Don't Forget About Your Friends With Mental Health
Health and Wellness

Pay Attention To Your Friends Suffering From Mental Health, Too

Putting yourself first is important, but so is checking in on your friends.


Lately, I have been feeling left out of a lot of things, which has caused my anxiety to go through the roof.

When I was younger, I knew something was off right away. Physical pain always had a way to be treated. It was simple, you broke a bone it got fixed with a cast. Mental illness is not that simple. Ever since I was 13, I knew I was not just going through a physical pain, but that there was something mentally wrong. I soon began to realize that I have depression. As I grew and transitioned into moved through high school, my depression quickly grew into anxiety.

According to Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, the medical term for anxiety is "an abnormal and overwhelming sense of apprehension and fear often marked by physical signs (such as tension, sweating, and increased pulse rate), by doubt concerning the reality and nature of the threat, and by self-doubt about one's capacity to cope with it."

Anxiety is incredibly frustrating, so living with it is even more frustrating. One minute you know that everything is fine, the next you have this undeniable feeling that everyone around you hates you. You get the feeling that everyone is saying that you're not pretty enough, smart enough, good enough or anything else negative. Many people do not realize the stressors that anxiety causes. This lack of realization plays an important role in the unacceptable terms to currently label people, who suffer from anxiety as "clingy" or "too needy."

I can tell you for a fact that I am not "clingy". I just require reassurance every once in a while. Due to my anxiety, I don't pick up on social cues easily. I will have what I think is one of the best conversations with one of my friends, but then it will turn sour for me because I will overthink the second they look at me oddly or use a different tone of voice with me. It's little things that other people don't notice, but I do. It's that if I ask you to do something, but you don't understand it that I am unable to explain it in a better manner not because I do not know how, but I just cannot in a way that you would understand.

I notice it because that is how my brain works. I overthink everything ever said to me throughout the day. I know that everything is okay. But because my brain is wired to think in an anxious way, that is what always ends up happening. I beat myself up for no reason, but it's because there's a part of me that feels as though everything is wrong.

If you ever catch me “trying too hard," then that is due to thinking myself into a mess and trying to combat how I feel.

More people need to stop the stigma of anxiety and realize that it's a way of thinking yourself into a mess. That it is a way of making situations bigger than they need to be. It' always putting others before yourself. It's always pushing your feelings to back and making sure that everyone else is heard. I understand mental health is becoming a bigger topic, but there are subgroups of mental health that are not discussed enough. There are so many of my friends who suffer from a sort of mental health issue and you could not tell it by just looking at them. So check in every once in a while. Especially when you know their week has not been the best. Bring them a cup of coffee, give them a hug or do something to make them smile for even just a second. As long as they know that you're there for them in a singular moment then that is all it can take some time to get them feeling a tad bit better.

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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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