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Pressure to pass driving test

(28 Posts)
butterflylove16 Tue 23-Feb-16 04:44:42

Hi everyone, this is my first post & I hope this is the right place for it!

I am currently 23 wks with our first, dd, and feeling a lot of pressure to pass my driving test. I have had on/off lessons for years as this is something which has caused me a lot of anxiety in the past. Last autumn my lovely dh bought me an automatic car & has been taking me out in it, & I'm about to start lessons with an instructor.

But I am feeling a lot of pressure to pass my test, and really don't know if I can before baby comes. I also haven't passed my theory yet. I voiced my concerns to dh about what if I don't pass before dd arrives, as I don't want to leave her to do lessons until she's older (especially as I hope to exclusively bf). But he told me as he bought me the car he would be 'furious' if I stopped my lessons, and I would have to leave dd to keep doing lessons when she's very young. I love dh so much, but I don't think he understands my maternal instincts fully, that I just can't leave her like that, even for a few hours.

I just don't know what to do. I understand dh's point of view completely and he really is supportive, I just don't know what I'll do if I don't pass as I still feel a long way off. Does anyone please have any advice? Thank you.

mrsnec Tue 23-Feb-16 05:05:38


I was the same. I've not been able to pass my test yet and planned to with dd. I didn't pass on time and now have ds and still haven't.

I don't think the pressure from other people helps. It makes me worse. I also thought having my dream car would help but it makes me nervous.

Anyway I wanted to say your not on your own and it should be done at your own pace. For me, I can't rely on other people and there are no activities in walking distance for me for my children so that has to be my motivation. Nothing else. I don't want them missing out. Would looking at it like that help?

butterflylove16 Tue 23-Feb-16 05:22:20

Thank you for replying, it's nice to know I'm not alone. Driving for dd's benefit is my main motivation, as well as taking some pressure off dh to get us around as he works so hard. Neither of my parents drive and as much as they tried with buses, there were clubs, days out, activities etc that we were unable to do without a car so I do really see the benefit. I think you're right, I just need to take things at my own pace, as I can only do my best. I hope you're able to get there too!

mrsnec Tue 23-Feb-16 05:39:13

Pregnancy is hard enough as it is though so my driving did go on the back burner for a bit and I'm 10 days post elcs at the moment so not considering starting again yet but it'd be nice to be driving by the summer. Before dd is 2 that's my goal.

HelpfulChap Tue 23-Feb-16 05:59:55

Good luck OP.

My advice is just go for it, I think if you put it off now you will keep finding reasons why you can't do it (that's not a criticism just an observation).

To pass your test in the first 2or 3 attempts you really want yo have to really want to do it for yourself and not because someone else wants you to do it.

All the best.

butterflylove16 Tue 23-Feb-16 06:12:19

Thank you for your reply. I think you're right, if I don't do it now I'm not sure if I will be able to for a long time. I really am trying my best, but struggle with my confidence when it comes to driving. To be honest my reason for driving has always been for dh/dd's benefit, but that is enough motivation for me smile

Hannahs83 Tue 23-Feb-16 06:14:48

It took me aaages to pass my test! 4 attempts over 7 years. I don't say that to add to the pressure, I say it as a context for my advice- the thing which eventually made me pass (and become a very good driver) was, after my 3rd failed test, ditching the lessons and just driving. Whenever I went anywhere with my dad, mum or brother we would go in the car I was insured on and I would drive. I'd drive everywhere, all the time, including some fairly long distances.

As your dh is so keen for you to drive perhaps he could take this supervisory role as well. Have some lessons beforehand and alongside so you get confident with the basics but then, whenever the two of you go anywhere, you drive. You'll very soon get much more confident and that's what will help you pass your test.

And if you haven't passed by the time the baby is born, I'm sure he'll forget all about it for a while in a haze of love and nappies.

good luck smile

HelpfulChap Tue 23-Feb-16 06:17:55

My DD was terrible the first time she tried but a few years later when she had lessons she was much better and passed without too much trouble. The second time she was doing it for herself and she was absolutely determined to pass.

