7 Things People With Anxiety Want You To Know
Health and Wellness

7 Things People With Anxiety Want You To Know During the Holidays

For some people, October through January is the worst time of year.


For many people, the holidays are a time when anxiety increases tremendously, so for people who already suffer from anxiety, that is double the amount of anxiety. On top of the day-to-day challenges someone with anxiety may face, they now must deal with the pressure of the holidays as well. Everything from gift shopping to Christmas parties, all normal things during the holiday season, can be overwhelming.

1. Not everyone is happy around the holidays, and that is okay

Just because we are supposed to be happy around the holidays does not mean we will be and that is perfectly fine. We understand that the holidays are the best time of year for many people, but constantly being asked why we are not as happy about the holidays as them only makes us more aware of our anxiety. For some of us, it is yet another reminder of a year spent with a mental illness as well as what the following year will bring in terms of that illness. We are aware of the expectation that we need to be filled with joy for the holiday season, and that expectation alone is daunting. Just because we do not show it doesn't mean that we care any less, we are usually just too stressed to keep up a facade.

2. Sometimes we might need to take a little breather...

Sometimes making conversation for hours on end can be stressful. Catching up extended family on your entire life is tiring; if we stop answering questions, it is not because we are avoiding, it is because we are exhausted. If we step out for a bit, it is not because we are not enjoying ourselves or because your party is not fun, it is because we needed a minute to catch our breath. If you see us sitting alone quietly, you can kindly ask if we are okay; if we say yes, then just leave us be because we probably just need a minute to collect ourselves. Do not badger us about how we are feeling. I cannot stress enough that if we disappear for a bit, you should just leave it be. Please do not ask where we went because we will probably struggle to come up with a terrible lie and it will make everyone involved uncomfortable.

3. ...or leave a party early

Sometimes taking a little breather might not be enough and we might need to leave altogether. If this happens, try not to be offended. We are not trying to be rude. There is a lot going on with the holidays, and as much as we might try to be involved, sometimes our anxiety gets the best of us. Don't hold it against us or stop inviting us to things because we do want to be there, but sometimes we just cannot be.

4. Small talk is the absolute worst

Small talk should be easy, it has nothing to do with deep personal subjects typically, but it is terrible for some people. Scrambling for topics to keep the conversation going is nerve-wracking. As we are talking about one thing, our minds are searching for what to talk about next while also overanalyzing everything that we have just said. It is a lot for our brains to do. I'm not saying don't talk to us, but when you do try to understand that if we freeze or seem uncomfortable, it is definitely not anything you did.

5. Please do not interrogate me about my personal life

This doesn't apply to just people with anxiety, but it is amplified for us. The holidays usually mean spending an absurd amount of time with extended family in a very short window of time, and we know what comes with that: questions about how your life is progressing. "How's college? Are you in a relationship, yet? What are you majoring in? Do you like your classes? How is your roommate? Have you made friends? What do you want to do with your life?" We know that you are just curious, but asking us all these questions all at once feels like being hit with an avalanche. Most likely, we are already worried enough about if we are making enough friends and what our major is and trying to talk about it is difficult. And asking what we want to do with our lives? That is a gateway to a crisis because we are probably terrified that we do not know what we want to do and you asking just makes us feel even less in control. So you have every right to ask about our personal lives, just make sure you are conscious of how you do so.

6. The obligation to reciprocate gifts can be ridiculously stressful

Even if people say you don't have to get them something, you do because otherwise you'll feel guilty. Someone gets you a gift, therefore you have to get them a gift otherwise you owe them and you feel like a terrible person. The problem is we most likely did not feel deserving of a gift in the first place, and so we feel like we have to repay you big time. If the gift is not perfect or we give it to you and you don't like it, we're going to feel crushed so we have to find the perfect gift which is way harder than it seems.

7. And when we do want to reciprocate gifts, shopping for them can be very anxiety-provoking

Black Friday is my worst nightmare; running around overcrowded shopping malls with people trampling each other does not go well with anxiety. Yes, some people who happen to suffer from anxiety enjoy holiday shopping, but for a lot of us, it is anxiety-provoking. Sensory overload is a thing and huge crowds of people with a lot of noises and visuals to take in can cause it. If you ask us to go to the mall with you and we say no, just respect that because if we wanted to go, we would. While I would love to go window shopping in NYC, sometimes dealing with the crowds can just be too much.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Health and Wellness

This Survey Shows How Quarantine And Drinking Relate, And I Can't Say I'm Surprised

"5 o'clock somewhere" is more of a guideline now than ever.

