Serious anxiety problem at the movie theaters
So with enough inner thought and a ton of similar stories on the Internet over the years, I tend to be anxious/panicky in a lot of common places in life. The complicated part is that I can't exactly put my finger on what is causing it. Whether it be a restaurant, store, usual public places - but I can put out those fires easily. But the most anxiety stirring location would have to be the movie theaters. It's odd because I used to go there all the time: I used to watch movies I wanted to left and right, but after some phase I went through during my teenage years, I came out very fearful about things without much rationalization as to why.
The movie theater thing though is something I have actually rationalized: in short, the flashes of lights, the fact I have to sit still through it all, enhanced sounds, and anything intense will cause my heart to race, shortness of breath, and an overall bad experience.
Now mind you, this is only in theaters. If I were to Watch a movie in my house, even on my biggest screen, I would have little to no problem at all. But the cinema scene has really generated negative thoughts/feelings every time I think of it.
It's been hitting me the hardest now since I'm a huge Star Wars fan, and as we know, the force awakens just hit the theaters. So it's been like torture if you haven't been seeing how it's been marketed on TV (like every other commercial).
And this is coming from one of the hugest fans you'll ever meet, so you can only imagine how severe this problem gets when I'm skipping out on something like this.
It's gotten to the point where I am on this on and off search for a bootleg version online (chances are little to none but whatever).
Seriously, the last movie I ever saw was 22 Jump Street, which came out in June of 2014!
Anybody have any similar issues like this? Or for God’s sake's a way to overcome this?? It feels so easy to talk about, but once I'm in the real thing, all that talk seems meaningless. Should I just wait for it to hit the shelves and do my best to ignore the marketing, or something else? Thanks for hearing me out either way.
First of all, know that you are not alone. There are MANY people who are uncomfortable with sitting in a theater or being in crowds, or being in a room with other people at parties.
There are so many options now, more and more people are waiting for movies to come out in different media.
BUT - if this bothers you, how about trying some "de-sensitizing" exercises? Like buy a ticket and enter the theater. Just do that.
Then next time, go into the theater and sit for just a few minutes, and then see if you can sit there for as long as you feel comfortable.
Increase the time at each attempt.
This might cost you some $$, but try it out.
You might want to talk to someone about this. There seems to be a "trigger" that affects you. (Could it be something related to the recent violence we have seen in theaters?) See someone who specializes in treating anxiety.
When I was 17, I had a psychotic episode, right next to my girlfriend, in a class where I was supposed to be reading out loud from the textbook. That seemed to break the dam, and open up what was to follow, although it was probably going to occur down the road anyway.
When I was 18, I got to where I couldn't sit in a barber's chair to have a haircut, because I got so nervous. When I was 28, I was having panic attacks, and once walked out of a movie theater where my girlfriend and I were sitting with another couple we had gone to the theater with, because I felt a panic attack coming on.
When I was 32, I was having panic attacks over a year or two's time, about 10 or 15 of those a year, is a guess. I would wake up with that, just after I had gone to sleep, and thought I was out of my mind and beyond recovery.
A psychiatrist gave me lithium when I was about 35, and the panic attacks stopped and have never come back. The lithium stopped the panic attacks cold. I am manic-depressive, and had I been diagnosed correctly, I could have been medicated correctly, and there would have been no panic attacks. So diagnosis is the key, for without that, you can't be medicated right. And without the right medicine, you aren't gong to be helped.
So try to find out what you are, for your benefit. I don't know that your attacks are connected to a larger emotional problem, I just saying there is a possibility of that, and if it's true in your case, you might want to find out what the larger, overall emotional problem is.
You can go to a manic-depression, or anxiety disorder, depression, etc., website, and answer the 20 or so questions to see if you think you might have a condition like that. Your psychiatrist can easily misdiagnose you. He or she has 20 or 30 minutes or so with you, you have hours, days, weeks to look in to some of those things on the net, etc. Show the doctor your findings and see what he or she thinks.
My mother's mother had emotional problems, probably manic-depression, as did one of her son have that condition, so you might want to look into your family history, to see if anyone had emotional problems.
I think panic attacks are probably not the only problem, I think they are a sign of the problem, as was true in my case. Look up panic attacks on the net and see what they say about them. Also, look up those other emotional problems, and see what they. Educate yourself.