“It is very hard to explain to people who have never known serious depression or anxiety the sheer continuous intensity of it. There is no off switch.”
– Matt Haig
When you love someone, all you want is to see them happy and well. If they’re suffering, it can break your heart into pieces, especially if you don’t really know what you can do for them. Thankfully, there is a way that you can improve your ability to help that person in their struggles.
The best way that you can aid your loved one is to understand their illness. From there, you can support them in every way that you can. Here are 6 important things to know if you have a loved one with anxiety.
1. They Need Patience
Things can get overwhelming quickly when you have anxiety. Sometimes, people who suffer from it will need some time before they can do things that most people would have no problem with. It may be frustrating for you, but getting annoyed at them will only make it worse. What they need most from you is your patience.
2. They Don’t Just Suffer Mentally
Anxiety is a mental illness, but what most people don’t understand is the way that mental illnesses present themselves physically. They don’t just affect your mind, but your body too. This illness can make you feel physically sick or unstable. As well as that, it can also leave them feeling like they can’t breathe or it can make their heart race.
3. They Aren’t Weak
Sometimes they’re going to break down. They’re going to cry, hide from the world, or struggle to breathe, but that does not mean that they’re weak. Living with anxiety is a complete nightmare. The fact that they manage to function at all proves that they are strong, even if they don’t think that they are.
4. They Need to Be Able to Talk to You
Anxiety can make you feel isolated and like you have no one to turn to. If your loved one struggles with this illness, they’re going to need someone to go to when things get rough. If you gain their trust enough, you will be the person that they can rely on.
5. They May Suffer From Depression Too
Not many people realize that having one illness can lead you to another mental illness. It’s extremely common for people who suffer from anxiety disorders to also suffer from chronic depression as well. Their anxious minds can make them feel down, as well as leaving them with no energy or will to face the world.
6. They Can’t Just Calm Down
When panic hits, the only thing that’s really going to help is deep breathing and waiting for it to pass. Telling them to calm down is not only unhelpful, but it’s also impossible. If they could just relax, they would have done it by now. Along with that, telling them that will make them feel like you don’t take them seriously.
7. They’ll Need To Be Alone Sometimes
Imagine how tiring it must be to live every single day stressed and on edge. That’s the life of someone with an anxiety disorder and it can leave them completely exhausted. The only thing that can help sometimes is to have some time alone to be away from other people and external stimulations. Don’t take offense if they say they need some alone time. It’s not because they don’t want to see you, they just need to recharge.
Anyone can develop a severe anxiety disorder. It’s such a common mental illness and affects millions of people throughout the world of any age, gender, race, or profession. The person that you love most could be one of those unlucky people and truly understanding their illness will help you to make life just a little bit easier for them.
Share this article with your friends and family. Anyone you know could need to hear these 6 things.