Terrified of driving at night
So nice to see that there are others who have a fear of driving. It all started at age 18. Just weeks after getting my license, I was involved in a hit & run. Luckily, I got off with a warning. Then, age 20, I was involved in an accident. My car flipped upside down as a result of an impact by a car that was speeding and that I didn't see in enough time to stop. I got charged with a misdemeanor (luckily, no points were attached to it but it's a 3 strikes you're out rule).
I spent 3 years out in the state of Michigan instead of New Jersey and I did well there. The first time I drove at night on their freeway, there were flash floods. Somehow, I managed. I even drove on other freeways there.
Last year, I came back to New Jersey and lo and behold, accident # 3 - sideswipe. Luckily cute cop did not give me a ticket.
Suffice it to say 3 accidents in 10 years is not very good. It seems to me that the DMV examiner's words that I have an 80% chance of getting into an accident came true. You see, I have depth perception problems so judging distance like how far cars are from me is tricky. Ironically, my right eye is worse than left and each time I've been involved in an accident, the car has come from my left! Go figure.
Now, I just got a job offer (Thank God!) except I have to drive there. For the first time ever, a job is not accessible by our wonderful mass transit. On the one hand, this will finally force me to drive and get over my fears. On the other hand, I am TERRIFIED. I hate our Parkway but it's the shortest route. I think I'll be okay getting to work but am really nervous about coming home. Thank God daylight savings is coming in about a month! The strange thing is that I've never (knock on wood) been in an accident at night. Only during the day.
How do I get past this fear other than facing it (as I have to for this job)? I've had knots in my stomach ever since yesterday. I always feel sick to my stomach before getting behind the wheel to drive on major roads/unfamiliar areas. To my credit, I HAVE driven on the freeways twice alone in the past year and the car and I have come home in one piece. I also have driven on a major route a couple of times by myself and have managed. I'm just fearful b/c of accident #3. And I have never driven such a long distance at night before! I've only driven a 10-15 minute commute at night so this is unchartered territory.
First off, it sounds like you certainly have a justifiable reason to be anxious after what you've experienced. Of course I recommend the [URL="http://www.drivingfear.com"]Driving Fear Program[/URL], but you could also check out my blog for some great free advice and audio interviews on anxiety, some of the other posts here, or one of my free reports.