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Old 03-23-2019, 12:46 PM #1
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Default Driving anxiety

I am sure many experience this. Mine is pretty extreme. I stupidly put a vanity plate on my car and now I am paranoid that if my driving isn't perfect a person can easily remember my plate and report me. I drive extra cautious as a result. And then there is my boyfriend, who is a professional driver and road tests commercial drivers as just part of his work duties (safety and compliance officer). There is not a time that he sits in the passenger seat that I don't wonder if he is critiquing my ability. I am extra extra cautious.
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Old 03-23-2019, 01:28 PM #2
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

I'm so sorry you're hurting so much, WishfulThinker66 I'm sure many can relate to what you wrote, especially here on PC. You're definitely not alone in this. It's hard to fight it. Do you see a therapist? Maybe that could help. You could learn new ways to cope with your feelings. Just try to focus on your driving and don't think of anyone else, although I understand it's not easy and I'm sure you're already doing it. There's nothing wrong with driving cautiously, but remember that there's no such thing as a perfect driver! I'm sure you're a perfectly good driver just the way you are. Have you talked to your boyfriend about this? Perhaps he will have some words of encouragement and support for you if you talk to him about this. Just a thought. I'm sure you're a great driver. I hope things will get better soon for you one way or another. Remember that we're here for you if you need it. Feel free to PM me anytime. Let me know if I can do something to help you. Wish you good luck! Let us know how it goes. I'm so sorry you have to deal with all of this, WishfulThinker66. You're a strong, wonderful person. Please remember that. You don't deserve to suffer at all
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Old 03-24-2019, 07:24 PM #3
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by WishfulThinker66 View Post
I am sure many experience this. Mine is pretty extreme. I stupidly put a vanity plate on my car and now I am paranoid that if my driving isn't perfect a person can easily remember my plate and report me. I drive extra cautious as a result. And then there is my boyfriend, who is a professional driver and road tests commercial drivers as just part of his work duties (safety and compliance officer). There is not a time that he sits in the passenger seat that I don't wonder if he is critiquing my ability. I am extra extra cautious.
I'm sorry that you are struggling right now! I scared myself when I tried to learn to drive. I shake really bad!
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Old 03-24-2019, 07:25 PM #4
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyCheeky View Post
I'm so sorry you're hurting so much, WishfulThinker66 I'm sure many can relate to what you wrote, especially here on PC. You're definitely not alone in this. It's hard to fight it. Do you see a therapist? Maybe that could help. You could learn new ways to cope with your feelings. Just try to focus on your driving and don't think of anyone else, although I understand it's not easy and I'm sure you're already doing it. There's nothing wrong with driving cautiously, but remember that there's no such thing as a perfect driver! I'm sure you're a perfectly good driver just the way you are. Have you talked to your boyfriend about this? Perhaps he will have some words of encouragement and support for you if you talk to him about this. Just a thought. I'm sure you're a great driver. I hope things will get better soon for you one way or another. Remember that we're here for you if you need it. Feel free to PM me anytime. Let me know if I can do something to help you. Wish you good luck! Let us know how it goes. I'm so sorry you have to deal with all of this, WishfulThinker66. You're a strong, wonderful person. Please remember that. You don't deserve to suffer at all
That is great advice! I will keep that in mind!
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Old 03-25-2019, 12:06 AM #5
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

I'm in the same boat with driving anxiety. I didn't come into driving until later in life. I'm in my mid-fifties, and I was 48 before I got my license. And I'm married to a professional driver. I understand about the vanity plate. I didn't want to get one. I also wanted a car that is a nondescript color, not something bright or flashy, so I'm less likely to attract attention.

Anxiety worsens if I have any passenger at all. Not because I'm afraid they might be judging me, but because if something happens, I am responsible for a life other than my own. So far I've never tried driving with children in the car. Not sure I could do it.

Most people complain about slow traffic and getting stopped at a lot of red lights. I actually prefer it. Being able to creep slowly to the next red light gives me a chance to stop, catch my breath, and relax before proceeding. I have certain phrases that I repeat to myself as I drive. One was given to my by another anxious driver. "You don't have to hurry." (To make that even more true, I plan an extra five or ten minutes to get someplace, so I don't feel pressured because I'm going to be late.) If some turkey behind me wants to honk because I'm doing the speed limit and he/she wants to go faster, or because I'm about to turn left and I yield to oncoming traffic first, that's on the turkey behind me. I'm doing the right thing. Let them deal with *their* dysfunctional emotions.

I stick to one lane as much as possible. If I know I'm going to be turning at some point, then I get in that lane as soon as I can, so I don't have to keep changing lanes. I don't weave in and out of traffic like some people do. Why? Because I don't have to hurry.

I also talk to the car as I drive. It's a good anti-anxiety technique. Her name is Tina. I tell her where we're going to go, what the speed limit is, what color the light is up, where there is a stop sign, etc. I may remind her, "No matter what the speed limit is, you can't go any faster than the car in front of you is going." She's a fairly new car. She has lane departure alerts and a backing camera. That helps a lot. If I start to drift out of my lane, she'll beep at me, and I'll thank her for telling me. That happens more and more rarely. If I leave the headlights on, she'll beep at me, and I'll thank her for telling me. That happens rarely too, since I avoid driving at night (poor night vision) and don't often have occasion to use the headlights.

The funny thing is, when I do something well, I have an easier time complimenting *her* than I do myself. We get there, we park, and I'll say, "Good job, Tina," but I don't say "Good job, me."
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Last edited by Arbie; 03-25-2019 at 12:19 AM. Reason: typos
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Old 03-25-2019, 08:15 PM #6
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

Sorry your struggling so much. I just got my permit two years ago and havenít really on the road since. Honestly Iím sure your driving is fine and nothing to worry about. I doubt your boyfriend is critiquing your driving, especially being a professional driver, heís probably just enjoying the time not driving. Of course anxiety can make you feel some strange things like people may be critiquing you. Just do your best and try not worry.
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Old 03-27-2019, 01:22 PM #7
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by ken9018 View Post
Sorry your struggling so much. I just got my permit two years ago and havenít really on the road since. Honestly Iím sure your driving is fine and nothing to worry about. I doubt your boyfriend is critiquing your driving, especially being a professional driver, heís probably just enjoying the time not driving. Of course anxiety can make you feel some strange things like people may be critiquing you. Just do your best and try not worry.
I hear you about anxiety attack!
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Old 03-27-2019, 01:52 PM #8
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

Hugs (if ok) .. I usually donít post much in this forum. I hope my hugs are acceptable. Feel free to ignore them if not.
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Old 03-30-2019, 04:16 PM #9
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

Do you think you would feel less anxious if you got rid of the vanity plate? I haven't put any bumper stickers on my car because I worry about someone identifying me.
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Old 03-30-2019, 09:55 PM #10
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Default Re: Driving anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvert View Post
Do you think you would feel less anxious if you got rid of the vanity plate? I haven't put any bumper stickers on my car because I worry about someone identifying me.
That a great question to ask!
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