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Name: Locut0s of Borg
Gender: Male
Hometown: Vancouver
Home country: Canada
Current location: Canada
Member since: Sat Jan 1, 2005, 10:08 PM
Number of posts: 6,154

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Hello. Going through a rough period of my life.

So I've posted on DU off an on for several years but have never introduced myself here despite posting numerous times about my emotional problems. I'll try to keep this as short as possible without cutting out anything important but if I start to ramble feel free to stop reading, lol

So anyway, where to start? I'm 29 years old. I suffer from a combination of serious Social Anxiety, Perfectionism, and Depression (with an extremely low sense of self esteem). To a lesser extent I suffer from GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) and an "enmeshed" emotional personality with my father. I've always been a shy kid, since early childhood and clung desperately to my parents at all times. School was a nightmare for me from K-12, and university for different reasons. I can still remember being left to cry at the gates of a preschool in Taiwan as I watched my parents drive off (I lived in China, Taiwan and Malaysia for 4 years as a young child). This reached a head in grade 10 when my anxiety peaked and I dropped out for the first time. I managed to go back and finish high school a year latter.

In university I was much freer and bullying and ostracization by other kids weren't the issues they were in HS. But years of social anxiety and self ostracization meant that I had none of the social skills necessary to build the kind of emotional support network, friends, needed to thrive in a post secondary environment. I've never dated, or come close to doing so, am a virgin etc.. This combined with my perfectionism and lack of good study habits born of years surviving solely on my intelligence would prove to be a nasty mix, I had a 4.0 GPA coming out of HS and did well in most courses at University even without studying. The following years I would drop out of university and start again 4 or 5 times or more. Eventually I'd had enough of it and looked to get a job while I worked things out, or so I told myself. My mother was an assistant manager at 7-11 and she helped me secure a position there.

The next 4 years I worked happily at 7-11 working my way up to assistant manager and eventually acting manager for a short time. At the end of this period though my anxieties reared their head again and I quit and started drinking heavily. Somehow I managed to stop drinking after several months and managed to secure a job at NCIX, a computer hardware retailer, where I worked for another year fairly successfully. Again though my anxieties returned and I quit that job too. This time I said I'd return to school, but one class in I realized I couldn't do it and dropped those courses. I went back to NCIX for a short period, 2 months before quitting that job for good. So here I am now looking at getting a job at a supermarket as a clerk. The only real positive of all this work experience is I've managed to salt away about $70k in savings over the years, but that's mostly due to living at home with my parents rent free. Being in Canada with universal heal care certainly helps too. I'm only so-so with savings as I've spent a good 10k or more on my electronics and computer hobbies, Thankfully my parents are extremely supportive.

In the longer term I've signed up for going back to BCIT to get a post secondary degree, already been accepted. But I need to make much headway on my emotional problems between now and the start of the semester in Sept. Or else I'm simply going to repeat history yet again. The supermarket positions that I'm looking at getting will be temporary jobs between now and the start of school again in Sept and I'm trying to tell myself that this isn't quite the setback it feels like and I CAN'T quit this time. I MUST stop running at some point.

As far a therapy and medication goes. I was on Paxil for several years in the past and it helped me a lot. I credit some of my success at 7-11 to Paxil. However about 2 years ago it started to loose its effectiveness despite a doubling of dosage. I weaned myself off that and have been on several different SSRIs since then. Currently I'm on a combination of Cymbalta and a low dose of Abilify as a booster. They seem to help a little but, not much. I've been seeing a psychiatrist now for about a month and 1/2 but I don't really get along with him all that well and don't feel all that comfortable opening up to him. He HAS however given me a referral to a different psychiatric group which does group therapy and CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), so I will be changing psychiatrists some time in the next few months.

I'm just not sure what to feel at this point. I'm about to turn 30 and here I am where most people are at 18. Doing grocery store jobs and just starting a post secondary education again. And I have so much experience with running away from my problems that I fear that I will do so again at any moment. I'm quite anxious EVEN over getting this new clerk/teller position, though why I should be is beyond me really. I'm tired of running but terrified of the alternative as well.

UPDATE (AUGUST 21): I never did do the grocery store job and spent the last 6 months or so at home. However the worst of my anxieties has subsided leaving me with medium to high level constant depression. As bad as that sounds its a marked improvement. Still not confident about school in the Fall. Oh well we'll see what happens.
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