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To admit I don't want to pas my driving test?

(62 Posts)
Serenity05 Sat 30-Apr-16 12:19:43

Warning – pathetic whining ahead.

I’ve been taking driving lessons on and off for around 10 years now. I’m on my third instructor and I’ve recently booked my test for June (my second attempt – the first one I failed within the first five minutes when I had a panic attack). I hate driving. I hate everything about it, I never feel safe and the thought of being in a car on my own makes me feel sick.

I have a 6 month old DS and I feel like I should learn to drive for him. My DM couldn’t drive when I was a child and I missed out on so much because she couldn’t take me places (my dad worked away a lot) and I don’t want that for him. But I also know that I’ll be terrified of ever getting behind the wheel with him – not least because he screams whenever he’s in the car.

I’m always an absolute state when I get back from my lessons and I feel like I’m wasting a load of money on something I don’t believe I can actually do, and if by some miracle I do manage it, it will still be pointless because I never, ever want to drive.

I’ve been put under a lot of pressure by my DM and DSis over the years to pass my test and I dread to think what they would say if I quit now. My DH wouldn’t pressure me but I know he’d be disappointed if I quit.

I don’t know if I want people to slap me and tell me I’m being pathetic or hold my hand and tell me it’s okay to stop.

Serenity05 Sat 30-Apr-16 12:21:19

And obviously that should be pass not pas. Damn phone.

Purplerain067 Sat 30-Apr-16 12:25:09


I suffer with really bad anxiety, I had been learning to drive a few years back and gave up because I felt like you do after your lessons. It's a horrible feeling, I truly believed I'd never learn.

This year I've struggled getting the four children around, to parties etc. Even going out for dinner was becoming so expensive with people carriers everywhere.

So, I found a female instructor and decided to give automatic a try. It's so much more relaxed without the fear of stalling, I have one lesson left and just need some practice now.

Maybe you could try automatic?


MatthewWrightResearch Sat 30-Apr-16 12:27:00

If you get so worked up when out with a calm instructer I think you'd be a danger on the road driving alone with a 6 month old distracting you.

If it was me, I'd sit the test and if I failed I wouldn't take anymore lessons.

molyholy Sat 30-Apr-16 12:27:43

I know where you're coming from. I was fannying about with driving lessons for years. Finally passed after 3rd attempt when dd was 4. The independence it allows you is amazing but I detest driving and if I could afford a full time chauffer, I would hire one. Not helpful sorry, but just to let you know I feel the same but it has changed my life for the better.

MrsJayy Sat 30-Apr-16 12:28:05

I don't drive I took lessons for years but can't pass a test my DDS are 23 and 18 and I managed to get them about fine as long as there is a good bus service and taxi firms you can get around if you are anxious then maybe you should just do your test you might pass if not then just stop

MrPony Sat 30-Apr-16 12:28:19

If you pass then you never have to think about doing your test again.

I was really anxious about driving too, I got all the shakes, nervous poos etc. I've been driving for 2 years now though and love it! Once it clicks that's it, you know how to drive, the rest is just practise.

Give automatic a go, it could be the making of you.

MatildaTheCat Sat 30-Apr-16 12:28:44

YANBU because that's just how you feel. Only you know whether it's worth trying to work through the feelings. Because that's what this is: anxiety. Your driving instructor thinks you are up to doing your test so probably you are.

Would driving make life easier in the future? If you pass and then build up gradually to driving alone then with ds you will become less anxious. And he will stop screaming at some point, they just do!

There are millions of drivers, some much more confident than others, some more competent than others. Relatively speaking there are few accidents. Would you consider doing some cbt type work to sort out your feelings?

There's no shame to giving up and never driving but I cannot help but feel you want to do it really but are being held back by overwhelming anxiety.

wallywobbles Sat 30-Apr-16 12:28:58

Please don't give up. It's so crap to lack this particular skill. Do whatever it takes to overcome the fear. Are there simulators or hypnosis or something.

Because passing the test is not really the problem here. You have to get over your irrational fear.

molyholy Sat 30-Apr-16 12:30:42

And i found i was less nervous with kids in the car because you are aware of keeping them safe and your own fears are completely second to that.

blondieblondie Sat 30-Apr-16 12:32:44

I passed my test 6 months ago after 16 years of lessons on and off and 5 instructors. I thought there was no way in hell I was ever going to pass, and was online with thirty mins to spare to cancel my test. It was too late at night to text my instructor, so I just decided I better go through with it. Somehow I passed. And it's honestly the best thing I've ever done. But when I eventually got my car, like you I felt ill at the thought of driving it. I sat in it for 35 mins trying to get yo the guts to take the handbrake off. Then I went halfway round the block and stopped for another half hour., hating myself every minute. I still don't drive far, and haven't been on the motorway, but it's made life for my wee boy and I so much easier. Please give it a try. Get the test done and out of the way and then worry about what comes next. There's no rush after that. Best of luck.

TheGhostOfBarryFairbrother Sat 30-Apr-16 12:47:55

I passed third time around (not in UK though) and absolutely hated driving. I had really bad anxiety and OCD and it was a total nightmare... but we live in the middle of nowhere and there's no public transport.

These days (six years later!) I actually enjoy driving, even if big cities still scare the crap out of me. I've found an automatic to be easier in cities but prefer manual in the country.

Do you feel comfortable with your instructor? After failing twice I changed to a much more gentle one and she helped me to stop being so terrified!

You can do this!

CharlieFarlie16 Sat 30-Apr-16 12:51:32

Honestly I hated driving with a passion, it took me 4 attempts to pass my test and years worth of lessons because I'd just keep giving up. Then I just decided I needed to do it and found a lovely female instructor, who was very patient and I did it. That was four years ago and it was so scary driving the first few times alone but now I wonder how I managed before. It really does just became second nature and the nerves fade away. Trust me if anyone had told me that's how it would be for me before I passed, I would never have believed them, but it does happen!

