Shauna Rae, star of TLC I’m Shauna Rae, opened about experiencing panic attacks. Here’s what she shared about navigating those challenging moments.
We get a glimpse of Shauna’s experience with panic attacks while shopping at a costume store. During the first season, her oldest sister Tara decided to stop by and visit family, so they decided to dress up for Halloween.
Shauna can’t find an outfit that fits her small stature, so she’s frustrated. She panics after the salesman puts a mask on her. “The costumes he suggested didn’t fit and I felt very uncomfortable,” says Shauna. “Because it didn’t fit perfectly or reasonably perfectly until I knew I could edit it and get comfortable, I had a panic attack.”
Shauna goes to the back of the store to calm down and her mother comforts her. Shauna’s mom says Patty some people might think she shouldn’t comfort her daughter, but she feels differently. She says she just wants to help her daughter during these times.
“I would suppose some people might say I comfort her at times of panic to coddle her, but I think if she’s in a stressful situation and I can help, why shouldn’t I? DO that?” says Patty during the show.
TIED TOGETHER: Kate Middleton and Prince William encourage people to take care of their mental health during surprise radio appearance
Shauna says her panic attacks started when she was about 12 or 14 years old. She believes her panic attacks were triggered by feeling alone and feeling like there was no one “in her corner.”
Shauna says life has been tough for her because she never felt understood. She feels her panic attacks have a lot to do with feeling misunderstood. “I think my panic attacks just happen because I’m afraid of not being understood,” says Shauna. “Then I just panic about not being understood in a certain situation and rethink it.”
Shauna says that she tries to manage her panic attacks by getting rid of whatever is causing her feelings of panic. She also practices breathing exercises and tries to focus on the positive.
During a family dinner, Shauna realizes how she’s feeling. She wants to move out of her childhood home and become independent, but her parents don’t approve of the idea. When they ask why she wants to move out, she’s honest about her feelings. Shauna’s father says she has so many people around who just want to help and protect her, but she feels suffocated.
“I’m a codependent,” Shauna tells her father. “I get rejected for who I am all the time. And I feel worthless every day of my life.” Her father assures her that she is not worthless. Shauna says seeing things from her parents’ perspective makes her realize how vulnerable she is and it puts her “in a really bad place mentally.” She is uncomfortable seeing how much she needs your help.
To get help: In the US and Canada, text the Crisis Text Line at 741741 to reach a Crisis Advisor.
Keep following Sheiresa Ngo Twitter.