What you should not say to someone with anxiety – experiences 

Yes- anxiety is something we all have but as psychologists and any psychologist will explain to you is that we can all take in different amounts of stress. Some can take in a very small amount and for them that is the breaking point, whilst some can take a load and they are fine! There’s things we say to eachother and it’s not fine and not cool. We all need to be trained and understanding. 

1. “A lot of people have it worse” 

Going back to the point I made, worse for them may be easier for them to deal with than our situation. Firstly, you don’t know the full situation and detail of what goes on in a persons mind for you to understand how it’s impacting them! You don’t know how bad the situation is and how people take it! Everyone has different levels of sensitivity. You may think that this will help – it won’t! An anxious person will feel that they are not trying as hard or that their situation doesn’t matter!

2. “Everything will be alright”

What guarantee can you give and why does saying that help at all? They already are trying to get their minds to work and think like this which is causing anxiety and worrying thoughts to occur. Your reminder is unnecessary and may just cause extra worry!

3. “Just be Happy”

Happiness is an emotion! It is not something you can decide. You cannot force yourself to be happy! Similarly you can’t force yourself to cry/laugh/be angry! Instead ask what you can do to make them happier! The above is totally ignorant 

4. “It’s all in your head!”

Ofcourse it is. Our brain controls everything and the way we think! It’s in the mind which means it’s in the body! This also means it’s hard to get rid of! Try and help a friend get their mind of the situation.

5. “What reasons do you have for your anxiety?” 

The worst one! This causes further issues. Rather than asking this, say “if you want to discuss we can talk about your anxiety” 

6. “Why are you ignoring me?”

At times people just want to disappear from the face of the earth but it’s okay! Give them time! They’ll come round! Do not take it personally.

7. “And your starting like that again / attention seeking”

Seriously, is the worst thing you can say! That person will never trust you or want to discuss anything with you ever again! Remenber chemical imbalances she medical reasons also cause anxiety so you must be understanding. Choose your words carefully! 

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