September 19, 2003

Blame it on Rio

I think it's natural for humans to try and place blame for a certain event. For example, when I am having a panic attack, such as at this moment, I always try and assess what could be to blame for it. I can't seem to accept that there doesn't have to be a reason for it to happen. Even though I know it, I don't really believe that nothing "caused" it. It seems so unlikely. Didn't they teach us cause-and-effect in school? Surely there must be some "cause" causing this effect? But that's the trap that resulted in my being agorophobic and housebound for so many years--blaming the situation I was in for causing the attack, and so avoiding the situation, until the point I couldn't leave the house. So while I know there was nothing I could have done differently to prevent this attack, I still am trying to assess blame. I shouldn't have eaten fried chicken for dinner. I shouldn't have worried so much about Hurricane Isabel. I shouldn't have smoked so much while I was blogging. It is extremely difficult to accept that I have no control over panic disorder. That I have eaten fried chicken before without having a panic attack. That other hurricanes have arrived in America without my having a panic attack. That I have smoked too much on a particular day without having a panic attack. I want there to be an identifiable cause, so that I can avoid that cause and never have another panic attack ever again.
I'm calming down a little. I have learned that distraction works wonders, and checking for typos is a good distraction.
But I still want there to be a "cause" so there can be a "cure." Or at least, prevention...

Posted by Susie at September 19, 2003 02:35 AM | TrackBack

I think you should blame Tiger for threatening to quit his blog. Undoubtedly this was the cause of much angst.

Posted by: Jennifer at September 19, 2003 04:10 AM

Feel free to blame me sweetie. That might get you a raise too, because that'll make you one of my bosses. :) Hang in there!

Posted by: Ted at September 19, 2003 06:52 AM

As you state it is difficult, but 'acceptance' IS the first part of the cure.

Posted by: jim at September 19, 2003 08:56 AM

Yar, swabbin' t'deck be good for what ails ya, lad! Or wuz that hangin' from the yardarm? Avast, let me be'a a takin' 'nother sip o't'rum.

Posted by: Tiger at September 19, 2003 09:22 AM

My college room-mate had 'em, too. Of course, I suggested drinking heavily but that didn't seem to work too well.

Posted by: Blackfive at September 19, 2003 09:54 AM

First, what exactly is a panic attack? I'm guessing it's probably self-explanatory from the name, but...?

Second, I think the blame rests squarely with the me for sending over the, uh, "emergency burn response team".

Third, are you going to be able to do the New Blog Showcase pick for HQ?

Last, LOVE the "Music to Blend Puppies By" sidebar thing. I've got tears in my eyes from suppressing laughter.

Posted by: Harvey at September 19, 2003 10:58 AM

This is really interesting. I tend to try to overrationalize things that really bother me, and they fall into two categories.

1) I COMPLETELY know the cause of something. That's much simpler.

2) I am in some sort of funk (varying levels of despair) and there are probably six causes to it, and I'm not sure which weighs the heaviest, and maybe two and three cause each other and are fighting for my anguished attention.

I'm not sure I've ever had a panic attack. There are times I feel pretty fragile and uncertain, but I can usually kick those in the proverbial ass with some physical activity or channel them with some writing.

I hope your writing helps.


Posted by: hln at September 19, 2003 10:10 PM

I have a friend whose fault it is. She confessed to everything from the Peleponnesian War through to New Coke, I think.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at September 20, 2003 06:55 AM
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