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I've got a driving test next Monday. I'm so stressed and want to cancel.(53 Posts)
I am 42. It's ridiculous that I don't have a driving licence - I'm an adult with a well paid responsible job, children, and a morgage. Being able to drive would make my life easier in so many ways, I know this. But I'm just absolutely shit at it.
I'm scared all the time and I struggle with really basic things like working out which way to turn the wheel when parking. I've been learning for almost a year and had over eighty hours of lessons (and have changed instructor in this time) and I'm still fucking awful at it and I hate it.
I've got a test booked for next Monday. My instructor insists that I'm ready and I just lack confidence, but I'm not; I'm just not, and I feel sick thinking about it.
I want to cancel it, but DH thinks this is stupid and I should just take it and if I fail then I fail (I will fail). But I think that a failure now will knock me so much I'll just give up completely and it's better to cancel and book one at a later date when I feel more confident.
Arrrrgh! I'm just in such a tizz! I hate that I'm being like this. I think I'm being rational but I can also see that it doesn't look rational from the outside. What should I do?
Just imagine that it's a lesson with a different instructor? Try and see it as practise, don't worry about the word test. If you pass you pass, if you don't you've had another hours driving practise.
I failed my first driving test but less badly than I thought I would. That gave me confidence which had been the cause of most of my problems and I sailed through the next one.
Think of it as an independent assessment that will tell you what to work on.
Do the test. Even if you do fail, at least you know what to expect next time and hopefully that will eradicate a fear of the unknown. I found that i just "got" driving one day, i didnt gradually improve over the lessons it all just clicked into place all of a sudden - and that was a few months after i had passed my test on the third attempt!
If your instructor says youre ready, trust them. they wouldnt put you forward if they didnt think that as it would bugger up their success rates.
See it as a practice test. If you don’t think you’re ready then it doesn’t matter if you fail but treat it as a learning experience and make it your aim to get something out of the experience of having your driving assessed by someone other than your instructor.
It's just a session with a different instructor. If you cock it up, it doesn't matter, it is an extra hour's practice under your belt, that's all.
Go for it.
Like PP have said, just imagine it's a lesson with a different instructor, or even that they are only there to test that your instructor has been teaching you correctly. Your instructor wouldn't let you book a test if they didn't think you were ready as it could reflect badly on them. Please don't cancel, you CAN do it, and even if you fail this time, just keep trying, and you will pass eventually. Good luck!!
Agree with others that you should just view it as a practice test - if you pass then it’s a bonus!
DD (19) passed on her fifth attempt, she was so frustrated as her friends all seemed to pass first attempt but she’s so happy she kept going.
Do you drive at other times or just in lessons
I did mine really nervous (literally felt like I was going to shit myself 😬) and passed. My examiner was quite old, and small, which made me feel less claustrophobic in the car. Weirdly, I passed because of her hairy legs. Once I had seen them, I just thought of her as a normal human and relaxed.
Go for your test, find something "human" about your examiner and try to relax. Try to drive like a robot, just focus. Try some herbal anxiety relief.
You might as well give it a go. Don't put too much pressure on yourself. My Dd can't get a test until January. If you cancel you might have to wait a long time for another one.
You can do it. I felt like you, had 18 months’ worth of lessons, literally hundreds of hours and was still completely hopeless, but I actually felt a lot calmer during the tests. I passed on my second try, but the first was a positive experience too. Good luck!
If you choose not to, there is no shame in cancelling. Though you would be different from most of the people who cannot drive, as they still have a licence.
I do hear what everyone is saying, about the test not really mastering and being good experience. I can see it makes sense. But when I think about actually doing it I feel as though I'm going to hyperventilate.
I get that this is an issue in my head, I know my reaction isn't proportionate, but also I know that I am objectively terrible at driving, will not pass, and will just be putting myself through hell for nothing.
Do the test. Think of it as a lesson your will learn from. See even failing as a positive part of learning.
Eat a banana one hour before the test too. It works wonders
I was an older learner too. I took paracetamol, ate a banana and took Dr Bachs pastels! Terrified doesn't cut it and it was boiling hot too.
I KNEW I'd failed when it was over and was ready to go home and book it again then when he said I'd passed I burst into tears and said You are joking!
Eat a banana one hour before the test too. It works wonders
My DD was so anxious the night before her first test that we ended up at A&E with abdominal pain. As such we got home at 3am, she had a midday test and failed.
I need to do everything I can to get her through the next one in November!
Just treat it as a practice run, a kind of mock test. You are in a win-win situation, you could pass and you will definitely get experience of a test situation.
OP I really feel for you. This was me when I learnt to drive, did well during my lessons but had absolute horror at the thought of a test. In fact I still get twitchy when I think about it, it was 20 years ago!
I failed 4 tests, threw up before every test, cried, had the shakes, leg shaking on the pedal the whole time. Long story short when I took the 5th test I took rescue remedy before the test, it really really helped, I was like a different person, no shaking, still a bit nervous but I could manage it.
I also have (still do sometimes) the problem of panicking and not being able to think how to fix it if I do something wrong. The trick is to stop, take a breath and just think about the angles and which way the car will turn if you turn the wheel this way or that (it that makes sense).
Honestly, the worst that can happen is that you’ll fail, it won’t be the end of the world. I can laugh about failing so many times now but at the time it felt like a massive mountain to climb! Good luck x
I took those Kalms pills (similar to rescue remedy) before my lessons and test. Whether they worked due to placebo effect or really did work I don’t know, but I passed on third attempt.
Thank you for all the good wishes, they are much appreciated. I will just have to try and manage myself better - I do keep telling myself that I can just keep doing it until I pass, but the thought of it makes me wobbly!
Second having a banana an hour before.
I’ve heard quite a few people say about the banana thing. And kalms (even if it’s a placebo who cares.)
Just do the test OP, if you fail you fail but it’s amazing practice and you might feel a bit less stressed if you have to do it again. Or you could pass! You never know until you try.
Are you dyspraxic? I am, took me years to figure out which way to turn the wheel (and even 20 years later, I can struggle when parking under pressure)
My only advice is to take things a little slower, give yourself just a second long to respond.
I was like you, and I still hate driving. But the test wasn't too bad, because I wasn't stressed, I thought if I pass, great, if I fail, not the end of the world.
Don't think too much, just go with the flow, your body knows what to do after all those lessons.
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