Just needed somewhere to vent. i miss life

I’m really sad, covid changed my life completely and its been 2 years of self isolating at home and not seeing anyone. I only saw 1 friend once and thats it. im terrified of going out and my best friend has found this nice bar which i know i would really like and i just feel so sad that i cant go there and do the things i used to do. i hate covid and covid fears and i miss my old life and my friends :frowning:

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hi there,

can i ask what is the cause of your fear of going out? 2 years self isolating is a long time for sure, and going out for the first time can be a bit difficult.
Instead of going out to the bar as the first outing, c an you arrange with your friend to go to another less-stress place? Maybe a walk in nature, where there aren’t as many people around?

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I have OCD and live with a parent with health conditions so the fear is my parent getting covid and dying. I did go once to park with them but i got scared again.

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has your parent also been isolating for the two years?

i’m glad you got out that one time. I hope that you can ease back into the ouutsides, in a way that is not too scary to you! Thank you for sharing here! You matter :slight_smile:

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Yeah everyone at home has, there have been periods when things have calmed down with covid and they have gone out and socialize and i was starting too but then when it got bad again all of us went back to self isolating.

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I’m so sorry that the fear of going out and eventually spreading covid to your loved ones is keeping you from doing things you’d like @v4ventetta. Covid and lockdowns have shaped so much of our life for 2 years now. It’s tough to get used to do things again and being safe, just finding the right balance between what we want and what is healthy. I have myself been struggling with going out again but because isolation has made my social anxiety worse. My heart goes out to you, friend.

Regarding your OCD and the current situation with covid measures, what would be your definition of safety besides isolating? What are the things that could help you feel safe and healthy while being outside? Are the masks, social distancing and handwashers reassuring for you?

There is definitely something worth it in trying to step out of your comfort zone a little bit. But as any type of exposure practice (one that implies to face some deep fears), then it is essential to do it progressively. Maybe this bar would be too much as a beginning, and some alternatives might be needed in order to re-learn to go outside, alone or with your friends, little by little. Whether it is by going to places way less crowded, or going outside during times when people are mostly inside (early morning, lunch time, evening).

You will be able to embrace life fully again, friend. It is okay if it requires plenty of very small steps in the meantime. It doesn’t have to be big and completely as it was before straight away. Take your time. Listen to yourself but also with a healthy dose of challenge and grace. If it means starting with standing at your front door (if possible) one day, then doing five steps the day after and so on, then that is completely okay. You need and deserve to feel empowered again. Covid has taken so much from all of us. But you are here, alive, breathing. You will be able to recreate a sense of normalcy in your life again, no matter what it would look like for you personally. :hrtlegolove:

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From: Lisalovesfeathers

Hi Friend, Thank you for posting. I am sorry you are struggling so badly. I hear what you say about how Covid has changed your life, this virus has come along and had such a massive effect globally and individually, no one had any idea what to expect and how much we were going to be asked to adapt our lives and its been truly mind blowing how far we have come and so many people have been badly affected so you are not alone. People from all walks of life that never felt that they would ever have a problem with anxiety have indeed developed issues so there have been no limits to this. Health fears are frightening, change is scary and the unknown is loaded with fears, its no wonder so many have struggled. But there is a light here because although we wont return as such to our old way of life we will adapt to the new way as it all settles as have many done before when these things have happened. It just all takes time to retrain ourselves to new ways or living and we have been doing that since it all started. The only thing to do is keep practicing the things that keep us calm and focused whilst we keep doing the everyday things that will become the norm and very soon this will just be now, it will just be living in 2022, taking care of yourself and like living with all the other illness that have surrounded us forever we do our best to keep ourselves healthy. I hope that you can soon find a way to relax yourself and start to enjoy your life again. You deserve to be happy. Much Love Lisa. x

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From: ᏒᎧᏕᎥᏋ

Hi @v4ventetta I’m sorry that COVID has caused you to be so isolated. I think a lot of us have at some level, but I think if you could slowly start to go out it would work better. Going to a bar on your first time back out in the world. For me, that would be too much and I would be very uncomfortable. Could you maybe go for short walks to a park or quick trips to the store? Where there are people but it’s not overwhelming? I hope you find your peace. ~Mystrose

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From: Dark Weeb 666 (Matt)

Hi v4ventetta I understand that isolation can cause this. Covid has been hard. I think if you dont want to go out, maybe you can invite your friends over to your place. Start slow and by small steps adapt to going out again. Take it at your own pace. You are not weird for feeling this way. many people have felt like this. We just have to slowly adapt on different conditions again. I wish you a lot of luck :wink:

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From: SuchBlue

Hi v4ventetta,

Covid has changed all of our lives, you are not alone. Life will slowly but surely return back to normal. Things have changed a lot and a lot of us are finding it hard to get used to them, some might stay with us forever but hopefully we’ll get used to them and we can be happy once more. It will definitely not instantly change back to normal, but I’m sure that we will be able to meet our friends again soon :slightly_smiling_face: We’re in 2022, it’s already been two years since this first started and things are sometimes getting better and sometimes getting worse. I wish you luck on coping with the situation and making yourself feel better while we stay isolated. :hrtlegolove:

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From: eloquentpetrichor

Hey there, friend! Oh, boy I feel you so much right now you have no idea. I’m sorry you are so afraid of covid and are terrified to go out. I was, too, and still am a lot. I hate covid and I hate being afraid of covid. I was so afraid I moved halfway across the country to escape some of the things causing my fears to remain high (old relatives). The fear is still there.

