Thursday, 14 January 2010

Marie's Agoraphobia, Monophobia & OCD - review of 2009

Marie's condition a year ago can be accessed here.

Marie's agoraphobia level fluctuated wildly during 2009, but at the end of the year, it was worse than when I met her in 1999. She had been improving, but when she stopped taking her medication on a regular basis - on two separate occasions - she was severely punished with a plethora of physical and psychological maladies.  It took more than two months for these to abate.  Mess with medication at your peril!

Marie can, at the start of 20010...
  • Stay at home on her own, as long she knows that is at least one safe person at home nearby and I am less than 60 miles away.  This is a little better than last year when I had to be less than 30 mile away.
  • Go out in a car, with a safe person, almost anywhere - although her level of anxiety when out is unpredictable
  • Walk 2 - 3 metres from our car/home/a safe place. This is back to the 2000 level & hasn't changed since last year.
  • Stay in any non-threatening place (e.g. a house) with a selection of "safe" people, as long as they can drive and there is a car close by. This is unchanged since last year, but worse than 2000.
Marie cannot, at the start of 2010 -
  • Be alone anywhere, if I am more than 60 miles away. Slight improvement on 2009.
  • Be alone at any time (see above for exceptions)
  • Walk more than 3 metres outside our building. Same as 2009.
  • Walk more than 2 metres from a car in an open area
  • Go anywhere, except by car and accompanied by a safe person
  • Go into any large building - e.g. supermarkets, the doctors' surgery, hospital, office blocks - or go more than 4 metres away from the door of small buildings. This is a very small improvement from last year, but similar to 2000.
The symptoms of Marie's monophobia have become a little less severe.  She is most definitely less anxious when I am absent from our home.  This has helped me in my business and has also allowed me to take the children more often and with a lot less stress.

Marie's OCD has improved slightly.  One day, without warning, she bought herself a new handbag (purse) - one which was only half the size of her old one.  She hasn't filled it either, so it is a more normal weight.  It doesn't sound like much, but in this one area, it's a major improvement.


Sarah♥ said...

Any positive is better than none.


Robert said...

Sarah - You bet! :0)

Ruby said...

It is such a roller coaster ride, you never know where you will be tomorrow, never mind a year from now.

Great to hear about the bag, that is huge Marie :)

♥ Kathy said...

My sister-in-law (who we live with) has agoraphobia and I've seen her try so hard over the last few months to "be by herself". It's a tough battle for her.

rosiero said...

Such a shame, as she WAS doing well at one point. As someone else said, it is a bit of a rollercoaster ride. Hope 2010 is the year to see more improvement.

Nechtan said...

Hi Robert,

All improvement is good however little and its great that 2009 showed some signs. From the overview it doesn't look like much but I think your posts over the year give a clear picture that there were some great times. I hope this year brings more of those for Marie so that you will all benefit as a family.

All the best


Robert said...

Ruby, Kathy, rosiero, Nechtan - thanks for the comments. It's true - all improvement is good. And it has been won at considerable cost. Hopefully there will be more improvements to report at the end of this year.

Anita said...

Hi, I came over from Grumpy Old Ken's. Didn't know what to expect. Your blog is definitely not one of the "mommy blogs!"
I wish you and your family well. :)

Kitty said...

Hi - like Anita, I'm a visitor via Grumpy Old Ken. You have an interesting blog - I admire you enormously. Tell Marie to hang on in there, I have known agoraphobic people who have turned it all around.

Take care :-)

Ethan said...


Just wanted to mention this website to you and yours.. and everyone else:

It's about FREE and easy to learn technique called EFT, which stands for Emotional Freedom Technique.

It has not (yet) completely cleared my problems, but it sure has helped me a lot!

Stumbled upon your blog looking for more information re. agoraphobia and panic attacks. Suffering for 9 years now...recognize the experiences all too well.. :(

Currently also investigating my vitamin B12 levels which are on the low side. This tends to make one anxious as well... and I believe it could also play a role in autism..

Hope the above is in someway useful.

Kindest regards,


signs symptoms agoraphobia said...

Agoraphobia suffering leav with constant far, not wanting to be embarrassed the next time they are out public