Annabelle Show full post »
Aniyah
I just joined this forum today and our stories are quite similar. I discovered three affairs as well and my anxiety was overwhelming. I hope that you will find the help and peace that you need during this tough time.
A
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Annabelle
Aniyah- thank you so much. I am so sorry you found yourself in this situation, but glad you are here in the forum. How did you cope with the anxiety? Hopefully things are better now, since you used the past tense!
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MITM
Aniyah wrote:
I just joined this forum today and our stories are quite similar. I discovered three affairs as well and my anxiety was overwhelming. I hope that you will find the help and peace that you need during this tough time.
A

Hey Aniyah. I would say "welcome", except nobody really wants to be here, right?
Male BS
D-Day Jan 2018
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MITM
Annabelle wrote:
I'm a betrayed spouse who has so far survived two D-Days: January 13, 2017 (discovered his emotional affair) and October 15, 2017 (discovered his sexual affair with a second woman.) I also found inappropriate texts between him and a third woman. In January of this year I started having anxiety attacks, mostly at night when I'm trying to sleep. I feel like I am losing my mind, especially as I lose more and more sleep.
I'm sure I'm not the only one with this problem. Does anyone have any strategies for dealing with anxiety/panic attacks, especially nocturnal attacks? Is there anything you do to calm yourself down when an attack occurs?

Hi Annabelle, I'm sorry you're going through this.

I'm pretty much the same way with anxiety. I'm about 4 months post D-Day now, and my WW's emotional (possibly physical too, not that it makes much difference to me) affair is ongoing. Basically it's destroyed my family, along with my peace of mind.

My own physical response to this has been that I can only sleep for 5-6 hours per night, as I'm pretty much guaranteed to wake up with a pounding heart - it's pure stress.

I decided early on I didn't want to go and get medicated if I could avoid it, so I've gone for some alternative and/or herbal things instead. That good old standby Rescue Remedy (there's a spray version for sleeplessness) helps, I find, along with a new herbal anti-anxiety product called KSM-66 and vitamin B.

Stay away from alcohol! Reduce caffeine consumption, and start drinking herbal teas like chamomile and rooibos.

Meditation and breathing exercises can also be useful, I've found. I got introduced to a breathing practice called the Wim Hof method, which can improve concentration and induce some calm and stillness.

None of this is a 'fix' for me, but it all helps. Apart from that, it's all the usual stuff. Find yourself a good counsellor/therapist. Reach out to your friends and extended family, even if you don't feel like it. Cry on a few shoulders. Find a lawyer and discover where you stand from a legal perspective. Chances are you're not getting much real truth from your WH right now (please tell me if I'm wrong), so having some actual facts on your side can be steadying.

And finally: I know it's a cliche, but that doesn't make it any less true - this is not your fault. He didn't do this because of some need you weren't fulfilling. He might well blame your marriage, but that's self-justifying cr*p.

I hope you find at least some of this helpful. And remember - you are not losing your mind. You're having a normal, human, stress reaction to emotionally intolerable circumstances. And by the looks of this community, you're in very good company.
Male BS
D-Day Jan 2018
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Annabelle
Hi MattinTheMountains-
thanks so much! That's very helpful. I hadn't heard of the herbal remedies you mentioned. Even after all this time it's so hard just accepting the fact that all this happened. It's still unbelievable. No wonder it's hard to sleep. We are definitely suffering ptsd and it only makes it worse to not acknowledge our trauma. However I do find that replacing negative thoughts with positive, helpful ones can help, and also reminding myself that there are still lots of things in my life to be grateful for.

My husband was a total jerk about the whole thing at first, I think because he felt so much shame. He would actually get angry with me for wanting to talk about it. And yes, I definitely got a lot of manipulative, self-pitying doubletalk from him, and plenty of theatrics. But when I start thinking about this behavior I try to balance it with thoughts of the little ways he's improving and trying to be better.

Things will get better and the anxiety will fade with time, I know. Peace will come. It sucks we are in this position, but we can only try to treat ourselves well and do the best we can to heal ourselves regardless of what happens in our marriages. I know I'll feel better when I know whether or not I actually want to stay with him.  Sounds like you are doing a good job taking care of yourself in the meantime. Thanks for the encouragement and for sharing your tips!

