Mum who passes out at the wheel still has no licence after 1,000 driving lessons

A mum who has been learning to drive for 30 years hasn't passed her test after 1,000 lessons – because she's so terrified she passes out behind the wheel.

Isabelle Stedman, 47, first started lessons when she was 17 but became instantly overwhelmed with dread whenever she got in the driving seat.

Her crippling phobia would cause her to sweat and shake, becoming so filled with fear she breaks down in tears and has to stop driving – or even worse loses consciousness.

Desperate Isabelle, who has the fear despite never being in a car accident, has gone through seven different instructors and estimates she has spent over £10,000 on lessons.

She even tried intense driving course and hypnotists to get her test-ready but has never been ready to take a test.

The supermarket worker, from Ampthill, Bedfordshire, said: "I've been learning for 30 years, but still whenever I get in a car it feels like I've never been in a car before and it's terrifying.

"I don't understand it but it's like I get so anxious and overwhelmed that my brain cuts out and I lose consciousness for a few seconds – and roundabouts are the worst.

"When I wake up, we're at the side of the road because the instructor had to grab the wheel – and I'm so overwhelmed that I end up in floods of tears and have to go home.

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"I'm desperate to finally drive so I can take my daughter to university and easily visit my family around the country, but it's so traumatising that I fear I'll never learn.

"My children will probably both pass their tests before me – I can't help but feel I've missed out."

Her most recent blackout was while approaching a roundabout at the time.

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"I got to day three of the course and I was nervously approaching a roundabout – and then I felt myself get really light-headed," she explained.

"Before I knew it, we were at the side of the road and the instructor was telling me he'd had to grab the wheel after I just slumped.

"I was sobbing from fear and disappointment – I just had to go home and sleep for hours afterwards because the whole experience completely drained me."

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The mum-of-two has never been in a car crash or had any bad experiences on the road prior to starting lessons.

She has spoken to doctors and even a hypnotist who were baffled and have been unable to explain her phobia.

It has left her speculating "maybe I died in a car crash in a past life – it's the only explanation."

Her own children, Dominic, 22, and Stella, 17, are now taking lessons with no issues, and the single mum fears she'll never manage to get her licence.

She feels she has missed out on many parts of life and motherhood – such as driving to see friends, visiting loved ones in hospital, and taking her children on days out.

The anxious mum says she hopes one day her luck will change and maybe one day she will have an answer to her phobia.

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