Serious Internet Anxiety Can Be A Seriously Bad Development

RubySo it seems that this is my latest trigger for panic.  Being online.  My initial thought was that I took on too much too quickly, but even just cruising news stories, which I used to love to do, makes me want to swallow high doses of Xanax.

Still I blame PTSD.  Does it make sense in any way?  Not especially.  Does anything about PTSD make sense in any way?  Not lately, not in my life.

I wonder if I’m just copping out by blaming anything different and psychosomatic on post-traumatic stress.  But I know what everything else feels like, manic-depression in its myriad representations, various anxiety disorders, plain old every day stress.  This is not the same, not by a long shot.

So I should go get therapy to help me through this, right?  Therapy, pfft.  Therapy never has worked for me.  Talk therapy, Interpersonal and Social Rhythm Therapy (IPSRT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).  I have to do it on my own, that’s just how I’m wired.

I even have what is supposed to be a wonderful book on PTSD.  I feel like it will burn my fingertips if I pick it up.

At least for the moment I’m not getting pushed off balance by this stuff.  I don’t like it, but I’m not getting confused and flipping out and feeding into the reaction.  I know wherefore it happens, so I don’t stress myself out making it worse.  It’s just a nasty little trick for my mind and body to play, because of the therapeutic value I have found in blogging.

But when push comes to shove, I am learning how to shove back harder.

And I always have my journals.  No sensory overload attached.

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5 thoughts on “Serious Internet Anxiety Can Be A Seriously Bad Development

  1. I’m sorry to hear about your difficulty. It’s always distressing to hear about these issues.

    You said something very interesting – the phrase “sensory overload”. I experience that and it leads to a lot of my phobias. Part of my crowded place phobia is the sensory overload.

    So I pose the question, how many of us can relate anxiety and sensory overload? And which one is first, the chicken or the egg? Does the anxiety jam up our processes or does the overload flare anxiety response?

    I hope you are feeling better soon, Ruby. And don’t worry. It doesn’t all have to come together quickly. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

    • Thank you, Lulu. A lot. I just tend to dive in headfirst and forget to come up for air until I’m so deep that I have to worry about the bends.

      As to your question, for me it’s definitely the sensory overload that leads to the anxiety. Of course once things spin out of control, it becomes a cycle and they feed on each other. But I did choose to shove back on this one, and I’m conquering it. 😉

  2. I never had too many issues as far as sensory overload and anxiety. I definitely have had moments, yes, but luckily that one doesn’t seem to be ongoing or pervasive with me.

    But Lulu does pose a very interesting question, and she’s right. Just take it in little bits.

  3. So, what does this bring to my mind; lots. Maybe I should start my own blog, but for now, I’ll just enjoy responding to others’ postings. I experienced sensory overload researching these stupid labels that were slapped on me. I’ve known about the anxiety stuff sort of, but did not know it was called Personality Disorder, only one of which I have received. What do you mean I’m a disorder, there’s nothing wrong with my personality. Not only have I increased my anxiety due to certain info overload, I’ve strained my eyes staring at my screen to the point of having to get a new set of glasses. I’m just curious, but do you understand the anxiety spectrum to be more of a bipolar thing or a separate entity of its own.

    Back to the overload; I dove in finally to research in preparation for my first pdoc appointment in almost a year. I had to set her straight on what was wrong with me. It turns out her observation skills are more attuned than I thought. I have refused meds, taking them only when I was so desperate and in a mixed messed up state I feared taking another breath. Anyway, all this reading lead to conjuring up old obsessive, sick thinking patterns that I had forgotten. The drugs I had been on squashed stuff; guess they were good for something. Now THERE BACK, not as bad, but damn it anyway. Guess I should have just trusted her and skipped the reading then I would not have bumped into this blog. I like how Always puts it, “take it in little bits”, but my nature is like Ms. Ruby Tuesday if I’m right, I tend to jump in over my head to become an expert forgetting to come up for air. I am a confessed info junky. So what’s a gal to do?

    • Laurie, first just let me say I’m sorry it took me so long to even moderate your comment. That isn’t my usual pattern, I just hit a bit of a rough patch where I didn’t do much of anything.

      In any case, I guess for me I can say that in one way it was easier for me to accept having the “Bipolar Disorder I, most recent episode depressed, no psychotic features” label slapped on (that’s how the docs do it with BD, overall diagnosis, assessment of most recent mood episode, and the psychosis part) because I knew exactly what any good, competent psychiatrist would tell me already – I began my researching before I went in. But in another way, well let’s just say I knew I had something going on for years before, so I had the benefit of being able to adapt to the idea in my own time, and not just be shocked by someone telling me I was something, as opposed to someone.

      I also did (and still do) most of my research on things the old-fashioned way – with books. Particularly with subjects that can be triggering and cause anxiety, like mental health diagnoses, this is the best way for me personally to go, because I can close a book and walk away when I’m beginning to feel overwhelmed. The internet, even when I know I need to stop and I’m upsetting myself, I just keep reading more and finding more and ultimately, upsetting myself more.

      As to your anxiety question, while it certainly can be part and parcel of bipolar, for me it is definitely a separate thing. I am diagnosed with multiple other anxiety disorders, one of which I know I have had since I was quite young.

      I think that we all have to find a balance and decide how much we need to research, and how much we are comfortable trusting our doctors. You should never blindly trust a doctor simply because they have the initials M.D. after their name, I could have been killed from drug interactions had I done that. And it is your body, so you know it best. But you do have to help let them guide you, which is why it’s so crucial to have one whom you can trust.

      You are absolutely right about me, I have always described myself as the all-or-nothing type. I’m learning a little about applying the concept of moderation to my life, but it isn’t easy. Always is right, and I have the benefit of having her in my life daily – and even occasionally listening to her 😉 – we are the closest friends, and have been for most of our lives.

      If I could answer that last question, I would – maybe I’ll ask Always. For the time being I just have to acknowledge you, because I realized I got the title of my most recent post on my personal blog from your question. I knew it was striking a bell in me, but I couldn’t remember why!

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