I've had a driving phobia..

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posted on Feb, 6 2007 @ 02:48 AM
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I love cars. I've always thought cars are cool. I'm quite a tall dude, and my first choice of car was totally stupid (an old '84 Honda Civic), far too small with zero leg room and I was cramped up and almost immediately sold it. Was useless to try and learn in.

Now, I'm 32 years old, and want to buy a new car, to learn in, and drive everywhere.. and I want it to be a decent car this time. Now, here's the problem -

I'm scared. I'm scared I'm going to crash into something. To run over a flock of schoolchildren. All that constant looking around the full 360 degrees thru the mirrors and windows.. the thought of it, freaks me out. The open road, a lone highway, does not worry me so much. But getting around a busy street, could well be a hell of a mission.

Does anyone have any advice for this 'late-bloomer'? Is this paranoia justified? Or have I left it too late?




posted on Feb, 6 2007 @ 03:52 AM
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Get a driving instructor,I`m sure you would have them in NZ.

Is there any special reason which has stopped you (other than your concerns in your post) from getting or being allowed to get a license?

Once you get some lessons,you will feel more competent and more than likely your phobia as you put it will go away.



posted on Feb, 6 2007 @ 03:53 AM
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Everybody is scared/nervous when they first drive on busy roads.

You probably should consider taking a drivers school/course. The instructors usually have a brake on the passenger side of the car to help you in any "panicky" situations you might get into. They'll also be an extra set of eyes in the car while you get used to driving in traffic and keeping an eye on what you need to around you.



posted on Feb, 6 2007 @ 10:41 PM
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Originally posted by gps777
Get a driving instructor,I`m sure you would have them in NZ.

Is there any special reason which has stopped you (other than your concerns in your post) from getting or being allowed to get a license?

Once you get some lessons,you will feel more competent and more than likely your phobia as you put it will go away.



Special reason.. well being an ex-uni student, I've done most of my travelling by foot (get to see more of the countryside / babes that way hahah). Other than that, I have just used public transport - bus or taxi, to get around. I get to work at the moment sharing petrol costs with workmates. Even though I love cars, just never occured to be a major priority til now. Now I have some savings, I feel now's the time to do it. Always been more into my music and guitars and computer rather than cars too. Y'know, lazy slacker etc.. but the phobia is the real barrier.

I did have some lessons with an instructor some years ago. While they were helpful, I found them too expensive to carry on with it, and whatever knowledge I gained I soon lost as I didn't have a car at the time, just the instructor's car. My parents wouldn't teach me - mum's like waaay too nervous to set foot inside the vehicle with me at the helm!

Thanks for the encouragement, I'll be hopefully looking at cars for sale this weekend, for possible purchase!



posted on Feb, 6 2007 @ 11:35 PM
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When I first started it was in the development where I lived, it was dirt roads and hardly any traffic, it was on backroads. Driving on those roads (if there are any around where you live)lets you get the feel of how to control the vehicle, for example, how hard to step on the gas and brakes and stay in control of the car and get it to go the speed you want and stop when you want without all the other distractions like a lot of traffic.

Once you are comfortable with that, it is a lot easier to get on busier roads with other vehicles.

I taught an old girlfriend of mine, a long time ago. (she was only 16 at the time, I was 17, a long time ago), how to drive a car I had ( the car was a four speed with a Hurst shifter) on backroads where there was no traffic. She had a car that had an automatic transmission and said she could never drive a clutch. It only took her about two weeks for her to get the feel of driving the car and using a clutch.

Find a friend willing to spend the time and help you drive on backroads or developments where there's little traffic or where they haven't built any homes yet.

I'm sure you can do it. But find a place you can practice driving, where there isn't much traffic. It's just a matter of feeling comfortable driving and practice.

As the old saying goes "Practice makes perfect'.

You've got to have the "can do" mentality.



posted on Feb, 7 2007 @ 12:15 AM
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Originally posted by RiotComing

Now I have some savings, I feel now's the time to do it. Always been more into my music and guitars and computer rather than cars too. Y'know, lazy slacker etc.. but the phobia is the real barrier.

I understand better now thanks.

As Keyhole said earlier driving instructors are the way to go,because they have dual controls.If your phobia is a major concern to you,its best to get an instructor.Though taking a car out in the dirt will teach you a lot also.

Seeing that you have saved for a car,use a portion of it to get as many lessons from an instructor as possible,to then get your license and then if need be save a bit more again for the car.

I think its a healthy concern you have,but its not healthy if your petrified,I think you`ll do just fine and get on top of it in no time.

So,all the best with it and let us know how you get on,across the ditch.



posted on Feb, 10 2007 @ 09:46 PM
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how tall are you? My dad is 6'5" and he drove a civic for years.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 11:47 PM
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Organizations that will fill you with the confidence that you currently lack on driving. They will teach you how to drive like you are the limo to the president. That is if you got the $ anything is possible.



posted on Feb, 17 2007 @ 05:21 AM
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Actually I know what you are talking about as I also have a severe driving phobia and have quit driving. I used to turn around and go back if I ran over a stick, somehow I would convince myself it was a person, I once called the police to see if there was a hit and run accident reported on the road I had just driven over, sure that I had hit someone because the road was covered in pot holes. My kids used to make jokes about their crazy Mom who demanded to know if every little noise when she was driving was someone she had hit.

I am betting the nightmare was not the car but the terror and awful feelings you suffered after driving, you probably chose such a small car because you felt safer from hitting someone in a small car.

I went to counseling to be able to drive, the minute my kids grew up and no longer needed me to drive I did not go back and renew my license. There are meds out that might help, but I definitely would try and overcome this by the use of therapy first.

It's great that you live where you can use public transportation, here in my area you actually have to drive for an hour to access such things, I live out in the country so this phobia has really limited me and made life very difficult. Good Luck!



posted on Mar, 1 2007 @ 10:17 PM
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Originally posted by phantom702
how tall are you? My dad is 6'5" and he drove a civic for years.

I am 6'3". The Civic was a little '84 model, a 2 door hatch. Very poky.

Anyway, thank you all for your kind and helpful responses and encouragement. I have actually bought a car a couple of days ago ('96 Ford Laser GLXI) and will be heading out for my first lessons over the coming weekend. I will indeed find some backroads, and get some confidence with a friend before moving on to an instructor (which I WILL do at some stage). The car is an automatic and seems to be an easy car to drive (from a passenger's view at the moment). I want to be relaxed and to keep the driving side as simple as possible so I can concentrate on the road itself.

I'm probably going to be nervous as hell, but I am excited nonetheless!



posted on Mar, 1 2007 @ 10:48 PM
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Good luck with the driving.

My Mother didn't drive until she was around your age.
She used a driving school (because Dads, should NEVER teach MOMS how to drive, EVER.) A couple of decades later now..She's a great driver.





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