All posts tagged: emetophobia

My Anxiety Was a Third Wheel on My Honeymoon

“I know I should be Zen and look at my nerves as a symbol of sensitivity and I should be grateful that we’re even here in the first place, but sometimes I get so MAD at myself.” I sat in the airport terminal, Jared waiting patiently next to me, as the loudspeaker overhead announced they were boarding rows 1 – 20. It was almost midnight and we were about to get on our plane to fly back home. We’d just spent a week in Hawaii on our honeymoon and my insides were churning like the ocean in the middle of a squall. My anxiety was pitching and rolling. The last thing I wanted to do was walk onto that airplane. And I was furious. No matter how much I’m aware of my patterns, my habits, and the way my nerves affect my physical body, it can still betray me despite my cognitive awareness. Like, I “know” there is nothing to be anxious about and yet my digestive track and stomach and muscles refuse to acknowledge this. …

When Your Body Answers the Question “How are you?” For You

All my life I have found myself feeling betrayed by my body. Often this betrayal comes in the form of a serious bowel issue coming up at a seriously inopportune time. However, other times it rears its ugly head in poorly timed crying, aggressive gas in public places, or massive cystic pimples on my chin right before my cousin’s wedding. All of these things can be traced back to my lifelong relationship with stress and anxiety. Last week I had another startling reminder that my body often knows more about my emotional state than my brain does. I found a sizable bald patch on my head. Like, my body is jettisoning hair from my head like I’m Apollo 11 releasing my Saturn V rockets. I am not the best at coping with uncertainty and stress. And my body KNOWS it and often forces me to face the truth even if my brain is like “whatever I GOT this.” I’m the emotional equivalent of those marathon runners you see who are running along, shouting I’m doing it, I’m …

Ask What You Want Wednesday: Struggling to Date with Emetophobia

I struggle with dating a lot and I severely struggle with Emetophobia as well. For years my emetophobia has just been a fear of vomiting in front of others and embarrassing myself. However, lately I have actually been vomiting in social situations, especially when I see a guy I am interested in. I am so ashamed of this and I’m trying to find the humor in it, but I am terrified that if I start to date this guy that I won’t be able to do it because of the vomiting. I would love to hear your thoughts. Guys, this questions rocks because I definitely have not talked about emetophobia — and my history with it — nearly enough on this blog. I was  excited to see this message in my inbox because I sometimes forget how experiences that feel so isolating are actually shared experiences. Thank you for sending in this question. And buckle up, this is probably the longest Ask What You Want Wednesday in the history of this blog. First off, there may be a physiological …

Hattie C Cooper talks about anxiety and scott stossel

My apology to Scott Stossel, or, The Atlantic article about anxiety that hit too close to home

While flying back home from the holidays, I found myself in the airport bookstore. As I previously wrote, I sometimes have anxiety when I travel and I can’t always predict when it’ll hit. My anxiety had been in the forefront of my mind, especially since it’d been acting up a bit while visiting my family back in California. But then I saw it in the bookstore: The Atlantic, Jan/Feb issue with the big, bold, title “Surviving Anxiety.” You may as well have cracked open the heavens and cued some damn angels to start singing, it felt like divine intervention. But here’s the thing, the article hit too close to home.  Not only does he write about living with anxiety, but he writes about living with the exact phobia I used to struggle with (and still sometimes do). The fear of vomiting. Emetophobia. I wish I could say that my anxiety is a recent development, or that it is limited to public speaking. It’s not. . . . I’ve abandoned dates; walked out of exams; and had breakdowns …

A panic attack while on a date can feel like being locked inside

What to Do if You Have a Panic Attack During a Date

I count myself as fortunate. I’ve only experienced an anxiety attack 3 or 4 times in my life. They were not fun, though, and I feel for you if they are something you struggle with on a regular basis. This doesn’t mean I haven’t had plenty of almost-attacks. Oh, yes, I know the almost-attack very very well. It usually comes in the form of being-convinced-I’m-about-to-vomit (this is a lingering side effect of having Emetophobia for many years of my adolescence). While I’ve never had a full-blown anxiety attack while on a date, I can imagine what it would be like. And I definitely had one before a date once. While the advice I will give is maybe not perfect for you, I hope it will help if even a little bit. Here’s what I want to tell you: you are never stuck. You have options. Just because you walk into that coffee shop, that party, that movie, that park, doesn’t mean you have to stay there. So much of panic/anxiety attacks come from the buildup of …