Getting Afraid to Drive?!?!

I've always been a good driver. No tickets. Accident in 2002 was not my fault. Now, I'm jumpy and scared that I'm missing something I should be seeing. I used to love driving over Mt Hood to see our daughter or up the gorge to Hood River. The thought of having another car right beside me freaks me out. Now, I get nervous just thinking of getting behind the wheel.

I wonder if it will get better? Anyone else have this problem?


Hi Kitty, Yes I am feeling exactly like you. I have been driving for 45 years, no tickets etc. Now, I forget to get off the right off ramp of the freeway and sometimes forget where I'm even going. It really scares me, sometimes I just feel like I'm losing my mind. While at a stop light I look everywhere so I will know what's around. My biggest worry is running thru a red light. I have trouble backing up or parrelel (sp) parking as my neck and shoulders are in such pain. I know it's the Fibro as it's even hard to concentrate while driving. I'm moving from So. CA to Mesa, AZ in a few weeks and I've already told people that I can not drive it alone. Nobody seems to be concerned about it. I'm afraid I might fall asleep. I don't know what I'm going to do, but will not drive by myself that far. You are not alone, Tawny

Do you think it's our lack of confidence? I know I'm not confident at all anymore. Seems to have changed my coping skills and cognitive skills.

Tawny, don't drive it. If you feel you can't, you probably shouldn't. Can someone go with you? I don't seem to have the problem if someone is with me. Weird.

Hi there, yes my confidence has change significantly, especially with driving. My coping and cognitive skills are going down hill, fast, therefore I really do not have much self-confidence. My big problem is that all family and friends don't believe in Fibro with all my symptoms, so I just keep to myself how I feel and the awful pain I am in all the time, Gentle hugs, Tawny


This must be awful for you.

If you feel really anxious about driving speak to your doctor, Please don't drive if you feel you are having problems, it is so dangerous for you and other road users. You would never forgive yourself if you had a bad accident and someone was injured.

You could try explaining to others how you feel and point out the dangers, they might then get the message.nn

I do too. I feel as if I cant process whats coming at me. especially if there is an on/off ramp that goes in a circle.

I just take it slow. I have made some mistakes in driving, and praise God the other person caught it and slowed.

I dont know why we have this issue, but I can tell you that I for sure cant stop driving.

I get super nervous too. I have not been in any at fault accidents, honestly I have been in several accidents where I was stopped and people plowed into me like I was invisible.

I have a lot of visual fatigue and cannot drive long distances. If I have to head to the beach or to Seattle I have to add travel time to stop and rest my eyes from the road.

Usually I try to get a pal to come with me. Even as I type now I have blurred vision from fatigue. I test at 20/15 but when my symptoms flare up I test at 20/60

They can not do glasses since it varies based on fatigue.

i had an accident in 2011 i flipped over a guard rail afer loosing control i was ok except a minor concussion and some mild brusing but can not drive in the snow now scared to drive on the highway had to quit my last job cause the axiety was too much everytime i pass the spot in which i wrecked guard rails scare the hell out of me i completetly understnd ur pain

Maybe we should re-think driving when we're having a bad day or a particularly foggy day. I am trying not to. I know the problem is we don't know in advance. I have a few friends I think I can call on when I need a ride. Living in a rural area, I'm several miles from any public transportation and grocery shopping, doctors, etc. I'm really fortunate that my closest neighbor is a good friend and most of all she understands my me/cfs and fm, or tries to anyway.

annann, thanks for your input. I see my doc next week and will talk to him. I agree, if we don't feel like safe drivers we shouldn't be on the road.

Today, I only have to drive one mile, to my church to help with a project. I can do

i also have issues to where i hit a bump in the road and freak out and think i hit someone and at times see spots forget where i am going ect this is becoming more frequent

Lyra, you may have put a name to the problem. Visual fatigue. I think that's a good way to describe it to my doc. Maybe the nervousness comes as a result of that. Hmmm...very interesting.

i have same prob my husband tells me to get over my accident my mother in law told me when i was in the hospital not to tell them about my fibro cause they wont take me seriously but my gi told me thats bs cause fibro is being proven to be more real everyday wish she was there to hear that but its fusterating when ppl closest to us dont get it its bad enough outsiders point and when they do it i wanna break there finger (not really but it is annoying and hurts.

blueeyedgirl, you be careful. Try not to drive on the most anxious and/or foggy days. We would hate for you to have an accident.

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Hi L-Kitty,

Yes, I do suffer from this too. Two times I've actually bumped into parked cars as I was parking. Fortunately there was no damage but yiy yiy! It was scary! Thanks a lot, fibro!!! I hope to get disability soon so as not to have to worry about this. Sometimes I also find myself looking at a green light and thinking I have to stop. I get confused when I never used to. I don't like feeling this way and wish that I could change it.

