Post by CharlotteGirl on Mar 18, 2015 13:37:01 GMT -5
There seem to be rather a lot of shy people who can't. Obviously it's useful for all sorts of reasons. I tried lessons briefly in my late teens but IIRC had a particular problem with changing gear apart from other things. Have never tried again, perhaps now I won't ever.
I passed my test last year at the age of 34. I initially took a couple of lessons a few years ago, but certain circumstances led me to stopping. I started again in March 2014 and passed by the October. Before my first lessons I'd never seriously thought about learning to drive. Never figured it would be something I'd be seriously capable of doing, and that I could manage without. I got to the point where I just needed to challenge myself to do it, mostly to broaden my opportunities when it comes to work.
I'll admit each and every lesson had my stomach in knots, and I'd had unwelcome scenarios swim before my eyes, of me continually messing up, doing things wrong. Looking back on the other side now, I faced all the fear and anxiety and got through it, controlled my worrisome thoughts and sometimes quite severe anxiety and got through the test second time round. I still wonder how though!
For anyone thinking about lessons, or fearful of even contemplating getting out on the road, I will say give it a try. Even if it's a free taster lesson if you can find any. Facing up to the anxiety even once could possibly start a train of thought that will carry you through one more lesson, then another....
I never, ever thought I would make it through 2-3 lessons, let alone get to the test stage. Seriously, if you think it is something you would like to do but are scared for whatever reason, take that first little step and see how you go
"He was painfully shy, which, as is often the manner of the painfully shy, he overcompensated for by being too loud at the wrong times."
I'm seeing more of this from the non-U.S. posters - delaying or not having a driver's license. It's not just my imagination, is it? From a quick search it appears that U.K. driving tests are more difficult, and you guys use manual transmission more. Public transportation isn't so great in most parts of the U.S. either, so it's harder to get by without a car here.
I do see news reports that there is less driving among young people, for mostly financial reasons I think.
I got my driver's license a week shy of my 17th birthday. I didn't rush to get mine as soon as I turned 16 (when I qualified) like other kids. Given that I never hung out with anyone I felt less peer pressure to get it immediately.
I was lucky in that I didn't realize I was taking my road test. I thought it was just another practice with my instructor. He said "You passed the test" and I was just thinking, "What test?" So I had to deal with less pressure.
It's just one of those things that takes practice. Using a driving simulator at first may help. Maybe a realistic driving video game?
I originally learned to drive in Scotland at the age of 17, but it took me three goes at the test to pass, by which time I was 19. The first time I failed I embarrassingly broke down in tears as soon as I got back to my parents. There felt like a lot of pressure to pass first time since most of my peers were passing no problem. The second time I failed I didn't care though, and during the third test I thought I had failed but then heard "congratulations on passing your test", lol.
When I moved to the states I took the test in south Florida, and it was super easy, especially in an automatic. It was basically just driving around a parking lot, instead of on the streets with the generally public like back home.
I still get nervous when driving to new places or to places I know are terrible to drive in, but most of the time I'm pretty comfortable with driving.
I passed my test when I was 23 after a long time trying and then didn't own or really drive a car until I was 28 I hated lessons so many of them ended in tears! For the first few months after I passed I spent the hour before I had to drive panicking about the things that could go wrong.
I think I left it so long due to fear and not being able to afford it. I could walk or get the bus to most places I needed to get to which wasn't many as I rarely left the house. I still choose walking or the bus to get into town as parking is a nightmare and expensive.
I had a complete driving fail the other day which left me in a mess. I was going passed some parked cars leading up to a junction ( it was a small road only tow lanes) and I remember thinking there were a few more parked cars there than usual when suddenly I realised the cars weren't parked they were actually queuing waiting at the junction...at this point I saw some cars coming towards up me with no space to pass so I had to awkwardly reverse all the way to the back of the queue completely humiliated.
I think one of my main problems is as I'm a complete push over I will normally let others go first so I've been trying to be more aggressive but of course I always misjudge the situation :/
Of course it is all worth it as my commute now takes under 30 minutes compared to an hour and 15 minutes. I am still waiting for the day I'll get better at it though...
I got my driver's licence at 19. I failed the first test. I never took lessons, my sister-in-law used to take me out in her car in the evenings and teach me to drive.
