Jump to content

Developing A Phobia

Recommended Posts

I have always loved shopping but my symptoms have worsened over the last 2 years. I find that I can not go to the back of a store or into large stores for fear of racing heart, dizziness and fainting.

I keep making excuses for things, how long can I do this?

This is so debilitating and depressing..

I totally empathize with you. I do the small local grocery or only use a motorized cart in the larger stores. I buy on-line a lot too.

My situation is complicated by also having cervical dystonia so hate getting stared at if the movement disorder kicks in due to fatigue or stress. We just have to make adjustments for our new normal, I guess.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

My husband shops for me, too. In December, I felt well enough to walk into a Walgreen's and "shop"--it essentially was me walking to where we needed something, grabbing it, and walking to the next aisle. I couldn't stop and actually look at things, as I had to keep moving. After about 5-6 minutes, I handed the stuff to my husband and he waited in line while I went to the vehicle. I could never go in a store that is bigger! And, just the anxiety of knowing you have limited "up" time makes it more stressful.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey GC-

It's tricky stuff. Your symptoms are real, make you very uncomfortable, and make shopping difficult. I can relate :rolleyes: BUT, the mental health professional in me wants to encourage you to go out and do what you can. Wait till it's a good period: your blood sugar, hydration, medication, BP and HR are stable or "stablish" and keep trying- if only for one thing. The sense of accomplishment and pleasure that you will derive will be a benefit- as well as heightening your sense of independence.

Agoraphobia (fear of open places) starts EXACTLY like you are describing. One has a bad experience with either panic or real physical symptoms (like in dysautonomia) and so we avoid the trigger- shopping. It can lead to making us true recluses. That's not fun, nor healthy. Keep trying & do what you can. Bring all of the support you need in terms of props (water, meds, snack, cane chair, etc.) and even a support person. It's good to change your scenery & interact as much as possible with others.

P.S. I'm just like you- used to love shopping before I was ill; now it's a real chore- hate it :blink:

Gentle Hugs-


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kudos to Julie. I agree and keep trying by setting little goals everyday. I set little goals and cross them off when I accomplish them whether a good or bad day. It just makes me feel better knowing I have some normalcy in my life.

I plan my shopping trips. I make a list, go with someone (drt, friend or other family member) during slow hours and pick stores I am familiar with their layout. I have even called stores to ask it they have chairs available and the location of a bathroom if they have one for public use. We actually try to make it fun to see who gets done 1st finding the items I need. I also go to stores like Wal-Mart, Giant Eagle, etc...that have motorized carts to use. Don't be afraid to ask for a carry-out. You would be surprised at how many stores will get someone to help carry out your groceries. I also do on-line shopping too. The most important thing to remember is you can do it. Don't stop trying!:D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I make myself shop, I hate it too, but I feel like if I let it go, the syndrome has taken one more ability from my life, and that makes me mad enough to do it! If Im really tired and feeling POTSY I always use the mechanical shopping carts, and I shop in spurts. Do a little one day and finish the rest a day or two after! Even if my husband goes, I will still go along for the sake of going! Makes me feel good, makes me feel like I'm at least still capable of participating in life's many activities!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...