Need advice had panic attack and afraid will happen again.

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#1 September 13, 2011 - 8:26pm
PhoebeR's picture

Need advice had panic attack and afraid will happen again.

I had another run-in, well not run-in but I saw my ex friend and narc today. I was eating lunch with a friend and she walked in and sat two tables down. I don't think she saw me, but I knew she was there. What surprised me was my reaction. I thought I was ok, after my last run-in with her weeks ago, which I handled well, I have been ok. Well today when i saw her I was at the end of my lunch, and when I returned to my office my heart was beating fast and my hands were shaking. I think i had a mild panic attack. I was really surprised by my reaction. I pulled myself together and went on with my day. But I am supposed to be in a meeting on Friday and she is in the same meeting. Mind you it will be a big room and there were be lots of people there, but i am afraid of what my reaction will be. What do i do, this is my job, i don't want to appear weak and scared and I can't skip the meeting. I was fine, I don't understand what happened. Any advice?

September 17, 2011 - 7:33pm
PhoebeR's picture

Things are ok, I guess

Thanks to everyone for their comments and advice. I waited but she never showed up for the meeting. I was prepared, I had visualized the meeting going well and how I would react if I saw her. I got through it and that's the important thing. I am dealing with something else now, if you all have seen my previous posts you know that she got engaged and had sent me an email asking me to help her plan her wedding, that was in July. I found out when the wedding date is, and although I was not expecting and invite, i still feel weird about it. It's in a few weeks, I found her registry online and her wedding page. She looks happy, she says he is very patient, I figured he needs to be. I am not sure how I feel, we were friends for over 15 years, but looking back it was a toxic friendship, my sister said if I had helped her plan the wedding she would blame me if something went wrong. Probably true. I know I am better off without her in my life, I am healthier and I have other friends who I trust. But it still feels weird, you know?
September 17, 2011 - 2:03am
Done sourcing
Done sourcing's picture

I've suffered with panic

I've suffered with panic attacks off and on for years. No one else can tell when you're having one. Breathe deeply and slowly through the belly, like down by the diaphram. Hyperventilation is always part of a panic attack, and the deep breathing prevents the hperventilation. Practice it when you are calm laying down, put your palms on your belly and feel the gut rise and fall. Shallow breathing with the upper chest wont move the belly, and that is what happens when we get anxious and panicky. Practice practice practice and breathe through the you have a plan that will work. ds
September 14, 2011 - 1:02pm
LuckySpurs's picture

Meditation & Prayer

Good morning, PhoebeR. Sorry to hear about the run-in. But I think you are ahead of the game concerning the next time you will see her. You already know she is going to be at this meeting, so she can't surprise you by showing up unannounced. If I were in your position, I would start now by clearing my mind and meditating on the meeting going well. Pray for clarity and calmness. Keep telling yourself that there is nothing to be afraid of. She has no power over you and that her presence will not shake you. Pray for peace of mind and pray for the narc. Yep, pray for the narc too, it actually helps you. O another good technique to lower your blood pressure if you feel it rising is to take several deep breaths. Control your breathing. It's physically impossible to be tense when you are deep breathing, it just naturally calms you :) I have only seen my ex friend once since we stopped being friends. When I heard her voice, it was kind of a shock because I recognized it instantly. She kept her distance from me since I was with my family (she's scared of my family, since she tried unsuccessfully to turn my sister against me). Had I been there alone, I'm not sure how I would have reacted. More than likely, I would have just ignored her. But who knows, you never know til it happens you. Praying for you!
September 13, 2011 - 9:20pm
Sparrow's picture

The best advise I can give

The best advise I can give you is to stand tall, with your chin up. Show pride and strength in yourself and do not let her presence intimidate you. Don't even acknowledge to yourself that she is in the room with you. You can f=do it! I know you can! Remember, she is with the loser now, and you are the one who is free of him. She will be where you are one day. ALWAYS remember that, never lose sight of it. YOU ARE BETTER THAN HER. AND YOU KNOW THAT. Good luck on Friday, you have time to prepare, don't worry, you will do amazing!
September 13, 2011 - 9:16pm
Winter's picture


Did you feel scared, I mean really scared? Like you are going to die? I have had a real panic attack in the past and this is how it feels like. Maybe you were simply agitated and nervous? You can try St John's Wort or a valeriana/passiflore herbal tea. It really helps and calms you down without affecting your ability to concentrate. In case you felt a real panic attack (an extreme fear, and you know it was fear, nothing else), then you absolutely have to see your family doctor. Big hugs!
September 13, 2011 - 9:11pm
juliamarie's picture

Panic attacks...they suck

I've been suffering with panic disorder for about 10 years on and off so I feel your pain. I will go years without an attack, but then something triggers me, and I'm in "mode" again. I'm sorry this is happening to you, but there are a few things you can do to get relief. First, breathe. It's the single most powerful thing you can do to bring yourself back to normal. Take a deep breath....hold it for 3 seconds....let it out. Repeat. I know it sounds stupid, but it works. You also have to tell yourself that it's temporary, and you're fine. Just repeat that inner dialogue to yourself. A positive inner dialogue is huge! I take medication now because of my current situation. For obvious reasons, since I'm already sensitive to the disorder, a broken engagement to a Narc is throwing me for a loop. But, I try to rely on my own ability to talk myself down when necessary. It's hard, I know. And from what I've read, PTSD is common. Panic attacks are a natural result. They won't last forever. If you find yourself feeling like this regularly, please get a mental health professional immediately as it can go downhill fast without true help. You'll be okay. This is situational. But, you do need to take care of yourself. Prayers to you!!