Rebecca2014 Sat 30-Apr-16 13:00:32

I was extremely nervous too,I remember getting my first car and having to drive it 30 minutes to my house, nearly shat myself with nerves. Been a year and I love driving,it's given me and my daughter such independence and I'm lot better driver now than I was back then.

Don't give up, you won't regret it.

ExplodingCarrots Sat 30-Apr-16 13:11:59

Please don't give up. It took me years to pluck up the courage to start lessons. I have anxiety and before my lessons I'd be a mess. Luckily my instructor was lovely.

I passed my test the second time. I'm still a nervous driver. I hate driving to unfamiliar places but it does get better with time. I get myself in some right states sometimes but honestly passing my test was the best thing I did. If I didn't then I wouldn't have been able to work where I did or go anywhere with dd.

You can do it. Keep going.

mrscee Sat 30-Apr-16 13:20:04

I hated learning to drive too, and didn't learn until I was 21 but I gave up after a year because I hated it and was genuinely scared. Anyway about 7 years ago I suddenly thought that I might see if I could try again and I start lessons again. I still wasn't that keen but felt like I was being held back because I couldn't drive. It took me 4 years of on and off lessons and giving birth to twins and on my 7th test I passed. It was hideously scary driving for the first time on my own and I didn't think that I would ever get used to it let alone enjoy it. But after getting my first car at the grand old age of 39 I have the world at my feet and I now drive to work in rush hour traffic and I no longer feel scared in fact sometimes I still can't believe I passed and I actually enjoy it. Also it's great being able to take my twins out and about instead of having to rely on public transport.

Serenity05 Sat 30-Apr-16 13:47:22

Thanks everyone. smile

I know I would be a fool to quit now. I have thought about learning in an automatic before but DH and I have a manual car and we can't afford to buy a second car. I do think some CBT or counselling would help though. Money is tight with me being on mat leave but hopefully DH will agree it would be an investment in our future!

cautiousoptimist1 Sat 30-Apr-16 13:54:32

You can do this! And what a great lesson and example for your DS.

DarlingCoffee Sat 30-Apr-16 18:02:03

I'm in the same boat, but I've passed my test (20 years ago) and am just terrified at the thought of going out on my own with the kids. Any tips from drivers out there on how to build my confidence? I still haven't worked up the courage to get into the family car yet. Its a lot bigger than the driving instructors car and I just find it really intimidating. I've had refresher lessons but just feel very nervous about going it alone!

spornersunited Sat 30-Apr-16 19:19:24

I could have written your post word for word 18 months ago (except DS was 4)

Could never imagine that I'd ever pass and thought that even if I did I'd hate every minute spent behind the wheel.

I gave myself a good talking to,got a grip and switched to an Auto.
Aged 46 (and three quarters\) I passed in 18 lessons with 3 minors. It has literally changed my life.

I know you said that moneys tight and that you cant afford a second car but if there is any way you can scape together enough to get a small Auto or change DH's car then I'd seriously think about it. You may even save long term on the cost of lessons.

BuggerLumpsAnnoyed Sat 30-Apr-16 19:27:22

I have recently passed. DS1 is 5 and DS2 is 5 months. All I can say is I was very nervous and found learning incredibly difficult. However, once you pass and gain actual, every day driving experience, it all makes much more sense. Having a couple lessons every week only prepared me for the test. A few weeks of proper driving, and I feel much more relaxed. And I don't have the worry of a test hanging over me! It is bliss not having to rely on people and to come and go as I please!

NinaGalbraith Sat 30-Apr-16 20:20:20

There would be no shame in delaying learning to drive until your DC is a bit older, if you don't have to drive to take baby around at the moment. Discuss it with your husband but perhaps you'll feel more relaxed about it in a couple of years. I can drive but we live somewhere where we don't need to often and I have never driven alone with DD (17 mths) in the car as she screams until doe's sick. I consider myself a good driver but don't think I would be safe while she is so young. Also, passing the test is one thing but confidence comes from regular driving so no point if you pass then just never drive because you're anxious. Perhaps better to take a break then find a sympathetic instructor once you feel like you'd like to drive so you could take DC to different places when they're older.

Topseyt Sat 30-Apr-16 21:03:39

I do understand your feelings about driving OP.

Whilst I am glad I can drive, it has never been my favourite occupation. I drive because I need to rather than because I enjoy it. I have to drive to get to work as there is no public transport, and to collect the DDs from the college bus and after school clubs.

I was so anxious around the time of my test that I don't think I would have carried on if I hadn't passed first time. Not for some years anyway.

I still get anxious about driving sometimes. I find that the occasional dose of Kalms can help.

CheshireChat Sat 30-Apr-16 21:10:00

I can't offer any advice regarding your driving license as I can't drive myself, but wanted to say that your DS may well calm down in a month or two. Also we put our DS in the passenger's seat and he was A LOT happier so it might be an option for you. Hope you work it out OP.

Amy214 Sat 30-Apr-16 21:14:30

Hi i was a nervous mess in my tests it took me 5 times to actually pass. Now that i have been driving for 3 years i absolutely love it. You will get used to driving with your ds in the car i was terrified of my dd being in the car with me i used to imagine all sorts happening now shes 2 im a lot more relaxed and we sing along to the music in the car (obviously not on the motorway) this year i done my 1st loooong drive (2 hours there, 2 hours back) on a motorway after putting it off for ages and it was stressful but i will be doing it again soon and im actually looking forward to it! Honestly driving gives you so much freedom you wont have to rely on anyone driving you around or public transport being cancelled. Just being able to step out the front door and into a car and going where i want is brilliant!

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