You can do it! Just remember everyone was a learner once. Try not to 'over-think' it.

Good luck.

butterflylove16 Tue 23-Feb-16 06:27:27

Thank you everyone smile dh has been taking me out since about October (minus a while during my early pregnancy when I was very sick). He has helped me so much and I can now drive in residential areas as well as some main roads, and I can park and do roundabouts with his guidance. He just feels he has taught me all he can so that's why I'm getting an instructor, but he'll still take me out at the weekends. I am so motivated to do this before dd arrives mid-June, I just keep getting myself in a panic when I wish I wouldn't.

Believeitornot Tue 23-Feb-16 06:32:45

Well your dh is hardly supportive is he? He'll be furious?

It gets hArder to drive anyway when you have a bump as it is.

I learned to drive when my oldest was 2. I was reluctant to learn and told myself that because we didn't have a car as children, I would cope without one. I was not confident at all. But once I got the right instructor I was fine albeit with some nerves. So I'd suggest you stop learning with your dh all together as he doesn't sound helpful.

HelpfulChap Tue 23-Feb-16 06:36:27

I agree with Believeit when she says getting the right instructor for you is crucial. Getting lessons in an auto at a time that suits you can be a bit tricky sometimes due to the demand.

Lucidlady Tue 23-Feb-16 06:40:39

It can be done - I did my theory when I was 26 weeks pregnant with DS and then sat my actual test 10 weeks later, at 36 weeks. I passed first time luckily. I'm so glad I kept the lessons going because being able to drive has made such a difference to my life. I had originally planned to learn before I had DD but didn't follow through, and it took me about 2.5 years after she was born to start again. It's definitely worth persevering with lessons now while you can.

SavoyCabbage Tue 23-Feb-16 07:11:58

I agree that your dh is not being supportive. Tell him to back off with his fury.

However you are really talking yourself out of it. You might be able to pass before you have the baby, but you are framing it to yourself as an impossibility. And you could still have the lessons when she is born. A couple at the weekends or after your dh is home from work. He is going to want to have some time with his baby too.

You already know what a big difference it will make to your life if you can drive. I hope you can find some belief in yourself.

Seriouslyffs Tue 23-Feb-16 07:15:30

You can do it. Use the anxiety as a motivation to do it not a reason not to. It will make such a difference.

SquirmOfEels Tue 23-Feb-16 07:25:04

June is ages away, and you'll be amazed at the difference in your progress with some proper lessons. No matter how competent your spouse is in a particular skill, it's just different and normally far better with a professional.

And yes, stick with it, because it will be far better if you can get this done before you have the baby. And there's no reason to think you can't.

Don't trash talk yourself! You can do this.

Annabrooke90 Tue 23-Feb-16 07:51:33

I get where you are coming from. It's hard. I started my lessons a few weeks before I fell pregnant with my 4th child. I was due to sit my test at 38 weeks pregnant however I gave birth at 34 weeks. Since then I have sat it time and time again. I'm the one who is putting myself under pressure though due to the fact I already have four children and am 12 weeks with baby number five, buses are a nightmare. I have lessons drive absolutely fine no faults and then I get on a test and fall to pieces. It's awful.

Good luck, don't feel too pressured by other people this needs to be for you.

FishWithABicycle Tue 23-Feb-16 08:00:21

It can be done I'm sure but work to a deadline of passing by the time you are about 7 months pg if you can (can you find the money for an expensive intensive course?) rather than assuming you have the whole of the rest of your pregnancy?

