3 weeks after severe car accident

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Hi there, im completely new to these forums but find its really my last hope before i do something silly. Ive had a history of anxiety and depression for around 4 years but recently i was involved in a really bad car crash resulting in me being cut from the car and more importantly my 2 year old son was in the vehicle also. We were very fortunate to walk away with just minor injuries but i was completely at fault. Everyday since I have been blaming myself, thinking i couldve killed my son that day and other innocent people. I cant eat or sleep and when i do sleep i have extreme night mares resulting in me wetting the bed at the age of 26. Im so ashamed of myself and feel like i just would rather have been killed that day. My son is the reason i get out of bed in the morning and try my best to carry on a normal routine but im slowly killing myself inside amd deteriorating fast. My gp has told me to contact lifeline (a belfast charity) which in turn have told me they cannot help unless i say im suicidal (which i refuse to do as im a mother) can anyone please help me? I was a regular gym goer, ive now lost interest, not working, wont leave the house due to traffic which causes severe panic attacks. My poor partner deals with my extreme mood swings. Im literally at my witts end. Please help. Thanks in advance

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  • Posted

    it sounds like you really need to talk to a doctor. its healthy to learn from our mistakes, but does sound like you need to talk to a gp. I am not a doctor but it does sound like you could use some mood stabalizers.
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  • Posted

    Robyn, no one on here can diagnose you, but do you think you might be suffering from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) over and above your existing anxiety and depression? It certainly sounds like it to me. It would be perfectly normal for any of us to be badly shaken up by a terrible event like the car crash, particularly when it involved a small child, so it's only natural that someone who's already anxious would suffer even more.

    Have you tried asking your doctor to refer you for PTSD counselling? And are you seeing a psychiatrist as well as your GP for your underlying anxiety and depression? It sounds as if you need a bit of extra support while going through your current situation.

    I'm sorry to hear that Lifeline imposes a requirement that callers are suicidal. I volunteer on a crisis line (not in the UK) and we don't make this a condition at all. The Samaritans don't either. In fact they actually state on the Contacts page of their website: "You don't have to be suicidal to get in touch". They were the original crisis line, and the gold standard on which others all over the world are based. They initially set the "suicidal" condition but quite early on realised that this wasn't helpful, as people can suffer terrible distress without actually wanting to die. In my adoptive country, there are actually two crisis lines, only one of which is specifically for suicidal people, while the other is open to everyone, suicidal or not. I suspect that a similar policy operates in NI, with Lifeline working in tandem with the Samaritans in the same way.

    I actually have experience from both ends of the phone, btw! A few years back, I got myself into a terrible state immediately after my mother's death (in the UK), found myself acting strange, banging my head on walls etc. Not wanting to unload this sort of craziness on any of my friends, I called the Samaritans. I too was asked the suicide question quite early on in the conversation and actually didn't know how to answer it. I was so distressed, I didn't even know whether I was suicidal or not. I thought about it out loud, decided I probably wasn't, but was still allowed a 40-minute call. It helped me tremendously, btw, as I realised that all I really needed was to shout, scream and cry for a bit while someone listened.

    If you google Samaritans you'll find a number for the UK on their Contacts page (without any mention of not serving NI). There's even a number for the ROI too! And you're not limited to just one call - you can call them whenever you feel things are getting too much.

    However, useful as crisis lines like the Samaritans are in allowing you to let off steam, they're not a substitute for appropriate therapy. I really think you should press your GP for a psychiatric referral, if you haven't already had one. And good for you for being able to state that you're not suicidal! That's a clear sign of sound underlying mental health, in spite of all the pain you're going through right now.

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    • Posted

      OMG, I've just re-read the above. If anyone from the literary style police is reading this, please forgive all the "actuallys"!rolleyes
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  • Posted

    God Robyn,  I know exactly what you are going through.  My incident wasn't as dramatic as a car accident but still could have resulted in the death of my nine year old special needs daughter.  I live in a two story townhouse. When my daughter started climbing the windows around three years of age I had every window secuirty screened so she wouldn't fall through.  All the windows except the tiny one in the ensuite which has a lock on it.  A few months ago my neighbour a few houses down was passing and suddenly screamed out that my daughter was sitting on the edge of the window leaning out.  I raced upstairs and grabbed her just before she fell.  Since then I relgiously make sure the ensuite door is locked, up to a dozen times a day!  I also relive the what if moment over and over again.  What if she fell and was killed or was seriously injured just because I didn't lock that door, something that takes a second to do.  I think most parents have some moment in their children's lives where they were a second away from a tragic ending but for some blessed reason fate intervened.  I still thank that neighour for passing by that day.  I live on a really quiet street and she was the only one out and about. You are definitely suffering from PTSD and are in need of counselling.  PTSD is not just something that our war veterans suffer.  
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  • Posted

    Hey Robyn

    So sorry to hear about the crash and its effects on you. I am sending you a huge virtual hug and some solidarity.

    Have you talked to your GP at all about medications to help manage your anxiety? I wonder if you might be suffering from PTSD and if therapy and/or medication might help? There are many options, but sadly, in the current climate, its seesm that patients have to fight harder than ever to get the help they need and this may not be something you have the eneregy for right now. Do you have anyone that can advocate for you? a friend or relative that you might feel comfortable disclosing your feelings to?

    Please do private message me if you think it might help. In any event, i will be thinking of you from here and wish you as speedy a recovery as possible.

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