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Staying at home

(12 Posts)
Valels Sat 27-Aug-22 10:07:52

I visited a friend on Wednesday, she told me she hasn't been out of the house since the start of the pandemic (apart from 2 trips to hospital in an ambulance). She doesn't even like to
go out into the garden. She does have health problems and was shielding during the pandemic.
I offered to take her out in the car on Saturday, nothing too exciting, just a short ride so she could see that there's still a world out there that doesn't consist of ambulances and people in NHS uniform. She's also under the impression that the shops are still quite empty and everyone's still wearing a mask.
She contacted me last night to say she couldn't go, she hadn't slept for 2 nights worrying about going out. We cancelled the trip because I wasn't going to force her to go.
I really don't know what, if anything, I can do for her.
Does anyone know of other people in this situation? I assume I just leave her until she's ready to go out, if she ever is. Any advice please?

Baggs Sat 27-Aug-22 10:11:05

Collateral damage of the excessive fear-mongering. Poor woman. Sorry, I've no advice. It's very sad.

MerylStreep Sat 27-Aug-22 10:14:22

I couldn’t agree more, Baggs

Liz46 Sat 27-Aug-22 10:24:02

She will be getting weaker. I had to shield and my legs in particular suffered.

It was kind of you to offer to take her out and I hope that she can overcome her fears.

We went out for a meal on Thursday and it was as though covid hadn't happened. Everything was back to normal.

PoppyFlower Sat 27-Aug-22 10:24:13

Hi, I'm so sorry your friend is in this state. I had similar fears following a breakdown rather than the lockdowns, but the fallout is still the same, agoraphobia. Might I suggest you try a short walk from her house, or if you can, walk from her house to a pub with a beer garden or cafe with outside chairs. Babysteps!

PoppyFlower Sat 27-Aug-22 10:30:46

PS, if she has mobility issues, a drive to a local establishment. If she sees her immediate local area is safe that's a good place to start. Take care.

Callistemon21 Sat 27-Aug-22 10:38:36

Valels I presume she's had all her vaccinations so that should have made her feel more confident.

As PoppyFlower says, it could be that she has developed agoraphobia, poor woman. She may not be the only person this has happened to, most people I know who were shielding are resuming more normal life again but not all might feel able to.

She may need to see her GP for help to try to overcome this.

ShazzaKanazza Sat 27-Aug-22 10:39:52

Baggs I totally agree with you. I feel so sorry for this lady. It’s upsetting what has happened. Mental health has shot through the floor?
Valels you are so lovely to try to help her. I can’t give you advise. I think just try small steps but you can only do so much x

MawtheMerrier Sat 27-Aug-22 10:55:46

This is so sad - her life is passing her by, restricted to her own 4 walls, not by choice but the fear of the risks outside. She may have had incipient agoraphobia anyway, aggravated by lockdown. If I am being honest, I think many of us have hesitated on occasion, whether at risk or not.
But the fact remains there are still some people terrified of face to face interaction, who still disinfect or quarantine their shopping and will wear a mask at all times.
That has to be “fed” by Project Fear and it is now coming to light how many of the courses of action advocated by SAGE and imposed by the government with the force of law, were not only unnecessary, ineffective and as we are seeing now, disastrous to the mental health of many of us as well as disastrous to the economy.
And we are paying for that now.

Grandyma Sat 27-Aug-22 11:20:00

I can empathise with your friend. During Lockdown my home became my “safe place” I still feel anxious when leaving home. Not about Covid but just generally not comfortable with being away from home. I have been away on a 2 week family holiday abroad recently and I found it incredibly daunting. I do try to fight it but it’s not easy. I agree that baby steps are the best way forward for your friend. ?

aggie Sat 27-Aug-22 11:28:35

I would visit and take a picnic to have in the garden and see if your company sitting , not too near her helps

kircubbin2000 Sat 27-Aug-22 11:50:30

This has happened to me too. I was just getting over the covid panic when I fell and now am a bit immobile. Several of my friends have likewise been incapacitated so there is not the incentive to visit them. My younger cousin who is 60 has not been out at all and has refused her jabs.
My health visitor has invited me to a 'falls prevention' keep fit class so I hope this will help me get out again.