Over the past two months, I have come to realize so many things about myself, my struggles, and the similarities I’ve found between myself and other anxiety sufferers. Since I’ve met so many other anxious women, I have felt more “normal” than I have in my whole life. I go through episodes that make me feel like I am truly insane, but after meeting these other women, I have come to realize that I am the furthest thing from it. I am simply a victim of anxiety, but that doesn’t mean that I, or anyone else, have to live like a victim.
Coming to this realization made me feel a lot less alone, and the connections I’ve felt to others has truly had an impact on my life. As you know, my two biggest goals with my blog are, one; help non-anxiety-sufferers understand, and two; help others with anxiety realize that they are not alone on this journey.
I decided to reach out to other women with anxiety, and I got eight amazing women who were willing to open up and share their experiences.
I hope you enjoy!
How old were you when you first experienced anxiety? How did you feel?
I have had it probably since my teenage years, but it didn’t get bad until the last couple of years. So let’s say 24. Anxiety is more than just a nervous feeling. It made me feel irritated, highly emotional, and even paranoid at times. It’s an overwhelming feeling and made me feel out of control of my life. It was terrifying when I first experienced it. It’s not something you get used to per se, but it is something you come to accept. — Katt, 26, TN
I was diagnosed with anxiety and panic disorder when I was 20-years-old. I was having multiple panic attacks a week and was falling behind in my classes at school because of my anxiety issues. My doctors first told me I had ADHD and then depression and it took months for them to finally come to the conclusion that it was anxiety. But, looking back on my childhood, I know that I have been anxious almost my entire life. I can recall having anxious thoughts and panic attacks since I was in elementary school. — Meredith, 24, NC
I was 14 when I first experienced anxiety. Over the past year, it has gotten a lot worse. — Maddy, 21, MI
I was 13, and I felt very scared as I didn’t understand why my heart was racing and I wanted to cry. — Anonymous
I really had to think about this one. I was officially diagnosed with depression and anxiety six years ago when I went to my college’s counseling center my freshman year when I had hit an all-time low. But I think I’ve been dealing with it most of my life. Interacting with other humans is a huge source especially when I came to the age of interacting with boys, getting in front of the class for presentations, and reading or even answering a question in class. So as young as middle school/puberty age. That’s when the overthinking and self-doubt started. How it feels; that’s something I have struggled to explain. It’s a heavy weight on my chest, the inability to control my heightened breathing, and hard to concentrate. This weird feeling in my mind/head, like a scattered feeling. It automatically makes me want to avoid whatever is causing it. Which causes more anxiety because I’m not doing what I’m supposed to be doing. And then I spiral out of control and get stuck in a thought loop. And then the depression symptoms add themselves in. — Kit, 24, FL
I don’t remember most of my childhood. So I’m not sure when the anxiety started. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
The first experience happened as a freshman in college, 17-years-old. The first time I recognized it was anxiety was when I was 23. I overthink, can’t sleep, and I’m constantly feeling uneasy. — Taylor, 28, NE
About 15. Angry, confused, and hurt. — Angie, 23, TX
Looking back I think I have always had anxiety but just didn’t know what it was. I was always nervous and shy. My mother called me a worry-wort. When I was younger I ended up having a bunch of tests done to find out why I was having stomach aches and headaches, they never found anything. Eventually, I was diagnosed with acid reflux, but the doctor says that stress can make that worse. I overthink everything, and if I need to talk to someone I play what I’m going to say in my head over and over again. Sometimes if I have to call someone I write down what I’m going to say or at least have notes to read from. I’m currently in school, and I’m petrified of having to get up in front of the class. I would rather blend in than be the center of attention. I am overweight, so I’m always so aware of what I look like and how what I’m wearing is resting over my stomach. I get stress migraines as well. — Kat, 37, MA
Do you suffer from panic attacks? If so, how would you describe them?
