Dear Anxiety: We're Over
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Health and Wellness

Dear Anxiety: We're Over

It's not me, it's you.

Dear Anxiety: We're Over

Dear Anxiety,

I’ve been sitting in front of this blank screen for hours contemplating how to do this without you blowing up in my face. How will you react this time? Are you going to yell at me again? Isolate me? Tell me I’m not good enough? I never know with you. Some days we coexist, but that’s not a healthy relationship.

You’ve made it impossible for me to function normally. You’ve taken days away from me, abused me, ruined most of my relationships, and for what? Do you expect me to just stay silent, say nothing, and let you control me? You’ve known me for how many years now, and you think I’m just going to take it? You make daily tasks virtually impossible and I’m sick of it. While I might have not had the courage to break up with you when things first turned toxic, I do now.

When we first met, I was curious. You were unpredictable and brought out the spontaneity in me. We fell hard and we fell fast. I should’ve seen the red flags waving, but I was blinded. Your stimulation brought out qualities in me that I had never imagined were possible. I was able to stay up all night and the stress you put me under drove me to focus on schoolwork and my future. I thought you were making me a better person. I thought you wanted what was best for me. I thought you wanted me to succeed. I was wrong. Little did I know that my world would soon revolve around you.

The spontaneity I once craved became my worst nightmare. I never knew when you would strike. I realized the stress that I thought was making me productive was actually doing the opposite. You began physically and emotionally abusing me. Screaming at me saying I wasn’t good enough, I would never become anything, and that my future was bleak, so what was the point of trying? My GPA wasn’t high enough and I didn’t have enough on my resume. I was a small fish in a big pond, right? I could work around the clock and still nothing was good enough.

The constant worry about the future drove my friends away and that’s exactly what you wanted, wasn’t it? You wanted them to think I was crazy, overdramatic, that I needed to “just calm down.” You wanted me all to yourself. You knew they would see the constant fear in my eyes and know something was wrong. You didn’t want them to know that you strangled me, sucked the oxygen out of my lungs, and left me crippled daily. You got your wish. I didn’t want to bother them and certainly did not want them to see the person I had become.

I tried to make things work. I got us help. We tried talking through our issues and working on ways to make our relationship better. A compromise was necessary. We needed to find a way to be functional and maybe even happy again, but you wanted no part in it. You wanted to keep doing what you were doing regardless of what it did to me.

After taking the time to think our relationship through, it dawned on me. You thought I was weak. I finally understood why you were doing this. I was angry and hurt, but mostly, relieved. In that moment it became clear: It’s not me, it’s you. You were looking for someone to prey on, to control, and I wasn’t going to let that person be me anymore.

I’ve realized that I am strong and independent, an epiphany that would not have been possible without you. I’m sure this isn’t going to be our last conversation. Like all relationships, we will probably check in on one another and reminisce about the times we shared together. For now though, I think we both need our space. Thank you for the experiences you’ve given me. While they might not have always been the healthiest, you gave me the opportunity to truly discover who I am and what I want to become.



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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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