I also cheated on the eye exam portion of the test, back then I needed glasses but didn't have any. The eye exam was one of those old fashion charts on the wall, so while the eye exam was being giving to the person before me, I memorized the letters in the line they were making people read and "read" them when it was my turn. Don't worry though, these days I have glasses.
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Interestingly, I've already talked a bit about my experiences on this subject in my diary/ranting thread. But ever since I've finally succeeded in obtaining my driver's license, I've actually started to, on some occasions at least, enjoy driving. Admittedly there are still a few stressful situations ( examples include having to park in a small/limited space, maintaining a security distance with cyclists on the road when my options are limited, having a pedestrian cross the road when/where he/she really shouldn't,... ) I have to deal with on a daily basis but overall I'm definitely not as anxious as I used to be.
As for why I waited so long before starting to take lessons, first it was for financial reasons and later because for a while I didn't feel the need to have a driver's license, the bus was always fairly reliable so workwise it wasn't a problem. Ultimately though I realized I needed to start taking steps towards becoming more independent and doing this was one of the steps required to reach that objective.
"I shall pass through this life but once. Any good therefore that I can do, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it. For I shall never pass this way again." Etienne de Grellet
I had a learners license in Ohio I got at age 25 IIRC. I thought driving was kinda fun but I never got much practice cuz I was not getting out much then so I never took the license exam. I did take a couple formal lessons because my husband was not confident he could teach me. I was more afraid of being alone in the car with an instructor and being too shy to talk than I was of crashing.
I never tried to learn as a teen because of I guess tension between me and parents, being afraid to fail the written test, and I was very focused on schoolwork and dance lessons.
Last Edit: Mar 21, 2015 15:18:56 GMT -5 by skyhint
I got my driver's license at age 15. To get it at that age I had to take Driver's Education which was a series of classes they offered twice a year for students. But before I took those classes my mom took me to a big empty parking lot a couple times and we practiced several of the basics skills.
I got my license so early for a couple reasons. Mostly I was excited to follow in the footsteps of my older siblings but we also lived too far from my school to walk, but too close for school bus service, so driving myself to school was required. Also, public transportation is almost nonexistent where I live so driving is kind of an essential skill.
Now, after so many years, I love driving! I still get nervous in some situations, but for the most part I find I really enjoy the freedom of it.
Post by Sexy Spork #37 on May 10, 2015 13:22:41 GMT -5
I took my theory test when I was 16 and passed it first time. When I did it, there were two parts and you had to get 56 and 62 right as a minimum to pass it. I got 56 and 63, so I was very lucky. It's such a stupid test, though. You sit in front of a computer screen with headphones and get questions and hypothetical scenarios blasted at you. 'What is the hazard in this video?' Turns out, it was a bike behind a hedge 200 yards down the road. So, so stupid...
It's changed since then, the numbers you have to get right have gone up. Tests are harder, too. You can take the theory test at 16 but you can't get behind the wheel of a car until you're 17. But you can't take that practical test until you have your theory.
I took my practical test at 17. In the UK, your instructor takes you out onto public roads, usually around industrial estates or empty areas. After about 10 lessons, they take you out onto more major roads, then after 20 to 30, it's dual carriageways, that have a speed limit of 60 miles-per-hour. You're not allowed on motorways, which have our highest speed limit of 70, until you've passed your test. The first time I went on a dual carriageway I went at 30 for a couple miles. Terrifying...
The second time I hit 65 and nearly crashed, but that's another story.
I passed first time after 40 lessons with three minors. Five minors and that's a major and you fail. A minor is something small like not checking mirrors or indicating. A major would be running someone over...
In your test, which are all done on public roads, you have to do one major manoeuvre, one minor, travel on a dual carriageway, and answer questions about the car. For me, mine were about tyre pressure and where the water goes. The tester gives you no help - you are on your own. They also tend to take you into city centres at busy times.
It's really tough.
When my tester told me I'd passed, I said:
"Really? No, seriously?" "Yes. You were brilliant." "Me? You sure?" "Yup." "Wow. Gee, thanks. Really?"
I thought I did badly.
Very proud of passing, though.
My teacher was brilliant. 9 of 10 first time pass rate.