Anxiety is one of the toughest mental illnesses to deal with because it’s affects everyone differently, and it can change throughout someone’s life. If you have anxiety, you might have specific triggers, but you also might get anxious out of nowhere for no reason. It’s basically the worst, and I hate it even though I’m dealing with it every single day.
On top of dealing with anxiety, it’s also tough to deal with people who don’t have anxiety because they tend to ask stupid questions or say rude things. We know you’re not trying to hurt our feelings intentionally, but it’s just best to be cautious and not ask these questions:
1. Why are you panicking?
I don’t know, that’s part of the problem with anxiety. It can happen at any time!
2. Why don’t you just calm down?
OH. OKAY. I’LL JUST DO THAT. Anxiety doesn’t allow you to “just calm down.” That’s kind of the whole point.
3. But you know it’s not going to hurt you so why are you freaking out?
Because anxiety and logic do not go hand in hand.
4. Can’t you just stop thinking about it?
5. What do you talk to your therapist about?
Well that’s invasive.
6. What kind of medication are you taking?
Also invasive and literally not your concern unless you are another person with anxiety and are curious about how medication makes you feel.
7. Why aren’t you on medication?
Prescriptions or lack of prescriptions are not something you’re privileged to know!
8. Have you tried meditating/yoga/etc.?
While some people might be trying to help, this is like telling someone with acne to try Proactiv.
9. Isn’t there, like, a cure or something?
If there was, don’t you think I would have tried that already?
10. Why do you put yourself through [insert activity here] if you know you’re going to get anxious?
Maybe because I want to live my life as a normal person and do fun things and see my friends and be adventurous and have a full, happy life without letting my anxiety hold me back?
11. Why are you mad at me?
Anxiety can make some people annoyed or frustrated, which could result in snapping at friends and family, especially when in the middle of a panic attack. It’s literally not about you so do not assume that it is.
12. Your life is fine, what do you have to be anxious about?
Just because someone seems fine on the outside (like me!) doesn’t mean they don’t have any problems. You don’t get to make that call.
13. How did you even get anxiety anyway?
Maybe I’m born with it. Maybe it’s Maybelline.
14. You grow out of it, right?
Can you grow out of being insensitive?
15. Why do you think you have anxiety when it’s not real?