a good person and you talk to people with respect then, you need to move forward to have some happiness in your life so that, maybe you will not need to depend on your brothers. Then you can move on at your own pace.
I know it is hard. Do not get me wrong. Sometimes others just do not want to treat you right. I know that I had to take a long hard look at myself also, before I could heal.
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: I have been diagnosed with major depression, anxiety, panic attacks, post traumatic stress disorders. I live in emotional trauma each day. From being harassed and sexually harassed by a male customer who also stalked me. I did nothing to him. I have never harmed another person. I cannot change my brothers opinions that they made up about my mother. It hurts me. I am a very sensitive person. I hurt very easily. My mother was my rock. She was always there for me. She tolerated me and loved me unconditionally. With regards to my brothers; I am not enough as I am. They both blame me for a long separation in years between us.
I have to take care of me first. My brothers have always been deceivers. I have had the burden for over 40 years, to hide the secret of my abuse from my parents. I miss them. Being around my brothers and their families, is like being thrown it a pit filled with boiling oil.
I am not exaggerating. I am always a little girl. Afraid, alone, not knowing what they will do next to me. I am seeking help. I am calling a lot of people in the past few days. I will not bow down to my brothers demands from me. I am my own person. They treat me like I should not have been born. They do not see it. I do.
I am very sorry for you Gwen. It is very hard to advise you on what you should and should not do since I am not there to guide you and hear you out. I believe that some of the reason you have so much stress is because you kept all of this in for so long. Another thing is, you have to learn somehow to get some happiness in your life. Unfortunately, you are the only one that can do that.
I know that is easy to say... But, You have no choice. This is a hard world and by you being so sensitive, it is harder on you.
Do you believe that you can have a relationship, meaning, getting to know and talk to people and make some friends? You basically have a choice to get your mind off of all of these things that are driving you bonkers.
You need to get some friends and hopefully they will become close enough to you to hear you out and help you to get on with your life!
I did not go out of my house at all for over a year and a half at one point in my life. It is a horrible feeling.
I inched out one toe at a time. Now, I travel anywhere.
I can not change your situation, and I can not change your life for you. I can help you if you are trying to take baby steps to get better.
You really have some issues that need to be addresses with the right therapist.
If you need to switch then, find someone that will listen. But... You have to want to get better first. You can do that by starting to forgive the ones that have done you wrong. Then and only then, can you move on.