For people who have anxiety, everything is frightening. The train might not come at the right time, that report might not be as good as they thought and that car might have an accident right now. All this comes and goes in their mind, and they need to find a way to deal with it and continue to have a normal life. On top of everything, they have to constantly explain to the others why they feel in a certain way today, how anxiety is really a disease and what kind of support they need.
I remember how my friends laughed a few years ago when I told them that I can’t go to this concert because there are too many people. That was the reality; the idea of being in the middle of the crowd gave me anxiety right away, and I knew that going there meant a panic attack for me. “Everything is just in your mind” and “Just calm down” are the things that they were saying the most, like my anxiety could magically disappear in seconds. I should have changed in friends in that moment, but I did not.
It took me years to realize that I don’t have to justify or explain my anxiety to everyone, and that most of the people will not understand it anyway. Once I did this, everything got much easier. What you need to do?
You need to stop explaining what you feel to other people and if you do, stop expecting them to understand. If they can’t see you hurt or being sick, they won’t see anything wrong with you. And you know what? That’s alright!
Living with anxiety can be difficult at times, but this won’t stop you from being happy. In the moment you stop caring about how other people see you, you give yourself the chance to do the things you love and to avoid hurting yourself in any way. You are making a clear statement “This is me, this is who I am and I don’t need to explain it to you”. It might sound harsh, but it is effective.
The good news? It will get better. You will learn how to control your anxiety, and you will find friends who understand what you’re going through. Eventually, you will smile!