Sara Benincasa’s struggle with panic disorder began with childhood anxiety attacks and intensified until, at the age of 21, she developed full-on agoraphobia. Her fears were so severe she was afraid to leave her own bedroom. She sank into suicidal depression. Garbage piled up against the wall as her appetite for food—and life—slipped away. Finally, one day two college friends contacted Sara’s family out of fear for her safety and state of mind. Here is an excerpt detailing when Sara’s parents have first been notified that their daughter was dealing with some very real problems.
“Hello?” I said hoarsely.
“Hi, Ra-Ra!” chirped one voice.
“Hey, Ra!” boomed another.
It was my parents. Keep reading »
What’s makeup agoraphobia? Well, listen to this. A new study has concluded that one-third of all women refuse to leave the house without wearing makeup. In other words, they can’t go out without painting their face first. Which is kind of shocking. Not only that, but more than a third of the 3,000 women polled speculated that had they not been wearing makeup when they met, their significant other wouldn’t have gone for them. Sad truth: I’m a bit of a makeup agoraphobe myself. Unless the kitchen is on fire, I’m disinclined to go out without mascara, some cover-up, and blush. What about you? [Daily Mail] Keep reading »
In retrospect, it was all inevitable. Not the details, like the time I grew so afraid of using the toilet that I urinated in cereal bowls in my apartment, or the time I collapsed outside a filling station in Sicily and told someone I couldn’t remember how to breathe. Those specific situations weren’t predictable, of course. But looking back, I can see how much sense it makes that I have panic attacks. Keep reading »
Sara Benincasa, who you may remember as The Frisky’s hilarious “Gossip Girl” recapper, is a host on Sirius’ Cosmo Radio, a Sarah Palin impersonator, and a comedian currently performing her one-woman show in New York City. “Agorafabulous” is all about Sara’s experiences with agoraphobia, an anxiety disorder that, at one point, kept her confined to her bedroom. I talked to Sara about her disorder and why she decided to write a comedy show about her experience. Keep reading »