The painful knowledge I’ve gained through experiencing anxiety, and loving someone suffering from anxiety.
Anxiety is slowing becoming more understood, but tragic misconceptions still exist that need to be changed. Have you ever made an excuse to skip a get together with your friends, because you know they won’t understand, “I’m feeling anxious”. Or maybe you’ve made an excuse on behalf of someone you love?
If you feel the need to make excuses, a misconception still exists. People don’t make an excuse for a broken leg if they need to stay in, and rest. Everyone understands the pain of a broken leg, even if they haven’t experienced it – they’ve likely seen the pain in one way or another.
The pain of anxiety is a bitch. The ghost of misery creeps up unexpectedly, incapacitating it’s victim in a most frustrating manner.
One person with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (or any other form of anxiety) to another cannot fully understand each other. Anxiety is not just any bitch – it’s a cold, blustery snowflake of a bitch. I know people hate the term snowflake, but it’s just so fitting in this sense.
Everybody thinks they know what anxiety is, because everyone has experienced it at some point in their life. This is where the problem lies. You’ve experienced a tiny amount of what someone with chronic anxiety feels – sometimes all day, for days on end. Please stop assuming you know what they are experiencing.
The moon has a dark side, and so does anxiety. I know you’re wondering what I mean, anxiety is dark enough as it is – could there possibly be a darker side? Well there is, and it’s a four letter word that spells L-O-V-E. The people who love someone suffering from anxiety are also suffering. We get overlooked a lot of the time.
But we are here, trying to help, giving all the love we have.
Someone I love very deeply is struggling with a vicious battle against anxiety, and it kills me everyday. His anxiety is foreign to me, I have experienced similar feelings myself, but I cannot claim to feel it as he does. My anxiety stems from being a people pleaser, and a constant fear of disappointing my family and friends, and I’m constantly working to keep it at bay – his is more all-consuming.
I cannot control someone else’s anxiety, and it’s maddening to be at a loss when all you want to do is help the person that you love. When you see the person you love in such pain, it crushes your own heart.
Anxiety is a lifelong struggle, and I will continue to love my person through it all – he has never asked to feel such lowness. To feel so desperate, and weak.
What I ask of you all is this – educate yourself, be understanding, and most of all – be patient. The only way you can help someone you love who suffers from anxiety is to keep your cool, put yourself in their shoes – and hope tomorrow will be better.
Tomorrow will be better.