My covert anxiety has ruined several people's lives

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I lived with my parents, then just my mum after my dad died well in to my 40s. During that time, I looked at buying a home, but just never managed to it. I did make offers on three, but all got rejected.

When my mum died in 2017, I had to leave her home. I toyed with the idea of buying a house, but again, I found some excuse not to. My girlfriend of 4 years invited me to live with her, while I looked for somewhere to buy so that we could marry and move in to 'my' house and start a family.

We looked at a few houses, but didn't like any of them. I sent my girlfriend details of nice looking houses, which she agreed looked nice, but I made up some ridiculous excuses not to view them. I could afford them easily, as when I received my inheritance from my mum, I could pay the mortgage off and we would be mortgage free.

Then I did receive my inheritance. I was awestruck with what I could suddenly afford. But again, I was so indecisive that I found 'other' things to do instead of viewing properties. I convinced myself that I needed more information to help me decide on the 'right' location, even though I wouldn't get the information for a couple of years. I had this attitude that now I had my finances in place, I could take my time to find somewhere.

As time went on, I continued to look at houses online, but they seemed to be getting worse instead of better. I was saving as hard as I could so I couldn't understand why.

Then the pandemic came and the housing market went in to a frenzy. I knew I couldn't cope with the anxiety of bidding wars or buying a property I hadn't viewed. I gave up looking.

Then my girlfriend dumped me, making me homeless. House prices are about 50% higher than when I first started looking. I'm priced out of the area where I would like to live. It's too late for either my ex-girlfriend or me to have children now.

I've had some counselling and therapy and been diagnosed with 'covert anxiety'. This means that my brain 'concocts' irrational beliefs/thoughts and suppresses information to prevent me from getting myself in to anxiety inducing situations. One such situation is buying a property. I know I've always been an overthinker and an overanalyser but I never would have considered myself to have anxiety. My brain has been telling me all sorts of lies to make me procrastinate buying somewhere. Whether it's because the buying process is so daunting, or my perfectionism wants me not to fail by buying the 'wrong' house or in the 'wrong' location.

If I had been able to think rationally, I would have easily realised which was the 'right' location, and I saw some amazing houses in that location. Now I'm priced out of the market there, so I'm so frustrated with myself. My therapy has taught me that my 'thinking' brain went 'offline', so wasn't available to me to think rationally. I'm not even sure that I told my girlfriend when I had received my inheritance and I just cannot think why not.

When I moved out of mum's, some friends agreed to look after some of my belongings while I sorted myself out. They (and I) expected it to be a few months, but it's now been over 5 years. I'm so embarrassed.

I'm now looking at spending 50% more on a house that isn't as nice as one that I could have bought, it's in the wrong area, so my daily commute will be over 3 hours instead of 40 minutes. With the current inflation rate, energy crisis, interest rates, it's an absolute nightmare. I'm not really sure I can afford the house, but rents cost more than I earn.

Several times a day, I'm reminded of the dire position that I'm in compared with where I would have been if it wasn't for my anxiety. I've ruined my ex-girlfriend's dream (and mine) of having children, so feel regret and remorseful several times a day. I'm also reminded of the irrational thoughts and beliefs that I had when I was in a great financial position and just cannot understand how my brain was so mixed up to believe such rubbish. My anxiety has ruined several lives and I am hurting so much.

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  • Posted

    sorry you are going through this. If you are currently not in counseling I would definitely suggest that for you right now.

    you need somebody to talk to and somebody to help you manage everything that’s going on. you might want to think about getting a counselor /social worker Who can provide you with the resources that you need to take the first step in feeling better. A lot of communities have free or low cost counseling. take one day at a time and try not to overthink things. Over thinking does absolutely no good and can make you feel worse. Get get out of the past and take it from where you are right now. The past is gone and thinking about it all the time gets you nowhere. Live in the present moment and go forward. Find that support you need. One step at a time. Take care

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