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How long did it take for you to learn to drive?

(47 Posts)
charliecat Fri 14-May-04 11:47:26

Im 25 and cant drive, havent ever really tried, well mainly because the truth is i cant feel the pedals through my shoes and am quite likely to go zooming in to the nearest hedge.
I dont feel i would ever feel confident enough even if I could feel the pedals and I got lessons.
How long did it take you and were you confident or a gibbering wreck at the thought of driving?

bran Fri 14-May-04 12:02:33

You could try learning in an automatic car. There's less to co-ordinate which makes it a lot easier.

I learnt when I was 17 so I was super-confident because I didn't know any better, I think it would be more difficult if I were learning now. DH never learnt, and I think he would find it totally nerve-wracking now (at the age of 41).

I think you should keep trying, especially if being able to drive would make your life easier. It's like most things, the more you do it the more confident you get. If you have lessons the instructor won't let you crash so you won't need to worry about that.

Good luck

Fio2 Fri 14-May-04 12:10:34

at 17 it took 40 lessons and 1 test (with 2 minors)

stopped driving and now need to start again...crapping myself

mummysurfer Fri 14-May-04 12:27:26

i was about 27, terrified...driving instructor said it was like giving a lesson in a wind tunnel, i was doing so much puffin g and panting....
took about 3-4 months, passed first time. learnt with BSM

Branster Fri 14-May-04 12:46:54

started lessons when 24, on & off, took loads though and passed the first time when i was 25 (heavily pregnant as well). i didn't drive for a long time though (various reasons) and finally got my own car when 27, am driving now but forgot how to do parralel parking, and reverse parking so i absolutely hate driving anywhere because of this. i am absolutely useless at parking. don't worry about crashing into things, you won't if you drive slowly. go for it! use different shoes (trainers?!) and find a car with an adjustable driver seat and it should solve the problem.

coddycodcod Fri 14-May-04 12:48:47

about 2 months with my brother!

nikcola Fri 14-May-04 14:20:55

im taking lessons in a automatic car it so much for me easyier, i can actully see myself driving on my own soon go for it good luck its not as bad as you think!

tammybear Fri 14-May-04 14:23:07

Im still learning
Test is on July 5
Hope I pass

Northerner Fri 14-May-04 14:25:23

Hi Charliecat, I'm 28 and can't drive either. TBH the thought of it petrifies me no, and I know the longer I leave it the harder it will be. I've failed 3 tests, and frankly I'd rather stick pins in my eyes than take another.

Miriam2 Fri 14-May-04 14:26:31

Was also about 25, took me about 40 lessons (with BSM) was perpetually terrifed but amazingly, passed first time. Needed some time afterwards to just potter around somewhere quiet. Get friends' recommendations on schools, the instructor makes all the difference. Go for it, coming from a non-driving family, I count it as one of my best achievements!

lemonice Fri 14-May-04 14:29:59

I developed a phobia of travelling in cars when at uni to the extent that I virtually couldn't get in one and when I did I just cried and hyperventilated. decided to try and cure it by learning to drive. I was so scared I spent hoursin the loo before each lesson. Brilliant instructor in edinburgh i had 22 lessons and no extra practice and passed first time. I didn't get a car for a while afterand was still nervous but eventually got confident. Go for it definitely.

tammybear Fri 14-May-04 14:33:56

i think my instructors a bit of a nutter lol. ive been learning to drive since last July, and Ive always been taught by him. the past couple of lessons he has been trying to build up my confidence, and has been getting me to drive up to junctions at 30mph, and then brake at the very last minute. Scares the crap out of me each time I do it, cos Im afraid Im guna go in a car or something lol

monkeygirl Fri 14-May-04 14:37:22

I passed in 2002 aged 35 after about 40 or so lessons (and amazingly passed first time). I was still so nervous I had extra lessons immediately after passing (including on the m-way which I would thoroughly recommend).

I still haven't put in that many miles because I think being a late learner means I have more fears and less confidence, personally. But even I recently have become more confident and don't crap myself everytime I just think about driving, like I used to.