I will every so often, and when I do, it can be straight up debilitating. My heart races like I have had an overdose of caffeine. I can hyperventilate and even start crying at the drop of a hat. It makes my nerves shot and can be quite exhausting. — Katt, 26, TN
Yes, I suffer from panic attacks. I used to have multiple attacks in a week, but now I know how to cope and have them way less frequently. I would describe my panic attacks feeling like my chest caving in. All I want to do is curl into a ball and close everything out. Panic attacks make me feel helpless, but panic attacks also feel different for everyone. — Meredith, 24, NC
I do suffer from panic attacks. I get sweaty, my mind races, my chest tightens, and my lips tingle. — Maddy, 21, MI
Yes, they are an out-of-body, numb experience for me. — Anonymous
I do, I didn’t realize until last year and hadn’t identified them as that. Most of the time I am just on the brink of them. During one of my worst ones in public, I had all the symptoms of my normal anxiety plus my lips went numb, and my vision in and out. I couldn’t stand, I could barely breathe. And I was a preschool teacher at the time and was the only teacher in the room with seven three-year-olds. It probably didn’t last as long as it felt but I no longer felt comfortable being responsible for these children who had become a part of my life. — Kit, 24, FL
I had my first panic attack when I was 12. It was after my father was finally gone. I woke up one day, and there was nobody home. I was terrified; I thought they’d abandoned me. I thought all the scary, very real (at the time) thoughts. I wanted to die. I was hyperventilating and bawling. I ended up in the kitchen sitting on the floor, sawing at my wrist with a butter knife with some vague idea that there could be an escape. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
I have only suffered from two (I guess that is two more than some people do). My heart starts racing, and my body will go into shock. I have to pace back and forth to calm myself and get my breathing back to normal. — Taylor, 28, NE
No, but I get overwhelmed easily in large crowds. — Angie, 23, TX
I do. I haven’t gotten a lot of them, but the ones that I have gotten were awful. I felt stuck in my head, could not stop crying. Not pretty crying, ugly loud crying. The last one I had I was in the shower and my boyfriend ran to come check on me and ended up crawling in the shower with me to try to help. — Kat, 37, MA
How would you describe anxiety to someone who doesn’t have it?
The best way someone put it to me, which I find funny yet true… Imagine looking up porn on your browser, and someone comes up to stand behind you, and you just can’t hit that x button fast enough. Now imagine that feeling lasting for hours at a time. — Katt, 26, TN
The best way I can describe how my anxiety feels to someone would be being stressed about something, either a new job or project, anything that can cause a person temporary stress. Now take that stress and amplify it 10 times and then have that feeling constantly. — Meredith, 24, NC
Anxiety is like a dark cloud hanging over you. With the cloud comes a storm which takes over your mind and body. — Maddy, 21, MI
You feel out of control, but also it can be unnoticed by the outside world. It can make you do things you don’t mean and overthink everything you say. When you are stuck and focused on your anxiety, it is hard to get outside of yourself and realize everything is okay and you can do it.— Kit, 24, FL
Imagine there’s an earthquake strong enough to shake the building and give you a spook. Then alarms start going off. You are on high alert, looking for the exit, trying to identify where the danger will come from. Now imagine feeling the same way, but it’s just because your phone rang, or you have to go to the corner store. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
I would describe it as your mind is always thinking/worried about actions you made or something you said a minute ago or even years ago. — Taylor, 28, NE
For me, it’s like walking on the road on a mountain, and you are on the very edge. The ground is collapsing piece by piece, and there are rocks falling all around you, and all you can do is keep walking. — Angie, 23, TX
Think of everything that you do in a day, now think of each individual action, think of them again, and again, and again… That conversation that you had with your boss or coworker; was there anything that you said that might have been taken the wrong way? Overthink anything that goes wrong, or COULD go wrong. Basically, worry… a lot and about everything. — Kat, 37, MA
How do you cope with anxiety? Is there anything that helps?
