My Response To My Loved One’s Feelings About Anxiety
On December 19, 2014, I published an article titled, 3 Questions I Asked My Loved One About My Anxiety Disorder. It was a candid interview with one of my very good friends. Her responses were unedited, very candid, and, in many ways, very painful for me to read. I recommend reading that post before reading this one about my response to my loved one's feelings about anxiety disorder.
I want to stress that she didn’t say anything untrue. There is no rational thought process that says people aren’t allowed to have emotions that negatively impact another person. This is one of the reasons that I’m fond of the phrase “life is messy.” Even when we are being open, honest, and non-judgmental, reality can be painful.
Sometimes My Anxiety Makes My Loved One Angry
All of her answers led me to one conclusion: Sometimes my anxiety makes her angry. There is no getting away from that, no matter how much I don’t want it to be true. Her answers weren’t meant to be malicious or to hurt my feelings. The unintended consequence of me having a severe and persistent mental illness is that it can negatively affect those around me.
Frankly, that shouldn’t be a surprise. Mental illness affects the afflicted negatively, so it’s not a stretch that it would negatively impact those around us. Would we really feel better if those around us were unaffected?
Knowing Anxiety Hurts My Loved One is a Gift
If my anxiety disorder is causing my loved ones pain, I want to know about it. In this way, knowing anxiety hurts my loved one is a gift. Knowing this means we can work together to lessen the impact.
It means I have a friend who cares enough about me to give me information that will allow me to be better. I can use this information to make better decisions about my care. This kind of knowledge is vital in maintaining a healthy and long-lasting relationship with anyone.
The bottom line, at least for me, is that I’d rather have the harsh truth than a comforting lie.
Howard, G. (2015, January 7). My Response To My Loved One’s Feelings About Anxiety, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2022, August 8 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/anxiety-schmanxiety/2015/01/my-response-to-my-loved-ones-feelings-about-anxiety
Author: Gabe Howard
I think her responses were insensitive and selfish. She has a right to her feelings but needs to be more compassionate about how she expresses them. Would she have said the same thing if your illness was cancer? Probably not. She seems to think you have control over your panic attacks. Her responses are a testimony of her lack of understanding of how this disorder works. I'm sorry you have a friend like her. I hope you have other ones who are more supportive of you.
There are many different symptoms that a person feels during anxiety. One of them we read here, which was very interested to read about this.
Thank you for reading and commenting! ~Gabe