In my last eye exam, to get fitted for new glasses, the doctor did not touch me past shaking my hand. I also was not made to lay down. I was sat in a chair, and the only thing that actually touched my face was the machine I put my own head against. I don’t think there is really any reason for an eye doctor to have you lie down, especially now that you are older and can hold your own eyes open.
Your fear is absolutely completely understood, although driving without glasses could be putting you in danger. You aren’t being dramatic, though it could be extremely beneficial to look into seeing an eye doctor for improved night vision…you can walk out of any appointment that makes you uncomfortable, and it might help to bring a friend or someone you trust :)
Just to add, many people have their eyes dilated at the eye doctor, and I think this might be what anon is referring to.
This can be really distressing because not only is someone touching you, but you also cannot see properly, and the room is mostly dark for portions of the exam. Super distressing.
One thing I would suggest, as j said, is taking a friend with you. Have them in the room with you. This might make you feel a bit safer.
Additionally, you could have a conversation with the doctor about it before they touch you. You don’t have to explain anything you don’t want to. You can just tell them you have a phobia or something. Hope this helped.
I work in an optician’s in the UK, and for most people the dilation isn’t a necessary part of the test, especially in younger (under 45) patients. You can usually explain that you’re driving home, so cannot be dilated that day etc.