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tosharri
Hi...I don't post a lot but I probably should post more.  Anxiety is something I live with every day - some days its worse than others, but I've managed to survive a marriage of over 20 years with several DDays and now a current relationship healing from infidelity.  Some days I trigger just from calling and getting no answer, other days its a slight reference to a past event.  My reactions can be from a brief moment of sadness to an entire sleepless night of crying and pain.  I would have expected that I should be over some of this but there are days that everything comes back so intensely.  I know I need counseling in a terrible way...previous counselors didn't connect with me.  I just need to find the right one.

My anxiety issues from both the breakdown of my marriage and the discovery of infidelity in my current serious relationship have rocked my world in such a way I struggled over the past four years just keeping my household together and frankly, didn't do a good job as an employee.  Unfortunately that resulted in two lost jobs in less than three years (and I'm a single mom).  I'm thankful that I live frugally and have been able to survive.  

Until something like this happens to you and leaves your world rocked and on its side, its hard to really understand or sympathize.  Its really hard when people try to help and don't really know what's wrong (almost makes it worse because its embarrassing for me to try to go into detail).  My youngest two children don't know what happened between their father and I so their anger is directed at me...I've lost friends and neighbors who won't talk to me because I 'left' my ex and I chose not to advertise why we split.  I am still...after over four years...being judged for something I did not choose, when I feel that I finally stood up for myself.  Wow...it takes a lot of strength and perseverance to handle all of this and my eyes are now opened to others whom have survived!  I am so thankful for resources like this community forum.  Just paging through and reading what people have posted has been so helpful.
Female BS Most Recent DDay Mar 2017 (prev marriage Ddays Apr 1995, Apr 2009 and Oct 2014)...can't say I didn't try to stick it out and make it work
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Trinity
TOSHARRI .
You have come through a lot and anxiety is surely one of those "clingers on" that know just the imperfect time to show up. [frown]  I know your pain and for me, there are days that are good and then there maybe a tv commercial or a dress I decide to wear or something I smell that sends me spiraling down.  I don't know when it will happen the only control over it is HOW much I let it take me down for the count.  That is where the strength and character are built.  Every downward spiral you come out of makes you more informed and gives you a new tool to use in the next one.
You should post more here and share what you feel comfortable with.  There are so may members here that truly understand where you are at in your journey and can offer insight.  Many very kind people here.  

"T"
BS - DDay July 2017

O GOD, take me, break me, make me. 
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Feelinghopeful79
I had so much anxiety after DDay, I couldn’t eat or sleep. I couldn’t function. I had my first panic attack a few days later. Then I went on meds, because I didn’t think I would be able to act normal in front of my kids. I went on an SSRI, for about 3 months.   I still had some anxiety and early morning wakings (usually 4 am). I had weird side effects, a tingling, almost buzzing feeling in my arms, sometimes legs. One day, this led me to try to breathe through it and I hyperventilated and almost passed out. Now, I’m taking another medication, a SNRI (selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor) and it’s much better. I plan on staying on it for the next 6 to 9 months, under advisement from my doctor. I think medication is not a long term solution, and it’s only one component of my self care, which includes exercise, yoga, meditation, hiking, my friends, a BAN support group, and taking some time off from work. Not to mention therapy. So really, I’m doing everything I can to try to take care of myself, so that I can heal and be a good mother, and hopefully have a better marriage eventually. 
Female BS
D-day January 1, 2018
Separated and getting divorced
Healing and Happier than ever
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hurting
I suffer anxiety attacks and panic attacks too... As a health care professional, I chose to not go onto medication and try to manage this with other methods including thought stopping. Having the insight to identify when a panic attack is starting helps you gain control and slow down your breathing. That's a big one...

I agree that self care is most important- but it's SO HARD TO DO when you're feeling terrible...  I try to stay away from caffeine in the later hours of the day. Alcohol is an easy one to turn to, but I am mindful to NOT use it regularly as the quality of sleep from it is not great anyway. I now drink lots of herbal teas in the evening. Praying once I get into bed also seems to help. 

