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Has anyone passed their driving test after 80+ hours of lessons?

(21 Posts)
MeadowHay Fri 14-Feb-20 19:20:49

I posted recently about learning to drive. I am in my twenties and learning to drive a manual car. I am autistic and also have Generalised Anxiety Disorder. I knew I would find it hard and not sure I would be able to learn. My instructor taught DH and is really nice and helpful. I have had over 20 hours of lessons and I have made progress but very slowly. He said based off my driving so far he would estimate I would need around 80 hrs of lessons to be test ready. We are a low income family and the financial drain is huge. I am feeling really demotivated and I don't know whether to continue or not.

Is there anyone who was slow to learn who finally passed their test after 80+hrs of lessons who can motivate me? sad

AGoodPodcastAndANiceCupOfTea Fri 14-Feb-20 19:38:54

I had 76 and then switched to an automatic and had a further 21 before taking my test during which I why the wrong way around a one way system!!!!!!! I did manage to pass on my second attempt in an automatic so it is possible. The thing that got me through my test was getting a car and having friends drive me around for hours in days car to practice.
I will add to this though that I never enjoyed driving, it always stresses me out and I eventually sold by car and used the money to relocate to a city where I no longer need to drive - driving isn't for everyone but if it will make your life better if you stick with it you will eventually get there.

TheHumansAreDefinitelyDead Fri 14-Feb-20 19:41:55

My driving instructor told me similar

So I changed instructor and also did automatic instead of manual

Any particular reason you are learning to drive manual?

LilyPond2 Fri 14-Feb-20 19:57:44

Not 80 hours of paid for lessons, but I started to learn age 17 and once I'd had some lessons I went out for driving practice with Mum or Dad in the car too, and I think I would have had more than 80 hours on the road by the time I passed my test (on my third attempt). I would say as long as you are making progress, keep at it.

Bonbonchance Fri 14-Feb-20 20:49:20

I must’ve done 80+ hours, took me till my 5th test to pass even though I was fine until I took the test. I learned in my 30s and made steady progress but a while to be consistent and to know what to do in all situations. Got there in the end!

nothingcanhurtmewithmyeyesshut Fri 14-Feb-20 20:53:32

I had hundreds of hours and more tests than I'm willing to admit to. Every test was basically a 40 minute panic attack. I eventually passed in an automatic and then passed a manual test a year later.

MrsCasares Fri 14-Feb-20 21:04:42

I had 250 paid driving lessons before I passed my test (3rd time). Have been driving for over 30 years now. Passed in a manual, but drive an automatic now.

Do yourself a favour, ditch the clutch and gears.

MeadowHay Fri 14-Feb-20 21:08:16

Thanks everyone.

I wanted to learn automatic but there are no instructors with availability in my area. I was on multiple waiting lists for over 18m before I started my manual lessons.

It's deffo not my instructor. He's absolutely lovely and taught DH who passed on his first attempt with him as an instructor (was his second test but he had two terrible ones before this one). He had another autistic student too who is on around 60+ hours of lessons and not test ready yet. DH's cousin has done somewhere between 80 and 100 hours of lessons with a different instructor (who I can't vouch for like) and still isn't test ready, he is also autistic.

If it wasn't for the money I honestly wouldn't care if it took me 100+ hrs it's just the financial drain feels so hard to justify.

Also thanks to PP who made the distinction between driving hours and lesson hours. There is nobody who can take me out for practice between sessions unfortunately. Therefore I'm talking total driving hours before test.

I don't think automatic would actually make that much difference. I am still stalling sometimes but that's definitely anxiety related, I only ever do it if there's traffic behind me!! If there's no one around I never stall anymore. I can also change gears up and down fine on my own and use the clutch fine to do three point turns and reverse.

I'm struggling with...everything else! Remembering roundabout rules...reverse bay parking...pulling up on the side I can do sometimes and other times I'm too far away or too close to the kerb, it's hit and miss...I still have no idea when to start braking (or even if I need to, when people shoot out in front of me without indicating which has happened a good few times already)...just general anxiety/panic which causes me to stall...also braking too harshly still...I could go on and on

MeadowHay Fri 14-Feb-20 21:09:58

Fully intend to drive automatic on future btw. Just honestly cannot find an instructor. I know a few other people who also want to learn automatic and can't find an instructor. There are hardly any locally.

jackparlabane Fri 14-Feb-20 21:14:02

I must have notched up a couple hundred hours by the time I passed (possibly autistic like the rest of the family, certainly have coordination difficulties), and it was my fourth test, but there were gaps of a couple years twice. And the time my instructor wrote off his car the morning of my test so had to drive a car I'd never driven before.

I took forever to master clutch and gears, but then manoevres and all the 'complex' reading the road and all was much easier.

Fizzypoo Fri 14-Feb-20 21:18:37

That sounds totally normal OP.