When it comes to anxiety, it is best to have a “crutch” as they call it. In social situations, I have my phone. Sometimes I will color or play music. Anything to get my mind off of the current situation. — Katt, 26, TN
I am on medication that I take every day in the mornings, I am also prescribed Xanax for when it’s needed. Deep breathing helps me calm down, I hate being touched or coddled during a panic attack. — Meredith, 24, NC
I try to give myself pep talks and remind myself to breathe. If I am in a triggering situation, I take a walk so that I can distance myself & collect my thoughts. Journaling and listening to music helps. — Maddy, 21, MI
Personally, I smoke cigarettes it gives me a few minutes to collect myself and distracts me. I also enjoy baths to just breathe and unwind. — Anonymous
I think since moving to Florida in October from Albany, NY I have found ways to cope. My change of scenery is one way that helped all on its own. Another is getting outside in the sun. Vitamin D can be healing. Using MONQ Essential oil pens. In the past I had used weed to cope, and this was a better way and more accessible and could be used at any time. It also taught me how to breathe in a way that would actually calm me down. I also have some mantras that I repeat. Especially on my way to work, I have growing anxiety so I repeat things over and over and breath in the way the pens taught, and I can feel in control. One is “everything’s okay, I can do this.” Which sounds simple but when you are deep in anxiety, you don’t realize that all your summed up thoughts equal “everything’s not okay” and simply reminding myself of that helps. Another is “I felt this before, I’ve been here before, I’ve done this before. I can do this.” Even if it didn’t go well before you made it through. Made it to the other side so you can do it again. — Kit, 24, FL
Honestly, smoking pot in fairly low doses helps with my anxiety, my depression, fatigue, and chronic pain. But also it’s important to try to be aware of triggers, or identifying problematic thoughts. I recommend anybody learning to cope with anxiety or depression do some reading on CBT, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
I am very open about my anxiety with my boyfriend and mom. I will reach out when I feel I need someone to be aware of how I feel. One thing that helps me is just to be held tight. This helps calm my thoughts and feel safe. — Taylor, 28, NE
Sometimes I read or write in a journal. I’ve found that reading the same book (Eragon) over and over helps me calm down and feel more in control. Also baking cookies or cornbread. — Angie, 23, TX
I try to keep myself busy, I have a bunch of hobbies. I do crafts (cross-stitch and beadwork mostly), things that take my concentration, so it takes my mind off of what is bothering me. I also have recently been doing adult connect the dots, it keeps my attention to find the next dot and to keep the lines straight. I also cuddle with my cats, one of which jumped up to sit in my arms as I am typing this. — Kat, 37, MA
What are your biggest anxiety triggers?
Finances are my biggest triggers. Or last-minute plan changes. If I feel I have stepped on anyone’s toes, it can set me off. This is where the paranoia comes in. I may not upset anyone at all, but in my mind, the what-ifs play over and over. What if I upset them? What if they don’t like me? What if I said the wrong thing? Etc… — Katt, 26, TN
I like being in control, whenever there is a situation where I do not know what’s going on or what’s going to happen it immediately causes me to go into a panic. — Meredith, 24, NC
Work and money are the main triggers of my anxiety. I work as a dishwasher and get overwhelmed with the number of dishes. I am a perfectionist, so when I am not caught up, I get anxious. I don’t like my job and don’t get along with all of my coworkers. I make a good amount of money but not enough to pay for all of my debt. — Maddy, 21, MI
Large crowds, meeting new people and clutter, the unknown in situations and public transport. — Anonymous
The future, comparing myself to others, peoples’ perception of me, friends/relationships. Socializing: for example at work, the small talk with customers, what questions I’ll get and if I’ll have the answer. — Kit, 24, FL
Yelling, particularly in the workplace, and sex-related things. I have PTSD from surviving multiple rapes. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
Work and friendships. — Taylor, 28, NE
Crowds that appear out of nowhere. Seeing a message from a friend and knowing I have to respond at some point. — Angie, 23, TX
Major change, random changes in plans, financial issues (which I have a lot of right now), being late or coming down to the wire with school assignments (I am currently in college but also work full time). — Kat, 37, MA
Do you have anyone in your life that you can turn to during your most anxious moments?
I do have my best friend I have known for years. What is great about her is she experiences anxiety like I do so she empathizes well. Of course, we aren’t available for each other all the time, so we learn how to cope on our own in those circumstances. — Katt, 26, TN
Unfortunately, I do not have anyone I can turn to in those moments. I always felt as if I was a burden to my family or friends when I feeling anxious. I felt like they thought I was being overdramatic and I don’t want to bother anyone, so I just deal with it alone. — Meredith, 24, NC
My boyfriend, Kurt, and his mother — Maddy, 21, MI
My mum is my number 1 go-to person, but she lives in another state and my aunty, but she lives in another country, but day or night I know I have their support. — Anonymous
Depending on the reason, I can talk it out with my mom which is a hit or a huge miss and adds to it. I have turned to friends, but it’s rare. I don’t know how to talk about it, I want to be able to figure it out myself and not have them view me differently. — Kit, 24, FL
Sometimes… Nobody is there all the time. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
My boyfriend is extremely supportive, and I can turn to him anytime I feel anxious. — Taylor, 28, NE
I have a woman from a church I went to that I can tell her anything. — Angie, 23, TX
My friend Jenn is amazing, she also has anxiety, so she understands and knows that sometimes she just needs to listen but also knows when to input helpful comments. My boyfriend tries his best, but he doesn’t always understand it. — Kat, 37, MA
How does your anxiety affect your relationships with those around you?
