Thursday, May 22, 2014

I'm Not Crazy

Words spoken by one of my best friends in the midst of one of my biggest anxiety attacks of my life.

Do you ever feel crazy? Literally, sitting there feeling emotions that you know are unfounded but you can't seem to stop. I've found myself literally battling myself, trying to return to reality - trying to find something to ground me.

 I know it isn't normal to get so worked up about many of the things that cause my panic attacks. I know it isn't normal to have paralyzing panic attacks because some stranger saw me walk into a room. I know this.

I also know that it isn't crazy, or abnormal. I know that I am not alone.

The mind is a complex thing and hormones and chemical reactions within our bodies are real. If you've ever taken a psychology class, you know that every bad thing that happens or someone does can be traced back to these reactions.

Most people don't seek treatment, when it would help them tremendously. There is a stigma about going to a therapist, counselor or psychiatrist.

I think it should be completely normal, especially because I believe it helps us to be enlightened. I also believe that birth control pills - however wonderful they are - cause more anxiety in women than normal. I believe that it is caused by an increase in estrogen, and I believe this because I have experienced it first hand.

I have seen the difference in myself between three different types of birth control and no birth control. There is no denying that I have an anxiety disorder or two. I only haven't been diagnosed because I haven't been to the psychiatrist. (It's always been on my list, I've just always found ways to overcome my anxiety and live with it.)

When I was on Yaz, I had a minimum of ten panic attacks a day. My psychologist taught me EFT and it has helped me tremendously. I also switched back to Ortho Tri-Cyclen Lo. Which limited my panic attacks to a few times a day, or even once a week. Then I switched to Implanon - a progesterin only implant that lasted for three years. I had less than ten panic attacks in those three years. When the three years was up, I went back to Ortho and, within the last year, noticed an upswing in panic attacks and anxiety again. After the wedding I was planning on finding a new progesterin only birth control, but instead we've decided it is better for me to stop.

Since stopping, I've still had a panic attack, but the hormones are still on their way out of my body. Overall, I feel like a different person. My skin doesn't crawl randomly, and my heart doesn't beat out of my chest unless something happens to cause my adrenaline. It's wonderful.

If you feel like you have a heightened sense of anxiety or panic, especially when it is unfounded (i.e. you're eating an apple and all of a sudden you can't breathe and your heart is pounding for NO REASON), please seek help. Seek counseling and talk to a doctor. They can only help you feel 100% you, if you share with them how you are truly feeling. Some of us have chemical imbalances. Some need to  be treated by medication, and some are less of an imbalance and can be managed without. We all find our ways to cope, and we all ask that others try to understand us.

I'm not crazy, I just have a chemical imbalance.

For more about this topic, Emma at It's Emma Elise talks a lot about her OCD  and General Anxiety Disorder, even answering questions from others. Check it out!

Please do not feel alone in this, I will forever be available to help you through it. Just shoot me an email.

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  1. I suffer from anxiety too. I know that my panic attacks are usually triggered by my food choices and being over-weight. I never thought my BC might be adding to it ... but something to think about! Thanks for sharing your story! <3

  2. Thank you!! I contemplated the same thing in college (but decided I just need to graduate already) but I take college psych classes whenever I can, even post grad.

    Thanks for your support! The same goes to you with your disorder!!

  3. Great post. It is all so true.

  4. I take a special kind of BC that doesn't have estrogen in them due to having migraines. I've had 2 anxiety attacks my whole life and I wasn't on these BC so that wasn't the case. I was on a different kind but was also going thru alot and that was during the 7 years I was with an abusive guy. I haven't had any sense then. Hope you get things figured out b/c they are scary thing.

  5. Love this and talking about same topics on my blog tomorrow! With my new adventure

  6. I've never had a panic attack before. It seems so scary. I do feel like birth control really does have an effect on everything - emotions, anxiety. When I was getting the shot, I feel like I felt so much better than on the pills. The pills didn't make me feel good in any way. Thanks so much for sharing your story, Raewyn!

  7. It is scary! Especially, before you realize what a panic attack is, because it can feel like a heart attack, especially if you have heart palpitations like I do.

    The shot is progesterine only too, so that makes total sense!

  8. that is good that you've only had two and are on progesterine only bc!


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