When I'm on for shift work (which screws up my sleeping patterns even more), or I'm struggling, I will take melatonin to help rather than benzos. 
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notemanj
Heidi wrote:
Hi Annabelle, I’m so sorry to hear your story. It sounds similar to mine - DDay in Feb 2015, followed by more revelations in Aug 2015 about an inappropriate relationship that had happened 15 years before.

from the first d day I suffered from panic attacks - though mine would happen on waking up. I couldn’t breathe, my heart was racing, it felt like I was dying. It got to the point that I was too afraid to go to sleep.

At the time I was seeing a counsellor, and she showed me some breathing techniques to get it under control. She also introduced me to mindfulness that helped a lot. I downloaded the Headspace app (I just had the free sessions) and that gave me a technique to deal with them. It didn’t eliminate the attacks altogether, but helped me to deal with them. I haven’t had one for two years now, so there’s hope.

There are also medical options. I know a number of people who have been prescribed medication for their anxiety. I ended up taking sleeping pills for a short while, which helped me to sleep.

You don’t say if you’re having counselling, but if you aren’t I’d highly recommend it. Discovering infidelity is a huge trauma, and something we need to process. I believe I had something like PTSD, and it took professional help for me to learn to deal with it. 

I hope things improve for you soon. 


i am suffering from PTSD. I had a major panic attack last night. I woke up in the shower that had been running for 2 1/2 hours. I sat down in the shower and covered the drain apparently. I “woke up” about half an hour ago choking on water. My WH was aware that I was having a panic attack because I had just caught him in another lie. He fell asleep in another room. I don’t remember everything that occurred. I don’t know what is happening to me anymore. I am so scared. I am experiencing blackouts that aren’t from too much alcohol. I have two teenage children. What if I hadn’t woken up?!?!
Wishing everyone here peace and healing!

Female BS Married 18 yrs
DDay 3/7/2017 through 4/2019 and counting. 
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Heidi
Notemanj, that sounds truly awful - so sorry you had to go through that. I’d feel exactly the way you do. I’d really urge you to get some medical advice - as you said, things could have ended in tragedy. 

Hopefully your doctor can help with ways of stopping the blackouts from occurring, or how to make you safe when they do happen.

In your place I’d also be having some words with your husband. If he’s going to unleash this pain on you, he really needs to stay awake to make sure you’re okay. 

Sending you gentle hugs today. 
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Kiki
Notemanj,  so scary.  I agree with Heidi.  Did you tell your H what happened?  He needs to be aware.  He needs to keep an eye on you when you start spiralling. I think you need some anxiety or panic attack meds.  Are you in counselling?  Some coping tools will help as well.
YOU and your health are the most important thing right now.  
Your children need you! Now and always!! Children will always gravitate to the stable, honest parent.  Get some help please!!! 
D-Day#1 Dec 19, 2017
D-Day#2 Jan 13, 2018
5 year “on/off affair”
Separated

Married 25 years, together 35
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Keepabuzz
I also suffered from PTSD, the panic attacks were very tough to deal with. In the 40 years of my life prior to d-day, I had never had even a hint of mental health issues. Then I’m rocked with deep depression, anger issues, panic attacks, suicidal tendencies, etc.  I was 100% against going onto any medication for a long time.  I finally have in. They were so helpful!  I had no more than 12-15 full on panic attacks. Once I had the meds, as soon as I felt it coming on, I would take one, and it kept them manageable. 
Male BS, D-day July 2015, trying to stay out of the dark.....
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notemanj
I want to thank you all for responding. I am on meds. This affair has shown me what I thought I had under control from my pretty messed up childhood (abusive, alcoholic father), was just waiting for the next trauma to send me right off of the cliff. I did talk to my H yesterday. We have found a book titled “The Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Relationship” by Diane England. I haven’t read it yet. But it was recommended as something that my help my H to deal with me better when I am spiraling. 
Wishing everyone here peace and healing!

Female BS Married 18 yrs
DDay 3/7/2017 through 4/2019 and counting. 
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