Anyone here who has driving anxiety? My dad got me an old run down car to learn how to drive in but I’m so anxious. I passed my permit exam back in August (which was on paper) and I got my drivers permit but now I’m sixteen and haven’t made any effort to go to drive times or even remotely make any progress to drive. I want to drive but I can’t without feeling anxious and I feel so left out considering a couple of my friends already have their license and they thought driving was easy.
Anxiety (Including GAD)
I was scared to drive when I was your age too. What helped me was driving alone so I did not have any pressure of someone else with me. I “practiced” getting comfortable by driving back roads were most people weren’t driving.
I have driving anxiety too, but it really does get easier with practice. Remember: the least intelligent person you know probably has a driver's license; you can do it!
Don't push yourself too far too fast. Practice close to home on familiar routes and radiate out slowly in concentric circles. There are also adaptive driving teachers who may specialize in working with people with anxiety. See if there are any around you and talk to your parents about getting some private lessons. I have anxiety and cerebral palsy and I learned to drive with no special mods to the car but with an adaptive teacher.
Oh my god never thought i'd find someone with this specific anxiety. After my first few anxiety attacks behind the wheel, i could drive the car around the block without hyperventilating or crying. Bought a car, registered it, everything. Left it in the driveway for 6 months.
You just have to keep the end goal in mind. What do you want to do with the freedom a car brings? Hanging out with your friends more often maybe, being able to rely on yourself to get places. And start small. Turn the car on, see how you feel. Drive it up the street, try to park in the driveway or even on the side of the road. And focus on the feeling you get when you accomplish the small milestones. They count as buildable steps.
I used to be the same way too! I got my learners permit when I was I guess like 15 maybe (I can’t remember but it’s the one you have to drive with an adult) and I drove for a little while but I was always on edge and would like scream at my mom in the car anytime any minor thing happened. Then I started having lots of nightmares about getting into accidents and hurting the people I loved and I stopped driving for a long time. I didn’t get my actual license until I was almost 18 which isn’t that late I guess but most of my friends already could drive. My first car was also old it was a ‘98 so I was also anxious about it breaking down on me.
I think the thing that made me want to drive was getting to have freedom and be in control of where I wanted to go. But at first I only took the routes I knew really well and didn’t drive in areas I knew would make me nervous. I try to remember that I am in control of the car and I can control how safe I drive. As far as the car went I was nervous about it breaking down or whatnot but I just made sure I knew what to do if certain things happened while I was driving and how to respond to them.
What you are experiencing is totally normal especially as someone that deals with anxiety. Just be patient with yourself and do things in little steps so you feel comfortable. Sometimes you just have to push yourself a little or get that push from someone else but you are totally capable 💕
I get anxious still when I drive sometimes in certain situations but practice really made me get over than initial hump.
I don't have anxiety while driving, but I do feel the anxiety of feeling like everyone's judging me for not having my license yet. I do really wanna get it, but anytime I admit to someone I don't have my license I feel a silent judgement. Like I'm a failure because I don't have my license.
i am so scared of driving, the intrusive thoughts and responsibilities that come with it are too much 😣
i feel the same, i put my permit test off for a year and a half until just last week and was absolutely petrified to drive. I still have some anxieties about it snd its perfectly normal, especially if you have been in an accident like i have
I definitely do. I’m 19 now and still only have my permit. My parents have been pressuring me to get my licensee for years. I’ve always been really anxious when driving because my ADHD and social anxiety/GA make me disassociate and get distracted a lot on the road. This makes makes me really anxious just about driving in general. I’ve explained to my family that I’m not ready and that I’m going to take it slow, which i’ve been doing but they don’t quite understand why I haven’t just gotten my license already. I never want to drive but I know I may need to one day so the skill will be useful but I can’t help but think that I just am not suited for diving. I’m okay with that but I don’t think the world we live in is.
if it makes you feel any better, i have tried to learn to drive, got my permit, have had it expire, and now i’m almost 24 and i still can’t drive.
Not so much driving in general but definitely driving at night. My depth perception is awful at night so I cabs really tell how far away lights are from me. When I first started learning to drive, I was terrified, but it definitely gets easier and pretty much becomes second nature, honestly. It's okay to be nervous, but the more you try the easier it will get for you. Take little steps if you have to, like "today I'm focusing on parking" "today I'm focusing on driving on driving down my street" and build up from there as you get comfortable with the small steps.
Yes! I struggled with this at 15 and didn’t get my license until I was 18. I just wasn’t ready to deal with the anxiety then and honestly think no one should feel rushed into getting their license before they are ready. I have good and bad years with my driving anxiety. I’m currently working on it.
One thing I’m doing is exposure therapy. Start off by sitting in your car for a few minutes in your driveway and increase that time until it’s no longer pushing you to your limit. Next work on going in and out of your driveway. Next work on driving a slight way down the road. Increase your drive by 2-4 min each day until you feel you are at a place where it’s pushing you and then stop until you feel more comfortable, then increase again. Do things slowly. Practice a lot close to your house. I found driving in the right lanes helps because I tell myself I can always easily pull over if needed. Also I stay off highways until I can drive on backroads and all that more easily.
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