Hi all,

Long time user that created a throw away account for this question because I’m extremely embarrassed. I know I shouldn’t be. I hope you don’t mind.

For the past year or so, I’ve experienced low grade anxiety. Nothing terribly serious, just periodic unexplained butterfly/nervousness sensations that quickly passed. I was irritable during those episodes but have never had a panic attack or anything close.

Over the past few weeks, I have been plagued by regular, intrusive thoughts about my own death. For the past few days, the thoughts are near constant and I am in a state of terror/panic about it nearly the whole day. To be super clear, I’m not talking about wishing I was dead, its more of a phobia level fear of not existing. I’ve barely slept in 3 nights because the adrenaline from the fear response is so insane; I can’t get any work done because I can’t stop thinking about it and my heart is racing; I am battling back tears the entire day and hyperventilating level crying in the middle of the night. Obviously, this is not normal or healthy and I have an appointment with my GP Monday morning and a therapist Monday afternoon and will tell them everything.

But does anyone have any experience with anything like this?? Am I having panic attacks? I thought panic attacks were brief, intense events, not 3 plus days of rolling terror. Why did it come on so suddenly? Does anyone have any suggestions about what to ask my GP? Should I ask for a referral to a psychiatrist? I’m used to talk therapy but I’m not sure I can even get the words out to work through this because I’m so panicked about this particular topic.

I know - unfortunately - that lots of women here have experience with anxiety so any insight would be much appreciated.

Thanks. Sorry so long.