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This is a discussion on anxiety... within the Rider Wellness forums, part of the The Horse Forum Community category

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    05-30-2011, 11:24 PM

So for my whole life I have always had bad anxiety. I remember when I was little I would always get so worried about my dad going out of town. I would get myself so worked up to the point where I would vomit. Between ages 6-12 my anxiety was so bad that I would be vomiting atleast once a day. My mom told me that I wouldnt eat because I thought it would keep me from throwing up. I remember my first babysitting job I ever got I cancelled because that whole night and day before I was throwing up. Now I am seventeen and from the ages of 13-17 my anxiety was practically gone. ( I got my horse when I was 13) the only time I have absolutley no anxiety attacks is when im with my horse. With my horse I am fearless. Ill jump him 3ft bareback, gallop bareback. Anything. I really think that my horse has helped with my anxiety a whole lot. But now I havent been riding my horse as much because of him having navicular syndrome. And all the sudden my anxiety attacks have been coming back. And I don't know if it is because im not riding MY horse as much or what... but im still riding friends horses quite often and I still take weekly lessons on my trainers horse. I have no fears on them either. So I don't really think my anxiety attacks are coming back because I stopped riding my horse as much but....

I was just wondering if anyone else goes through what I am going though. Or if anyone has any other stories about what their horses have helped them get through!
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    05-31-2011, 01:16 AM
I have suffered through severe depression for the vast majority of my life, I have severe social anxiety, and still suffer from depression, however when I was with my horse, my depression seemed to vanish entirely. I was able to talk to people more easily when she was around. She I guess was my security blanket you could say. Without going into boring details that no one that doesn't know me really would want to hear, my depression was so severe that I'd often contemplated suicide and had it planned out, but, never did it, because my horse was something for me to live for. She was my life-line so to speak. When she died I had a hard time hanging on, for the first year I didn't think I would be able to be around horses ever again, but they're in my blood, taking away horse's is like taking away oxygen. I'm back into riding again through riding lessons for hunter/jumper, granted it's not the same as having my own horse, and it still hurts very much that I lost her, but I have to say being around them again is helping me through my depression again. If I wasn't able to be with my horse (in a similiar situation as you) I would be absolutely depressed, and when she foundered I was. Yes you have these other horse's you're riding, but it's not the same as if they were your own. Having your own horse, and riding someone else's is a completely different feeling. So yeah, I understand what you're going through, and it's tough as all manure. Just thought I'd rant a little to let you know that you're not alone.
    06-02-2011, 01:44 AM
I know what you guys are talking about... my horse is my "therapist" and helps me get through the hard times. I lost my horse last christmas, and it was so hard. She was my best friend and whenever I was feeling scared or sad I just had to think of her waiting for me and I would feel better. Seeing her for the last time, the look she gave me is burned into my mind. She always pretended everything was all right for me, even when she was dying. Luckily I had the fortune of meeting another horse, which I bought just this week. Since buying her I feel ten thousand times better already, although now I worry way too much about health problems. Horses have been used as therapy animals for thousands of years, I believe even the greek philosophers advised the use of horses in therapy. They are such wonderful animals.
    06-02-2011, 01:52 AM
I get stressed easily. Riding helps me relax. I guess since the horse senses my nerves I know I need to be calm.

Maybe the anxiety is coming from the worries of your horses navicular syndrome.
    06-05-2011, 11:50 AM
I am so so so sorry about the loss of your horses. I can't even imagine. I don't think the anxiety is coming from juniors navicular. He has only had it for a year and I have always had anxiety. It just flared up again but it didnt get bad when I first found out about junior's navicular. And he was doing REALLY well he was soooo sound but I didn something stupid and jumped him too high so now he is sore again. But im sorta thinking it is because I am going to be a senior and I think im worried about having to grow up.
    06-05-2011, 02:17 PM
Thinking about goriwin up and leaving my parents always saddens me and makes me worry about what I'll so for a living, how I'll do in life etc. Don't really have any advice on the matter since I'm going through a very similar situation and im far from handling it perfectly.
    06-05-2011, 06:52 PM
I know exactly what I want to do with my life I am going to be a vet. And that is one thing I will never settle for less with. Im not really sure where this sudden anxiety is coming from. Im not worried about leaving my parents because im already very independent. I pay for EVERY aspect of my horse and at one time I worked three jobs so I could keep him. So its not that I am truly worried about how I will do on my own... I think its just the fact that I have to be an adult and I have such high expectations of myself. Idk... im just thinking as I type....

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