Go for it, because it really can make life easier or at least give you more choices, even if it is choosing not to drive. I honestly believe if a worry-wort previously gibbering wreck like me can do it, then anyone can!

marialuisa Fri 14-May-04 15:19:51

You don't want to know how long it's taken or how much it's cost (so far!).

I just have zero confidence and tend to get pushed into driving in situations i'm not comfortable with by DH and it then takes weeks for me to get back to where I started...

Driving makes me and i can honestly say if it weren't for DH's bullying I would never have even bothered.

Nutcracker Fri 14-May-04 17:26:48

Charlie - I started a similar thread to this not so long ago. I also don't drive, really should learn as the car sits outside all day, but i'm petrified. I'm convinced i'm going to either drive to fast and crash or drive to slow and have people beeping at me.

I keep saying i'm going to do it but i always find some excuse not to.

Shall we both start together ??

dogwalker Fri 14-May-04 17:34:01

I learnt at the age of 20 after I had been working for a couple of years and had a bit of money saved up. I think I took about 20 lessons, and also had lessons from my dad. I passed FIRST time, and used to really enjoy driving. However, after now driving for 18 years, the roads are so much busier, and everyone gets cranky, including me, so I don't enjoy it like I used to and just drive out of necessity.

motherinferior Fri 14-May-04 19:00:42

You so don't want to know.

17 years.

And five tests, and four instructors.

OK, so I wasn't learning all that time, but that's the period between first setting bottom to driving seat and hearing, agog, the words 'you've passed.'

But I did pass at 37 weeks pregnant!

coddycodcod Fri 14-May-04 19:10:14

now listen

after what YOU have achieved, you can do anything

coddycodcod Fri 14-May-04 19:14:07

and if people beep you can beep back

motherinferior Fri 14-May-04 19:22:47

And look, when I got a good instructor (BSM bloke who'd taught someone I know) we went back to the basics, he taught me pretty well from scratch, and I did it. That took me about five months. But remember, there were lots of bad habits to undo - and I was 15 years older than you! Seriously, if I can pass, anyone can. I mean that.

coddycodcod Fri 14-May-04 19:24:23

Mi so you can d rive to the meet up!

pepsi Fri 14-May-04 19:29:55

I took 5 tests over a period of 8 years, the first one was so traumatic there was a gap of 6 years before I started up again. I still dont like driving but only wanted to pass so I could get children to school, doctors, etc and do the food shop. I dont take passengers as it makes me nervous, have been driving 6 years now and still cant park properly but am doing ok and I get by, not been on a motorway either. My first 4 tests were a nightmare, on one I hadnt closed my door properly and had to pull over to close it, started crying on another and examiner asked me to pull over and calm down, on another I simply said I couldnt do the reverse park and simply drove off without waiting for instructions. When I did pass though I took the test in my own car, a manual, and my hubby sat in the back, this is allowed providing they do not speak or interfere in any way, it puts the examiner off a little I think plus in your own car they dont have all their mirrors and stuff. Driving isnt easy for everyone and for me it was very emotional, but if you perservere you will be successful in the end, it doesnt matter how long it takes. My friend recently took her test for the 5 time and got in the wrong side of the car, I suppose it broke the ice!

charliecat Fri 14-May-04 19:46:44

LOL at your friend Pepsi!!!, Nutty, you go ahead and try without me. Im sure i will have one lesson and chicken out. Good idea about the automatic, my mums knees are dodgy and one day she will need an automatic and then I could drive hers!
I also feel i would resent walking and busing if i had a driving licence in my pocket? Anyone who drives but cant afford a car get that?

Tommy Fri 14-May-04 20:11:19

Have you tried driving barefoot? My Mum used to do it and my DH drives in his socks cos his feet are so huge that there isn't enough room for them down there!
BTW I learnt when I was 17 - it took me about 10 months of lessons and 2 tests. The way I managed to learn was by thinking about all the really unintelligent people I knew who could drive so I thought "Well, if they can do it, I must be able to"!

charliecat Sat 15-May-04 09:24:37

Tommy i think that will be my next move, but i thought you had to wear shoes for the i didnt want to learn one way and then be hitting a brick wall when i had to put my shoes back on.
I must say ive had the same thought as you about all the berks i know that zoom about, meanwhile, intelligent me is standing at the bus stop!

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