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Hello! My name is Lisa. I am 40 years old, married, and have 3 children ages 11, 6, and 4. When I was asked to join an e-mail support group, the list owner asked me to tell about someone who inspired me the most. I immediately thought of my Aunt Pat, and that is why I made a memorial page dedicated to her. I have suffered from chronic illnesses most of my life, and it is my hope that I can share the empathy and understanding my Aunt Pat gave to me with other people who are suffering from these illnesses.




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Throughout most of my life, I have suffered from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Panic Disorder and Social Phobia.  I took Prozac for several years. The Prozac and psychotherapy I received changed my thinking to the point where I was able to leave my home and work full-time with only occasional panic attacks and small doses of Xanax. However, after I had been taking Prozac for about seven years and the amount of stress in my daily life increased, I realized Prozac was not blocking my obsessive thoughts about contamination nor my compulsive hand washing and its accompanying emetophobia. I was having panic attacks as frequently as I had before I started taking Prozac. At that point, I saw a psychiatrist who informed me that Prozac stops working after someone has been taking it for a while.




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Through the Parkview Publishing website, I met other people who had suffered with IBS most of their lives. Some of them said they had also had panic attacks, and even emetophobia. As a result of surfing the Web, I discovered the site of the Anxiety Disorders Association of America.  I found a therapist listed on there. I cannot tell you what a tremendous amount of relief I felt as I talked with her and discovered she had also had IBS, panic attacks, and emetophobia.  She said the only way to completely treat all of the above problems was to realize that it is all part of a bigger picture known as Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. She said she was certified to treat Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and that she was completely recovered from it. Through several sessions with her, using the cognitive therapy approach, along with a change in my medication regimen, I realized I could be given the tools to stop the merry-go-round in my mind.

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