It heavily affects relationships I am in. Once again, this is where the paranoia sets in. I always wonder if I’m good enough, if I’m smothering, if they have bad thoughts about me. It tends to make me want to keep them at arm’s length to protect myself. I have gotten better about not allowing this, but often times it is still in the back of my mind. — Katt, 26, TN
Like I said in the above question, I don’t want to burden anyone. I don’t usually tell people about my anxiety, my close friends know about it and that I am medicated, but we don’t really go further to talk about it. — Meredith, 24, NC
I overthink everything that I say and do in my relationships with others. I often avoid talking to people out of a fear of saying something wrong. — Maddy, 21, MI
Anxiety effects it greatly. I find it difficult to keep friends or relationships because I feel I am not good enough so I tend to push people away before they can do it to me. — Anonymous
I’m dealing with that a lot right now as I’ve started recently dating someone. I normally have had more in-the-moment, non-serious hookups for the past two years. This is different and wonderful, but I am a terrible communicator. It’s not that I don’t say things that are in my head, there are just no words to help someone understand. Especially when I’m in it. I tend to shut down and leave abruptly. With my friends in NY as well they were always telling me to come to them if I needed anything but I don’t know how to. I don’t know how to explain it. And I don’t feel the comfortability that they believe they give me. — Kit, 24, FL
My anxiety makes it difficult for people to be my friend because I need reassuring on a regular basis. I guess I’m high maintenance. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
Anxiety sometimes makes me not want to be social. I will stay home and avoid going out with friends. Other times it is frustrating for loved ones because they don’t know what caused my anxiety and how exactly they can help. — Taylor, 28, NE
My boyfriend is very understanding, parents not so much. I have ruined several friendships because of anxiety and depression. — Angie, 23, TX
I tend to overthink what I say to people, my friend Jenn is pretty much the only one that I can speak EXACTLY what is on my mind without worrying about it. My anxiety affects how I sometimes feel with my boyfriend, I overthink what he says to me. He knows that I try not to do that, but sometimes I can’t help it. I worry what I say to people at work and school, I fear getting too comfortable and saying something wrong. — Kat, 37, MA
Does anxiety affect your sleeping and eating habits? How so?
It very much does. Anxiety and insomnia tend to go hand in hand. I will lay down to sleep, but my mind will not follow my lead. It will still run 1000 miles an hour, having many thoughts and questions zip through my mind. When it comes to eating, it can go either way. Sometimes it makes me want to reach out for comfort food while other times it will kill my appetite. All depending on the level of anxiety. The lower levels cause me to eat more but the worse it gets, the less appetite I will have. — Katt, 26, TN
When I’m feeling very anxious or stressed about a current situation it can affect my sleeping. I either can’t fall asleep easily, or I wake up multiple times throughout the night. — Meredith, 24, NC
My anxiety affects my sleep in that I often suffer from insomnia. My mind races so much that it is easier to listen to music than it is to sleep. My anxiety affects my eating habits in that I tend to eat more junk food and soda when I’m anxious. — Maddy, 21, MI
I have severe insomnia and have dealt with anorexia and bulimia. I feel nervous to eat as I also have a digestive health issue, so everything I eat either gives me chronic pain or I bloat really severely. — Anonymous
Absolutely. I’m always a terrible sleeper and if I’m worried about something it makes it worse which causes more anxiety about waking up and feeling terrible. Also, I am not a good eater. As my mother says about us, “we eat to live, not live to eat.” So eating three meals a day is a success. If I’m not doing well, I’m even less hungry than normal. Making my stomach hurt even more just to eat. — Kit, 24, FL
I often struggle to fall asleep. Then I have nightmares and wake up every couple hours. And my anxiety makes it impossible to eat sometimes, which means I can’t take my meds, which makes me more anxious, which makes it harder to eat… Oh, hey! That’s another thing pot helps for! — Carly, 33, Ottawa
My sleep is the most affected. I will toss and turn at night. I will even be so tired, but cannot stop my mind from thinking about things the next day or even coming up on the weekend. It is a vicious cycle. — Taylor, 28, NE
Yes, I have a hard time falling asleep because my brain has to go over every single issue going on currently and what bills I need to pay. But when I do sleep I have a hard time getting out of bed, part of that is also the depression, so I can’t tell if that is more anxiety. I just know that sometimes I just want to hide from everything in bed. As for eating, I sometimes forget to eat, but I think that is more the depression than the anxiety. — Kat, 37, MA
Is there anyone in your life who just can’t understand your anxiety? How does that make you feel?
