This is what anxiety feels like. It is a struggle that is unseen and goes inside the head of the person who is burdened by the pressure of anxiety. It can be anyone and you can be totally oblivious of their trauma. The worst part is that it can be anyone from your friend, colleague, or even partner. It becomes immensely hard when the person you love is suffering from anxiety.
"I feel like everyone hates me
They are going to leave"
This is another type of thought that pulls down a person constantly. So, despite knowing the fact that you love them, they won't be able to stop thinking that you will leave. This is also because it's something that they have faced. Either people failed to understand their condition or they pushed people away. In any of these situations, people left. That broke their heart so bad that now they are certain that you will leave too.
It is not easy to love someone with anxiety but after you have earned their trust, you are in for an amazing surprise. Here are some of the things that you may face when you are in love with someone who suffers from anxiety.
They will create scenarios in their own mind that can lead to unnecessary fights. No, they are not delusional but they read too much into a situation. Despite being the toughest people, they can get really emotional. That's when you need to maintain your composure and bring them in front of the truth in a loving way.
"It's ok" are not just words but a bubble of assurance for them. These words can actually slow down or even put a stop to the millions of unnecessary thoughts that they are battling with inside their head.
They have a lot to express but often find it hard to share. Be a listener and have patience. Once they tell their story, many things that seem irrational will start to make sense.
Sometimes their behavior will certainly seem irrational. However, when they open up to you, you can be sure that they trust you. Do not break that trust by saying that they are overreacting. You'll be back to square one.
Nights are often the hardest for them and they have fewer things to keep themselves occupied with. Yes, it may seem tough giving them time each night, but when they are wide awake at 3 am battling their demons, then your presence (even if it's over a virtual platform) will help them sleep better.
Trust is often a luxury for them. Why? The primary reason is because it has been broken before. It is not that they do not recognize your love and trust but they are scared. They are frightened to expose their vulnerable side to you. It is not that they don't trust you, but it will take time. Also, they probably hate themselves for not showing you the trust that you deserve.
When you answer their texts in time, it helps them more than you can actually imagine. It is not a mere text but an assurance that you are there. Even if you cannot speak or chat, just explain to them that you are busy somewhere and they will not stress about it. It creates problems in their mind that end up in creating situations that aren't required. This is not about them being clingy or distrusting you, this is just to prove to them that you are not leaving them.
Double texting is one of the things that you can absolutely expect. They understand the fact that they may appear annoying to you but they text because they care. When you are out of touch they often imagine the worst possible things. Despite knowing that it makes them look bad, they can't stop caring or checking up on you.
There may be instances, when they will cancel your plans at the last minute, maybe 1 hour before you are about to meet. They can also freeze in the middle of the night and become completely unresponsive for some time. There are thousands of things that can set off their anxiety. Thus, you will not really know how it will end and the only thing you can do is to be patient.
Fights are bound to happen and sometimes you'll often think they're silly. You may get upset, but mark my words after a while they will apologize. Though you may not even understand the reason that led to this situation, accept their apology. You will be helping them more than you can understand. However, this doesn't mean they are always unreasonable. You will slowly discover they also come out as one of the most supportive people when you are going through even the tiniest hurdle.
When you love them you want to help them with their meltdowns. However, know that you cannot always help them. They are stubborn and they will not admit that they cannot handle something. Also, they will not talk about their troubles thinking that they are disturbing you. You may feel that you will fall apart and the relationship will break. Just be a little patient, because they will deal with their own demons and come back to you.
They know that there are times when they are not reasonable and they act weird. They are well-aware of the fact that they can appear to be clingy, desperate, and irrational. All you can do is be with them and remember not to point out that they are unreasonable. Also, they do not expect you to go out of your way to be with them but they will appreciate immensely if you do.
The question is why would you go through so much trouble? Why will you endure the messed up fights, frozen expressions, and occasional issues? It is because, when they finally open up and trust you, then you will enter a world of unbound love. They will make sure to offer you the last ounce of their love and they will always be there for you. It will certainly be hard to imagine how your life used to be without them.
No pricey gift, no limitless pampering, or costly vacations. The secret to making them happy is hidden in your small gestures. When you stand with them despite knowing that they can overreact or withdraw, then even your tiniest gesture makes them immensely happy. Lastly, you have to accept and understand the fact that they are much more than their anxiety. You will see how wonderful they are when you step behind the line of their anxiety. They will love you forever.