The Last Furlong

Comments on the race of life.

Dr Claire Weekes – forgotten friend


After my third child, I went into Post Natal Depression. Wow. I had never heard of such a thing. For at least six months I hid it from everyone and battled on on my own – in ignorance – in eternal panic and fear. Eventually,  I had a suicidal thought. Not just for me – but for taking my three children with me. This one thought, gave me such a fright, I went to the family doctor and wept, and wept, and wept.

Then I found out from him, that I was NOT a freak, that “Post Natal Depression” was a recognised condition. That other people experienced it too.

That didn’t make it go away. But then I knew what was happening. So I took the pills he prescribed – Valium – at the beginning.

And I found Dr Claire Weeks books. The one that was especially helpful was called Agoraphobia. There was no Internet then, only Libraries. So until now, I have never seen Dr Weekes, or heard her talk.

Those were the days when you “pulled yourself together” and her ideas were something new. This concept of understanding your symptoms and the idea of  sensitization unlocked the beginning of my healing process.

I thought of her as a result of a comment on yesterday’s post. I have had a wonderful time surfing the net and rediscovering my old friend. Her ideas are still valid today in our age of “scientific sophistication”, psychiatrists, physiologists and Mental Health. And no – I never became addicted to Valium!

Dr Claire Weekes: On the Anxiety State

FULL MOVIE ON  Peace from Nervous Suffering



Author: Liz

I'm someone also pounding the Path, just like you.. I'm retired, going into Old Age and loving my life. I'm hoping to remain happy and well for as long as possible. Old Age is not SO bad - yet!

4 thoughts on “Dr Claire Weekes – forgotten friend

  1. Such a difficult one because it wasn’t widely recognised in my day. And you got no sympathy, so you had to get on with it.
    As it is, I doubt that I ever actually recovered. Anxiety remains my worst bug bear, so not actually depression, presuming that I know what I am talking about, and how to tell the difference.

    I am still to some degree Agoraphobic. I never go anywhere unaccompanied that I don’t have to. But living alone, I do have to on occasions. But I am not blaming anyone. It was the price I paid for this insane desire to procreate.


    • I still get panic attacks occasionally. I rush for Rescue Remedy and try to “float” through it, knowing it will go away.I was Agoraphobic for years after – but I could get through if I always sat near an exit. I still have to know where the exit is, but it’s not so essential any more. I do get jumpy if we have to leave our car miles away from where we are. The car is an extension of my house. I need to get “home” without restriction. So I’m not keen on Park and Ride. Do you have triggers for your panic/anxiety attacks? One of mine is flashing lights – flash photography, ambulances, police cars and fire engines and even road side lights that strobe. But not always – very strange.

      Does anyone actually recover to what we were before? I think we just learn to handle it. That’s recovery maybe.


      • I’m not sure if I have the terminology right. I just don’t like going out, mostly for fear of what might happen. This started when I had babies to worry about, and what might happen to them if anything happened to me, and it never quite went away.
        Something to do with a rather nasty experience with a step mother after my own mother died when I was very young, I expect. And one certainly never gets over that.


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