By 7 months pg I was starting to find driving uncomfortable and was also finding that my brain was slowing down somewhat and I was easily befuddled (the tiredness from being unable to sleep properly due to my enormous size didn't help). I had a very minor accident (rear-ended someone at low speed in queuing traffic) when about 8 months pg and stopped driving until after my baby was born as I didn't trust myself to drive safely in that state. I certainly don't think I could have passed a driving test at that time.

applesvpears Tue 23-Feb-16 10:35:56

I had pressure to pass a few years ago as I needed to drive for my job. But seriously with the right instructor you will get there (not being sexist but the best instructors I always had were women). Try and have lessons at the time of day when you feel most relaxed to build up your confidence (maybe not in rush hour) do lots of reading on how to drive, that really helped me understand things like roundabouts etc. And practice at home on the sofa with a plate (seriously!) and when it comes to the test I ended up getting a beta blocker from the doctors which helped me. I passed my theory first time and practical on my 4th time. Now I drive a lovely automatic, it is so so easy to drive! ( but passed with a manual).

applesvpears Tue 23-Feb-16 10:37:03

Oh and I wouldn't recommend an intense course personally. Just a few lessons a week.

BeauticianNotMagician81 Tue 23-Feb-16 11:09:13

Don't put pressure on yourself. It's stressful enough coping with pregnancy. I was taking lessons leading up to and during my pregnancy with ds3. I didn't feel pressure I just wanted to pass as we lived in a village at the time. I took my test about 5 weeks before ds3 was born and failed. I booked another straight away. I passed the 2nd time when ds3 was 3 weeks old. Never felt pressure it was just something I wanted to do. As it is I hate driving. I'm pretty good but I worry all the time.

butterflylove16 Tue 23-Feb-16 11:09:42

Thank you for your responses everyone, it has really helped. I know that dh probably wasn't the most supportive in telling me he'd be furious, but other than that he really has helped me in buying the car and giving me lessons. I am actually really fortunate in that only he works so I'm free during the week, I have spoken to an instructor who can hopefully give me a good amount of lessons during the weekdays. I did consider an intensive course, but think I would really stress myself out with that.

I will give myself an ideal deadline so hopefully I have learnt before I get too big, so far my bump hasn't been an issue but I know at some point it will be! But if I haven't learnt by then, I know I need to stop beating myself up over it. I think because I've struggled with my confidence with driving, I can often think it's impossible I'll ever get there but it's not. Thank you again smile

theclick Tue 23-Feb-16 11:17:44

Oh God, I feel you OP.

I put a lot of pressure on myself to pass. I then started to feel it from different family members. I'd constantly delay tests because I wasn't ready and put myself back three months. I let an awful instructor push me into taking a test when I wasn't ready and that didn't help (I eventually changed instructors when I married DH). My DH was supportive, but I knew he was thinking - why does it take her so long? Like you, I wanted to pass for my future kids.

June is a long way off and it's amazing how much progress you will make in that time, especially if you practice AT LEAST four times a week. I was out every night and I hated it but it helped. I also got to know my test route well but in my area they try and mix it up a lot. I watched loads of YT videos on different driving manoeuvres eg bay park etc to go over it in my head, and even watched some videos of some people taking mock tests so I could learn from their mistakes! Finally, I did do at least two mock tests before my big day which really helped.

My instructor - the new amazing one - had a back seat in her car for her learner's kids to sit in while they were driving - and she said most of her clients were new or pregnant Mum's and she had a really great pass rate. So don't worry OP!! You'll get there.

butterflylove16 Tue 23-Feb-16 11:45:16

Thanks for your reply smile that is actually a really good idea to watch videos of manouvers and mock tests, I've never considered doing that.

Dh and I are also moving a few hours away in a couple of months, so although in an ideal world I would take my test here, I know it's probably more likely I'll have to take it there which has worried me. But no more worry and putting myself down, I can do this (or at least give it my all) haha.

CommanderShepherd Tue 23-Feb-16 12:21:29

It's my DH that's feeling the pressure as its him that will be taking me to hospital lol! He's just passed his theory, just the driving part. I'd recommend getting the theory done asap, you get 2 years to pass the driving test after that. Just read the Highway Code back to back and there are websites online that have mock tests which he found very useful. Drive everywhere with your partner in the car, just to get the hours under your belt and you will get there.

butterflylove16 Tue 23-Feb-16 12:33:18

Thanks, yes I have a CD rom thing that has lots of questions as well as a hazard perception test that I try to practise most days. You're right that I really need to get my theory sorted as soon as I can; it will be nice to have it out of the way.

All the best to your Dh smile

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