As it stands, and my friends and I are finally 21. We're extremely excited to be able to go out to bars and "get lit" as the kids say, but due to the pandemic, all of our plans have been put on hold. We'd rather wait and go when it's safe than risk spreading the infection and hurting our loved ones. So, we've all been quarantining apart, getting on the occasional wine zoom call. This made me wonder if anyone else our age were doing the same thing.

Then, I discovered this survey: We Surveyed Millennials And Gen Z About Their Quarantine Drinking Habits — Cheers. Here are 3 things that I discovered through the survey results.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 Easy Summer Mocktail Recipes You Can Make With Items You Probably Already Have On-Hand

Keep these drinks in mind next time you're visiting your local farmer's market — you might want to grab some extra mint and limes.

With Summer 2020 in full swing comes the addition of many fresh fruits and vegetables to brighten up your dinner plate, but also your glass! Farmers markets are my personal favorite place to look for produce that is in season to make fun mocktails with.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 Ways To Celebrate The 4th of July — Without Fireworks Or Social Gatherings

We created a list of things to do since social distancing may create a dent in our typical, planned traditions.

With the Fourth of July on Saturday, the usual tradition of popping fireworks, grilling out, and being surrounded by family has been modified due to the pandemic. Whether you're a loner or surrounded by family, there will most likely be some changes to your celebrations.

For weeks on social media, people across the country have been complaining that they have been subjected to fireworks going off at all times of the night into the early morning. This has sparked concern and questions about why this is happening and how are people even obtaining the fireworks.

Keep Reading... Show less

Carb And Cheese Lovers, Unite — These Are The Best Mac And Cheese Recipes On The Internet

Whether you need to get through the current pandemic or want to spice up your Fourth of July celebrations, these mac and cheese recipes will do just that.


My favorite food is mac and cheese, and it always has been. All it requires is noodles and cheese — it's so simple to make. Although it's my favorite, it can also get kind of mundane because it's such a simple recipe. This, of course, has led to many people all over the world experimenting with the American staple.

With our lives currently being turned upside down due to the pandemic, a lot of people are seeking comfort. These are scary times, and in order to make it day-to-day, we need to have our favorite foods as a standby. These recipes can also be used during your celebration of the Fourth of July.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

17 Things To Make You Feel GOOD This Week

Because some purchases are just necessary.

Y'all, we're struggling. You don't even have to tell me, I know. What a mess we're all in, right? This year is not going how we planned and the world has turned into one giant struggle bus. I guess you could be super philosophical about everything happening for a reason, but sometimes life is just hard.

There are plenty of ways to bring yourself out of whatever rut you're in. You could go for a run, have a snack, or read a book. Or, if you're really looking for an adrenaline rush, go shopping. This is obviously not going to solve the world's problems with one swift click of the "checkout" button, but hey, it may just give you the little boost you need today.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Wore A Butt Mask Every Day For A Month, And It's Officially Essential In My Daily Self-Love Routine Now

Thirty days later, my booty's as smooth as a baby's.

- Blissfully unaware that butt-care beyond squats was even something I should be considering in my self-care routine, I tried one of Bawdy Beauty's butt masks for the first time a month ago.

- I've never really given my butt a second though till I took a look at improvements that could be made with the mask — if one of the hydrating, firming, detoxifying, or brightening masks in the kit I received could either smooth out cellulite or tone my skin a bit more, I wasn't going to complain.

- Each Bawdy Beauty sheet mask comes in an individually-packaged sheet, soaked with a serum I massaged into my skin after removing said sheet. The clay butt mask comes in a convenient stick format I simply draw on to my skin and leave to set for about 10 minutes before hopping into the shower.

- I set a goal of committing myself to butt-care every day for one month. Between the regular use of sheet masks, clay masks, and their CBD Butt Balm in between, I didn't have many expectations.

- I thought the whole concept may just be a gimmick, but my butt has never looked so toned in my life, and the cellulite I had is almost completely gone. I wear one every single day when I get the chance.

I'm incredibly skeptical when it comes to marketing ploys and gimmicks in the beauty world. I'll be the first cynic to try out the latest serum on the market every influencer is raving about just to negate every grandiose claim it makes.

Keep Reading... Show less

Friends, you don't have to be quarantined to use a personal massager, you know? Because, sure, quarantine made for a lot of extra quality time with yourself, but no matter what phase of the reopening process you're in, it's normal and actually healthy to take care of your sexual needs on your own.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 Books I Didn't Realize Are About Gay Women

If you read primarily LGBTQ fiction, then this list might help to expand your TBR list.

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels

Frequent readers of LGBTQ fiction might feel like they're reading the same book over and over again, with few exceptions.

Most of these books were on my TBR list for months and I didn't realize they were about gay women until I was reading them, hopefully, this list of books can interest you in expanding your reading material and seeking out different stories.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments