Anxiety is a major mental illness that a lot of us have. And there are always things to remember when interacting with people that have anxiety. Here are some things to remember if you love someone with anxiety.
1. They’re awesome just like us.
People with anxiety are human beings just like the rest of us, and they want to be treated the same way you want to be treated… Simply with kindness, patience and respect.
No need for kiddie gloves here. Anxiety doesn’t take away from natural awesomeness!
2. It’s not a limitation.
Anxiety isn’t fun, and it can make a lot of things more difficult for someone who suffers from it, but it’s not necessarily a limitation. People with anxiety are just as capable as anyone!
3. Sometimes they need to disappear.
Similar to introverts, sometimes people with anxiety need to step back from the outside world and take a breather. It’s perfectly normal and it’s an important part of rest and recuperation.
4. Sometimes they ignore you.
Because anxious people are often overwhelmed by social interaction, they will occasionally ignore you. It’s always a temporary thing, and as a friend or partner, the best thing you can do is be patient and try not to take it personally.
5. Change doesn’t come easy.
Most people are a little resistant to big changes in their life, it can feel like a loss of control and this feeling is usually amplified in those with anxiety.
Any change at all to their comfortable routine can be upsetting and worrisome in ways that we don’t always understand or relate to.
Check in regularly with your anxious loved one when they’re going through a big change, and remember that they may be dealing with deeper and maybe scarier feelings than they let on.
6. Your friendship is important.
Even though it may not always seem like it, people with anxiety need a strong support network of good friends they can depend on.
Yes, they need time alone and away from social situations now and again, but your presence matters and they’re thankful to have you around.
7. Worrying just makes it worse.
While the anxious person you love appreciates that you care about them, they have probably found their own way of coping with their panic mode.
It may seem worrisome to you but they need you to stay calm and loose while they work through the panic on their own. Worry only makes more worry and doesn’t do anyone any good!
8. They’re aware their anxiety isn’t always rational.
Don’t feel like you need to tell them they’re freaking out over nothing, because trust me, they definitely already know. Unfortunately, just because it doesn’t make sense or isn’t rational doesn’t mean it’s any less real.
9. They can be easily overwhelmed.
So when your loved one with anxiety needs to pause and withdraw for a bit, don’t get in their way. They need that time to gather themselves and take a breath.
10. Anxiety does not define them!
The person you love has anxiety, but it isn’t all they are. It’s important not to let the anxiety overshadow all of the wonderful things about them that you fell for in the first place.
Be patient and understanding, and it will pay off in the end when you find that your deeply sensitive friend or loved one with anxiety is also capable of some of the deepest and most dedicated love out there.
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