Wednesday, May 7, 2014
Anxiety And What Not To Say
I suffer from both Major Depressive Disorder and severe anxiety. The meds I am on at the moment are helping quite a bit. Sometimes, though, I have a panic attack. My heart races, my arms and legs tingle, I am short of breath, there is an oppressive feeling of impending doom, and horrible thoughts race through my mind.
Some people understand my anxiety and some people don't. Most don't. They tell me to "just stop it" and ask me what is making me so nervous. Often there is no discernible trigger for a panic attack. It is an attack - from out of the blue chemicals flood my brain and cause me great physical and mental distress. If I could "just stop it" I would definitely do just that.
There are those people that are well-meaning and make suggestions like, "have you tried meditation?" and "why don't you exercise, I bet that will help". I have tried everything there is to try to conquer these horrible episodes. What I need from someone when I am in the middle of an attack is just conversation to distract me from the racing thoughts of doom. But I don't get to go out much, so usually I am alone when an attack occurs. If I need help there are a couple of people I can call that understand when I tell them I just need to get my mind off its rampage.
The reason for this post is an article I found that puts a humorous spin on what not to say to someone who has anxiety. Click here to go to that article. I think you will enjoy it. And it will help you if you know someone who suffers like I do.
What someone suffering from severe anxiety needs the most is for you to just be there in case we have a request. Something as simple as you telling me about your day can help to quell the horror that is running through my brain. And, eventually, it will pass. It may take a while, but it will pass. And you would be considered a great friend for being there in our time of need.