The best advice I can give is to try and not let it win completely. I don’t know where you live but I hope it is someplace still taking it seriously. That helps so much. I’m terrified but I make myself go out to places I know take mask mandates seriously. I go places during non-busy times. I go to parks and open spaces where I can avoid people if I need to. Can you do these things? Can you go to the new bar when it isn’t quite as busy?

Does your friend know you are afraid? If you feel comfortable to let her know you want to try but you may need to leave if you become too afraid. It can be so helpful to have someone who knows about your fears to help you venture out into this new world we live in. To have someone to help encourage you to go out and do small things to become slowly more acclimated to being around people again. I had my mom for that. We would go to restaurants and she would occasionally check in with me and ask if I needed to leave or go outside for a bit which made me feel less stupid for being afraid. I can be so helpful and I hope you have someone who can help you do those things.

And would you feel safe having your friends over to your home? Or going to theirs? Especially if you are all vaccinated. It may not trigger your fears if you are in such a controlled environment.

Sadly this is the world we live in now. Hopefully it ends some day but the effects covid has had on the world and on people’s mental health may never disappear. I hope you can find ways to venture out a little bit or invite people over to spend time with your friends again. Good luck :hrtlegolove:

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ive been walking out and going shop thanks to support worker, this week i went alone and i was anxious and pulled through but i ended up breaking down due to trauma trigger and being sensitive due to the challange and now i saw my huge outing as a failure. and i feel so sad because i wanted to have a job and career and how am i ever going to do those things when going out to the shop makes me have a full breakdown

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Hey @v4ventetta,

I’m so very proud of you for trying Going outside and having this walk was really good and your efforts are to be celebrated. I know how consuming and scary these steps can be. It’s okay to celebrate yourself unapologetically when you are actively trying.

It is absolutely okay to break down though. You are not expected to handle this as you did before. Life has happened too and this is likely to be for you a process to learn again how to feel safe, if not comfortable, when being outside and in more noisy environments.

I hear you and what you say about your career. It’s been a huge stressors to me as well, in my life personally. When the little steps are too hard or when I feel very low, I wonder if I’ll ever be able to have a “normal” life again - and handling a job is probably the main goal too, at least for me. It’s understandable that we need to project ourselves in the future. However, how things are in the present doesn’t mean it’s going to be this way forever, especially because you are trying and working on your struggles. But it can be really really hard to envision something so different from now, because it seems very out of reach.

A thing that my therapist has reminded me of when I wanted to be able to do everything I wanted too quickly, is how much the road is paved of little steps. Picture yourself in the corner of a room, and you’re willing to move to the opposite corner. The problem is that to get there, your desire to change your situation asap makes you expect that you would get there just with one big jump, which is an unfair expectation to have. To get to the opposite corner, you will need to walk, to literally take small steps, one by one, and walk around the obstacles/furniture all around too. The paradox is that the more you try, the more you break down your goals in small steps, the more you progress in a realistic way, then the more confident you would feel. And what felt like an impossible goal to reach at first, will seem to be closer and closer to you.

You are not doomed to stay stuck where you are. Having a full breakdown was how it was at the moment. Sometimes you will experience a feeling of progress that will be easy for you to acknowledge. Other times you will experience steps backwards that will make you doubt of yourself. But through it all: keep trying. Consistency is key. This is a learning process that requires you to constantly adjust both your limits and your expectations.

Be patient with yourself, my friend, as much as possible. :hrtlegolove:

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well unfortunatly where i am they are fully dropping all restrictions and im terrified. my friend hasnt been vaccinated and regularly goes out as many of my friends do and im just left behind. :frowning:

Thank you, i just feel really sad because my dreams and career were literally one step away from me and then covid came and ruined everything and, im a weaker person, it hurts to know i had the power, that chance and to have lost it

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I completely hear you. Covid/lockdowns and unemployment have made me fall deeper into my social anxiety. I didn’t expect it to be that way, and sometimes it’s hard to deal with this new reality. It’s frustrating to feel everyday how much energy it takes to take one step further, yet how easy it can be to move backwards and fall down.

You are not alone, friend. I am truly in awe of your willingness to try regardless. You inspire me as well to get better and to dare to step out of my comfort zone. Something you and I know for sure, is that staying in the same spot of feeling stuck because of our fears is not worth it. There is so much better outside of this restricted bubble, even if there are times of doubts and discouragement. It’s okay to feel down. Let’s make sure we don’t let those feelings have the last word though. We know from experience what we are capable of. Circumstances change, but our strength remains the same. Actually, it is reinforced each time we try, each time we take a new step, each time we keep waking up and give ourselves a chance.

I’m standing next to you in this journey. You got this. We got this. I’m proud of you. :hrtlegolove: