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#1 Monday 21st May 2018 17:04:20

Registered: Monday 21st May 2018
Posts: 1

I think I’m ready to give up now

I’m a 25 year old teacher with two degrees, good money and a job I love. I’ve known my fair share of hard work, challenges, of coping with failure and springing back, but I have never felt as much as a failure as learning to drive, and I’m not sure if I can do it anymore.

I’ve failed five driving tests after almost 2 years of driving lessons. My theory test runs out in August and I think that will be the decider of whether or not I continue. I haven’t had a lesson in 3 months, and haven’t contacted my driving instructor since (who is fantastic btw, no fault of her).

It’s been two long years of the same cycle. I show up for a test, agonise over it for weeks, fail on one serious or dangerous, usually no or few minors, I feel gutted, go home and spend the next few months of people asking me if I’ve passed yet, why I haven’t passed, how much better I feel when I pass, how it will “open new worlds for me” (said in this condescending manner as if I don’t have a life because I am without a car) or how their 17 year old kid has already passed after only 2 months of driving.

I’m not exaggerating when I say everyone, I mean everyone, keeps asking. I recently bumped into an old family friend (I haven’t seen them since I was about 10) who asked me if I could drive yet. My next door neighbour speaks to me about nothing but my driving progress, endless work colleagues, family members, friends. Only a small amount of people won’t ask anything about it because they’re close enough to me to know it’s a sensitive topic.

I understand my problem is absolutely nothing compared to the tragedies that face people everyday, but the whole situation is agonising me. I’ve never had to cope with failure on a level as repetitive as this, I feel like I’m looked down on by even the closest people in my life because I don’t drive. I feel like a drain on their time and petrol if I ask for a lift. In short, I feel utterly, utterly useless.

Can anyone help me to talk myself off this ledge? I don’t know how to pull myself out of thinking like this. Any replies would be helpful.


Monday 21st May 2018 17:04:20

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Re: I think I’m ready to give up now

#2 Monday 21st May 2018 22:23:07

Verified Member
Registered: Friday 18th May 2012
Posts: 313

Re: I think I’m ready to give up now

Get back on the horse pal!!!

I had a pupil who'd failed 8 tests with another instructor. His family made him feel like S h1t. They basically told him to give up. Told him he'd never pass. Very good driver just had awful nerves on test day. He was physically sick on the street outside the test centre. (Gulping down rescue remedy not a good idea)
Cut a long story short he passed his test second time with me. 10 goes in total but a cracking driver without test day nerves.
See him occasionally around town and he still beams about it 3 years on. Best thing he ever did he says sticking with it.
Get back on the horse!!

Last edited by Joe24 (Monday 21st May 2018 22:23:51)


#3 Tuesday 22nd May 2018 08:50:06

Verified Member
From: Darwin, Northern Territory Aus
Registered: Friday 20th August 2004
Posts: 2,700

Re: I think I’m ready to give up now

Good post from Joe24 above.

When one of my clients tell me they want to give up, I encourage them to first focus on something they CAN do well,
we discuss it and I try to identify something that I can't do well but they can ...
... e.g. if it's music, I can't do it all, I'm hopeless and slightly tone deaf to boot; I conce got discouraged because I couldn't learn to play "Twinkle little star" on a kiddie xylophone marked with letters.
If it's horticulture, I'm the black sheep in a family of green thumbs, a black sheep who can even accidentally kill artificial plants in his care.
I've found that this sometimes helps, especially if they think what would they say to me to encourage me to not give up gardening for example - then apply the same reasoning to themselves.

In my theory classes, I tell the group that it's OK to do it at one's own pace, and that the ones who take longer to reach their goal are not necessarily worst drivers than the faster learners (refer to Joe24's post above).
In fact I've found that the ones who take more time are often BETTER drivers!

Zipper ("G'Day Mate!")
I'm not 65! I'm only $59.95+tax


#4 Sunday 3rd June 2018 16:28:36

Verified Member
Registered: Saturday 22nd October 2005
Posts: 375

Re: I think I’m ready to give up now

The first thing to consider is that you are not a failure, you can drive but have not been successful in a test. Many would be drivers experience this temporary hurdle and go onto make excellent drivers. You need to analyse why you are not being successful with the driving test. There are many reasons for this, nerves, lack of confidence, exhaustion, concentration levels. For instance I had a female client in her 40s who could drive perfectly on lessons but failed 12 tests usually with just one serious fault. The problem I eventually worked out was she could not concentrate for more than an hour and was using it all up in the lesson before the test. She went cold for her 13th test without driving before and passed with 2 minors. Another who came to me, 20 year old, had failed 3 tests and yet could drive perfectly. I observed he next test and she had failed within a 100 metres of the start. Pure nerves, she could not function at all. Beta blockers were the answer and she passed the next test easily.
There is always a solution, you just need to find it. Keep on with it and you will get the result you want.


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