15 Questions You Should Never Ask Someone With Anxiety

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?

Do you have anxiety? What questions do people ask you? Tell us in the comments below!
You can reach this post’s author, Caitlin Corsetti, on Twitter and Instagram!

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  • Gabriel Scroggins

    I feel like this is a slight exaggeration here, because anxiety is not the hardest to deal with. It may suck, yes, but there are much worse issues that can happen, and regardless anxiety is not a mental illness, it’s a behavioral condition. If you really want to know some of the worst conditions that make anxiety seem like a fluffy kitten, think about people who go through severe depression, who want to KILL themselves, or people who have severe migraines and have to deal with THAT every single day, and Bridget you obviously are taking the what are you anxious about question wrong, because its sounds like you are rejecting help and trying to justify it. It is a simple question, not ” did you have sex last night “. And if somone asks you then try to let them help you, it’s not like they’re asking just to put you down

    • Amanda C

      Okay, seriously? Mayo Clinic (one of the best health facilities in the world) considers anxiety a MENTAL HEALTH condition, HELLOOOOO! IT’S MENTAL, NOT JUST BEHAVIORAL! Anyways, I have severe chronic depression, severe anxiety, migraines and several other issues.. Maybe you should find out what the hell you’re talking about before you make comments… And out of everything I have, sure it may not be the worst, but it can be the most crippling when I’m terrified to go somewhere or do something because it’ll trigger an anxiety attack.. And the thing is, when I get upset enough, it triggers anxiety attacks but I hate making people have to walk on eggshells when they talk to me and I hate walking on eggshells when I’m talking to people.. So as I said, sure it may not quite be the worst, but it definitely can be at times.

    • Klara

      My anxiety is MILD, and I have had to deal with:

      – Consistently only sleeping 4h/night because of compulsive exercising
      – Not being able to sleep because I needed to make sure my family is still breathing
      – Getting up several times in the middle of class to go wash my hands
      – Checking all the thermostats in the house 3 times before going to bed
      – Missing class to go cry in the bathroom
      – Trying to hide crying in public situations/places
      – Sitting all day on the couch because I was scared of “failing” if I tried to do something
      – Researching suicide methods & planning
      – Self-harm
      – Taking 5X the recommended dose of medication hoping I will “accidentally” get sick
      – Restless leg syndrome
      – Cramps/Itching in entire left side of body
      – Panic attacks
      – Almost constant heart palpitations & shivering
      – Being exhausted ALL the time, falling asleep in random situations (microsleep) but not actually being able to sleep through a night, people thinking you’re fainting when you’re tired.

      Again, this is coming from someone with MILD anxiety. Don’t say “get over it” if you have no idea what it is.

  • Brynne

    Why can’t I stop shaking? Ugh it’s annoying

  • Bridget M

    “Ok so what are you anxious about right now?” Like, unless you are my therapist, I would rather not discuss this and send myself into a spiral of worry. I do not need to validate my mental health status to you. And no, I don’t think that the government is taking information from my brain.