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HOW CAN I HELP MY SIL.....Learn drving the car???

Discussion in 'Relationship With In-Laws' started by Sunny3, Jan 14, 2010.

  1. Sunny3

    Sunny3 New IL'ite

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    My SIL, brother's wife, lost her dad in a road accident when she was 10yrs old. They are 3 siblings and she is the youngest. Both her siblings are in India. SIL lost her mom 4 yrs back due to breast cancer. She was most attached affectionately to her mom.
    Now, brother and SIL are here in US for past 10yrs. SIL does not drive since she never got her license. We tried so many times to help her get over the anxiety and nervousness but all in vain. She even went to a therapist here and also in India. Nothing is working. Day by day the fear is increasing. The moment she sits behind the wheel she gets panicky. She passed her written and got a temp. permit and brother sits with her when she drives. He says she is fairly good but when it comes to taking a road test she fails. She says I fear when someone other than your brother sits with me.

    I feel so sad for her. I want her to learn driving since then she can go out shopping on her own. She is a stay home mom and I really want her to have her time going to beauty parlors or friends places. I talked to her so many times and explain to her but I am no psychology expert so don't know how to get it to her that she CAN DO IT!! She too is understanding and appreciates my efforts. She also wants to do it but it is her panic attacks that don't allow her. Other than this she is a healthy woman in 30s and mom of 2 lovely kids and a lovable SIL/DIL. I like my SIL very much. She is next to my mom to me.
    HOW CAN I HELP HER???

    Sunitha
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2010
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  2. Manaswini08

    Manaswini08 Bronze IL'ite

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    That is so sweet of you. Seems like you're both very lucky to have each other.

    Would therapy help her? Maybe she can talk it out with a therapist. When its a family member we tend to steer them into a particular path. A therapist on the other hand will be more objective. Good luck.
     
  3. Sunny3

    Sunny3 New IL'ite

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    Thanks Manaswini. Yeah, we are both lucky. And I feel, after reading so many issues here in this forum and hearing from friends and relatives how some SILs and DILs can be, that we are very fortunate to have her as our SIL. She is very understanding,supportive and encouraging.
    Infact, my mom takes her to be more of a daughter than me....:bonk for her patience and loving nature.

    She went to the therapist but brother says it does not help her. Even she went to Isha yoga sessions (though not consistent in practice) but don't know why of all the things driving is getting to be such a challenge for her.
     
  4. arthidiva

    arthidiva Silver IL'ite

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    so sweet of your Sunny. you seem to have a wonderful SIL too. God bless you both. Keep this relationship going girl!
     
  5. hopefulforbest

    hopefulforbest New IL'ite

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    oh lucky u guys. both of u are so lucky.
    i faced that tension while driving. tell her to start driving and you sit by her. talk encouragingly, soothingly.
    tell her to have a candy or something sweet. it creates hyper and eases anxiety. start by driving small distance. just the back street. i started driving 2 yrs ago. before i got my permit i was in an accident and to this day i feel very anxious while driving. my hands start to sweat.but continue to keep trying. we cant let go of things. slowly increase pace to nearby places like mall. its quite common to get nervous and anxious while doing it.
    let her take some driving classes. the driving school people are good at this kind of things than us. if she take a few classes probably she will get rid of her fear.Good luck
     
  6. smart_soul

    smart_soul Bronze IL'ite

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    That is very sweet of you and your SIL Sunitha. It's not so often that we see such a friendly relationship. God bless you both.
     
  7. tashidelek2002

    tashidelek2002 IL Hall of Fame

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    You mentioned that she is having panic attacks. If they are real panic attacks, that can be medicated until she gets out of it with the help of a psychiatrist (MD with special training in psychotherapy). If she went to other types of counselors they cannot medicate so please have her check with a psychiatrist.
     
  8. Sunny3

    Sunny3 New IL'ite

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    Thanks arthidiva, My SIL is one of a kind and I thank God for that. She is like my friend/sister.


    Thanks Hopeful.....I never knew candy can do that!

    Thank you Smartsoul.

    Thanks Tashidelek. I forgot to mention that she had MVP or mitral valve prolapse and she is taking medicines for that. But other than that she is healthy. She does not show signs of panicky in the way she does things in day to day life. She is just normal.
    Does this MVP have anything to do with panicky?
    The therapist said there is something called 'fight or flight'.
    And she needs to fight the fear herself....he says.
    She needs to be consistent as that is the key to fight this. Like, driving for atleast 30 mins each day without anyone besides her even though if it is just around the block. Eventually, she will get comfortable, he says,
    But even to drive short distances without anyone besides her she needs license and that is not happening. Hence, the problem back to square one!


    Sunitha.
     
  9. ars

    ars Platinum IL'ite

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    Why not start in a high school parking lot on weekends. She can drive with out any one sitting next to her.
    Also, sign up for a driving lessons. They teach in their own car and passenger side will also have controls so the teacher can use in case of emergency. It might help her having a teacher sit next to her than your brother. In turn she won't panic when she takes the test and a stranger is next to her.
     
  10. tashidelek2002

    tashidelek2002 IL Hall of Fame

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    Sunitha:
    from your response I am still thinking she should have at least an opinion from a psychiatrist on this as it would be a real shame if she can be medically treated but doesn't get it. I used to work with a woman who got panic attacks. She was normal about 99% of the time but when they would hit she was beside herself. Now medications have been developed to help get rid of this but she went through a lot years ago. My opinion is if she had been able to eradicate this on her own she would have done it already. Best of luck.
     

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