There are many people that don’t, but it is hard for others to understand something they don’t go through themselves. It can make me feel isolated and even hurt, especially when I first experienced it. Over the years I have just come to grips with this and manage to find a way to be okay with the fact that I must be here for myself. — Katt, 26, TN
My dad – he just thinks I’m uptight and I stress myself out. He doesn’t get that I have these never ending thoughts in my head that I have no control over. I hate it, I hate that I can’t call and talk to my family members when I’ve had a “bad anxiety” day. I have to deal with it alone a lot of the times. — Meredith, 24, NC
My boss does not seem to understand my anxiety. This makes me feel like she doesn’t care about me not only as an employee but also as a person. — Maddy, 21, MI
Sometimes I feel as if my Dad doesn’t and it makes me feel two feet tall because I don’t know how to express how or why I’m feeling that way. — Anonymous
Not really, everyone is really understanding even if they don’t know exactly what is going on. Which sometimes makes me upset because I do have so many wonderful people and still feel trapped and I feel unworthy of them. — Kit, 24, FL
Sometimes I feel like nobody understands. This makes me feel very alone. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
I do not feel that my director truly understands how my anxiety is. I have expressed multiple times how it affects me and causes high stress/anxiety, but he does not take that into consideration. This drives me to want to break down and feel as if I am never being heard. It has even caused me to consider quitting coaching gymnastics, which is beyond anything I would ever want to do. — Taylor, 28, NE
My boyfriend, I wish that I could say that he gets it but I don’t think that he does. I love him, and I love that he tries. It is frustrating that he doesn’t understand it, but I know that he tries and that helps. — Kat, 37, MA
Have you ever seen a therapist for your anxiety?
I have not. — Katt, 26, TN
No, I can’t afford it, and my insurance doesn’t cover it. — Meredith, 24, NC
I have never seen a therapist for my anxiety. — Maddy, 21, MI
Yes, multiple. I wasn’t successful in finding it helped me. — Anonymous
Yes, I’ve seen more than one over the years. I tend to try to show how well I’ve been doing after the initial session, so I think I focus more on that than talking everything out. A therapist is someone good to have a check in with once a month or however often, so you don’t stay in your hole/pit, as I call it. — Kit, 24, FL
I am beginning therapy for the first time, in a few weeks. *Fingers crossed* — Carly, 33, Ottawa
It was not specifically for anxiety, but that was a very hot topic while I was seeing her. — Taylor, 28, NE
Yes, I haven’t been able to afford it, so I haven’t gone recently but I plan on trying to go back soon because I feel like I need it. — Kat, 37, MA
Has anything severe ever happened due to your anxiety (loss of job, end of a relationship, hospitalization, severe depression, etc.)
Depression, yes. For me, it’s a 2-in-1 package. It has caused me to isolate myself, thus losing friends, which ironically makes me feel worse. It is harder to hold down a job, especially high-stress jobs such as customer service. —Katt, 26, TN
No. — Meredith, 24, NC
Nothing severe has happened, but I am close to being fired because my boss and coworkers are tired of dealing with my anxiety. — Maddy, 21, MI
I was raped when I was 17… I was a virgin, so it has caused major intimacy anxiety for me and trust issues. — Anonymous
I’ve quit a job. I have ended relationships because I’m doing bad and feel bad that they are connected to me while I go through that. I went to a psychiatric hospital last year for a week when I couldn’t handle existing. For me, anxiety and depression go hand in hand. My symptoms of one bring out the symptoms of another. I definitely have been severely depressed at different points over the years. — Kit, 24, FL
My anxiety and depression have lost me several jobs, to the point of going on disability. I have attempted suicide more than once, and think about it often. I went to emergency at the hospital because I was afraid I would harm myself. Relationships have failed; romantic relationships, platonic relationships, familial relationships. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
Yes, I was in a very verbally abusive and mentally abusive relationship. This has caused me to have many different triggers, and at times I am very delicate on certain topics or types of behaviors. — Taylor, 28, NE
Some friendships have either ended or taken a hiatus due to my overthinking and overacting due to those thoughts. I also suffer from depression and have since I was a teenager, so I don’t know if that is caused by the depression or contributes to it. — Kat, 37, MA
If someone is looking for advice on how to handle an anxious person in their life, what advice would you give them? How can they help?