I made loads of silly mistakes like that when learning to drive.

YouTube video of bay parking, parallel parking as there's a method of making a v in your mirror rather than the angle/degree that a lot of instructors use.

Big L and big R on your hands.

Talk out loud what you're doing.

Follow the darker lines in the road to get your road position. Don't worry too much about the breaking, I think when learning to drive instructors tell you to break and slow down faster than you would naturally do when driving alone. You have to learn how to pass the test rather than learn to drive fustratingly.

stoplickingthetelly Fri 14-Feb-20 21:45:27

It took me well over a year, at least 16 months so I probably had more than 80 hours worth of lessons. I was a very nervous driver, but I did pass first time. There were many times that I wanted to give up, but I’m so pleased I persevered.

MeadowHay Fri 14-Feb-20 21:53:05

Thanks everyone, honestly making me feel sooo much better. My parents and one of my siblings are being very unsupportive and keep making snide remarks and jokes about me. I know it's none of their business but still not nice when I'm so anxious about it already. (Also extra ironic that one of the parents passed on 4th attempt and has refused to drive since, and sibling has failed automatic 4 times and given up...who are they to make fun of me?!)

hunteddown Fri 14-Feb-20 21:59:42

I have a disability so knew I could never manage a manual, like you automatic instructors where I lived were hard to come by. I was 20's, so I brought a car and my dad taught me how to drive, no formal lessons and passed first time. Can you get a car and just drive with DH. I'v been driving for a few years with no issues but do think the fact that I just got out there and drove for a few hours a week helped my confidence for after I passed.

MeadowHay Fri 14-Feb-20 22:16:27

DH has only had his licence for one year so cannot legally take me out driving unfortunately.

Branleuse Sat 15-Feb-20 00:46:26

God i had loads. I think i failed my test about 6 times too. Then went to automatic and it was great to just be able to concentrate on the road properly and passed quite quickly after that

Keeoe Sat 15-Feb-20 01:39:29

Please dont give up hope. I have GAD amongst other conditions and passed a month before my 40th birthday. I first started to learn when I was 19. I had lessons and tests in fits and starts but my nerves let me down every time. I found the most amazing instructor and was through in 2 months. I'm now a confident and competent driver, which sometimes feels like a dream to me - I never ever thought I could do it.

safariboot Sat 15-Feb-20 02:34:51

I was probably closer to a hundred hours of tuition. Learned in my late 20s and I'm entirely neurotypical. One 2 hour lesson a week for about a year until I passed. No additional practice which has a big effect on need for paid lessons.

Partly I think my teacher wasn't great, but also we went beyond what the test requires. In particular I had a lot of my lessons at night because it was convenient, and night driving is harder than daylight.

80-100 hours is towards the longer end but by no means exceptional.

TeenPlusTwenties Sat 15-Feb-20 07:47:59

My DD with dyspraxia had around 80 hours of driving practice before passing. However this was in an automatic. By not having to think about gears it freed up brain power to do roundabouts etc.

I agree re lack of automatic instructors though - we bought an automatic car and DH taught DD in that.

You might be better off stopping lessons for a while and then saving the money. Then when you have a bunch saved go for lessons twice a week instead of weekly so you have less time to forget between each lesson.

CandyflossKid Sat 15-Feb-20 08:51:57

I had 60 lessons and passed first time (much to my amazement!)
I hated driving - I had bought a car but even when I passed, I found it so difficult to actually go out in it.
I drive everyday now but only out and about in my own town - I wish I could drive further afield but it's not worth the anxiety.
Good luck with your driving

MeadowHay Sat 15-Feb-20 14:24:17

I have been having between 3.5 and 5 hours of lessons a week for the last month or so! This is because as part of my dyslexia I have poor short term memory, the odd times there is a 6 day gap between my sessions me and my instructor both really notice it. So I'm sure if I had lessons just once a week it would take me much more than 80ish hours iyswim! Although due to circumstances will probably have to drop down the hours in a month or so unfortunately. I wish I could drive home, it's mostly a straight line from where we are practicing but he hasn't even mentioned it yet. He is very careful not too overwhelm me which I do appreciate but also maybe I need more pushing too. I think I will mention it next week. I mean he can brake if I need it haha so where's the harm?

I am sure if I pass I won't be a confident driver necessarily but I only want to learn so I can do certain familiar routes anyway really. And DH would definitely support (/push!!) me to make sure I drive a bit afterwards. Plus we are going to buy an automatic so takes a tiny bit of stress out of it.

Thank you so much everyone. I was so upset last night it gave me insomnia and I was still up at 2am (and had to get up at 7). I know I need to be positiv though. I knew this was going to be a struggle for me but a struggle doesn't mean I can't do it and if I approach it with a defeatist mindset that's not going to help

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