I don't know if you'll have any problems like this. It's wise of you, L-Kitty, to think ahead on this subject and consider how things could be with the fibro. I guess that you could ask your family to keep an eye out on your driving and let you know if they think you are having problems and should consider not driving.

Yeah, that's a scary concept, isn't it? Like you, I loved to drive and would go all around. I don't dare do it anymore. Not alone, that's for sure.

Fibro is tough on us. It can really take a toll. But as hard as the truth may be, at some point you and I may need to give up driving.

Gentle hugs, shared tears and a lot of understanding on the topic,


Awwww, Tawny, that's sad! It's got to be so, so hard to go through every single day without someone who believes you and is helping you through this. No wonder your confidence is flagging. You deserve to know that you're okay, you're just suffering from a chronic pain illness.

I do find though that my coping and cognitive skills are not what they were even a year ago and it bothers me. As I said, I'm hoping to get disability soon, so I can quit driving. If you guys are doing the same thing, I can certainly understand and sympathize.

Understanding hugs,


I am not a driver but I have always been a very hyper aware pedestrian...Fibro Fog has gotten in my way and now lately I am feeling very similar to you. Although I am not behind the wheel and I certainly pray that I am not going to walk into any cars, moving and/or not moving, I am feeling more anxiety whenever I am walking out about on the streets. I live in an area that is known for its not so wonderful drivers. To put it lightly, if your car is really jacked up, you fit right in and if your car is brand new and you are driving like a loon because your car will soon be jacked up, you fit right in.

I have noticed that my head often feels uneven and when I walk I feel like I am always rearing to one side. I also feel like the fibro fog makes me feel like I am walking in a surreal bubble and I am very worried that I will be hit. I have found myself not able to keep myself in a straight line and I have to correct my pace. Feeling so disconnected to what is going on around me and knowing that my head and body feels like a car in dire need for a wheel alignment is very scary. I leave home and walk and pray. I get so much anxiety when I know that I am leaving my home still in my fog. I definitely feel your angst. Is there anyone else who feels this head unevenness?

My weekly email from has a few paragraphs on driving with fibro.

thank you for this link. This article is right, I cannot believe that my average fine gauge knit sweater hurts my arm! To say the least for my winter coat! My clothes hurt my body! How do you walk into the dr and tell them my clothes hurt? Showering is an entire different labor itself. Sometimes just the anxiety of my thinking that I may fall and really be done puts me on a stool because I get dizzy and disoriented, and I don't take them that hot because it hurts. It is so clear that fibro changes our lives in so many ways, from how we comb our hair, the clothes we wear, how and when we sleep, to driving a car.

Oh Tawny!! I can't believe that no one is concerned about you driving alone to Arizona! Believe me, if I was near by, I would go with you and fly back! Seriously! I do hope you will find someone to help you with your move! I am very concerned for you. Please keep me posted on whether you can find someone to go with you?? Hugs and love, Laurie

Hi L-Kitty,

I went through PTSD from the last car accident, worked with a really great Psychologist who helped me get back behind the wheel, but I still don't like to be in big city traffic, or treacherous roads of any kind.

After that third rear end accident, I could no longer drive my Ranger, could not push the clutch in and hold it. I had specifically wanted a truck, a 4 wheel drive, because I could no longer spend the time, especially the effort, to 'dig it out of snow', I wanted to go right through it. The impact of the accident bent that bumper the whole way to the ground, it was repaired, but I just couldn't handle it, my Chiropractor told my husband, my days of driving a clutch were over, so he started going to dealerships and coming home with different cars. Some were very high end, luxury cars, but I could not stand the seats, I must have sat in 50 different cars and finally a new salesman at the Chrysler dealership brought a Pacifica down. The seats were a perfect fit, the passenger and driver side seats adjusted electrically from the door, so required no effort, and it has independent racing suspension.

As great as that car is, and it is now nearly 6 years old, it has only about 22k in mileage on it, and it was taken to TN at least once. It has 6 bucket seats, 5 of them will fold down, so it is very accommodating.

As great as the car is, and as grateful as I am to have it, riding in the car just KILLS ME!! I still get freaked out if I hear screeching tires, or someone gets too close, but I am much better than I had been.

I dread the thought of having to go into Baltimore or DC for a surgeon, but my Internist says the surgery is too delicate to be done locally, and I agree, am already really concerned thinking I will have to ride all that way home after surgery. I already imagine 5 seats down, and me laying face down to get home.

After hearing your story of your ride home from your daughters, I think you will feel better if you are taken and picked up in the future! We just have to make adjustments, you know?

Sending a big hug,


BTW, they no longer make the Pacifica, but Dodge makes a car almost identical, I'll see if I can find it for you.

Couldn't find the Dodge, but here is he Pacifica, I love it!

It rides like my big Oldsmobiles, I had many of those big beautiful cars!