5 Things To Know Before Dating Someone With An Anxiety Disorder

5 Things To Know Before Dating Someone With An Anxiety Disorder

Here are some things to consider to save you and your future parter the heartbreak.
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I have lost relationships to anxiety, and it's one of the worst things I've ever experienced. It makes you feel like you aren't good enough to experience happiness because your brain doesn't work right. I wished someone would've told the people in my past that living with anxiety is a constant struggle, and that I am trying just as hard as I can. So before starting a relationship with someone who has an anxiety disorder, please consider the following.

1. Sometimes there's nothing you can do to help, and you have to accept that.

People with anxiety disorders are often prone to panic attacks (fits of panic that are accompanied by hyperventilation, shaking, racing heartbeat, and sweating), and most of the time there is nothing you can do to help. Don't let this frustrate you. You just need to hold them and try to help them breathe while letting them know you're there.

2. Manic depressive tendencies can be tough to deal with.

Manic depression is incredibly common amongst people with anxiety disorders. Your future partner might go through spells where they talk fast, have increased amounts of energy, and have scattered thought, and then snap into a state of depression that is accompanied by increased amounts of sleep, lack of motivation to complete even the simplest tasks, and outbursts of emotion (often fits of crying and self-loathing). This can be exhausting for both you and your partner.

3. You need to be their emotional support 24/7.

Your future partner might be emotionally unstable and anxious most of the time. Sometimes they can be completely fine one minute, then have a random panic attack moments later. You need to be available at all times to be their support and let them talk. There will be times when you're working or don't have cell service, but you should always check on them as soon as you can. Often it's difficult to ask someone for help or support, because they feel as though they're a bother. This can cause more anxiety. Try your best to let them know often that you're there for them and they can ask you for help anytime.

4. You CANNOT get angry. It isn't their fault.

Anxiety cannot be controlled by the individual. There is no "cure." Yes, there is medication, but that doesn't completely eradicate the anxiety attacks and manic depression. If your future partner has an anxiety attack and you're late for something, you cannot blame them. They already feel awful enough about being an inconvenience, and they don't need you to be angry and make it worse.

5. You have to love them unconditionally, anxiety and all.

I am not my anxiety, but we are a package deal. I will always have anxiety, and if you cannot accept that or you aren't willing to deal with it, move along. You cannot "fix" me. You cannot "make me better." I'm not a fixer upper. I'm the way I am and there's nothing you or I can do to change that. Please, for your sake and theirs, decide if you can accept that before you become emotionally invested just to later decide that we're too much to handle.

Cover Image Credit: Violet Alexandria

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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To The Friend I Rarely See Anymore

I wish you nothing but the best.

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When we graduated high school, we thought it was the end for us. The distance would ruin us and we wouldn't be able to call ourselves friends. Thankfully, you were my rock for the first year of school. You were the one I turned to when the adjustment was hard or when I needed someone to talk to and just listen. We never lost our connection for a whole year. We proved that nothing could pull us apart no matter how far the distance, no matter the different schedules. We were still best friends.

Another summer came and we only got stronger. We went on countless beach trips, late night hangouts, and Starbucks runs. I didn't even think it was possible to be this much closer to you than we already were. If we weren't together, we would Snapchat or text to never stop the conversation.

Now summer ended, we didn't think twice about losing our connection this time. We had a bond stronger than anyone could fathom. We once again went our separate ways and kept our texting and Snapchat habits.

But something changed.

It must've been the comfort level of sophomore year. It must've been all the new friends we got. It must have been the boys who entered our lives. We don't speak anymore. I haven't seen you since winter break. I haven't texted you since New Year's Eve. Our connection, one that was once thought to be indestructible, came crumbling down with sophomore year. I am not going to lie, sophomore year was the best of my life, but I knew you were missing the whole time. It wasn't the same without you.

I'm not upset you chose to focus your time and life on your new boyfriend. I am happy for you. I am not upset you spend more time with your school friends. I am happy for you. I am not upset you don't text me anymore and killed our streak. I know you're living a happy life. And I am too.

We may have gone our separate ways like we never imagined, but I am happy you are finally happy. Don't forget for one second that I will always be here for you. I will still always answer your text. I will still always be your shoulder to cry on even when no one else is there for you. I wish you nothing but the best, and I hope you're doing ok.

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