Please accept my apologies in advance because some of this may not may any sense lol.
I first started lessons 11 years ago. Due to a really bad instructor (at the time, I thought it was me who was bad), I gave up a year later. For years, I thought I couldn't do it. I went back to lessons again 4 years ago, and I have now had 6 instructors all in. 4 of these have been terrible, and I now have a really good one, who has helped me learn properly, how to drive. He's made me see that it was the previous intstructors who were the problem. He was recommended to me by my friend, who had told him all about me. He was furious when she told him how my previous driving school had treated me.
A bit of background on me...I have never had much self-confidence or belief. I grew up with a very strict and critical mother, who wanted me to be just like my older brother, who is the apple of her eye. She never really praised me much, unless I was doing what she wanted me to do, like take music lessons. I grew up with severe anxiety problems, although I didn't realise what it was until I was older. I've read somewhere that you tend to choose a partner who displays behaviour that you are used to. I don't know how true this is, but I moved in with a man who behaved just like my mother. Critical, unpredictable, he had mood swings, and played mind games just like my mother does. They both have a talent for twisting any situation so it's my fault. Thankfully, I left him, although it did mean moving back in with my parents. I have been lucky enough to meet someone who is fantastic, the total oppesite of my ex and he makes me feel relaxed and I am happier than I have ever been. We are going to get married and that should be the happy ending.
However, I have failed my driving test 6 times, and this is halting any progress in my life. My partner lives 180 miles away and my dream is to retrain, and start my own business, for which I need a car. My parents are getting old now and neither of them are in the best of health, and so for me to move to be with my man, I need to be able to drive to be with my parents at the drop of a hat, should they become ill.
Having a driving licence is the only thing I have ever wanted to achieve, and yet it's never felt so out of reach. I CAN drive a car, and I drive well. But my lack of confidence makes me find it difficult to keep my composure, so when it comes to a test I fall apart. My mind goes blank and I do stupid things, that I never do on a lesson. It seems, the harder I try, the more something somewhere is stopping me. I've had to take my theory test twice, because it ran out before I could pass. I never seem to have any luck with it, and even my instructor agrees that I've been incredibly unlucky.
I get embarrassed to admit I haven't got a licence, and I am ashamed by it. I have even been for hypnotherapy. although I only went for one session as financal reasons have, thus far, prevented me from booking another. My mother likes to tell me all about who has passed and, even from the very beginning of my lessons, she was always asking when I was booking a test. To her, it was just talking, but to me, it felt like a pressure cooker. My brother always asks "Have you not passed yet?" and likes to talk about how if you need more than 20 lessons you should just give up because you obviously don't have the confidence to do it.
My boyfriend keeps saying it doesn't matter, but I don't think he realises just how much this means to me. Yesterday, my niece passed her test. She is 7 years younger than me, and I know I should be happy for her. But I am having a hard time handling it. I've spent the last two days in tears because of it, and I know it's totally ridiculous. On my last test, I had a complete breakdown, and the examiner aborted the test altogether. That was almost a year ago, as I have been too frightened to contemplate another. I enjoy my lessons, for the most part, and don't make many mistakes when I am driving on a lesson. But my confidence is so low because I just can't seem to get through the test.
I went to book another test yesterday, only to find that my mother had been going through some papers and stuff and has lost my theory certificate. It just feels like another blow, even though I know I can call up in the morning to get the number.
I have tried beta blockers from the doctor, and Kalms and Rescue Remedy, hoping there would, at least, be a placebo effect. But nothing has worked. I don't even know what I am asking here. I guess I am looking for reassurance, or some tips on keeping my cool. I don't think I could handle another fail.
Sorry for droning on, and thanks for taking the time to read my post.