Sally’s Trauma – part 1
Sally gets anxious out of the blue
Today I would like to tell you about Sally.
More specifically, I want to tell you how and why she spent vast amounts of time trying to avoid any situation that made her feel anxious.
Sally is someone we recently helped to overcome her anxiety by using the specific techniques we are sharing with you. Because her story is pretty extreme, we have changed her name to protect her confidentiality.
Let’s wind back 8 years.
Back then, Sally was 32, attractive and worked as a salesperson. To do that job, she had to be confident, chatty, personable and out-going, all of which she had in spades.
She had never experienced anxiety in her life until one evening when she was home alone with her two young children.
They lived in a townhouse, which had the kitchen and dining room on the ground floor, the living room on the first floor and bedrooms on the second and third floors.
Anyhow, she had just got the children off to sleep and she was downstairs in her kitchen preparing dinner for herself and her partner, who was due home around 8 pm.
She heard a crash from the front door (just down the corridor) and suddenly found there were two men in her kitchen, one with a knife.
To say she was surprised was an understatement. In fact, she was so shocked, she became rooted to the spot.
The man with the knife grabbed her and put the knife to her throat. He was saying something in a quiet hissy voice.
To this day, I have no idea what he was saying.
The other man was suddenly in front of her, trying to rip open her blouse.
She remembers thinking that the pasta that she had just put on the stove would overcook and be ruined.
Obviously, and quite understandably, she had gone into shock.
The fear had become so great that her mind had disassociated her from the situation and what she feared was about to happen.
It was at this point that things became 10 times worse…
She remembers hearing her eldest child (aged 6) calling out from upstairs “Mommy, Mommy…”
It was at this point, to her everlasting shame, that she passed out…
You see, her anxiety had reached such a peak that her subconscious mind took steps to protect her from experiencing any more trauma.
Notes about Sally’s story
Sally’s story is pretty extreme, but it doesn’t need an event anywhere near this traumatic to set up patterns of anxiety that can stay with you for life (unless you do something about them).
Especially if your anxiety started when you were a child or adolescent.
In fact, many “common” life events can be significant enough to set up the anxiety response, including the death of a close relative, bullying, job insecurity or even divorce.
The point is, that if Sally can overcome the anxiety that is rooted in such an extreme event, so can you.
In the next instalment explaining how this set up her patterns of anxiety in the years that followed.
If you would like to read the next instalment of Sally’s story please click below.
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