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Old 24-01-2018, 04:05 PM   #1
one_step_closer
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Car Decisions

I'm not a very confident driver. I use my car to go short distances on roads I am familiar with and only when I'm ok with whatever the weather is doing. I'm not particularly clued up on car maintenance and I hate going out to check my car when it's in my drive because my neighbours will watch me. The garage I know how to get to for it's MOT has a very small parking bit and I worry about not being able to park, I'm crap at parking in general, my MOT is due at the end of next month.

What I need help with is how I decide if I should keep my car or not. I think my insurance is due in a couple of months or something and I don't want to pay for another year and waste money when I can walk and get buses places. I survived without a car for 2 years in the middle of my driving experience and I got my current car maybe 2 years ago because I missed driving and wanted to experience it again. My confidence and ability seem to get worse as time passes. I've never been in any serious accidents but I've reversed into a car twice and I often think it's just luck that I haven't got into an accident. My brother thinks I should keep the car because I can afford to and he thinks I'll want a car again after another couple of years away from driving.

I don't know how to make this decision. My car is good for when I'm lazy or when I'm on a tight time schedule and I worry that I will get rid of it and will then end up with a job or voluntary work where I could have used my car to get to and I'll struggle to get out of bed on time to make it to work on public transport.

Any help would be much appreciated.





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Old 24-01-2018, 04:38 PM   #2
Cacoethes
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It does sound like you'd be able to cope without a car which is good. And cars are very expensive!
But maybe you could look into doing a pass plus course to increase your confidence with driving and see if that might help?



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Old 24-01-2018, 04:53 PM   #3
sherlock holmes
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If the only issue is your lack of confidence with cars, then that can easily be helped. Like Beckie said you can do a pass plus driving course which builds on what you learned in order to pass your test. Or if that isn't available (i'm not sure if it has to be within a certain number of years after taking your test) I still think it would be advisable to book some sessions with a driving instructor to tackle the issues making you feel nervous ie driving in the dark/bad weather, parking, reversing, simple car maintenance etc. There's driving instructors out there who specifically work with nervous and/or disabled people and so they are calmer in their approach, able to explain things in a patient way, and very nice.

It took me many years to pass my driving test with a big gap in the middle where I just gave up on it. Eventually, when I found an instructor who teaches disabled people, everything seemed to click. He was so patient with me and he really boosted my confidence. Though now it's been nearly 2 years since I passed my confidence is decreasing so I might see if I can get some refresher lessons or do my pass plus.

I do think cars give greater independence than public transport, especially if you would struggle to allow for an increased travel time in the morning. It would be a shame to stop driving out of fear/anxiety when that can be overcome.



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Old 24-01-2018, 06:39 PM   #4
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Thank you both. I'm scared to look into having further sessions with a driving instructor because I worry I will mess up badly and they'll tell me I have to do my test again or something. I think I'm just a crap driver in general and maybe that can't be improved on.





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Old 26-01-2018, 10:54 PM   #5
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Once you've passed your test that's it, you don't need to do it again! I think the only situation you would need to retake it is if you get completely disqualified from driving. And a driving instructor can't do that. You'd get disqualified in court following a serious incident like drink driving and causing a huge accident.

Why not give it a go for a few lessons and see if it makes things any better? You might not be a crap driver. You could be an extremely good driver but on top of that is a big layer of anxiety and self doubt getting in the way.



Isn’t it funny how day by day nothing changes but when you look back, everything is different…

you once called your brain a hard drive, well say hello to the virus.


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Old 27-01-2018, 01:06 PM   #6
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I think I'm too anxious to get more sessions with an instructor. I'm too anxious to even talk to my neighbour about car maintenance stuff and he's nice and used to be a mechanic. I'm sure I need one new tyre because of the tread but I feel unable to take it somewhere to get it changed or get one and change it myself. Cars are such big and dangerous things. People can see very clearly if I drive like an idiot or something. There's no one who can help me with these things, don't know if my support worker would and I'd still have to do the phone calls and taking the car to the garage and stuff. I basically avoid most things that make me anxious and I especially worry about car stuff because of the danger etc. I really don't know what to do. I wouldn't even know what to do if I got rid of my car. It's definitely not ready to be scrapped so I couldn't just get someone to pick it up but again anxiety might stop me from selling it privately or driving to a dealers to sell it. I really just want the car to disappear I think but it's handy for going to get my prescription as I have to do that every day except a Sunday and for getting household shopping.





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Old 29-01-2018, 07:05 PM   #7
tiptoes
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Have you consider sorning your car for a while to see if you miss having it?



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Old 29-01-2018, 07:17 PM   #8
one_step_closer
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I've gone for a period of 2 years without a car before, I can walk places and I have a disabled travel card so can afford to use public transport. I think I would cope ok without it. I haven't been driving since I noticed the tread on the tyre because I don't want to get into trouble. My main worry about getting rid of my car would be that I might need it in the future. I suppose I could SORN it for a while if I'm not going to be using it because of the tyre anyway. I feel like an idiot.





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Old 29-01-2018, 11:46 PM   #9
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Is car sharing type of services/apps a thing in your area/country? I don't know if it is. I know here it's similar to uber or lyft where if you want a car you basically reserve it and then you can use the car for a set amount of time for a fee. The one I know of where I live is called zipcar. I know plenty of people in larger cities use it when they are in need of a car, but mainly take public transit.



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