Try to be sympathetic. Do not take offense if they take it out on you, or push away from you for chunks of time. Sometimes I personally need to be to myself to “recharge” because anxiety can be especially draining. Just bear with us the best you can. — Katt, 26, TN
Sit down and have an open conversation with them, learn their fears and their triggers so that when a panic attack arises, you’ll know how to handle it. Sitting and talking can help so much when everything is out in the open. — Meredith, 24, NC
I would tell them to be patient and kind. Try to talk to the person about their anxiety but understand if they need space. — Maddy, 21, MI
Give the person a moment to get their barrings before you start asking 100 times “can I help” but when the person has gathered their thoughts then just be a listening ear. — Anonymous
Make them feel that you will always be there. Don’t just say the words and just let them figure it out. Check in on them, not like a parent, but that’s one way someone can feel you will be there no matter what. Giving them space to an extent. If you give it too much for too long, then that will add to their anxiety. Try to get them out of the house, suggest an activity. Just like you would for any friend. Helping decide what we do or what the plan is can be extremely helpful.— Kit, 24, FL
Be patient, be gentle. Remember it isn’t our fault leaving the house feels like jamming our hand into a jar full of spiders sometimes. Reassure us that you care and that you won’t be angry if we can’t do something, or frequently reschedule. We know it’s irrational, but it still feels just as real. Don’t pressure, or belittle someone, because it may have taken more strength for them to get out of bed than it does for you to go to the gym. Be kind. To everyone. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
My advice would be to be patient. I know this sounds silly, but with an anxious person let them come to you and reach out. If we (people with anxiety) are continuously asked questions on how we feel or what can they do to help, it at times makes us feel even more anxious due to the fact we do not have answers. The one thing I feel is a big help is the nurturing love of others. — Taylor, 28, NE
Be patient, be there for them to talk to. Sometimes what they say won’t always make sense to you but do your best to understand. Please do not give up on them, it won’t be easy but do your best. Be there for them, that alone will show them that you care. Don’t overwhelm them, just let them know that you are there but don’t force it.— Kat, 37, MA
Share the one thing you really want people to understand most about anxiety.
We are not broken. Don’t treat us as such. We fight harder than most to simply make it through the day. We are strong people battling ourselves on the daily. And please, for the love of God, stop telling us we have nothing to be anxious about and to be happy. That’s just irritating and even insulting. — Katt, 26, TN
It’s real, and it’s terrifying, and it’s not something that can be blown off. I wish every day that I could be some “go with the flow” kind of girl, but I can’t, and I’ll never be able to be that way because of my anxiety. — Meredith, 24, NC
I want people to know that I don’t act like this for attention. I don’t choose to be this way and my anxiety does not define who I am as a person. — Maddy, 21, MI
Please don’t judge us, sometimes our minds hype up a situation. — Anonymous
That I am sorry for how my anxiety affects others. It’s a daily battle, and sometimes I feel like I have made tremendous strides while other times I feel like I’ll never be able to communicate. It’s exhausting. — Kit, 24, FL
It is a lot more inconvenient for us to feel this way than it is for you to spend some extra time reassuring us everything is ok. — Carly, 33, Ottawa
The one message I would send about anxiety is we as individuals are trying our very best every day to stay positive and calm. The triggers we deal with bring up emotions within and cause our bodies to close into fear and worry. If we could, we would wish it upon us not to experience anxiety. But thankfully there are many people out there that go through the same exact feelings and emotions, and they are someone who you can turn to for help or even a shoulder to lean on (or even reach out through social media). You are not alone. — Taylor, 28, NE
It doesn’t always make sense, but it is something that is bothering the individual. Mental illness will not always make sense to everyone, different people are affected in different ways. Please be patient with the individual. Help if you can but only if they want the help.— Kat, 37, MA
Before you ever judge “that anxious person,” please remember, we are human, too.